Cornell economist faults Bloomberg’s soda ban

Getty images

A behavior economist at Cornell University criticized Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s proposed soda ban, at a press conference hosted by the Weill Cornell Medical College this morning.
Professor David Just said that the soda ban implies a restriction on people’s freedom, causing many to rebel, which will do the exact opposite of what the policy is designed to do.
“Anytime you throw some kind of policy that works to restrict freedom, individuals are going to put up some kind of resistance that’s going to erode its effectiveness,” he said.

This summer, Bloomberg announced he wants to outlaw sugary sodas larger than 16 ounces.
Just also said that he’s seen many policies similar to the soda ban fail because they were not well-tested or tested at all.
“People who prefer larger sodas are most likely going to find some way to overcome this ban,” he said. “Rather than targeting obesity, the ban will incite some sort of rebellion from those who feel their freedom is restricted.”

Just has studied school lunch programs, as well as how behavioral economics can be applied to child nutrition programs.

Just said that he believes there are other policies that should be implemented that would effectively target obesity.

“What would happen in New York City went to soda companies and asked for those companies to have smaller sizes available?” he asked.

He also suggested regulating or even manipulating sizes so people think they’re eating more than they actually are.
“According to my research, if you call something a ‘regular’ size, people are going to eat all of it,” he said. “But if you call it and extra-large, people will only eat about 75 percent of it, thus reducing calories.”


Putin fields question from U.S. fugitive Edward Snowden

Edward Snowden, the fugitive former U.S. spy agency contractor who leaked details of intelligence eavesdropping, asked Russian President Vladimir Putin a question on Thursday during…


Cops release sketch of Madison Avenue jewelry robbery…

Authorities continue to look for a man suspected in a $54,000 jewelry heist at a Madison Avenue store from from last week.


Rapper affiliate of Wu-Tang Clan 'cuts off own…

Rapper Andre Johnson, who has performed with New York outfit the Wu-Tang Clan, is in a critical condition after reportedly cutting off his own penis…


Canadian charged in 'Heartbleed' attack on tax agency

OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canadian police have arrested a 19-year-old man and charged him in connection with exploiting the "Heartbleed" bug to steal taxpayer data from…

The Word

'Mrs. Doubtfire' sequel in the works

Finally, Hollywood is making your dreams come true - they're making that "Mrs. Doubtfire" sequel you've been clamoring for all these years.

The Word

Lawsuit accuses 'X-Men' director Bryan Singer of raping…

A new lawsuit accuses director Bryan Singer of sexual assault against a minor.


The Cannes Film Festival announces its 2014 lineup

The lineup of the 2014 Cannes Film Festival was announced this morning, promising the latest from a slew of usual (and some unusual) suspects.


‘Survivor: Cagayan’ recap: Episode 8

Sure, it's called Survivor. But this season should really be called 'The Tony Show.'


Knicks wrap up season with win over Raptors

The Knicks wrapped up their season as it began — undermanned — but that still didn’t deter them from ending it the right way.


Adam Warren closes out doubleheader sweep for Yankees

Adam Warren navigated a tricky ninth inning earn the Yankees a 2-0 victory over the Cubs.


Marc Staal healthy, eager to contribute to Rangers…

Marc Staal remembers the feeling of helplessness watching his teammates compete for hockey’s ultimate prize and being unable to contribute.


2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April version

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April version


How to parent without gender stereotypes in a…

Christia Spears Brown, Phd. author of "Parenting beyond Pink & Blue" gives advice on raising kids free of gender stereotypes.


This Week in Health News: breastfed infants trying…

Are breastfed infants trying to prevent mom from having another baby? Theory: The act of breastfeeding not only brings mom and baby closer together –…


This Week in Health: chocolate may prevent obesity…

Can chocolate prevent obesity and diabetes? Location of study: U.S. Study subjects: Mice Results: The positive health benefits of chocolate have been studied increasingly more…


Unexplained infertility may be caused by lack of…

Researchers have identified a protein on the egg's surface that interacts with another protein on the surface of sperm, allowing the two cells to join.