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Why party and how much? The Soviet State and the party finance

Author

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  • Eugenia Belova

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  • Valery Lazarev

Abstract

Archival data on annual budgets of the Communist party shed light on how this cornerstone Soviet institution was maintained and on the party-state relationships in a one-party polity. The party depended on subsidies from the state budget until the mid-1950s and became largely self-financed afterwards. The costs of maintaining the party were significant compared to other branches of government. We consider three models of the party – “party-agent”, “party-ruler” and “party-political club” – to study the evolution of the party’s institutional role and find that by the 1950s, the party transforms from an economic agent of the state into an increasingly autonomous institution. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Suggested Citation

  • Eugenia Belova & Valery Lazarev, 2007. "Why party and how much? The Soviet State and the party finance," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 130(3), pages 437-456, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:pubcho:v:130:y:2007:i:3:p:437-456
    DOI: 10.1007/s11127-006-9096-y
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s11127-006-9096-y
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Martin C. McGuire & Mancur Olson Jr., 1996. "The Economics of Autocracy and Majority Rule: The Invisible Hand and the Use of Force," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 34(1), pages 72-96, March.
    2. Ferrero, Mario, 2001. "Political exchange in mass party regimes and the transition from socialism," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 25(4), pages 365-379, December.
    3. Valery Lazarev, 2005. "Economics of One-Party State: Promotion Incentives and Support for the Soviet Regime1," Comparative Economic Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Association for Comparative Economic Studies, vol. 47(2), pages 346-363, June.
    4. Anderson, Gary M & Boettke, Peter J, 1997. "Soviet Venality: A Rent-Seeking Model of the Communist State," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 93(1-2), pages 37-53, October.
    5. Lazarev, Valery & Gregory, Paul, 2003. "Commissars and cars: A case study in the political economy of dictatorship," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 1-19, March.
    6. Dmitriy Gershenson & Herschel I. Grossman, 2001. "Cooption and Repression in the Soviet Union," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 13(1), pages 31-47, March.
    7. Schnytzer, Adi & Sustersic, Janez, 1998. "Why Join the Party in a One-Party System?: Popularity versus Political Exchange," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 94(1-2), pages 117-134, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. Lazarev, Valery, 2007. "Political labor market, government policy, and stability of a non-democratic regime," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 546-563, September.
    2. John Bishop & Haiyong Liu, 2008. "Liberalization and rent-seeking in China’s labor market," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 135(3), pages 151-164, June.

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