The Covid pandemic has seen a sharp rise in government spending, and large scale testing and vaccination programmes. Some of these have been successful, while others less so. We look at whether, on balance, governments are an effective mechanism for achieving desirable outcomes.
In this podcast, we explore the rationale for having governments in the first place and consider what activities it is appropriate for them to carry out. We look at what happens when the government gets it wrong and also examine what various data sources say about the relative effectiveness of the private and public sectors.
A few things we mentioned in this podcast:
- Chicago School of Economics https://www.investopedia.com/terms/c/chicago_school.asp
- Milton Friedman – Four ways to spend money https://investorjunkie.com/economics/milton-friedman-ways-spend-money/
- Principle-Agent Problem https://www.investopedia.com/terms/p/principal-agent-problem.asp#:~:text=The%20principal%2Dagent%20problem%20is,roles%20of%20principal%20and%20agent.
- Ambrogio Lorenzetti's Good and Bad Government
- PSIRU report summarising some of the evidence https://www.epsu.org/sites/default/files/article/files/Public%20and%20Private%20Sector%20efficiency%20EN%20fin.pdf
- The effects of bad government https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/2020/06/01/effects-bad-government/
- What’s so bad about government anyway https://fee.org/articles/whats-so-bad-about-big-government-anyway/
- What is rent-seeking? https://corporatefinanceinstitute.com/resources/knowledge/economics/rent-seeking/#:~:text=Rent%2Dseeking%20is%20a%20concept,It.
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