Property Rights Versus Rent-Seeking Politics: A Public Choice Perspective
Classroom discussion of political topics, if done in a way that encourages lively but healthy debate, can encourage student participation and critical thinking. This paper outlines several insights from public choice research as applied to the federal government set up by the U.S. Constitution and the protection of property rights. Using a Hobbes versus Locke framework, this discussion also encourages debate about the role of government generally. The interdisciplinary nature of the discussion encourages input from students majoring in various fields, making this framework particularly well suited to use in an upper division elective with limited pre-requisite courses.
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