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numberkruncherFlag for United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

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Performance Implications of Referential Integrity (RI)?

I am designing a MySQL database using the "MySQL Workbench". I have created a design which includes lots of RI, but what are the performance implications of RI?

Please could you refer to the following illustration of the WordPress database:
http://codex.wordpress.org/images/9/9e/WP3.0-ERD.png

Table: wp_term_taxonomy
Attribute: "parent" may optionally refer to another "wp_term_taxonomy"

- What reasons might the WordPress designers have chosen to not enforce RI for term hierarchies?

- Are there any performance benefits with RI and foreign keys?
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Jezbit
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Thank you guys, that is interesting.

With regards to traffic, the website will have on average between 200-500 users at any given time. So I am thinking that I should switch off "Foreign Keys" when exporting the create script from "MySQL Workbench".

Should I still be using heavy RI in "MySQL Workbench"? Is it possible to export selective RI?
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Thanks for the help guys, and sorry for the late response.