Monday, June 05, 2006

Utilitarismo socialista vai perdendo pontos

Less is more de Constantin Gurdgiev:

«When it comes to government spending, less is more. Less government spending and involvement in the economy - both in terms of regulatory interference and taxation burden - are associated with higher rates of economic growth, better productivity and more diverse markets for products. This is supported by country-specific evidence and several long-running international indices ranking economic environments.

To discount the benefits of the minimal government, the state-reliant opponents of free markets and personal freedom usually argue that while less government may indeed mean more economic prosperity, smaller governments deliver lower quality of public services. In doing so, supporters of the large welfare state usually point to the alleged lack of public services in the US - a myth hardly supported by reality. The supposedly contrasting social-services-in "rich" European welfare states are similarly mythical.


Overall, the study concludes that "It may be surprising, even counter-intuitive, to find that countries with leaner governments spend more on health and education than those with larger governments (and have been growing that expenditure at a faster rate), that they have a better standard of living, better employment records and similar spending on income support. But the data... should give policy-makers some confidence in arguing [that] ...the leaner governments clearly benefit their citizens more than the narrow illusory benefits offered by larger governments."

The lesson is a simple one. If the real objective of European governments is to improve social and personal well-being, they should lower taxes, cut state spending and let the private sector do its job.»


The bigger the better? Evidence of the effect of government size on life satisfaction around the world (WIF - Institute of Economic Research) [pdf]
  • Life satisfaction actually decreases with higher government spending.
  • This negative impact of the government is stronger in countries with a left-leaning median voter.
  • It is alleviated by more effective governments -- but, crucially, only in countries where the state sector is already small.
The case for reducing business taxes (Centre for Policy Studies) [pdf]
  • In lower-spending countries, per-capita income was on average 12 per cent higher than in larger-government countries.
  • More importantly, the gap between the two types of economies is widening -- real gross domestically (GDP) grew more rapidly in the leaner countries.
  • Leaner governments reduced their tax and other receipts, as a proportion of GDP, by an average of 6.5 percentage points over the last two decades while larger governments grew their tax and other receipts by an average of 4.8 percent.
  • At the same time, between 1997 and 2005, it grew at an average annual rate of 4.1 percent in the former group of countries compared to 1.9 percent in the latter.
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