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Article Title

Editor's Note

Abstract

This issue of the New England Journal of Public Policy is an eclectic mix. Its range and diversity, however, illuminate one of the less considered aspects of public policy: the fact that policy itself, despite the efforts of policy theorists, and on occasion policymakers and practitioners, to invest it with the trappings of rational, scientific method, rarely if ever is defined in politically or culturally neutral terms. The pretense that this is not so suggests that there exists some set of objective criteria that are impervious to either political or cultural dictates. In reality, of course, nothing could be further from the truth; policy is the product of our particular circumstances, of the normative yardsticks and values that imbue our political and cultural discourse, often with unforeseen impacts on and dislocations to its intended beneficiaries. In short, we often kill or at the very least maim with kindness.

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