Comparative Politics and Public Finance
The postwar neoclassical theory of normative public finance has been written from a Pigovian perspective. It addresses questions about optimal taxation and allocation of public goods from the perspective of a benevolent social planner. This field of research has produced many important principles and insights regarding what governments should do. It nevertheless suffers from an important weakness, which has been forcefully pointed out by the Public Choice school: it neglects that political representatives rationally follow their self-interest.
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