بکووستس، حقوق کنترل و تجزیه و تحلیل هزینه فایده
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|23431||2003||12 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||5108 کلمه|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : European Journal of Political Economy, Volume 19, Issue 1, March 2003, Pages 71–82
Consider a public project that produces a consumption good that benefits future generations. Let a conventional cost–benefit analysis find that it gives higher benefits than projects it would displace in the private sector. Voters may, nevertheless, oppose the public project: the combination of a desire to control bequests and the lack of control over who benefits from a public project makes the public project unattractive. In contrast, private projects have owners, allowing parents to control whether their children will receive the benefits from such projects. Parents can, therefore, better influence the behavior of their children when they have the option of giving the children title to private projects.
A large literature discusses the discount rate government should use in evaluating public projects. Most analyses implicitly assume that the same discount rate can be used for projects that impose costs and generate benefits to the current generation as for projects that impose costs on one generation but give benefits to future generations. Programs with such delayed benefits are increasingly important, particularly in environmental policy. Thus, reductions in carbon or CFC emissions impose costs on persons now alive, and will benefit people yet unborn. When capital and other markets are perfect, who will be alive when benefits appear is irrelevant. We shall show, instead, that generational differences do matter when considering public projects that yield benefits to a future generation. Our essential idea is that a parent who wants to induce particular behavior by a child may do so by conditioning a bequest on the child's behavior, and that such inducement is more effective if the parent controls the assets than if the parent spends some assets on a governmentally controlled project. Consider a parent evaluating a tax increase to fund a government program that would reduce carbon emissions. The program has no immediate effects, but will benefit the next generation. Suppose that standard cost–benefit analysis, which compares the present discounted value of social costs to benefits, calls for undertaking the program. Let consecutive generations, say parent and child, implicitly bargain over how much services the child provides the parent in exchange for a bequest. We shall show that the parent may oppose even a costless public investment that benefits the child. The opposition arises because the benefits of the public project increase the child's income, which is her threat point when bargaining with the parent, and so reduces the parent's utility after the bargaining. The parent's interest in her child's behavior can be paternalistic. A mother may want her daughter to avoid drug use, marry within the religion, or complete a college degree. Or the motive may be selfish, with a mother wanting her daughter to take care of the mother in her old age. Since the literature has considered in depth the last motive, we shall mostly speak here in terms of it. Thus, we largely follow Bernheim et al. (1985), Cremer and Pestieau (1991), Cox and Rank (1992), and Cremer et al. (1992) in supposing that parents leave bequests to their children because they want to obtain services (such as care) from their children. We shall also consider limited altruism, with the mother demanding less attention from her daughter, or leaving a larger bequest, than pure selfishness would dictate. Bernheim et al. (1985) provide strong evidence for the strategic bequest motive, finding in particular that attention to parents by children increases with bequeathable wealth, but decreases with nonbequeathable wealth. A novel element of our analysis is to consider a public project as generating nonbequeathable wealth. Also consistent with the strategic bequest model, Borsch-Supan et al. (1992) find that children who earn higher wages spend less time with their elderly parents. Laitner and Ohlsson (2001) study Sweden and the United States, finding that parental bequests increase with the parents' lifetime resources, and decline with the earnings potential of the heir. These results are consistent with both an altruistic motive and a strategic bequest motive, but, the authors state, perhaps better fits the strategic bequest motive. Hochguertel and Ohlsson (2000), who examine predeath gifts made by parents, also reach conclusions consistent with the strategic bequest model: in the United States a child is more likely to receive a gift if she works fewer hours and has lower income than her brothers and sisters. Some recent works, however, question the hypothesis: in the United States children's provision of care to parents is little guided by a strategic bequest motive (see Perozek, 1998 who, unlike Bernheim et al., 1985, controls for the number of children in a family, and Sloan et al., 1997, who study the amount of time children devote to disabled elderly parents). The strategic bequest motive appears far stronger outside the United States. Horioka et al. (2000) compare the responses of survey respondents in the United States and Japan. In one question, respondents were asked whether no strategic considerations entered in bequests. In the United States, 43% of respondents held the view “I want to make efforts to leave behind a bequest regardless of whether my child or children look after me after I retire;” in Japan, only 20% of respondents agreed with this nonselfish view. In Japan, 33% of respondents said that “Most or all of [the bequest] will be willed to the child or children who look after me;” only 2% held this view in the United States. Parents who make bequests for nonstrategic reasons need not favor private investment over public investment. But the evidence suggests that many parents view bequests, at least in part, as giving leverage over their children. To understand the behavior of such parents, we should look at the difference between private and public investments. The owner of a private investment can control the conditions under which her heirs will receive the proceeds from that investment. In particular, she can deny a bequest to a child who neglects her. In contrast, an individual cannot control who benefits from a public investment. The benefits may be a nonexcludable public good, so that all members of a future generation receive the benefits. In other words, parents cannot use a public investment to purchase care from children. Similar results obtain under a somewhat different interpretation of why children may care for their parents. Suppose credit markets are imperfect and parents are uncertain about their future financial needs, so that they do not always consume all assets during their lives. Suppose further that the value of the asset, say a house, is greater if well-maintained. Then children may visit their parents, paint the house, call the plumber, and so on, with the selfish intent of increasing the asset they will inherit. The child, therefore, does not worry that a parent formally changes the bequest specified in a will, but provides services for the parent as a by-product of preserving the parents' assets.1
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
Public finance has considered important differences between goods provided by government and goods owned by individuals: governmentally provided goods are often public goods, each person may be able to consume them at a price less than marginal social cost, and the level of provision is determined by collective decisions rather than by markets. This paper highlights an additional difference: any one consumer lacks control over who will receive a governmentally provided good. Sometimes this may not matter—a consumer may be indifferent to how much national defense others consume. But when one person's consumption opportunities affect another's, this absence of control does matter. In particular, we saw that within a family an increase in a daughter's endowment may reduce the services she provides her mother. Such effects can make an individual prefer private investments, whose output she controls, over a more productive public investment, whose output she does not control.