Dictatorship in a single export crop economy
AbstractWe provide an analysis of a power-maximising model for dictatorial behaviour. In the model, the dictator’s revenues depend on the exports of a single crop. Using export earnings the dictator buys loyalty from the producers of the export crop by setting the domestic producer price. Revenues resulting from the difference between the international and the domestic price of the crop are used to finance a repressive apparatus. We present a complete comparative statics analysis of the choice between repression and loyalty to obtain power, in response to changes in the international price of the single crop in the economy. The results allow for a novel classification of power-maximising behaviour into benevolent, tyrannical and totalitarian dictatorships. We argue that the model and the associated dictatorship typology can be embedded into Wintrobe’s more general specification of a dictator’s objective function, which combines aspirations for power with rent-seeking motives. We compare our analysis with empirical observations of the Habyarimana regime in Rwanda (1973–1994). JEL Classification Numbers: D72, H30, H56.
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Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by in its journal Journal of Theoretical Politics.
Volume (Year): 24 (2012)
Issue (Month): 2 (April)
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Other versions of this item:
- Lode Berlage & Bart Capéau & Philip Verwimp, 2003. "Dictatorship in a single export crop economy," Public Economics Working Paper Series wpdcsec, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Centrum voor Economische Studiën, Working Group Public Economics.
- Lode Berlage & Bart Capeau & Philip Verwimp, 2003. "Dictatorship in a Single Export Crop Economy," Center for Economic Studies - Discussion papers ces0311, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Centrum voor Economische Studiën.
- D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
- H30 - Public Economics - - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents - - - General
- H56 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - National Security and War
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