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Dictatorship in a single export crop economy

  • Lode Berlage

    ()

  • Bart Capéau

    ()

  • Philip Verwimp

    ()

Is it a matter of pure altruism or short-sightedness when a dictator spends an increasing amount of his revenues for the population, while cutting on own consumption? In order to be able to consume, the dictator first has to stay in power. We present a formal model of a power maximizing dictator. His revenues depend on the exports of a single crop. With the export earnings the dictator buys loyalty from the producers of the export crop by setting the domestic producer price. Revenues resulting from the difference between the international and the domestic price of the crop are used to finance a repressive apparatus. We characterize the optimal trade-off between buying more loyalty and adapting the level of repression. The model is illustrated with a case study of Rwanda under president Habyarimana (1973-94).

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File URL: http://www.econ.kuleuven.ac.be/ew/academic/econover/Papers/wpdcsec.pdf
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Paper provided by Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Centrum voor Economische Studiën, Working Group Public Economics in its series Public Economics Working Paper Series with number wpdcsec.

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Length: 34 pp.
Date of creation: 2003
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wpe:papers:wpdcsec
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  1. Daron Acemoglu & James A. Robinson, 2001. "A Theory of Political Transitions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(4), pages 938-963, September.
  2. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521794497 is not listed on IDEAS
  3. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521583299 is not listed on IDEAS
  4. Sachs, J-D & Warner, A-M, 1995. "Natural Resource Abundance and Economic Growth," Papers 517a, Harvard - Institute for International Development.
  5. Ricky Lam & Leonard Wantchekon, 1999. "Dictatorships as a Political Dutch Disease," Working Papers 795, Economic Growth Center, Yale University.
  6. Hardle, W., 1992. "Applied Nonparametric Methods," Papers 9206, Tilburg - Center for Economic Research.
  7. Verwimp, Philip, 2003. "The political economy of coffee, dictatorship, and genocide," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 161-181, June.
  8. Lam, R., 1999. "Dictatorship as a Political Dutch Disease," Papers 795, Yale - Economic Growth Center.
  9. Oliver LINTON, . "Applied nonparametric methods," Statistic und Oekonometrie 9312, Humboldt Universitaet Berlin.
  10. repec:dgr:kubcen:19926 is not listed on IDEAS
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