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 Timothy Sandefur, Principal Attorney, Pacific Legal Foundation; Ilya Somin,
Professor of Law, George Mason University; and Simon Lazarus, Senior Counsel, Constitutional Accountability Center; moderated by Ilya Shapiro, Senior Fellow in Constitutional Studies, Cato Institute.
President Obama recently declared that “the debate” over the Affordable Care Act “is over.” That may be wishful thinking given that the law continues to be unpopular and its implementation keeps hitting snags. Moreover, lawsuits challenging Obamacare are once again reaching the nation’s highest courts. On May 8, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit will hear arguments in Sissel v. Department of Health & Human Services, which involves the claim that the ACA’s “tax” on people without health insurance—as the Supreme Court deemed it two years ago—still violates the Constitution. The Constitution’s Origination Clause requires all tax bills to “originate” in the House of Representatives, while Obamacare came from the Senate (recall how the House voted on the Senate bill after Scott Brown won a special Senate election in Massachusetts and deprived the Democrats of their filibuster-proof majority). Please join us to hear about Sissel and its implications for limited government from the attorney who will have just argued the case, Cato adjunct scholar Timothy Sandefur.