Yoram Bauman, the stand-up economist, is in China doing some climate change economics-y stuff:
In case you’re curious, OECD stands for “Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development,” and the OECD category on the graphs refers to countries that are members of the OECD, which happen to mostly be developed countries.
Is it bad that my first thought was that, by making people use their own toilet paper, China is encouraging more efficient toilet paper use? On the other hand, if washing one’s hands does in fact have positive externalities (I’m no epidemiologist, but I’m pretty sure this is the case), China could find it in its interest to provide or at least subsidize the hand soap. (Technically, wiping one’s butt properly must also have positive externalities, so I’m a little stymied on the issue.)
Is it worse that my second thought was “They have pink BMWs in China??? That’s not consuming like us, that’s consuming way better than us!” I’m guessing I might be alone on the second part of that statement.