Economic voting and economic revolutionizing? The economics of incumbency changes in European democracies and revolutionary events in the Arab World
While people in democracies can vote their government out when they are discontent with its policies, those in dictatorships cannot do so. They can only attempt to expel the dictator via mass protests or revolutions. Based on a general cause-and-effect mechanism, the author analyzes whether such mass protests are more likely when the economic situation is poor and vote outs are more likely under bad economic conditions. The empirical analysis provides evidence of economic voting in the European democracies. On the other hand, the results for the Arab World show that economic revolutionizing does not occur there. For this reason, the economics of the Arab Spring are analyzed in greater detail. It can be concluded that bad policy is punished in democracies only. Therefore, by using positive analysis, the investigation demonstrates the malfunctioning of the political market in dictatorships.
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