Sunday, October 11, 2009


It should be no surprise to anyone that more government regulation has failed once again. Their latest scheme to keep fat people thin by requiring restaurants to post their calorie counts has failed. With thousands of tax dollars spent to put this into effect, new studies point out that this did not change consumers' waist lines at all. But even if it did, is this what we want to spend our money on, social engineering and behavioral changes? That is a little too 1984 for me.

Now I always thought that the government’s primary function was to prevent people from harming each other, whether by force or by fraud. But in the past century, we have been misled to believe that the government’s job is to stop us from making bad decisions, and to demonize anyone that tempts us with anything more than a celery stick. Why take personal responsibility when it is so much easier to point your fat finger?

But the truth is that if a restaurant doesn’t share nutritional information with you, you are not being harmed – you’re just not getting what you want. If you believe you can’t make healthy choices without that information, you are free to take your business elsewhere. The restaurants know this, so it’s in their interest to keep you happy. That’s why nutrition information is easily available online and in pamphlets – because enough customers demanded it, not because politicians did.

Meanwhile, these laws force restaurants to conduct a lot of expensive lab tests on their food to determine all the calorie counts, which in turn drives up prices. The end result, of course, is that not only are your taxes increased but you’ll pay more for your restaurant meals and fat people will still be just as fat.* This of course, like most regulations, hurt the lower and middle class pocketbooks much more than the upper class. But f*ck em, who cares about that 90% of the population...right? The politicians get to feel good about themselves, and that’s all that really matters.

But whether it’s menu labeling, soda taxes, or something as ridiculous as salt shaker bans, regulators seem dead-set on destroying our freedom as consumers. And if America continues down this road and does to the food industry what it did to the tobacco industry, you can find me down in the sewer with Sylvester Stallone and Denis Leary eating a nice juicy rat burger.

You can look up nutrition information for hundreds of restaurants on this web site, which somebody took the time to create without any interference by politicians.

* I think it is important to note that calorie based diets work roughly 1% of the time and usually leads to weight gain. People can watch their calories all they want but what they should strive for is a well balanced nutritional diet. Let's face it, the bigger you are the more calories your body needs for fuel. And for fat people if they are insulin-resistant, meaning their bodies produce a higher level of insulin to keep their blood surgar down, their bodies end up storing calories as fat and not using them as fuel. Cutting back on calories for one meal at McDonald's will only lead you to crash and then binge later on that day...eating just as much if not more calories.

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