Tuesday, August 21, 2018

An egregious repugnant transaction

When I speak about repugnant transactions--transactions which some people voluntarily engage in, but other people think they shouldn't, or perhaps shouldn't even be allowed to--I sometimes run into some skepticism from economists who point out that voluntary transactions generally increase welfare, and that to restrict them is paternalistic.

Nevertheless, many people have that (paternalistic) impulse at least sometimes.
Test yourself on this one, from the Guardian:

British stag group in Spain 'paid homeless man to get face tattoo'
Anger in Benidorm as Polish national given £90 to have groom’s name on forehead

"British tourists on a stag party in Benidorm have provoked outrage by paying a homeless man to have the name of the groom tattooed on his forehead, a local business leader has said.

Karen Maling Cowles, the president of the Benidorm British Business Association, said the group gave 34-year-old Tomek, originally from Poland, €100 (£89) to have “Jamie Blake, North Shields, NE28” inked on his head...
"Residents of the Spanish resort criticised the stag group after the tattoo parlour posted a photo on Facebook, since taken down, of Tomek getting the tattoo."

HT: Muriel Niederle

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