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Journal Articles Political Quarterly Year : 2017

Public Choice Failure and Voter Incompetence in France


This article explains failures of politics and government through the incompetence of voters and their perception biases. It illustrates this argument using the French case. If voters lack knowledge and develop irrational beliefs, then voting is probably not effective as a mechanism for sanctioning public policy. The incompetence of French voters and their anticapitalist bias is well documented. This incompetence can be partly explained by the low cost of holding irrational beliefs in politics. Voters’ anti-capitalist attitudes are explained by the utility they obtain from expressing themselves in favour of state intervention, and by France’s prohibitive level of justification costs of holding pro-capitalist views. The resulting biases contribute to the failure of public choice.
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hal-01519505 , version 1 (08-05-2017)



François Facchini. Public Choice Failure and Voter Incompetence in France. Political Quarterly, 2017, 88 (2), pp.258-264. ⟨10.1111/1467-923X.12366⟩. ⟨hal-01519505⟩
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