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The Not So Holy War: Israelis, Palestinians and the US Mass Media

In his study for his Senior Capstone project in politics and government titled "The Not So Holy War: Israelis, Palestinians and the U.S. Media," Casey Nishimura found a shift in coverage in major U.S. news outlets on how each side is portrayed. For much of the long conflict, he noted, academics have claimed a bias in the U.S. media against the Palestinians. More recently, though, his studies revealed a shift in presentation that casts Israel in a more negative light. Nishimura used four study "frames," The Villain Frame, the Victim Frame, the Pursuer of Peace Frame and the Incompetent Frame to help quantify how each group was portrayed. He studied reports in the New York Times, the Washington Post and the Houston Chronicle. One reason for the shift, said Nishimura, is that reporters are relying less on official government releases and more on eyewitness reporting.

We are Here, We are Queer, We're Not Going Anywhere!: Successful Strategies of the LGBTQ Movement

Why did the strategy to defeat a California proposition in 1978 that would have prohibited gays from working in the state's public schools succeed, while another strategy to defeat the 2008 California proposition banning same-sex marriage failed? That was the topic of Politics and Government major Ally Ryoppy's senior project, "We are Here, We are Queer, We're Not Going Anywhere!: Successful Strategies of the LGBTQ Movement." Using social-movement theory plus historical data, Ryoppy laid out a thesis for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer (LGBTQ)'s strategies in dealing with the two propositions. Among the reasons the 2008 movement failed, she believes, was apathy within the general public, the lack of powerful political allies, and the styles of activism taken by each movement. "I think this issue is very prevalent in our society today, especially the gay rights movement that is occurring," she says, adding that she learned "an extreme amount by doing this exercise."

No Correspondent Left Behind: Media Analysis of the No Child Left Behind Act

The No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 was a sweeping piece of federal education policy reform. Lawmakers have historically opposed such changes, evidenced by toothless reforms and legislation following the Elementary and Secondary Education Act in 1965. As a key domestic policy issue, education receives coverage on a national and local scale. An analysis of print articles by The New York Times, the Oregonian, and The Star Tribune (Minneapolis) and television transcripts from abc, cbs, and nbc revealed three categories of frames: the political aspects of the law, the educational merit of the law, and finally, the revolt against the law's consequences. Specifically, political frames highlighted the concept of accountability or partisan bickering. Education frames focused on the standards and testing process and results, and the revolt frames examined the subsequent consequences. A source analysis also indicates a correlation between the frames and the identity of the source.

US Arms Transfers to Pakistan: Necessary or Risky Business?

The United States wields a tremendous amount of power via the arms trade, as it remains the largest weapons exporter in the world today. This trade affords certain economic, military and foreign policy advantages that are not available to other countries. This thesis analyzes how arms transfers to Pakistan affect US national security and interests. US arms sales to Pakistan are problematic at best and show deficiencies in the arms trade and hypocrisies of US foreign policy.

Union Suppression: A Comparative Analysis of the patco Strike and the Ravenswood Lockout

This thesis is a comparative study that analyzes two historical episodes involving labor union suppression during labor disputes. Comparing the modes of suppression used by governments and corporations, I analyze the patco strike, which is an example of government suppression, and the Ravenswood lockout, which is an example of private, corporate suppression. These case studies vary in many ways: the origin of suppressing force, the suppressive actions taken, and resulting outcome of the labor dispute. The analysis finds that government suppressive agents were more effective at suppressing the patco strike than the Ravenswood Corporation was at suppressing the lockout. This result shows how the distinct modes of suppression and the union's reaction to such suppression directly led to the defeat or victory of the labor dispute.

Supreme Opinion or Public Independence: The Supreme Court�s Power Over Public Opinion

The Supreme Court holds the power to decide the legitimacy of laws and statutes throughout the country. This power, however, is not absolute and is often limited. Public opinion has seemingly affected landmark decisions throughout history. Public opinion shifts after the decisions in Roe v. Wade, Brown v. Board of Education, and Bush v. Gore were examined in order to see whether the Court can actually alter public opinion. After looking at these three cases it is evident that an actual shift in opinion is a result of larger social events rather than the Court's influence.

Social Movements and Institutions of Power: Emerging Acceptance of Modern Forms of Contraception in the Catholic Dominated Philippines

This thesis analyzes the emerging acceptance of modern forms of contraception in the Philippines, despite the prevalent presence of the Catholic Church in both society and government. First, I use Michel Foucault's theory on power to explain the extent of the Church's influence and how it operates as a powerful institution. Applying social movement theory to the analysis, I explicate how the growing sentiment in favor of modern contraception is undermining the Church agenda on legislation regarding reproductive health. Though the Church and its conservative supporters are still influential in society and in government, support from average citizens, politicians, NGOs, and a large portion of the media has furthered the pro-contraception movement.

Foucault and the War on Drugs

Michel Foucault's conception of power provides a revealing lens to analyze the United States' war on drugs. Using a Foucaultian lens, I examine power relations in an effort to deepen our understanding of the inner-workings of the war on drugs. By analyzing the DARE program, drug testing, and the drug certification process I find that disciplines, rationalized by bio-power, animate the drug war. These drug-war-related programs attest to the erosion of the private sphere on a micro and macro level.

Conflicted, Captured & Corrupted?: Oregon Environmental Agencies Examined

This study examines two Oregon agencies with regulatory power: Environmental Quality Commission (EQC) and the Board of Forestry (BOF). Considering the members assembled in these agencies, I have conducted research to determine whether or not these members have a conflict of interest. Depending on the conflict of interests found in a department, I determined whether or not these agencies are being influenced or controlled by those who benefit from the decisions they are regulating, thus agency capture. I found that both conflict of interests and agency capture are present in these boards. This raises questions regarding how conflict of interests and agency capture are interfering with decision-making in Oregon.

Twenty-Five to Life: The Politics of Transfer Policies in the Juvenile Justice System

In 2005, 56% of all juvenile cases were transferred to adult criminal court; that's 1.7 million children. Transfer policies allow a juvenile to be tried in adult criminal court and sentenced to time in prison. Through an explanatory, multiple-case study, the political processes leading up to the insurgence of transfer policies is deconstructed on three levels: the due process revolution, the "get tough" movement, and public opinion. Examination of these three significant political shifts over the past fifty years leads to the conclusion that political shifts directly affect the changes in the justice paradigm.

From Radio Gaga to the Internet Blogosphere: A Policy Analysis of the Laws that Define Communications Reform and Technological Media

A key part of a working democracy is to ensure that the voting populace is informed on the policies and decisions their elected officials make. Citizens must understand important events in order to come to a proper conclusion on their opinion on how their country should respond. This is mostly accomplished through the media, whether it be radio, television, or the Internet. This thesis examines the evolution of communications policy in the United States and foreshadows the future based on analysis of a recent Net Neutrality bill in Congress.