Research

The Vote Motive


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https://iea.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/The Vote Motive.pdf
The economics of politics applies the techniques of economic analysis (monopoly, competition, information costs, etc.) to political and bureaucratic behaviour.

It drops the conventional assumption that politicians and bureaucrats try to serve only ‘the public interest’ and more realistically assumes that, as elsewhere, they try to serve their own interests by, for example, seeking re-election and empire-building. The vote motive in politics is the profit motive in industry.

The new economic theory has, since 1960, been revealing the strengths and ‘imperfections’ of government as established economic theory since 1776 has revealed the strengths and ‘imperfections’ of the market. It thus provides a rational explanation for economically irrational policies such as on Concorde, devolution, commuter fares, agricultural subsidies, regional employment and the siting of nationalised undertakings.

Hobart Paperback 9

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