We explore the hypothesis that long-term commitments affect the dynamics of government expenditure. With the aid of a simple median-voter model we interpret the pattern of increasing-then-constant tax rates observed in OECD countries in the second half of the last century: persistence of public expenditure and a lower bound on new interventions will push government size upward, and preferences of the electorate put a halt to this growth at some point. In this view, the fiscal policy variable is seen to consist of only a part of the total expenditure, the rest being predetermined by its past level.
|Numero di pagine||15|
|Rivista||Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics|
|Stato di pubblicazione||Published - 2012|
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