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Essentials of Fiscal Sociology

Conception of an Encyclopedia


Edited By Jürgen G. Backhaus

The issue whether fiscal sociology is ripe for an encyclopedia is the hidden agenda of this project. The authors are international experts from the old and the new world, from Italy to Estonia, the Netherlands to Russia, and of course, the United States. The essays cover both, the history of fiscal sociology and recent and future issues, such as the making of the Estonian constitution, which emphasizes fiscal austerity, and the emerging European constitution.


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Pareto’s sociological maximum of utility of the community and the theory of the elites F. Forte and P. Silvestri


ABSTRACT The paper deals with three interrelated Pareto’s contributions to fiscal sociology of relevant contem- porary importance, i. e., the maximum of utility of the community as a sociological process (Pareto II criterion of maximum welfare), the non logical actions consisting of derivations based on residuals and the theory of the elites. Pareto II welfare criterion of sociological maximization of individual utilities is compared with Pareto I welfare criterion, commonly known as Pareto criterion, introduc- ing the process of valuations by the elite of the utilities of different social groups weighed according to their residuals. Derivations are essentials to persuade the masses to move to the points designed by the elite. The process is subject to the law of circulation of the elites which leads to different sociological equilibriums. The theories of the elites of Pareto and Mosca, criticized by Einaudi, are then compared. For a disenchanted analysis of the fiscal processes and designs, Pareto’s sociology may still provide to the economist more than a help. JEL Codes: H79 Keywords: Paretian sociological maximum, derivations, Pareto’s sociological school, theory of elites, Einaudi vs Mosca. I Introductory Remarks 1. According to Richard Wagner1 there are two windows from which to look at public finance as a compound of fiscal phenomena. The first one, as exemplified by Antonio De Viti de Marco “Principles of economics of public finance” con- sists in trying to know how in real life fiscal phenomena do develop. The second exemplified by Henry Simons’ work in the same area,...

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