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: Edward N. Luttwak, Senior Associate, Center for Strategic and International Studies; George Ayittey, Professor of Economics, American University; and Mauro De Lorenzo, Resident Fellow, American Enterprise Institute. Moderated by Marian Tupy, Policy Analyst, Cato Institute.
Many African states have been addicted to Western aid for decades. Unfortunately, Africa as a whole has stagnated and some African countries are poorer today then they were in the 1960s. In recent years, advocates of foreign aid have called for making aid more efficient, but that may be easier said than done. The problem, some critics argue, is that aid supports predatory governments and perpetuates institutions that are alien to Africa. The “modern” state, characterized by Western-style elections and bureaucracies, may be ill-suited to African conditions. Failing governments should be allowed to collapse and be replaced by institutions indigenous to Africa. Our panel will discuss the likely consequences of ending aid and consider subsequent institutional developments.