Racism, xenophobia, and redistribution

Racism, xenophobia, and redistribution - University of...

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University of Massachusetts - Amherst ScholarWorks@UMass Amherst Economics Department Working Paper Series Economics 1-1-2005 Racism, xenophobia, and redistribution Woojin Lee University of Massachusetts - Amherst John Roemer Karine van der Straeten This Article is brought to you for free and open access by the Economics at ScholarWorks@UMass Amherst. It has been accepted for inclusion in Economics Department Working Paper Series by an authorized administrator of ScholarWorks@UMass Amherst. For more information, please contact scholarworks@library.umass.edu . Lee, Woojin; Roemer, John; and van der Straeten, Karine, "Racism, xenophobia, and redistribution" (2005). Economics Department Working Paper Series. Paper 51. http://scholarworks.umass.edu/econ_workingpaper/51
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DEPARTMENT OF ECONOMICS Working Paper Racism, xenophobia, and redistribution by Woojin Lee, John Roemer and Karine van der Straeten Working Paper 2005-15 UNIVERSITY OF MASSACHUSETTS AMHERST
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Racism, xenophobia, and redistribution Woojin Lee Department of Economics Univ. of Massachusetts Amherst, MA 01003 USA woojin.lee@econs.umass.edu John Roemer Departments of Political Science and Economics Yale University USA John.roemer@yale.edu Karine van der Straeten CNRS and Ecole Polytechnique Paris France karine.van-der- straeten@shs.polytechnique.fr Abstract We report here a summary of our recent research on the effect that the race issue, in the United States, and the immigration issue in European countries, is having on the degree of redistribution and the size of the public sector that is implemented through political competition. We model political competition as taking place on a two dimensional policy space, where the first issue is the tax rate, or the size of the public sector, and the second issue is the race or immigration issue. Our substantive conclusion is that the conservative economic agenda has been given new life in many countries because of racist and xenophobic views of polities. JEL Categories: D3, D7, H2 Keywords: Racism, xenophobia, redistribution, anti-solidarity effect, policy bundle effect, party unanimity Nash equilibrium
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September 24, 2005 1. Introduction Although it is often assumed by political economists, for modeling purposes, that political competition takes place on a unidimensional policy space, reality does not conform to this specification. Politics are surely multi-dimensional, and in the 20 th century, it is arguable that issues of race, religion, and ethnicity were important ‘secondary’ issues. Indeed, the issue of race has been of paramount important in the United States since its founding, and it has been important in democratic competition since the Civil War. Our interest in the study about which we report here is in the effect that the race issue, in the United States, and the immigration issue in European countries, is having or can be expected to have on the degree of redistribution and the size of the public sector that is implemented through political competition.
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Racism, xenophobia, and redistribution - University of...

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