How to give a wrong economic answer to a political problem
brazil | by Claudio Shikida | 21 Feb, 2004 at 03:54 AM | comments (1) | trackback (0)

Illegal payments to public officials are not good for the image of a country. So, what an economist would do with this? He would advise you to enforce the law, increasing the probability of being punished. Or, he could also say: "Let people buy and sell the good or service even if it is a drug or the sexual service of a prostitute. In the last case, some people say, you could think about HIV in Nevada: the index of infected people infected is low because of the legalization of the activity (details here).

Ok. Now think about the recent political scandal of corruption in Brazil: the Waldomiro-Dirceu's affair. The scandal is about an important public officer receiving money from a guy whose activity is game, specifically, the famous brazilian's "Jogo do Bicho".

What is the answer of president Lula? Unfortunately, he just signed a MP (Medida Provisória) which will prohibit some game-related actitivities in Brazil. Ok, we still have federal lottos, but the new law says that some kind of games will have to end (Ironically, I didn't find anything about "jogo do bicho" in this link...).

Do you believe it will happen? I mean, to write in a piece of paper that "Game is over" is enough to end game's activities? Probably not. Even politicians know that.

But I can tell you: the value of illegal payments to members of government will be higher. And the mechanisms adopted to law's enforcement, here, know how efficient they are...

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Posted by Buy Flexeril | August 8, 2004 08:34 AM

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