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Doctors routinely advise patients to avoid a wide range of unhealthy behavior, such as smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, a poor diet, and lack of exercise. Beyond these salutary suggestions, however, there is also a growing paternalistic trend to prohibit activities like smoking—and through targeted taxation, governments are taking aim at food deemed unhealthy for having too much fat, preservatives, salt, or sugar. New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg's ban on large, sugary drinks was just ruled unconstitutional in a unanimous decision by the state Supreme Court's Appellate Division—but this ruling isn't likely to discourage hardened advocates.
Utah State University
big brother, consumption, behavioral economics
USU Jon. M Huntsman School of Business; Shughart, William F. II; Smith, J. Fish; Thomas, Michael; and Hoffer, Adam, "Big Brother Declares War on Consumption" (2013). Jon M. Huntsman School of Business News Collection. 75.