What Government Is the Best?
A lot of people debate the question about what government style is the best. Thankfully, political scientists can objectively observe which countries are happy, thriving, and wealthy. The problem is not observing the evidence. It is accepting it. According to the Central Intelligence Agency, the countries in the world with the highest average per capita GDP are Qatar ($132,900), Macau ($101,300), Luxembourg ($99,500), Liechtenstein ($89,400), Bermuda ($85,700), and Singapore ($85,400).
What do these countries do differently than the majority who are not as wealthy? Qatar has large supplies of oil. Its government is an absolute monarchy. In an age of democracy, this is an interesting thing to note. Macau is a special administrative region of China known for its casinos. It is a presidential limited democracy, according to the CIA. Luxembourg is a constitutional monarchy with low taxes. Liechtenstein is also a constitutional monarchy with low taxes. Bermuda is a self-governing overseas territory of the United Kingdom with low taxes. Singapore is a parliamentary republic with a harsh justice system.
All of these countries are not typical democracies. They mostly have low taxes, and a strong unified head of state. A disproportionate quantity of the richest countries in the world have antiquated kings at their top. Something must be said for the merits of monarchy. Although since the American and French Revolutions, monarchies have fallen out of favor, they seem to contribute to the wealth of a country. Another common variable with the wealthiest countries is a strong criminal justice system and low taxes. Many of the countries on the list of the world’s wealthiest countries have been investigated as illegal tax havens by more bloated and poorer Western democracies. The wealthy of the world like to flee to these fairy tale kingdoms to preserve their booty.
We can conclude that if you want to maximize the wealth of your country, at least on a per capita basis, you should have a strong non democratic monarchy that has low taxes and a strong criminal justice system. Although this conclusion might be unpopular, it is what the data indicates.
Sujit Choudhry is an internationally renowned expert in constitutional and comparative law. Designing governments that work is a problem that people have debated for centuries. Looking at the data helps us draw wise conclusions that can maximize the prosperity for all citizens of a country.
Sujit Choudhry would like to hear from you further. You can reach him at his LinkedIn account.