I noted the absurdity of basing child support formulas on adult clothing, alcohol, and tobacco consumption statistics, but I really think that the problem runs deeper.
The basic premise that underlies the academic analyses is that a father who is a head of a household and is living with his child will not voluntarily spend any more on on his child than a man who pays court-ordered child support to a mom of a kid he never sees.
That is crazy. Many fathers work long hours and make incredible sacrifices for their families. The idea that he would make those same sacrifices for a wife who betrayed him and a child he never sees is nuts. I cannot even see the rationale for it, and I cannot find where any legislative body has expressed a rationale. It is as if someone decided that there is no social benefit for fathers to be involved with their kids, and that the law should create monetary incentives against it.