Macroeconomic Dimensions of Public Finance: Essays in Honour of Vito Tanzi

By Mario I. Blejer; Teresa Ter-Minassian | Go to book overview

3

SCOPE OF GOVERNMENT AND LIMITS OF ECONOMIC POLICY

Manuel Guitián1

One of the most disputed questions both in political science and in practical statesmanship at this particular period relates to the proper limits of the functions and agency of governments.

(John Stuart Mill, Principles of Political Economy, 1848)


INTRODUCTION

Had John Stuart Mill deleted the clause ‘at this particular period, ’ the sentence quoted above would be timeless, as it should be; with or without the clause, though, the sentence is as relevant now as it was a century and a half ago, when it was written. Indeed, the question of ‘the proper limits of the functions and agency of governments’ continues to be one of the issues in political economy yet to be settled. Today, the establishment of an appropriate boundary between the roles, responsibilities and activities of the public and the private sectors in the economic sphere remains as complex, dynamic and elusive an endeavor as ever. Complex because there are many areas where both sectors interact closely and there exist no hard and fast criteria to determine precisely where public action takes off or should take off and private activity begins or should begin. Dynamic because the interaction between them varies over time with society’s preferences for public services and with its willingness to finance them. And elusive for both of those reasons: the absence of clear lines of separation between the two sectors and the changing nature of social preferences. It is difficult to gather a firm consensus about how far should government participate and interfere in the economic process and it is just as hard to keep at all times the demand for public services in line with social willingness to pay for them. And yet, some demarcation between the government and the rest of the economy is necessary as the basis for the design and implementation of economic policy. It is through the interplay of government policy and private activity in the market that the economy’s performance is determined and the quality of this

-27-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Macroeconomic Dimensions of Public Finance: Essays in Honour of Vito Tanzi
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
/ 506

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.