This new edition restructures and updates the political economy view of the responsibilities and limitations of government. Public-choice and behavioural concepts are prominent. Gender issues are included. Technical concepts are explained from first principles. Economic theory is rigorously applied. Excessive technicality is avoided. The book integrates traditional public finance topics - taxation, public goods, externalities, and income redistribution - with political self-interest, bureaucracy, voting, rent seeking, corruption, and the common-pool problem of public spending. Social justice is viewed as income equality, equality of opportunity, or the right to benefit from one's own effort. Public policies studied include the environment, education, health insurance, welfare payments and entitlements under moral hazard, unemployment insurance, paternalistic impositions, and defence and public safety. This book is ideal for advanced undergraduate and graduate courses that combine economic theory with a real-world perspective on the politics of public finance and public policy. A broad scope makes the book suitable for students in all countries.