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Government Paternalism – Nanny State or Helpful Friend? - Princeton Scholarship Online
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Government Paternalism: Nanny State or Helpful Friend?

Julian Le Grand and BILL New


Should governments save people from themselves? Do governments have the right to influence citizens' behavior related to smoking tobacco, eating too much, not saving enough, drinking alcohol, or taking marijuana—or does this create a nanny state, leading to infantilization, demotivation, and breaches in individual autonomy? Looking at examples from both sides of the Atlantic and around the world, this book examines the justifications for, and the prevalence of, government paternalism and considers when intervention might or might not be acceptable. Building on developments in philosophy, behav ... More

Keywords: nanny state, smoking, pensions, assisted suicide, risky behavior, autonomy, intervention, government paternalism, taxation, subsidies

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2015 Print ISBN-13: 9780691164373
Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017 DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691164373.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Julian Le Grand, author
London School of Economics

BILL New, author