IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/spr/joevec/v10y2000i1p3-16.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Democracy and capitalism: Are they compatible in the long-run?

Author

Listed:
  • Peter Bernholz

    () (WWZ, Center for Economics and Business, Universit, t Basel, Postfach, CH-4003 Basel, Switzerland)

Abstract

Starting from a discussion of Schumpeter's analysis of the relationships of capitalism, socialism and democracy, it is shown that, in a complex society, democracy is only compatible with a decentralized market economy with safe property rights. But in time democracy shows a tendency to weaken the capitalist system by more and more regulations and an ever-increasing share of government (including the social security system) in GDP. This tendency is a consequence of political competition because of the development of interest groups and the presence of rationally uninformed voters. It leads to a weakening of efficiency, investment, innovation and thus to lower growth rates of GDP. But in time forces opposing this development arise. First, because of the negative consequences of growing government the welfare and regulatory state is bound to move into a crisis in the long run. Thus innovative politicians have a chance to win the support of a majority of voters for reform projects, who perceive finally the ever-increasing burden of higher taxes and regulations and realize that these burdens are not worth the benefits bestowed on them. In doing so, they may face, however, the competition of ideologies. Second, there are other states with lower taxes and less unnecessary regulations which show higher growth rates of GDP, and gain thus relative advantages in international political and military competition since they can command greater resources with the passage of time. To maintain their relative international power position, reforms are thus considered as necessary by rulers. This may be helped by pressure resulting from comparisons of the standards of living done by their citizens.

Suggested Citation

  • Peter Bernholz, 2000. "Democracy and capitalism: Are they compatible in the long-run?," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, vol. 10(1), pages 3-16.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:joevec:v:10:y:2000:i:1:p:3-16
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://link.springer.de/link/service/journals/00191/papers/0010001/00100003.pdf
    Download Restriction: Access to the full text of the articles in this series is restricted

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Bresnahan, Timothy F. & Trajtenberg, M., 1995. "General purpose technologies 'Engines of growth'?," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, pages 83-108.
    2. Giulio Bottazzi & Alex Coad & Nadia Jacoby & Angelo Secchi, 2011. "Corporate growth and industrial dynamics: evidence from French manufacturing," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 43(1), pages 103-116.
    3. J. Stan Metcalfe & John Foster & Ronnie Ramlogan, 2006. "Adaptive economic growth," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, pages 7-32.
    4. Sandro Sapio & Andrea Roventini & Mauro Napoletano, 2006. "Modelling smooth and uneven cross-sectoral growth patterns: an identification problem," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 15(7), pages 1-8.
    5. Dosi Giovanni, 2008. "Statistical Regularities in the Evolution of Industries. A Guide through Some Evidence and Challenges for the Theory," L'industria, Società editrice il Mulino, issue 2, pages 185-220.
    6. Nelson, R.R. & Wolff, E.N., 1992. "Factors Behind Cross-Industry Differences in Technical Progress," Working Papers 92-27, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
    7. David, P.A., 2000. "Understanding Digital Technology's Evolution and the Path of Measured Productivity Growth: Present and Future in the Mirror of the Past," Papers 99-011, United Nations World Employment Programme-.
    8. Eric Bartelsman & Stefano Scarpetta & Fabiano Schivardi, 2005. "Comparative analysis of firm demographics and survival: evidence from micro-level sources in OECD countries," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 14(3), pages 365-391, June.
    9. repec:ebl:ecbull:v:15:y:2006:i:7:p:1-8 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Richard Disney & Jonathan Haskel & Ylva Heden, 2003. "Entry, Exit and Establishment Survival in UK Manufacturing," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 51(1), pages 91-112, March.
    11. Nelson, Richard R. & Wolff, Edward N., 1997. "Factors behind cross-industry differences in technical progress," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 8(2), pages 205-220, June.
    12. Nunes Amaral, Luís A & Buldyrev, Sergey V & Havlin, Shlomo & Maass, Philipp & Salinger, Michael A & Eugene Stanley, H & Stanley, Michael H.R, 1997. "Scaling behavior in economics: The problem of quantifying company growth," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 244(1), pages 1-24.
    13. Giulio Bottazzi & Angelo Secchi, 2006. "Explaining the distribution of firm growth rates," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 37(2), pages 235-256, June.
    14. Freeman, Chris & Louca, Francisco, 2002. "As Time Goes By: From the Industrial Revolutions to the Information Revolution," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199251056.
    15. Xavier Gabaix, 2011. "The Granular Origins of Aggregate Fluctuations," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 79(3), pages 733-772, May.
    16. Harberger, Arnold C, 1998. "A Vision of the Growth Process," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, pages 1-32.
    17. Carree, M. A. & Thurik, A. R., 1999. "The carrying capacity and entry and exit flows in retailing," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 17(7), pages 985-1007, October.
    18. Sandro Sapio & Grid Thoma, 2006. "The Growth of Industrial Sectors: Theoretical Insights and Empirical Evidence from U.S. Manufacturing," LEM Papers Series 2006/09, Laboratory of Economics and Management (LEM), Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies, Pisa, Italy.
    19. Bottazzi, Giulio & Secchi, Angelo, 2003. "Why are distributions of firm growth rates tent-shaped?," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 80(3), pages 415-420, September.
    20. Charolina CASTALDI & Giovanni Dosi, 2004. "Income Levels and Income Growth: Some New Cross-Country Evidence and some Interpretative Puzzles," DEGIT Conference Papers c009_038, DEGIT, Dynamics, Economic Growth, and International Trade.
    21. Carolina Castaldi & Giovanni Dosi, 2007. "The patterns of output growth of firms and countries: new evidence on scale invariances and scale specificities," LEM Papers Series 2007/14, Laboratory of Economics and Management (LEM), Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies, Pisa, Italy.
    22. Gort, Michael & Klepper, Steven, 1982. "Time Paths in the Diffusion of Product Innovations," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 92(367), pages 630-653, September.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Facchini, François & Melki, Mickaël, 2013. "Efficient government size: France in the 20th century," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 31(C), pages 1-14.
    2. François Facchini & Mickaël Melki, 2011. "Optimal government size and economic growth in France (1871-2008) : An explanation by the State and market failures," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) halshs-00654363, HAL.
    3. Niklas Potrafke, 2012. "Political cycles and economic performance in OECD countries: empirical evidence from 1951–2006," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 150(1), pages 155-179, January.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Capitalism - Democracy - Growth of government - Welfare state - Regulations - Uninformed voters - International competition - Ideologies;

    JEL classification:

    • D78 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Positive Analysis of Policy Formulation and Implementation
    • L33 - Industrial Organization - - Nonprofit Organizations and Public Enterprise - - - Comparison of Public and Private Enterprise and Nonprofit Institutions; Privatization; Contracting Out
    • P16 - Economic Systems - - Capitalist Systems - - - Political Economy of Capitalism

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:spr:joevec:v:10:y:2000:i:1:p:3-16. See general 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: (Sonal Shukla) or (Rebekah McClure). General contact details of provider: http://www.springer.com .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.