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Accountability of Political Party Elites: Intra-party Democratization in the New Zealand Alliance

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Political parties are essential to societal democracy and internal party democracy is a necessary complement to the democratic functioning of the polity. However, the democratization of parties is notoriously difficult and the accountability of elites is at the crux of this difficulty. This dissertation describes case study research into the problems of elite accountability in a political party and compares similar efforts in others. In New Zealand activists of the Alliance party made use of internet communication in their struggle to hold leaders accountable for unmandated action. The research traces the change in power from leaders to member networks as the communication regime changes from hierarchical to horizontal. It is argued that, through the use of computer-mediated communication, activists create a new regime of information flow in the organization so that the importance of the monopoly of organizational resources by officials is negated by the network capital of the activists. Through this transformational action activists overcome the heteronomy of a hierarchical structure in favor of the agency of members.
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One: Truth and Closeness to Truth.- 1.1 The problem of truthlikeness.- 1.2 Explications and intuitions.- 1.3 Some adequacy conditions.- Notes.- Two: Popper on Truthlikeness.- 2.1 Truthlikeness in Popper's methodology.- 2.2 Truthlikeness by truth content and falsity content.- 2.3 Measuring truth content and falsity content.- Notes.- Three: Distance in Logical Space.- 3.1 Conceptual frameworks and possible worlds.- 3.2 Distance between propositions.- 3.3 Measuring the symmetric difference.- 3.4 Truthlikeness for a propositional framework.- 3.5 Truthlikeness by similarity spheres.- Notes.- Four: Truthlikeness by Distributive Normal Forms.- 4.1 Languages and pictures.- 4.2 Worlds and interpretations.- 4.3 Constituents in a first-order language.- 4.4 The symmetric difference on constituents.- 4.5 The propositional measure extended.- Notes.- Five: Beyond First-Order Truthlikeness.- 5.1 Questions, answers, and propositional distance again.- 5.2 Infinitely deep theories and ultimate questions.- 5.3 Higher-order frameworks.- 5.4 Verisimilitude and legisimilitude.- Notes.- Six: Truthlikeness and Translation.- 6.1 Invariance under translation.- 6.2 The identity of states of affairs.- 6.3 Coactualisation and structure.- 6.4 Two criticisms of the structure argument.- 6.5 Numerical accuracy, confirmation and disconfirmation.- 6.6 Privileged properties.- Notes.- Seven: Truthlikeness, Content, and Utility.- 7.1 The content condition.- 7.2 The attractions of brute strength.- 7.3 Epistemic utilities.- 7.4 Accuracy and action: a conjecture.- Notes.- 8.1 First-order languages and their interpretations.- 8.2 Higher-order languages.- 8.3 Examples J and K formalized.- 8.4 First-order normal forms.- 8.5 Permutative normal forms.- 8.6 The distance between constituents.- Notes.- References.
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