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Trade Restrictions on Farmland - a Utilitarian Analysis of Paternalistic Laws


  • Mann, Stefan


The aim of this paper is to approach the normative analysis of paternalistic laws. Our examples are restrictions on trade in agricultural land: a quantitative restriction in Switzerland and Germany and a fixed price range for lease land in France. We develop a normative framework from the literature and apply it to the restrictions. It shows that the quantitative restrictions apparently rest on a misunderstanding of structural change and can therefore hardly be justified, whereas the price allegation protects from information asymmetries which would lead to unfair results. Hence it can be shown that a normative analysis of paternalistic interventions can produce meaningful results.

Suggested Citation

  • Mann, Stefan, 2005. "Trade Restrictions on Farmland - a Utilitarian Analysis of Paternalistic Laws," Working Papers 30709, Agroscope Reckenholz Tanikon (ART).
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:artawp:30709
    DOI: 10.22004/ag.econ.30709

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. New, Bill, 1999. "Paternalism and Public Policy," Economics and Philosophy, Cambridge University Press, vol. 15(1), pages 63-83, April.
    2. Severine Deneulin, 2002. "Perfectionism, Paternalism and Liberalism in Sen and Nussbaum's Capability Approach," Review of Political Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 14(4), pages 497-518.
    3. Gordon Tullock & Jimmye Hillman, 1991. "Public Choice and Agriculture: An American Example," International Economic Association Series, in: Partha Dasgupta (ed.), Issues in Contemporary Economics, chapter 5, pages 98-118, Palgrave Macmillan.
    4. Mann, Stefan, 2003. "Why organic food in Germany is a merit good," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 28(5-6), pages 459-469.
    5. Mann, Stefan & Mante, Juliane, 2004. "Of Farmers And Butchers - Comparing The Determinants Of Exit In Shrinking Sectors," Working Papers 30708, Agroscope Reckenholz Tanikon (ART).
    6. Schmitt, Gunther, 1989. "Simon Kuznets' "Sectoral Shares in Labor Force": A Different Explanation of His ( I + S)/ A Ratio," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(5), pages 1262-1276, December.
    7. Rucker, Randal R & Thurman, Walter N, 1990. "The Economic Effects of Supply Controls: The Simple Analytics of the U.S. Peanut Program," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 33(2), pages 483-515, October.
    8. Burrows, Paul, 1995. "Analyzing legal paternalism," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 489-508, December.
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