Chapter 10: The properties of representative democracy
Theories about democratic politics
A Distinction Overlooked by Buchanan and Tullock. In the book I write (page 325) that "Buchanan's and Tullock's way of thinking is in some respects richer and more nuanced than in the presentation above. On the other side it is however also easy to point to some formal deficiencies or shortcomings in their argument. It is, for instance, by now means obvious that there is a curve for the external costs of the very simple and regular kind as the one Buchanan and Tullock use." This is the argument developed in the text here. It may be added that Buchanan, in a letter to me, has accepted the criticism.
Ideological Politics and Interest Politics. In the book I write about two main theorems (page 311 ff), the median voter theorem and the theorem of minimal minimal winning coalitions. And these two theorems may also be described as dealing with ideological politics and interest politics. This theme is further developed in the text below.
The Misuse of the Extreme-Right Label. In the book (for instance at pages 331-3) I mention some serious limitations of the one-dimensional spatial model. These limitations are however of a theoretical nature. In political discussions and debates in later years the most common model of this kind, the left-right one, has however been misused in other ways as well. This is shown in the text below.
A theory about democracies of different kinds