a metonym for bureaucratic overflow, may be helpful in
answering these questions.
A short history of red tape
The Spanish administration of Charles V, King of Spain and Holy
Roman Emperor (1500–1558), started to use red tape to bind critical
administrative dossiers requiring immediate discussion by the Council
of State, in order to differentiate them from ordinary documents,
which were bound with simple string (Dickson, 2015). Red tape
was obviously a frame that was expected to tame the overflow:
there were too many documents, and
Demand-side abundance and its discontents in Hungary during the long
simple reason that no one needs or wants them.
From the consumer’s perspective, however, it makes little difference
that, although their everyday experience was predominantly with
quantitative and/or qualitative shortages, ‘goods’ (good for nothing)
were filling warehouses.
Even the idea that the consumer should, by definition, have an
agency in the sphere of economic activity seems to have been all
too often absent from (or hardly reflected upon in) the writings and
ideas of many of Hungary’s reform economists.
The consumer citizen of