Show Less

Autocratic, Democratic, and Optimal Government

Fiscal Choices and Economic Outcomes

William A. Niskanen

This book presents simple models of the major alternative types of political regimes, estimates of the parameters of these models, and quantitative estimates of the fiscal choices and economic outcomes of these regimes. William Niskanen provides valuable analysis of the effects of the voting rule, the progressivity of the tax structure, and the length of the fiscal horizon in democratic governments and interesting insights of the effects of alternative regimes on policies, such as war and immigration, that affect the number of people subject to the regime.
Buy Book in Print
Show Summary Details
You do not have access to this content

Chapter 10: Conclusion

William A. Niskanen


Every type of political regime has had its defenders, not all of whom were paid apologists. A comparison of the major types of regimes, however, has been complicated by two conditions: the conceptual case for each type of regime was often made on different grounds, and a comparison of the outcomes of the different regimes is complicated by different initial conditions and different economic effects of the primary fiscal decisions. For these reasons, the evaluation of the major types of political regimes in this book is based on a common standard, the same initial conditions, and the same relation between the fiscal choices and economic outcomes. The strength and breadth of the conclusions from this analysis suggests that this has been a worthwhile endeavor. ON THE CHOICE OF REGIMES A comparison of the major types of political regimes, such as summarized in Chapter 4, presents a sharp contrast of the fiscal choices and economic outcomes. Autocracy An autocratic government will choose a level of general government expenditures and a tax rate to maximize the net income of the autocracy. This leads an autocratic government to choose a relatively low level of expenditures for government services to the general population, because it values these services only to the extent that they add to the net income of the autocracy. For the same reason, an autocratic government will 107 108 Autocratic, Democratic, and Optimal Government not tax the autocracy but will levy a revenue-maximizing tax rate on...

You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.

Elgaronline requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals. Please login through your library system or with your personal username and password on the homepage.

Non-subscribers can freely search the site, view abstracts/ extracts and download selected front matter and introductory chapters for personal use.

Your library may not have purchased all subject areas. If you are authenticated and think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

Further information

or login to access all content.