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 Diane Ravitch, New York University; Frank Wang, Saxon Publishers; and Stephen Driesler, Association of American Publishers.
In The Language Police author Diane Ravitch makes it clear that the process by which textbooks are adopted in the United States is hyper-politicized, and children are suffering as a result. Interest groups on both the left and the right have huge impacts on what does – or more often does not – go into textbooks, rendering them devoid of quality content. This is especially true in huge markets like California and Texas, where textbooks are adopted at the state level. Moreover, despite the disappearance of good content, textbooks keep getting bigger; children have to lug them in heavy backpacks or cart them around in pieces of wheeled luggage. How did this happen? More important, what can be done to fix it? Please join us as we address both those questions in a serious discussion about textbooks in American schools.