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Inequality, Democracy, and Growth in Brazil

Book Description

In terms accessible to non-economists, Marcos José Mendes describes the ways democracy and inequality produce low growth in the short and medium terms. In the longer term, he argues that Brazil has two paths in front of it. One is to create the conditions necessary to boost economic performance and drive the country toward a high level of development. The other is to fail in untying the political knot that blocks growth, leaving it a middle-income country. The source of his contrasting futures for Brazil is inequality, which he demonstrates is a relevant variable in any discussion of economic growth. Inequality illuminates causes of seemingly-unconnected problems. This book, which includes freely-accessible documents and datasets, is the first in-depth analysis of an issue that promises to become increasingly prominent.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover image
  2. Title page
  3. Table of Contents
  4. Copyright
  5. Foreword
  6. Disclaimers
  7. About the Author
  8. Acknowledgments
  9. Dedication
  10. Introduction
    1. Chapter 1
    2. Chapter 2
    3. Chapter 3
    4. Chapter 4
    5. Chapter 5
    6. Chapter 6
  11. Chapter 1: Low Economic Growth and its Proximate Causes
    1. Abstract
    2. 1.1 Introduction
    3. 1.2 Sources of economic growth
    4. 1.3 The Brazilian economy during the military government (1964-1984) and the transition to democracy
    5. 1.4 Low growth
    6. 1.5 Proximate causes for low growth in 10 stylized facts
    7. 1.6 The story behind low growth
    8. Annex 1
  12. Chapter 2: Inequality
    1. Abstract
    2. 2.1 Introduction
    3. 2.2 The composition of inequality
    4. 2.3 The fall of inequality since the mid-1990s
    5. 2.4 Will inequality continue to fall?
    6. 2.5 Are social policies effective in reducing inequality?
    7. 2.6 Did inequality only begin to fall more intensely as of 2001?
    8. 2.7 Social stratification after two decades of poverty and inequality reduction
    9. 2.8 Conclusions
  13. Chapter 3: Redistribution to the Rich
    1. Abstract
    2. 3.1 Introduction
    3. 3.2 What does economic theory have to say?
    4. 3.3 Inequality, extractive institutions, and rent seeking in Brazil
    5. 3.4 Evidence of redistribution to the rich in Brazil
  14. Chapter 4: Redistribution to the Poor
    1. Abstract
    2. 4.1 Introduction
    3. 4.2 What does economic theory have to say?
    4. 4.3 The fiscal impact of income transfer to the poor
    5. 4.4 Expansion of public education for the poor and its Fiscal impact
    6. 4.5 Expansion of public health to the poor and its fiscal impact
    7. 4.6 Conclusions
  15. Chapter 5: The Middle Class Joins the Game
    1. Abstract
    2. 5.1 Introduction
    3. 5.2 What does economic theory have to say?
    4. 5.3 Rent seeking in legal disputes
    5. 5.4 The elderly as a politically preferred public
    6. 5.5 Public education that does not serve the poor
    7. 5.6 The political power of civil servants
    8. 5.7 Labor unions and resistance to labor legislation reform
    9. 5.8 Income-tax exemptions
    10. 5.9 18 Great farm debt renegotiations in 19 years
    11. 5.10 The widespread distributive conflict
    12. 5.11 Conclusions
  16. Chapter 6: Redistribution and Long-Term Growth
    1. Abstract
    2. 6.1 Introduction
    3. 6.2 What does economic theory have to say?
    4. 6.3 Which path will brazil take?
    5. 6.4 Conclusions
  17. Glossary
  18. Index