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 the author Daniel B. Klein, Professor of Economics, George Mason University; with comments by Jason Kuznicki, Research Fellow, Cato Institute; moderated by Gene Healy, Vice President, Cato Institute.
Adam Smith denounced the folly and presumption of interventionists, and
Friedrich Hayek denounced their pretense of knowledge. Daniel B. Klein’s new book attempts to renew Smith and Hayek and go beyond. His talk will focus on the hubris of interventionism, arguing that such arrogance hangs on maneuvers in government and “expert” quarters that pretend to make things simpler than they are. In particular, he will explain how economists flatten knowledge down to information and thereby shortchange the case for liberty. A candid understanding of knowledge makes us more virtuous and more libertarian.