Las ideas priman sobre los intereses

CAMBRIDGE – En materia política, la teoría más aceptada es también la más sencilla: los poderosos siempre consiguen lo que pretenden. Los intereses de los bancos dictan las normas financieras; los intereses de las compañías de seguro dictan la política sanitaria; y los intereses de los ricos dictan la política impositiva. Quienes más puedan influir en el gobierno (por medio del control de los recursos, la información, el acceso o la mera amenaza de la violencia) tarde o temprano se saldrán con la suya.

A escala global es lo mismo. Según se dice, la política exterior depende, primero y principal, de los intereses nacionales, no de las afinidades con otras naciones o de la preocupación por la comunidad mundial. Los únicos acuerdos internacionales posibles son aquellos que están alineados con los intereses de Estados Unidos (y, cada vez más, de otras grandes potencias en ascenso). En los regímenes autoritarios, las políticas son expresión directa de los intereses del gobernante y sus secuaces.

Es una teoría convincente con la que podemos explicar fácilmente por qué tan a menudo la política genera resultados no deseados. Tanto en democracias como en dictaduras o en el campo internacional, que se produzcan esos resultados es reflejo de la capacidad que tienen ciertos pequeños grupos de intereses especiales para alcanzar sus fines en detrimento de la mayoría.

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