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Predation, Efficiency, and Inequality

  • Herschel I. Grossman
  • Minseong Kim

This paper analyzes a general-equilibrium model in which each person can choose to be either a producer or a predator. This model shows how predation breaks the link between the interpersonal distribution of productive resources and the inter-personal distribution of consumption. Specifically, we find that in this model the Rawlsian criterion of maximizing the expected consumption of the least advantaged person selects an unegalitarian distribution of productive resources in which a positive fraction of people have only the minimum possible endowment of productive resources. Also, an egalitarian distribution of productive resources is not even Pareto efficient.

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Article provided by Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen in its journal Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics.

Volume (Year): 158 (2002)
Issue (Month): 3 (September)
Pages: 393-

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Handle: RePEc:mhr:jinste:urn:sici:0932-4569(200209)158:3_393:peai_2.0.tx_2-o
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  1. Grossman, Herschel I & Kim, Minseong, 1995. "Swords or Plowshares? A Theory of the Security of Claims to Property," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(6), pages 1275-88, December.
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