3.3.9 Economic Pressures on Governments

It is a fundamental human need to have a roof over one’s head and enough to eat.  It is one of the things that people expect governments to protect, as described in the last chapter (2.1).  At the very least, people want to avoid economic insecurity – but more than that, they want a feeling of economic well-being.  If they don’t feel good about the way the economy is being run, they will seek an alternative government.

Politicians therefore have an incentive to manage the economy well, to make them popular and increase their chances of remaining in power.  There are two economic aspects to this incentive:

●  It constitutes pressure on them to perform competently.  People and organisations can exploit this need for political purposes (

●  It also constitutes pressure on governments to avoid being blamed for people’s problems.  They are helped in this by the difficulty of assigning responsibility for the performance of the economy (



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This page is intended to form part of Edition 4 of the Patterns of Power series of books.  An archived copy of it is held at https://www.patternsofpower.org/edition04/339.htm.