By Robert M. Uriu

This publication chronicles how a debatable set of coverage assumptions in regards to the jap financial system, referred to as revisionism, rose to develop into the root of the exchange coverage process of the Clinton management. within the context of turning out to be worry over Japan's expanding financial energy, revisionists argued that Japan represented a particular type of capitalism that was once inherently closed to imports and that posed a chance to U.S. high-tech industries. Revisionists recommended a "managed exchange" resolution during which the japanese govt will be pressured to put aside a proportion of the marketplace for international items. the writer describes the function that quite a few American teachers, executive officers, and enterprise leaders performed in constructing revisionist inspiration. Revisionism used to be at its top simply because the Clinton management got here into workplace. the writer makes use of huge interviews with coverage makers to track the interior discussions contained in the Clinton White condo, which culminated within the adoption of revisionist coverage after which to calls for for "results-oriented" alternate agreements through the Framework negotiations. This publication info how Japan refused to simply accept those controlled alternate suggestions, and fought to discredit revisionism and to rally worldwide help opposed to American unilateralism.

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Extra info for Clinton and Japan: The Impact of Revisionism on U.S. Trade Policy

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Indeed, assumptions often play their most powerful roles precisely when they are not recognized. See Jervis (1970) on the ‘stickiness’ of perceptions. 11 Clinton and Japan At this point, a few concrete examples might clarify how this concept works in practice. When the North Korean economy began to collapse in the mid-1990s, the US government might have defined the issue as a humanitarian one, since estimates were that millions of North Korean civilians would die as the result. Or, policy makers might have conceived of the situation as an opportunity to end the Kim regime and solve nuclear proliferation concerns once and for all.

Second, it is not always easy to determine the direction of causality. At times, new goals and new policy assumptions are announced simultaneously, so it can be unclear which is driving which. The analyst must have at least some access to those making policy, and even then causality is not always clear. Furthermore, one can think of cases where an end goal is defined first, and then policy assumptions are cynically manipulated to justify that goal. ) Clearly, at times, policy makers try to use assumptions strategically or instrumentally to hide ulterior motives.

The fact that policy assumptions are tangible and defined makes the task a bit easier. That is, since they are a concrete element of the policymaking process, one can more easily trace the contest over their adoption, and can thus more easily discern when they have a causal impact on policy change. Conversely, we 16 Even in cases where a nation’s policy assumptions are focused, as they were for the US during much of the Cold War, or perhaps after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the policy process remains a complex one with multiple courses of action available.

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