For at least a generation, experts have warned us not reach out to others. Too much help makes people passive and dependent, we are told, and self interest is the only motive that spurs us to work and contribute to society. Liberals and conservatives alike have endorsed this new moral code for government.The Samaritan's Dilemma challenges this conventional wisdom.Deborah Stone argues that we are born needing help, we die needing help, and we live out our days getting and giving help. We live by everyday altruism.The Samaritan’s Dilemma warns that when leaders define the ideal citizen as someone who pursues his self interest and withholds help from others, good people are repelled by politics.
Deborah Stone is a visiting and research professor in the Department of Government and the Rockefeller Center at Dartmouth College. She has an A.B. in Russian studies from the University of Michigan and a Ph.D. in political science from MIT. From 1986 to 1999, she held the David R. Pokross Chair in Law and Social Policy at Brandeis University, and before that was on the faculty at M.I.T. for nine years and Duke University for three. She has held visiting professorships at the Yale School of Organization and Management, Tulane University, Radcliffe College, and the University of Bremen, Germany. Her book, Policy Paradox: The Art of Political Decision Making (W.W. Norton, 1997 and 2001), is used in teaching programs around the world. In 2002, it won the American Political Science Association’s Aaron Wildavsky Award for an Enduring Contribution to Policy Studies. She has published numerous articles in scholarly journals and edited books, and has written for The American Prospect, The Nation, New Republic and other magazines.
Jacobs, Lawrence R..
The Samaritan's Dilemma: Should Government Help Your Neighbor?.
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