Friday, 11 July, 2003

More McDonald's bashing

The New York Times ran an article today reporting that some food manufacturers are trying to revamp their offerings to include more healthy foods.  Or, to be more correct, foods with smaller portions, less fat, and fewer calories.  The article makes the case that these companies are trying to stave off a barrage of lawsuits.  On this, I'd have to agree.  But the article crosses the line between journalism and advocacy, and verges on big business bashing.  When I read crap like this I wonder how the New York Times ever got the reputation for being the source for news.

There's no doubt that there's an obesity problem in this country.  And there's absolutely no doubt in my mind, or in the mind of any thinking person, where the responsibility for that problem lies.  That's right, squarely on the shoulders of people who choose to overeat, and parents who refuse to control what their children eat.  Labeling food and grading products according to their nutritional value will have the same effect on this problem that warning labels did on cigarettes:  none.  People will continue to eat too much or the wrong kinds of foods, refuse to exercise, and blame "big food," the government, and genetics for the ill effects of their irresponsible lifestyles.  Next thing you know, the California legislature will pass a 50 cent tax on any meal that contains more than 10 grams of fat.  After they've collected that for a few years and people continue to get fatter the State will begin the process of extorting money from fast food companies, ostensibly to pay health care costs for the millions of uninsured fat asses who somehow have enough money to eat at McDonald's but can't afford to buy healthy food.  It sickens me to see this playing out.