Welcome to ToDaZeD Nudge Balloon:
[Alec Baldwin][written at HuffPo - linky safe to Politico]
I think Mayor Michael Bloomberg is right. At least in spirit.
At first, my response to Bloomberg’s critics was more visceral. Some libertarian types don’t mind government intervention in the matrimonial decisions of gay men and women. They look the other way at wars fought in our name in places they can’t find on a map. They want courts to get involved when they want to tear down the wall between Church and State.
Yeah. All the “Libertarian Types” I know want to institute a gov’t religion.
Food is a drug. At least in the way it is marketed today, which is significantly different from when I grew up. As a child, sweets were referred to as “treats,” and were dispensed far more judiciously than they are today. The proliferation of fast food restaurants that serve high fat, high sugar meals, as well as places like Dunkin Donuts, which are simply sugar dispensaries, has evolved as well.
* I recently lost over 30 pounds by giving up the lion’s share of refined sugar in my diet and reducing my intake of pasta, rice and bread. I switched to almond milk and have reduced my dairy consumption significantly.
Here we go….
I once lost 30 pounds by eating exactly the same things I was eating before — just half the amount. After about a week, it felt normal. Stayed that way, too.
I watched the HBO documentary The Weight of a Nation [and now I'm a freakin expert] and many of the overweight people interviewed there spoke of being not only demoralized, but confused by a chronic weight gain that they struggled with and were ultimately powerless to overcome. I can relate.
I exercised constantly yet watched my weight climb until I was certain something was wrong with me. In May of 2011, that fear was confirmed. I was told I was pre-diabetic and needed to aggressively rethink and regulate my diet. Gone were the days when I could eat a peanut butter cookie the size of a hubcap with my 5pm coffee as a “snack.” With age, my body had changed. My health had changed. My ability to process significant amounts of sugar was gone. I was sick. And I wanted to get well.
So you want me to believe that you didn’t know a “peanut butter cookie the size of a hubcap” was gonna make ya fat? Actually, I do believe you didn’t know that… considering….
Many of those who cry loudest about measures like the one Bloomberg has proposed are probably sick, too: hooked on high fat, high sodium and high sugar diets who don’t want their “drug” taken away.
So your diagnosis of pre-diabetic is the same as an “addictive sickness”?
Americans are obese, and in some areas of high concentration, morbidly obese, in numbers that are sapping the treasuries of the fifty states, undercutting U.S. competitiveness, and leaving this country vulnerable to a set of long-term health crises that we will struggle to overcome, if ever.
“Criiiisis in Black and White” *runz in circles*
[erm, what if people had to pay for their own health care costs? Not for everyone else's personal choices? Hm? No? ok -- just a thought....]
All the while, millions will die, unnecessarily, simply because they fell victim to the marketing of unhealthy dietary choices.
“Death!! Destruction!!! Victimhooood!!!!”
“Cause of death: Victimhood”
Whether you think an elitist, billionaire New Yorker has any business blocking your path to the soda fountain is one issue. His motives, however, are unquestionable.
I will ask no queations about his motives. I don’t give a wet cookie about his “motives.” I’m interested in — you should pardon the expression — the outcome.
What has happened is that we’ve allowed the gov’t to intercede in a transaction between two [somewhat, formerly] Free Individuals. A Restaurant owner figures his profit margins, costs and customer base and has chooses to offer what will make him profit and what his customers want to buy. Mayor Mommy has interfered with that free transaction to the detriment of both the seller and the buyer for no benefit to anyone.
If you really, really believe that it is the duty of the gov’t to save people from their own choices, why not make cheezeburgers, cake, donuts, candy, peanut butter cookies the size of a hubcap and sodas completely illegal to sell or possess?
Why not mandatory gov’t-enforced exercise programs?
the Institute of Medicine has just unleashed a report — 478 pages, corpulent in its own right — addressing the topic. It advances the notion that obesity is not an individual shortcoming requiring voluntary personal reformation, but a societal problem requiring compulsory systemic change.
…The New York Times’ Mark Bittman likens foods with added sugar to tobacco, and asks, “How do we regulate the consumption of dangerous foods? … We need the government on our side. It must acknowledge the dangers caused by the most unhealthy aspects of our diet and figure out how to help us cope with them.”
Warning, Will Robinson!!!!
At a “Harvard Thinks Big” confab earlier this year, evolutionary biologist Daniel Lieberman offered his own bright idea for tackling the nation’s obesity epidemic. Merely medicating it won’t do, he said, and education is well-meaning but ineffective. His answer? “Coercion. … We should start telling corporations what to do.” But not just corporations. He also advocated — “to hearty applause,” the Harvard Gazette noted — “requiring people to exercise.”
Orwell to the White Courtesy Telephone, please.
All this sturm und drang seems odd, or at least oddly timed — because the obesity epidemic has actually leveled off. Rates of obesity in men have remained largely stable for the past eight years. Among white women, obesity has not risen for the past 12 years. …reports The Washington Post.
So if obesity rates have not changed significantly, what has? Government’s share of total spending on health care — which was 41 percent in 2007 — is expected to exceed 52 percent by 2019, whether the Supreme Court upholds the Affordable Care Act or not. And the government says obesity costs a lot of money: more than $150 billion a year, by some estimates.
Those estimates are wildly inflated by the inclusion of factors such as “the value of income from decreased productivity”*cough*bullshiite*cough* and “the value of future income lost by premature death.” *cough*morebullshiite*cough*
See? Getting the gov’t involved always produces better outcomes!!lubenty11!!
Since Jones is being forced to pay for Smith’s medical care, goes the argument, Smith should be forced to stay fit and trim, lest he become a burden on Jones. And since he cannot be expected to do so on his own — owing to “obesogenic” factors [see? victimhood *is* fattening!] and whatnot — he should be made to. Even through compulsory exercise, if that is what it takes.
Of course the coercionaries could leave Smith alone, if they simply left Jones alone too. But this solution never seems to occur to them, does it? And why should it? It would require a certain degree of humility and restraint. Besides, they already know the solution: In the event of any government failure, apply more government directly to the wound.
So it comes down to this clear demonstration that Nationalized “Health Care” is entirely about furthering gov’t control of personal choices and commercial interaction. Somebody make the argument for me that that is Constitutional.