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The most interesting aspect of Van Parijs’s essay is the reflection it prompts on the effects which political decentralisation produces on welfare and redistributive policies. Though he only considers one specific case – the financing of the Belgian national health system – his observations prompt more general evaluations. It is hard to say whether the solution Van Parijs proposes – which has a number of redistributive features – will be able to solve the problems generated by the "federalist" reform implemented in Belgium. In any case, his analysis clearly reveals that phenomena of political decentralisation jeopardise the traditional mechanisms of the welfare state, precisely because their effects are liberal and anti-redistributive. In a libertarian perspective, they thus deserve to be viewed with favour and supported.