George Will's unbridled arrogance never ceases to amaze me:
Barack Obama is a "choice architect" aiming to implement "libertarian paternalism." He might not know that he is; he might embrace the practice without understanding the theory. It is adumbrated in the new book "Nudge" by two occasional and informal advisers to Obama, both of whom are former colleagues of his at the University of Chicago, Richard H. Thaler of the Graduate School of Business, and Cass R. Sunstein of the Law School.Obama might not "understand the theory" of libertarian paternalism? I've read Nudge, and believe me, libertarian paternalism is not a difficult concept. The book is written at the level of a popular economics book. It's interesting and highly recommended, but the concepts aren't even remotely difficult to understand. This is a variation on one of Will's most common arguments: that Democrats vote the way they do because they just don't understand economics (a subject Will has no formal training in, by the way); in Will's mind, if Democrats did understand economics, they'd be libertarians or conservatives. To be sure, there are plenty of Democrats who don't understand economics (I'm looking at you, Sherrod Brown). But when the overwhelming majority of professional economists are Democrats, it's time to put the old "Democrats don't understand economics" argument out to pasture. Or better yet, put George Will out to pasture.