Equilibrium Political Inaction in a Democracy

Part of the International Studies in Economics and Econometrics book series (ISEE, volume 28)


The suppression of political demands is usually associated with dictatorships. In democracies, individuals are typically free to speak out on political issues, to organize or participate in demonstrations against the government, write letters to newspapers, and so forth, and their right to do so is protected by a judicial system which is independent of the government. Nevertheless, political freedom is not complete in any democracy, and certain overt restrictions are typically imposed. These overt restrictions are usually imposed on freedom of speech where significant external costs might result. In this category are the restrictions imposed by many jurisdictions against “hate” literature; libel laws; restrictions on the discrimination of pornographic literature, to engage in criminal conspiracies, and so forth. More severe restrictions are often imposed on speech which has commercial rather than a political purpose.’ In Canada, for example there is no law banning the activity of prostitution, but therearelaws against the soliciting of customers by prostitutes.


Political Party Ideal Point Median Voter American Political Science Review Ideological Position 
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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1993

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