Friday, March 14, 2014

Congresspeople: Impersonal Shoppers

There are 28 mostly irrelevant search results for "Impersonal Shoppers"

Discussion on tax choice facebook page

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Xero

All of us would agree that it would be an improvement if taxpayers could allocate even just 1% of their taxes. And maybe all of us would agree that 10% would be an improvement. What about 50%?

Where should the line be drawn? Why should it be drawn there?

If we ever set up a tax choice non-profit...would we ever turn away a donation because it was too big? "No, you don't really value the cause that much!"

I've tried to flesh out the relevant concepts in terms of block (limiting input) vs flow (facilitating input)...

Block vs Flow

Cait Lamberton 

In my studies, the psychological benefits actually dissipate at high levels (50%) because skepticism is generated. Not saying that shouldn't happen from a policy standpoint, but it'd be a tough sell practically and may have some weird negative consequences...

Xero

Very interesting.  I'm guessing they're skeptical of the accuracy of their allocation decisions?  If the allocation level was 100%...does this mean that taxpayers would allocate 10% of their taxes and then just give the rest to their personal shoppers (congress)?  "You go ahead and order the main course for me...I'll just order my drink...and maybe dessert".  I think if there was any real value created by the employment of infinitely removed personal shoppers...then there would be plenty of companies in the private sector capitalizing on the demand. LOL...I said "infinitely removed personal shoppers".  I should have just said "impersonal shoppers".

This ties into the work by Joel Waldfogel...
Consumers fare better [at identifying their own preferences] than all types of givers except significant others and possibly grandparents...it seems unlikely that an alternative chooser would do better than friends, siblings, and parents, all of whom have substantial amounts of information about the ultimate consumer's preferences. - Does Consumer Irrationality Trump Consumer Sovereignty?  
We say "representative democracy"...but I think it's more accurate to say "representative economics"...or maybe "proxy economics".  It's pretty much just a command economy.

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