Sunday, May 25, 2008

Why I Don't Believe People Have all of the Information about their Diets

by Ken Houghton

Economic Logic always makes a point arguing that externalities should be taxed. (See, for instance, here.) The counterargument, of course, is that if you're going to try to discourage behavior, people have to know what behavior you are trying to discourage before they can stop it.

For instance, if you don't know the full calorie count of that Combo—10-piece Chicken McNuggets (420), Medium French Fries (380), Medium Coca-Cola(r) (210); total 1,010 calories, or more than half the calories of a "normal" (2,000 calorie) diet—the decision you make cannot be considered rational.

And how do we know that people don't have full information? Well, we know when divinecaroline (h/t Avram at Making Light) realizes that it's still necessary to publish an article such as Five Foods That Cause Anal Leakage.

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