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The control of politicians in divided societies: the politics of fear

Padró i Miquel, Gerard (2006) The control of politicians in divided societies: the politics of fear. 12573. National Bureau of Economic Research, Cambridge, MA., USA.

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Abstract

Autocrats in many developing countries have extracted enormous personal rents from power. In addition, they have imposed inefficient policies including pervasive patronage spending. I present a model in which the presence of ethnic identities and the absence of institutionalized succession processes allow the ruler to elicit support from a sizeable share of the population despite large reductions in welfare. The fear of falling under an equally inefficient and venal ruler that favors another group is enough to discipline supporters. The model predicts extensive use of patronage, ethnic bias in taxation and spending patterns and unveils a new mechanism through which economic frictions translate into increased rent extraction by the leader. These predictions are consistent with the experiences of bad governance, ethnic bias, wasteful policies and kleptocracy in post-colonial Africa.

Item Type: Monograph (Working Paper)
Official URL: http://www.nber.org
Additional Information: © 2006 Gerard Padro i Miquel
Library of Congress subject classification: J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
Journal of Economic Literature Classification System: O - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth > O1 - Economic Development > O17 - Formal and Informal Sectors; Shadow Economy; Institutional Arrangements: Legal, Social, Economic, and Political
D - Microeconomics > D7 - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making > D72 - Economic Models of Political Processes: Rent-Seeking, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
H - Public Economics > H2 - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue
O - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth > O5 - Economywide Country Studies > O55 - Africa
Sets: Collections > Economists Online
Departments > Economics
Research centres and groups > Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines (STICERD)
Rights: http://www.lse.ac.uk/library/usingTheLibrary/academicSupport/OA/depositYourResearch.aspx
Identification Number: 12573
Date Deposited: 12 May 2008 15:20
URL: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/4823/

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