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Temptations: A General Theory of Over-eating, Under-saving, Favoritism, Certainty Effect, Spoiling of Children, Pornography-Viewing, and Regretting

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  • Elias L. Khalil

Abstract

This paper traces temptations to biased beliefs—instead of the standard approach that traces temptations to biased tastes. The proposed theory affords, in two ways, a more general framework than what is afforded by the standard approach: First, to start with biased beliefs can simultaneously explain the temptation to cheat others as well as the temptation to cheat oneself. Second, to start with biased beliefs allows us to go beyond the stress on biological urges and time-inconsistent tastes. This allows us to consider cases of temptations that are not traditionally considered as temptations–such cases include favoritism, the certainty effect, the spoiling of children, pornography-viewing, and regretting.

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File URL: http://www.buseco.monash.edu.au/eco/research/papers/2012/2612temtationskhalil.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Monash University, Department of Economics in its series Monash Economics Working Papers with number 26-12.

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Length: 49 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:mos:moswps:2012-26

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Related research

Keywords: shoplifting; shirking; slackening; self-deception; self-delusion; impulsive decider; calm decider;

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  1. Becker, Gary S, 1976. "Altruism, Egoism, and Genetic Fitness: Economics and Sociobiology," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 14(3), pages 817-26, September.
  2. Bengt Holmstrom, 1981. "Moral Hazard in Teams," Discussion Papers 471, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  3. Khalil, Elias L., 2011. "The mirror neuron paradox: How far is understanding from mimicking?," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 77(1), pages 86-96, January.
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