Why Johnny Can’t Choose

People want more choices in life, or so they say. But a new study suggests that people presented with more than a few choices have a much harder time making decisions, and may choose to make no decision at all, rather than cope with the stress of multiple options. So perhaps it follows that, when it comes to matters of public policy, our government needs to stop giving us so many options, and make a few well-reasoned decisions on our behalf. So said a psychology professor in a New York Times op-ed last week. But Ronald Bailey isn’t buying that argument: “One suspects that his unspoken converse is that sound public policy consists of the government restricting options and forcing Americans to do what people like Professor Schwartz think is good for them.”