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Free Market Madness

Why Human Nature is at Odds with Economics–and Why it Matters

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What’s wrong with free market theory? It doesn’t take into account our human nature. We humans aren’t entirely rational creatures. We decide to roll over and hit the snooze button instead of going to the gym, and then we fret over our health insurance payments. We take out home loans we can’t possibly afford. We live hours away from our jobs when free time is clearly our most valued asset. All too often our subconscious causes us to act against our own self-interest.

But our free-market economy is based on the assumption that we always do act in our own self-interest. In this book, I show that in some cases government must regulate markets for our own health and well-being. Focusing on the obesity epidemic, I explore the irrational and unconscious forces that lead consumers to engage in harmful behavior. Only by understanding and controlling the factors that go into our decisions, big and small, we can all begin to stop the damage we do to our bodies, our finances, and our economy as a whole.

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