Advertisement

Questions of Risk and Regulation

Hegemony, governance and the US chemical industry
  • Frank Pearce
  • Steve Tombs
Chapter
  • 138 Downloads
Part of the Advances in Natural and Technological Hazards Research book series (NTHR, volume 16)

Abstract

If, since the second world war, accelerated rates of technological development (and, in particular, the growth of ‘big science’ in the OECD countries) has fulfilled the Enlightenment promise of progress, at the same moment it has called it into question. Developments in the chemical and nuclear industries have helped magnify material wealth but, as the new social movements argued, and recent disasters have demonstrated, they have also created a society where we have an increased susceptibility to large scale disasters and chronic illnesses (Beck 1992a: 1992b). The response of the hegemonic social groups has been to significantly modify the ways in which production takes place, and the ways in which it is regulated. In some ways, at least, within these countries, it is now undertaken more safely than previously, if never as safe as government and corporate propagandists claim. However, the move to produce more basic chemicals in less developed countries where there is usually less regulation both displaces risk by exporting hazard (Ives 1985), and, at the same time, may well, in the long run, contribute to a general lowering of standards in OECD countries too (Pearce and Tombs 1994; Pearce and Snider 1995). In this chapter we will relate the changes in the ways in which chemical production is organised within the U.S. to these changes and to changes in its mode of governance. Overall, we want to argue that there has been effected ‘a passive revolution’ (Gramsci 1971: 119–120; Sassoon 1987: 204–217) in that these changes have occurred through procedures, and through discourses, that marginally modify but crucially sustain both the overall conception of group and societal interests held by the groups comprising the power block and, relatedly, the pre-existing modes of hegemonic dominance. Yet, because of a continuous reconfiguring of social relations and social forces within the American and global context, this new ‘settlement’ is inevitably unstable and recuperable.

Keywords

Chemical Industry Corporate Crime Risk Society American Enterprise Institute Methyl Isocyanate 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Acton, J.P and Dixon, L.S. (1992) Superfund and Transaction Costs: The Experience of Insurers and Very Large Industrial Firms, Santa Monica: Rand Corporation.Google Scholar
  2. Adams, W. and Brock, J. (1986) The Bigness Complex: Industry, Labor and Government in the American Economy, New York: Pantheon: 76–78.Google Scholar
  3. Adams, W. and Brock, J. (1991) Antitrust Economics on Trial: A Dialogue on the New Laissez-Faire, Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  4. Aftalion, F. (1991) A History of the International Chemical Industry, Philadelphia: Pennsylvania University Press.Google Scholar
  5. Aharoni, Y. (1991) The No-Risk Society, Chatham, NJ: Chatham House.Google Scholar
  6. Aglietta, M. (1979) A Theory of Capitalist Regulation, London: New Left Books.Google Scholar
  7. Baram, M. (1987) ‘Chemical Industry Hazards: liability, insurance and the role of risk analysis’, in Kleindorfer, P.R. and Kunreuther, H.C., eds., Insuring and Managing Hazardous Risks: From Seveso to Bhopal and Beyond, Springer Verlag, 415–442.Google Scholar
  8. Bardach, P. and Kagan, R. (1982) Going by the Book: The Problem of Regulatory Unreasonableness, Philadelphia: Temple University Press.Google Scholar
  9. Barnett, H. (1982) The Production of Corporate Crime in Corporate Capitalism’ in P. Wickham T. Dailey (eds) White Collar and Economic Crime, Lexington: Lexington Books: 157–170.Google Scholar
  10. Barnett, H. (1992) ‘Hazardous Waste, Distributional Conflict and a Trilogy of Failures’, Journal of Human Justice, 3, (2), 93–110.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Barnett, H. (1994) Toxic Debts and the Superfund Dilemma, Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press.Google Scholar
  12. Beck, U. (1992a) ‘From Industrial Society to the Risk Society: Questions of Survival,Social Structural and Ecological Enlightenment’, Theory, Culture and Society, Volume 9.Google Scholar
  13. Beck, U. (1992b) Risk Society: Towards a New Modernity, London: Sage.Google Scholar
  14. Becker, G. C. (1975) Human Capital, Chicago: Chicago University Press.Google Scholar
  15. Calavita, K. (1983) ‘The Demise of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration: a case study in symbolic action’, Social Problems, 30, 4, pp. 437–448.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Carson, R. (1962) Silent Spring, New York: Fawcett Crest.Google Scholar
  17. Chandler, A.D. (1990) Scale and Scope: The Dynamics of Industrial Capitalism, Cambridge: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  18. Chelius, J.R. (1977) Workplace Safety and Health, Washington DC: American Enterprise Institute.Google Scholar
  19. Cox, R. (1993) ‘Structural Issues of Global Governance: implications for Europe’, in Gill, S., ed., Gramsci, Historical Materialism and International Relations, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  20. Crooks, H. (1993) Giants of Garbage, Toronto: Lorrimer.Google Scholar
  21. Cutter, S. (1993) Living with Risk, London: Edw in Arnold.Google Scholar
  22. Dake, K. and Wildaysky, A. (1993) Theories of Risk Perception: Who Fears What and Why?’, in Burger, E.J., ed., Risk, Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.Google Scholar
  23. Donnelly, P. (1982) The Origins of the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970’, Social Problems, 30, (1), 13–25.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Douglas, M. (1993) ‘Risk as a Forensic Resource’, in Burger, E.J., ed, Risk, Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.Google Scholar
  25. Douglas, M. and Wildaysky, A. (1982) Risk and Culture, Berkeley: University of California Press.Google Scholar
  26. Draper, E. (1991) Risky Business. Genetic Testing and Exclusionary Practices in The Hazardous Workplace, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  27. Fellmeth, R. C. (1970) The Interstate Commerce Commission: The Public Interests and the ICC, New York: Grossman.Google Scholar
  28. Fine, B. (1990) “Scaling the Commanding Heights of Public Enterprise Economics”, Cambridge Journal of Economics, 14.Google Scholar
  29. Fligstein, N. (1990) The Transformation of Corporate Control, Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. Galanter, M. (1994) ‘The Transnational Traffic in Legal Remedies’, in Jasanoff, S., ed., Learning From Disaster. Risk Management After Bhopal, Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 133–157.Google Scholar
  30. Gill S. and Law, D. (1993)’Global Hegemony and the Structural Power of Capital’, in Gill, S., ed., Gramsci, Historical Materialism and International Relations,Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  31. Gramsci, A. (1971) Selections from the Prison Notebooks of Antonio Gramsci. Translated by Hoare, Q. and Nowell Smith, G., New York: International Publishers; London: Lawrence and Wisconsin.Google Scholar
  32. Hadden, S. (1994) ‘Citizen Participation in Environmental Policy-Making’, in Jasanoff, S., ed., Learning From Disaster. Risk Management After Bhopal, Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press.Google Scholar
  33. Hayek, F. (1949) Individualism and Society, London: Routledge and Kegan Paul.Google Scholar
  34. Hilgartner, S. (1992) The Social Construction of Risk Objects’, in Short Jr., J. F. and Clarke, L., Organizations, Uncertainty and Risk, Boulder: Westview Press.Google Scholar
  35. Hofrichter, R., ed. (1993) Toxic Struggles. The Theory and Practice of Environmental Justice, Philadelphia, PA: New Society Publishers.Google Scholar
  36. Hohfeld, W. (1913) ‘Some Fundamental Legal Conceptions as Applied in Legal Reasoning’, Yale Law Journal, 23.Google Scholar
  37. Hohnan, O. (1993) ‘Internationalisation and Democratisation: Southern Europe, Latin America and the World Economic Order’ in Gill, S., ed., Gramsci, Historical Materialism and International Relations, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  38. Horwitz, R.B. (1986) ‘Understanding Deregulation’, Theory and Society, Vol. 15.Google Scholar
  39. Horwitz, R. B. (1989) The Irony of Regulatory Reform, New York: Oxford University Press. Ives, J., ed. (1985) The Export of Hazard, London: Routledge Kegan Paul.Google Scholar
  40. Jessop, B. (1990) State Theory: Putting Capitalist States in Their Place, Cambridge: Polity Press. Jones, T. (1988) Corporate Killing: Bhopals Will Happen, London: Free Association Books.Google Scholar
  41. Kagan, R., (1984) ‘On Regulatory Inspectorates and Police’, in Hawkins, K., and Thomas, J., eds. (1984) Enforcing Regulation.Google Scholar
  42. Katzman, M. T. (1989) ‘Pollution Liability Insurance as a Mechanism for Managing Chemical Risks’, in Schnare, D. W. and Killingsworth, M.J and Palmer, J.S. (1992) Ecospeak: Rhetoric and Environmental Politics in America, Carbondale and Edwardsville: Southern Illinois University Press.Google Scholar
  43. King, R. (1990) Safety in the Process Industries, London: Butterworth-Heinemann.Google Scholar
  44. Kletz, T. (1990) Critical Aspects of Safety and Loss Prevention, London: Butterworths.Google Scholar
  45. Lepkowski, W. (1994) The Restructuring of Union Carbide’, in Jasanoff, S., ed., Learning From Disaster. Risk Management After Bhopal, Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 22–43.Google Scholar
  46. Lustig, R.J. (1982) Corporate Liberalism: The Origins of Modern American Political Theory, 1890–1920, Berkeley: University of California Press.Google Scholar
  47. Lyotard, J-F. (1984) The Postmodern Condition: A Report on Knowledge, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.Google Scholar
  48. Mahon, R. (1977) ‘Canadian Public Policy: the unequal structure of representation’, in Panitch, L., ed., The Canadian State: Political Economy and Political Power, Toronto: University of Toronto PressGoogle Scholar
  49. Mahon, R. (1979) ‘Regulatory Agencies: Captive Agents or Hegemonic Apparatuses’, Studies in Political Economy, 1, (1).Google Scholar
  50. McNamee, S.J. (1987) “Du Pont - State Relations”, Social Problems, 34, (1), February.Google Scholar
  51. Miller, P. and Rose, N. (1990) ’Governing Economic Life’, Economy and Society,19, (1).Google Scholar
  52. National Research Council (1983) Risk Assessment in the Federal Government: managing the process, Washington DC: National Academy Press.Google Scholar
  53. Navarro, V. (1983) ‘The Determinants of Social Policy, A Case Study: Regulating Health and Safety at the Workplace in Sweden’, International Journal of Health Services, 13.Google Scholar
  54. Nichols, T. (1986) Industrial Injuries in British Manufacturing in the 1980s: a commentary on Wright’s article’, Sociological Review, (2).Google Scholar
  55. Noble, C. (1986) Liberalism at Work: The Rise and Fall of OSHA,Philadelphia: Temple University Press. O’Malley, P. (1992) ‘Risk, Power and Crime Prevention’, Economy and Society,21, (3).Google Scholar
  56. Pearce, F. (1995) ‘Controlling, Reforming or Reconstructing the Corporation and its Economy: Remedies for Corporate Antisocial Conduct within US Capitalism“, in P. Stenning (ed) Essays on Accountability, Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  57. Pearce, F. and Snider, L. (1995) ‘Regulating Capitalism’, in Pearce, F. and Snider, L., eds., Corporate Crime: Ethics, Law and the State, Toronto: University of Toronto Press.Google Scholar
  58. Pearce, F. and Tombs, S. (1989) ‘Bhopal: Union Carbide and the Hubris of the Capitalist Technocracy Social Justice, 16, (2).Google Scholar
  59. Pearce, F. and Tombs, S. (1990) ‘Ideology, Hegemony and Empiricism: Compliance Theories of regulation’, British Journal Of Criminology (Autumn).Google Scholar
  60. Pearce, F. and Tombs, S. (1993) ‘US Capital versus the Third World: Union Carbide and Bhopal’, in Pearce, F. and Woodiwiss, M., eds., Global Crime Connections, London: Macmillan, pp. 187–211.Google Scholar
  61. Peltzman, Sam (1976) Toward a More General Theory of Regulation’, The Journal of Law and Economics, 19.Google Scholar
  62. Priest, G.L. (1993) ‘The New Legal Structure of Risk Control’, in Burger, E.J., ed., Risk, Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.Google Scholar
  63. Raphael, A. (1994) Ultimate Risk: The Inside Story of the Lloyd’s Catastrophe, London: Bantam Press. Robinson, J.C. (1991) Toil and Toxics. Workplace Struggles and Political Strategies for Occupational Health, Berkeley: University of California Press.Google Scholar
  64. Rose, N. (1993) ‘Government, Authority and Expertise in Advanced liberalism’, Economy and Society, 22, (3). Rose, N. and Miller. P. (1992) ’Political Power beyond the State: Problematics of Government’, British Journal of Sociology, 43, (2).Google Scholar
  65. Rosner, D. and Markowitz, G. (1989) Dying for Work: Safety and Health in Twentieth America, Bloomington: Indiana University Press.Google Scholar
  66. Rustin, M. (1994) ‘Incomplete Modernity: Ulrich Beck’s Risk Society’, Radical Philosophy, 67, Summer, 3–12. Sanders, J. (1992) ’Firm Risk Management in the Face of Product Liability Rules’, in Short, Jr. J. F. and Clarke, L., Organizations, Uncertainty and Risk, Boulder: Westview Press.Google Scholar
  67. Sassoon, A.S., (1987) Gramsci’s Politics, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.Google Scholar
  68. Sklar, M. (1988) The Corporate Reconstruction of American Capitalism 1890–1916, New York: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  69. Smith, M.A., ed. (1985) The Chemical Industry after Bhopal, London: BC Technical Services Ltd.Google Scholar
  70. Smith, R.S. (1976) The Occupational Safety and Health Act: Its Goals and Achievements, Washington: American Enterprise Institute.Google Scholar
  71. Smith, R.S. (1982) ‘Protecting Workers’ Health and Safety’, in Robert W. Poole Jr., ed., Instead of Regulation, Lexington, Mass.: Lexington Books.Google Scholar
  72. Stellman, J. and Daum, S. (1973) Work Is Dangerous to Your Health, New York: Vintage Books.Google Scholar
  73. Stigler, G. J. (1971) The Theory of Economic Regulation’, Bell Journal of Economics and Managerial Science, no. 2 (Spring).Google Scholar
  74. Szasz, A. (1984) ‘Industrial Resistance to Occupational Safety and Health Legislation: 1971–1981’, Social Problems, 32, (2).Google Scholar
  75. Teuber, A. (1993) ‘Justifying Risk’, in Burger, E.J., ed., Risk, Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.Google Scholar
  76. Tinker, T., Lehman, C., Neimark, M. (1988) ‘Bookkeeping for Capitalism: The Mystery of Accounting for Unequal Exchange’, in Mosco, V. and Wasco, J., The Political Economy of Information, Madison: The University of Wiscons in Press.Google Scholar
  77. Turner, J. (1970) The Chemical Feast,New York: Grossman.Google Scholar
  78. Viscusi, W.K. (1983) Risk by Choice: Regulating Health and Safety in the Workplace, Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  79. Weaver, P. (1978) ‘Regulation, Social Policy and Class Conflict’, in D.P. Jacobs, Regulating Business: The Search for an Optimum, San Francisco: Institute for Contemporary Studies.Google Scholar
  80. Weidenbaum, M. and de Fina, R. (1978) The Costs of Federal Regulation of Economic Activity. AEI Reprint no. 88, Washington, D.C.: American Enterprise Institute.Google Scholar
  81. Weinstein, J. (1%8) The Corporate Ideal in the Liberal State,Boston: Beacon Press.Google Scholar
  82. Wilson, G.K. (1985) The Politics of Safety and Health, Oxford: Clarendon Press.Google Scholar
  83. Wilson, H.T. (1976) The American Ideology: Science, Technology and Organization as Modes of Rationality in Advanced Industrial Societies, London: Routledge and Kegan Paul.Google Scholar
  84. Woodiwiss, A. (1993) Postmodernity USA, London: Sage.Google Scholar
  85. Wynne, B. (1989) ‘Frameworks of Rationality in Risk Management: towards the testing of naive sociology’, in Brown, J. ed., Environmental Threats: perception, analysis and management, London: Belhaven ESRC, 33–47.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Frank Pearce
    • 1
  • Steve Tombs
    • 2
  1. 1.Queens UniversityKingston OntarioCanada
  2. 2.School of Law, Social Work & Social Policy Josephine Butler HouseLiverpool John Moores UniversityLiverpoolUK

Personalised recommendations