By Luigi Zingales – “To petition the Government for a redress of grievances” is a right inscribed in the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. This right equally belongs to individuals, organizations, and corporations.
When economic giants fight among themselves, not only does the right to lobby fulfill a constitutional right, it is also efficient. This is what Nobel Prize winner (and late University of Chicago professor) Gary Becker [2, 3] thought: competition among lobbies leads to efficient outcomes.
Yet, for this result to be true two conditions need to be fulfilled. First, the different interests (or view points) should have equal ability to organize and finance their lobbying effort.
As Mancur Olson [2, 3, 4] (a Maryland economist who died too young to win the Nobel Prize) wrote, dispersed interests face a bigger hurdle in getting organized. Thus, citizens interested in clean water have a harder time lobbying Congress than chemical companies who pollute it.
Thus, under realistic conditions lobbying tends to be excessive from a social point of view: not only does it waste resources, but also might lead to the wrong decisions: favoring the strongest player, not necessarily the one with the most valid claim. more> http://goo.gl/CRmCAu