Normally, in western democracies, governments concentrate the less popular recovery interventions in the first two years of their electoral mandate. This enables them to earmark the resources for expansion policies at the end of their mandate in order to start the following election campaign with a healthy economy and achieve, in this way, strong political consensus. A government which has been in office for two years and has inherited unbalanced public accounts is forced to take upon itself only the “dirty work” without benefiting from the advantages of the second part of the story. This does not pay from an electoral point of view also because voters find it rather difficult to understand the use of a reduced deficit and a public debt or a slowly growing GDP. Moreover, when prices go up, mortgages become increasingly expensive and consumption goes down. These are some of the reasons why the 2008 political election campaign was very peculiar. Long standing unsolved problems became entwined with more recent uncertainties: the great expectations of the weaker ones and the bitter disappointment of the more fortunate ones, the shattering of interests and the resistance of exclusive privileges. In this chapter, I will provide an overview of the economic context which directly or indirectly impacted voters’ decisions. In the first two sections, I will focus on the short- and long-term changes of the general contex and on the macroeconomic performance of the Italian economy. In the third section, I will analyse in greater depth the main political measures implemented by the outgoing Government, and in the fourth one I will focus on the most important economic proposals outlined in the major coalitions’ manifestos. In the last section, I will make some closing remarks about the victory of the right wing coalition led by Mr Berlusconi.

Il contesto economico (The Economic Context)

LAVIOSA, Sara
2009-01-01

Abstract

Normally, in western democracies, governments concentrate the less popular recovery interventions in the first two years of their electoral mandate. This enables them to earmark the resources for expansion policies at the end of their mandate in order to start the following election campaign with a healthy economy and achieve, in this way, strong political consensus. A government which has been in office for two years and has inherited unbalanced public accounts is forced to take upon itself only the “dirty work” without benefiting from the advantages of the second part of the story. This does not pay from an electoral point of view also because voters find it rather difficult to understand the use of a reduced deficit and a public debt or a slowly growing GDP. Moreover, when prices go up, mortgages become increasingly expensive and consumption goes down. These are some of the reasons why the 2008 political election campaign was very peculiar. Long standing unsolved problems became entwined with more recent uncertainties: the great expectations of the weaker ones and the bitter disappointment of the more fortunate ones, the shattering of interests and the resistance of exclusive privileges. In this chapter, I will provide an overview of the economic context which directly or indirectly impacted voters’ decisions. In the first two sections, I will focus on the short- and long-term changes of the general contex and on the macroeconomic performance of the Italian economy. In the third section, I will analyse in greater depth the main political measures implemented by the outgoing Government, and in the fourth one I will focus on the most important economic proposals outlined in the major coalitions’ manifestos. In the last section, I will make some closing remarks about the victory of the right wing coalition led by Mr Berlusconi.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11586/72199
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