I have to completely and utterly disagree there. Enjoyment is central to utility. It can be perfectly rational to drink yourself into a stupor, just like it can be perfectly rational to smoke 40 a day. Doesn’t have to be, but can be.

For a start, the probability you will crack your spine or die of lung cancer as a result of your vices is not 1, so it’s a gamble — just like taking a plane, driving somewhere, or even getting out of bed is a gamble.

But even if I knew for certain that my smoking habit would lead to my premature death of cardiovascular disease, I could still rationally decide that the enjoyment of a life long nicotine fix outweighed the cost of premature death and the inconvenience of my condition in my latter years (if dying prematurely were indeed a cost; maybe I have no interest in living long).

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Accidental behavioural economist in search of wisdom. Uses insights from (behavioural) economics in organization development. On Twitter as @koenfucius

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