The U.S. Army as a Rational Economic Agent: The Choice of Draft Animals during the Civil War
AbstractThe Army has historically been ridiculed as an inefficient institution which neither responds to incentives, nor acts as a rational economic agent. This paper argues that historically there were instances in which the army acted in ways analogous to "market driven" institutions. During the Civil War the Army tried to issue the more abuse-resistant, yet more expensive, mule to its soldiers instead of a less expensive substitute, the horse. It is argued that this practice was to mute the effects of agency problems, as was done in southern agriculture and in U.S. mining. This finding has implications for the Army today, as well as for other institutions with similar agency problems, that issue physical capital to their agents.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Eastern Economic Association in its journal Eastern Economic Journal.
Volume (Year): 22 (1996)
Issue (Month): 3 (Summer)
Contact details of provider:
Postal: c/o Dr. Alexandre Olbrecht, The Anisfield School of Business 205, Ramapo College, 505 Ramapo Valley Road, Ramapo, New Jersey 07430, USA
Phone: (201) 684-7346
Web page: http://www.ramapo.edu/eea/journal.html
More information through EDIRC
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- N41 - Economic History - - Government, War, Law, International Relations, and Regulation - - - U.S.; Canada: Pre-1913
- H57 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Procurement
You can help add them by filling out this form.
reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.Access and download statisticsgeneral information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Victor Matheson, College of the Holy Cross).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.