11 Pages Posted: 11 Jan 2007 Last revised: 14 Nov 2007
This essay considers, and rejects, arguments for libertarian paternalism based on behavioral law and economics' findings that people sometimes make mistakes and lack self-control. It doesn't follow from the fact that people don't always do 'what they really want' that we can know what they really want and with confidence put in place laws and policies to nudge them in that direction. Still, in part because we don't necessarily do 'what we really want,' there may be sensible reasons to adopt paternalistic policies.
Keywords: paternalism, behavioral law and economics
JEL Classification: K00, I18, D62
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation