Universal Suffrage: The Century of Corrupting Incentives?
New Perspectives on Political Economy Vol. 14, No 1-2, 2018, pp. 63-89
33 Pages Posted: 15 Aug 2019 Last revised: 17 Mar 2020
Date Written: August 12, 2018
Conflict of interest of welfare dependent voter creates wrong incentives. These incentives inherent to universal suffrage, yield consequences, as predicted by John Adams back in the 18-th century. Historically the rise of the modern welfare state might be traced to the emergence of mainstream left parties, which promoted government care “from the cradle to the grave”. This paper will address the damages to Democracy caused by conflict of interest, which led to irresponsible leadership and permanent peacetime budget deficit. Historical examples from the 1990s show possible escapes from the trap of universal suffrage.
Keywords: Universal Suffrage, Conflict of Interest, Left Parties, Budget Deficit, Regulations
JEL Classification: D72, D73, H62, N40
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation