Is Government Inevitable?

Independent Review, Forthcoming

Posted: 8 Feb 2006  

Peter T. Leeson

George Mason University - Department of Economics

Edward Stringham

San Jose State University

Abstract

Inspired by Holcombe's (2004) argument that government is inevitable, this paper reconsiders some of his claims. We contend that his argument fails on two counts: it both fails to show that anarchy must break down and that limited government will not. The arguments Holcombe raises against the viability of anarchy can be applied to the viability of limited government, and the arguments he uses for the viability of limited government can be applied to the viability of anarchy. We discuss the problems with Holcombe's theoretical arguments as well as historical evidence that casts doubt on his claims.

Suggested Citation

Leeson, Peter T. and Stringham, Edward, Is Government Inevitable?. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=881776

Peter T. Leeson (Contact Author)

George Mason University - Department of Economics ( email )

4400 University Drive
Fairfax, VA 22030
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.peterleeson.com

Edward Stringham

San Jose State University ( email )

San Jose, CA 95192-0066
United States

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