Una crítica a la tesis de Hans-Herman Hoppe sobre el menor carácter lesivo de la monarquía frente a la democracia

Jacek Sierpiński
2016 Res Publica Revista de Historia de las Ideas Políticas  
The aim of this paper is to critically analyse the thesis of Hans-Herman Hoppe that although any government -taken as a territorial monopolist in the field of jurisdiction and tax imposition -is an organisation harmful both from the economic and ethical point of view since it violates property rights in an institutionalised and legal manner, exploiting private owners and contributing to the process of "decivilization," yet the monarchy is less harmful than any democratic state. The ultimate
more » ... t is to prove that Hoppe's assumption on lower time preference of the governing monarch is not sufficient to conclude that monarchy is less responsible for violating property rights and that it contributes to the process of "decviliziation" less than democracy. Keywords: Hans Herman Hoppe, democracy-monarchy comparison, economic freedom. Resumen El propósito de este trabajo es analizar críticamente la tesis de Hans-Herman Hoppe según la cual, si bien cualquier forma de gobierno -tomado como un monopolista territorial en el terreno de la jurisdicción y de la imposición fiscal-es una organización lesiva tanto desde el punto de vista económico como ético, puesto que viola los derechos de propiedad de manera institucionalizada y legal, explotan-523 but only temporary clerks, will pursuit only the increase of the present income and wealth. This implies that they will be more willing to expropriate, increase taxes (both directly and indirectly, through inflation) and borrow money irresponsibly since they are aware that paying these debts will be the problem of their successors and not their own. In order to assume and hold power, they will promise various privileges to different groups and carry out the policy of redistribution at a great scale -through taxation or regulations imposed on private property and the market. They will also be more willing to engage in wars, which, owing to the greater identification of the society with the state that results from "blurring" of the border between the rulers and their subjects, will be more violent. 3 As the empirical data that prove his thesis, Hoppe presents examples that show the greater increase in the extortion by the state -higher tax rates and larger debt, more regulations, higher inflation, higher employment in the state institutions, and the evolution of wars into total wars -during the "democratic republican age" (Hoppe acknowledges the end of the I World War as the beginning of this era) than during the prior, "monarchy age." 4 However, should we assume that data referred to by Hoppe prove that there is in fact a causal relationship between democracy and the increase in the extortion by the state? It needs to be noted that Hoppe's approach is an ahistoric one: he contrasts societies that lived in two different historic periods, neglecting the possibility that other factors (such as e.g. the level of material development) could influence the extortion by the state as well, and that the causal relationship has an opposite direction -i.e. the change of the form of the state from monarchy to democracy is a result, not a cause of the increase in the extortion by the state (influenced by other factors). Were Hoppe's thesis to be true, it should be proven by conclusions drawn from the comparison of democratic and non-democratic states existing during the same period of history, the states of societies that were culturally similar and similarly developed. However, Hoppe failed to present such comparison, probably because he trusts his theoretical analysis completely and because in his approach, "a priori theory" is superior to the empirical data. 5 This paper aims at providing such comparison. Although Hoppe is right claiming that the dominance of democratic states started only after the I World War, it is true that democratic states, or at least those including elements of democracy, existed throughout history.
doi:10.5209/rpub.53878 fatcat:wik7hxckizdcnn4ekr7rqwxtem