@article{Sussman2004, author="Gerald Sussman and Lawrence Galizio", title="The Global Reproduction of American Politics", year="2004", journal="Political Communication", volume="20-3", number="July-Sept", pages="309-328", annote="

Question(s) addressed by the author and working arguments

This article examines the transformation, commodification, and transnationalization of U.S. electoral politics, a phenomenon circumscribed by a globalizing neoliberal regime of accumulation.

Approaching the subject from a political economic perspective, the study critiques the conventional understanding of electoral change captured in the expression “profesionalization of politics.” The principal concern broadly focuses on the organizing tactics of professional consultants. Heavy campaign spending lifts all boats of all those directly employed by the electoral process, including the biggest ships of state and corporate capital.

Most important is that large scale private financing enables corporations to maintain a disproportionate hold on political discourse and practice, putting national politicians on a full-time money chase during their legislative lives and allowing corporate industry lobbyists and wealthy donors highly privileged access to politicians and to legislative and administrative policy.

As a functional conception, profesionalization holds that as elections are conducted on a more technical basis, such as with the use of voter databases, there comes with this development a greater need for new forms of expertise, which become central to the process.

But as elections become more industrialized (process-centered), and significantly more expensive. The “pay-to-play” precondition for candidacy and office favors highly financed organized interests, making natural allies of the consultants, the public opinion specialists, the media advisors, the mass media, the corporate political action committees (PACs), and other friendly governments and politicos in pursuit of common neoliberal objectives –in short, the “political-industrial complex.”

Despite the fact that the majority repeatedly chooses not vote in local, state, and national elections, elite spokespersons still hold up the ritual as the most valid test of the government’s legitimacy. In a context in which the concentration of wealth has reached such borderless proportions that many corporations have more assets than nation states, politics is no simple being “professionalized,” it is becoming more intensively industrialized, commercialized, monetized, and transnationalized.

Conceptual references to transnational – transnationalism

Transnationalized, transnational interests.

Conclusions or Final Remarks

Discursively, the professionalization thesis shifts the public gaze away from the question of how organized transnational interests, including media corporations, employ election events, symbolism, and public engagement to sustain their own legitimacy and reproduction. Professionalization facilitates more direct influence of political action committees and direct contributions from corporate interests, eliminates much of the guest work and horsetrading in politics, and rationalizes the best electoral system that money can buy.

", keyword0="Mass Media", keyword1="Neoliberalism", keyword2="Political Parties", keyword3="Politics", type="journal" }