Obesity remains a serious health problem and it is no secret that many people want to lose weight. Behavioral economists typically argue that “nudges” help individuals with various decisionmaking flaws to live longer, healthier, and better lives. In an article in the new issue of Regulation, Michael L. Marlow discusses how nudging by government differs from nudging by markets, and explains why market nudging is the more promising avenue for helping citizens to lose weight.
In Bootleggers & Baptists: How Economic Forces and Moral Persuasion Interact to Shape Regulatory Politics, economists Bruce Yandle and Adam Smith explain how money and morality are often combined in politics to produce arbitrary regulations benefiting cronies, while constraining productive economic activities by the general public.
Featuring Chris Edwards, Editor, www.DownsizingGovernment.org, Cato Institute; Scott Faber, Vice President of Government Affairs, Environmental Working Group; Andrew Moylan, Outreach Director and Senior Fellow, R Street Institute; and Josh Sewell, Senior Policy Analyst, Taxpayers for Common Sense.
Congress may pass a major farm bill reauthorization this year for the first time since 2008. Farm bill supporters claim that draft bills in the House and Senate would save taxpayers billions of dollars, but that isn’t the case. The bills would eliminate so-called direct payments to farmers, but the savings would be plowed into new subsidy programs and higher guaranteed prices for certain crops. What can be done to reform costly farm subsidies that harm agricultural markets and damage the environment? Chris Edwards, Scott Faber, Andrew Moylan, and Josh Sewell will discuss the impact of farm programs on taxpayers and the environment and suggest possible reform steps.