The book takes some ideas from math and science. Without actually mentioning linearity, they sort of skip right to non-linearity and then whether or not politics exhibits behavior characteristic of equilibria or not. They do all of this completely qualitatively, so I was prepared to treat it as a metaphor, rather than actual math. Their other metaphor is "punctuated equilibrium" associated commonly with Stephen Jay Gould, but with a longer and more interesting history: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Punctuated_equilibrium.
It is _okay_ to use metaphors from science to think about other things. I don't have a problem with that. It is _not okay_ to think that you actually get the kinds of things that go with actually doing the math to come along with that metaphorical use, and I don't know yet whether these authors will attempt that.
In the meantime, I'm complaining about an incorrect name.
"This is the well-known paradox of voting, first analyzed by the French mathematician Concordet [sic] in the late eighteenth century and rediscovered by Duncan Black in the 1950s."
Concordet? What, like a miniature SST, or short peace treaty? No. Condorcet. Math people do math stuff, and I apply math rules to determining their accuracy, relevance, plausibility. Word people do word stuff, and I apply word rules to etc. _Condorcet_.
This is the second edition. 6% of the book is introductions, plural. And we can't get the proper nouns right? I actually _have a rule_ about not buying poli or econ stuff from University of Chicago. And here's another reason why.