Monday, March 5, 2012

Frezza: The Nanny State and Your Waistline

In the 3/5/2012 RealClearMarkets, Bill Frezza discusses the latest nanny-state obsession with citizens' waistlines: "Too Fat? Too Thin? Progressive Policies Can Fix That!"

From his OpEd:
The logic behind government efforts to control Americans' mass body index is as impeccable as it is insidious. If health care is a "right" to be paid for by the taxpayer, and "access" to this right is being jeopardized by the runaway costs associated with a "disease" called obesity, then the food that you stuff in your face is no longer a personal preference but a critical matter of fiscal necessity.

Sugar is the latest demon, since it appears that years of government advice on the consumption of saturated fats has turned out to be wrong. A broad-based campaign is underway, spearheaded by zealots like Professor Robert Lustig of the University of California, to get the federal Food and Drug Administration to regulate sugar as it does other "addictive poisons"...

At the other end of the scale, "scientists" are urging government action to ban skinny models to curb anorexia, a self-induced malady that affects far too many young women with self-esteem problems. Apparently, the fashion industry's penchant for thinness, which you might think would be hailed by obesity warriors, is a public menace that needs to be controlled. First Amendment be dammed, we have a crisis here and we cannot let corporate greed trump public safety!
(Read the full text of "Too Fat? Too Thin? Progressive Policies Can Fix That!")

As Robert Heinlein once said: "The human race divides politically into those who want people to be controlled and those who have no such desire."

Unfortunately, the first group is in charge -- until we muster up the gumption to kick them out of office.

Related OpEds:
Milton Wolf, "Is This Still America?", Washington Times, 2/27/2012.

Paul Hsieh, "Universal healthcare and the waistline police", Christian Science Monitor, 1/7/2009.