Structural Dependence of the State on Capital

Adam Przeworski, Michael Wallerstein

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Abstract

    A central claim of both Marxist and neoclassical political theory is that under capitalism all governments must respect and protect the essential claims of those who own the productive wealth of society. This is the theory of “structural dependence of the state on capital.” Using a formal model, the internal logic and the robustness of the theory is examined. We conclude that in a static sense the theory is false: virtually any distribution of consumption between wage earners and owners of capital is compatible with continual private investment once an appropriate set of taxes and transfers is in place. Yet the state may be structurally dependent in a dynamic sense. Policies that, once in place, redistribute income without reducing investment do reduce investment during the period in which they are anticipated but not yet implemented.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)11-29
    Number of pages19
    JournalAmerican Political Science Review
    Volume82
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    StatePublished - 1988

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    neoclassical theory
    wage earner
    private investment
    political theory
    capitalist society
    taxes
    respect
    income
    Society

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Sociology and Political Science

    Cite this

    Structural Dependence of the State on Capital. / Przeworski, Adam; Wallerstein, Michael.

    In: American Political Science Review, Vol. 82, No. 1, 1988, p. 11-29.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Przeworski, Adam ; Wallerstein, Michael. / Structural Dependence of the State on Capital. In: American Political Science Review. 1988 ; Vol. 82, No. 1. pp. 11-29.
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