Perhaps the classic example of a libertarian paternalist
nudge is switching the default rule on participation in employer-sponsored savings plans--401Ks, etc.--from opt-in (where the employee must sign up for the plan) to opt-out (where the employee is automatically enrolled but may withdraw if she chooses).
We see libertarian paternalism as particularly threatening because this paternalist
explicitly seeks to nudge irrational citizens toward choices that the paternalist
deems best and away from choices that the citizens may have regretted.
the new paternalists
. Behavioral law and economics postulates that
Selection confusion indicates that the efforts of libertarian paternalists
to incentivize "good actions" may prove insufficient to obtain good results (p.
But it is also a welcome challenge to a currently fashionable theory that libertarians and paternalists
alike should read with pleasure.
we have also seen that means paternalists
would consider a fuel-economy
. The wild and childish Irishman thus becomes the empathetic
This strikes me as the paternalist
's greatest challenge to the claim that the criminal law must honor deontic rights, and so permit a great many blameworthy (that is, suberogatory) actions.
offer a novel answer to these questions.
Suffice it to say we would need to explore deeper issues such as practical reason internalism versus externalism, whether reasons internalism can yield a principle or principles that defeat neutral paternalism, whether any viable liberal theory has the equipment to levy a justificatory burden that neutral paternalists
cannot meet--without having troublesome implications in other areas of political morality, etc.
The old principle handed down from ancient rhetoric remains as valid as ever: `Those who assert must prove.' The burden of proof falls to the New Paternalists
to give us some good reasons for thinking that all -- or even most, or even very many -- of the non-working poor have the peculiar combination of frustrated preferences and weaknesses of will they insist on attributing to them.
Critics of the community service requirement characterized it as forced servitude and its proponents as anti-poor paternalists
who equate poverty with immorality.