Coming after your favorite foods

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Dr of BBQ
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2006/09/03 23:31:10 (permalink)

Coming after your favorite foods

You didn't complain or act when they came after fireworks, banned smoking, or dropped the BOA limits, and now they are building up their courage and determination to come after your favorite foods. And I guarantee BBQ will be on the list.

This from the Drudge Report.

An obesity pandemic threatens to overwhelm health systems around the globe with illnesses such as diabetes and heart disease, experts at an international conference warned Sunday.

"This insidious, creeping pandemic of obesity is now engulfing the entire world," Paul Zimmet, chairman of the meeting of more than 2,500 experts and health officials, said in a speech opening the weeklong International Congress on Obesity. "It's as big a threat as global warming and bird flu."
#1

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    CajunKing
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/05 01:04:30 (permalink)
    You heard of the whiskey rebellion, this here will be the BBQ rebellion.

    Instead of you gotta pry this gun out of my cold dead hands, it will be you'll have to wipe the que sauce off my cold dead fingers!!!

    #2
    roossy90
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/05 02:51:07 (permalink)
    #3
    ann peeples
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/05 06:03:15 (permalink)
    What is so ironic to me is that if obesity is such an epidemic, why wont insurance cover help with weight loss?(only if you are 100lbs overweight)Being a healthy weight can avoid lots of expensive health problems.Believe me, I know-have struggled with the issue for years...
    #4
    MilwFoodlovers
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/05 06:45:39 (permalink)
    NPR just had an interview with a fellow pushing for a tax on "unhealthy" foods with the proceeds earmarked for healthcare, "Just like the tobacco taxes". I don't have a cell and I was in my car or I would have called and asked a) "How long will you guarantee I'd live if I obeyed what you felt was a proper diet" and b)"That tobacco money went where"?.
    #5
    ann peeples
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/05 06:50:01 (permalink)
    That is the most ridiculous thing i have heard in a long time......
    #6
    lunasatic
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/05 14:25:10 (permalink)
    Speaking as a morbidly obese (the medical term) person who used to office-manage for a surgeon that specialized in "obesity" surgery; insurances companies as a whole consider any weight-management programs as "vanity programs", and tend to classify the surgeries used in extreme cases with "cosmetic surgery". Yes, he did the surgery on me. No, it didn't work, mostly for psychological reasons. This "problem" is much more complicated than "if you take in more than you burn off, you get fat". It's basically just like any other addiction (drugs, sex, alcohol, tobacco), with one major exception: You cannot totally abstain from food and stay healthy.
    #7
    xannie_01
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/05 14:28:21 (permalink)
    lunasatic,
    thank you for the insight.
    #8
    lunasatic
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/05 14:29:33 (permalink)
    More on subject, I reckon this'll go pretty much like all the other government "wars" (Prohibition, the War on Drugs, the War on Poverty)have gone: They'll throw tons of our money away and solve nothing. Along the way some innocent people will be harmed ("collateral damage"), some other not-so-innocent people will make tons of money for their own pockets, and nothing will be accomplished.
    #9
    lunasatic
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/05 14:32:18 (permalink)
    Why don't we have a war on selfish stupidity??? Or congenital bad manners? Or POLITICIANS?!?
    #10
    Dr of BBQ
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/05 18:29:32 (permalink)
    When you consider the eventual outcome it will have on the food industry, the restaurant business, and of course the nations health those effects far outweigh any political correctness. The Food Police are just beyond the gates and with these groups there is no meet us half way. They are all or none and the silly people from both parties we elect see these issues as a way to get another 15 minutes of the spotlight. If I owned a sit-down restaurant I’d be very nervous. If you claim hey we do the best we can it’s not going to be enough. If you change to no fat content people aren’t going to buy your food. If you go all fresh (free range) chickens your prices skyrocket. In Springfield every restaurant in town serves fish on Friday. I told a local guy (good friend) runs one of the most popular places in town to cut his fish in long thin strips because people aren’t ordering it because they like fish but instead because they like the deep fried batter he breads it with. He did and now sells 60 cases of fried fish every Friday night. 60 cases is a lot of fish. But if you compare the amount of the same fish he sells baked which amounts to less than 1/3rd of a case in a week, if he dropped the fried fish he might as well close up on Friday night. I sure don’t know the answer but with out the ability to post problems like this on forums we will never get enough information exchanged between good hard working restaurant owners, chefs, and general managers, to get the problems we are about to face solved. The people that write to this forum are aware of the current problems those of us in the food business face and they are pretty good about coming up with some very helpful and creative solutions.
    Jack@DrofBBQ.com
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    Jack@DrofBBQ.com
    #11
    UncleVic
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/05 19:58:34 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by MilwFoodlovers

    NPR just had an interview with a fellow pushing for a tax on "unhealthy" foods with the proceeds earmarked for healthcare, "Just like the tobacco taxes". I don't have a cell and I was in my car or I would have called and asked a) "How long will you guarantee I'd live if I obeyed what you felt was a proper diet" and b)"That tobacco money went where"?.


    What they need is an Idiot Tax. Nail all the people that work in the goverment that have no clue which side is up or down.
    #12
    Adjudicator
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/05 20:05:47 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Dr of BBQ

    When you consider the eventual outcome it will have on the food industry, the restaurant business, and of course the nations health those effects far outweigh any political correctness. The Food Police are just beyond the gates and with these groups there is no meet us half way. They are all or none and the silly people from both parties we elect see these issues as a way to get another 15 minutes of the spotlight. If I owned a sit-down restaurant I’d be very nervous. If you claim hey we do the best we can it’s not going to be enough. If you change to no fat content people aren’t going to buy your food. If you go all fresh (free range) chickens your prices skyrocket. In Springfield every restaurant in town serves fish on Friday. I told a local guy (good friend) runs one of the most popular places in town to cut his fish in long thin strips because people aren’t ordering it because they like fish but instead because they like the deep fried batter he breads it with. He did and now sells 60 cases of fried fish every Friday night. 60 cases is a lot of fish. But if you compare the amount of the same fish he sells baked which amounts to less than 1/3rd of a case in a week, if he dropped the fried fish he might as well close up on Friday night. I sure don’t know the answer but with out the ability to post problems like this on forums we will never get enough information exchanged between good hard working restaurant owners, chefs, and general managers, to get the problems we are about to face solved. The people that write to this forum are aware of the current problems those of us in the food business face and they are pretty good about coming up with some very helpful and creative solutions.
    Jack@DrofBBQ.com
    __________________
    The Doctor of BBQ
    www.DrofBBQ.com
    Jack@DrofBBQ.com


    A long-term solution might be just what government officials are trying to do -- re-educating the masses on the benefits of eating a healthful diet.
    #13
    MilwFoodlovers
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/05 20:25:50 (permalink)
    quote:
    A long-term solution might be just what government officials are trying to do -- re-educating the masses on the benefits of eating a healthful diet.


    Who among us do not understand what smoking, too much fat, too much salt, too few vegetables, eating without moderation will do to us? I think we all should be informed. I think HFCS use should be "un-subsidized" but I'll take responsibility for my own actions. Let the folks that are sure they know what's best for me run the asylum and you can kiss livermush, scrapple, southern fried chicken, sausages, burgers, prime ribs, corned beef, BBQ pulled pork, fish frys, frozen custard, butter, eggs, etc. as something foolish we ate in our youths. Heck probably 90% of what we post about is on someone's I'd like to ban list. I clearly remember Julia Child saying that you must use lard if you are baking a pie, and if you have problems with that, have a salad for your next meal; just make food the best way you can make it. Not her exact words to be sure, but wise advice nonetheless.
    #14
    ann peeples
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/05 21:12:36 (permalink)
    Taxing is absolutely NOT the solution.The government taxed our cigarrettes, they taxed booze, etc...did not stop anyone from doing it(or very few)Education is what we need...in the printed media, on t.v, in our schools.
    #15
    Oneiron339
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/06 07:44:50 (permalink)
    It all comes down to freedom folks, and the choices we make. Everyone (99.999999%, anyway) is where we are today because of the choices we make in our lives. We don't need government to tell us what to do. Government can, and should disseminate the info to make choices, but then get out of the way. If I want to smoke or drink, allow me. If I want to eat what I choose, then permit me - as long as I don't infringe upon anyone else's well-being or rights. This "Mommy" state we are in is because our liberal politicians believe government is the answer to all our needs. Not only are we heading to a socialist state, where government decides upon everything for its people, most of the "sheep" out there can't even see it coming. The USA is the longest tenured form of governmental process in existence in history (over 225 years)and the writing is on the wall about its demise. But we still don't get it and won't do anything about it.
    #16
    MilwFoodlovers
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/06 07:50:46 (permalink)
    "Liberal politicians"?? Excuse me? It would appear that right-wing wacko's have infringed upon my personal rights more than any "liberal politician". This, however, is a topic best served in another forum. Start one up and I'll be happy to have an intelligent conversation about rights.
    #17
    lunasatic
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/06 16:51:51 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by UncleVic

    quote:
    Originally posted by MilwFoodlovers

    NPR just had an interview with a fellow pushing for a tax on "unhealthy" foods with the proceeds earmarked for healthcare, "Just like the tobacco taxes". I don't have a cell and I was in my car or I would have called and asked a) "How long will you guarantee I'd live if I obeyed what you felt was a proper diet" and b)"That tobacco money went where"?.


    What they need is an Idiot Tax. Nail all the people that work in the goverment that have no clue which side is up or down.

    I thought Congress exempted themselves from their own rules!

    #18
    UncleVic
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/06 20:52:45 (permalink)
    Lunasatic, wish it was limited to Congress and Washington... But I have to tell you, and I probably dont.. Look around. It's getting fairly waist deep at the local level also. I hate talking politics, but there's times your veins are popping and bleeding out of your forehead just reading about it.

    Start putting WORKING folk and Working Folk wages in office... I bet things change! (Again, this is a personal opinion.. If ya wish to discuss it further, I'll meet ya in the MISC. forums on a 'be kind' basis).


    #19
    Tony Bad
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/06 21:31:41 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Oneiron339

    It all comes down to freedom folks, and the choices we make. Everyone (99.999999%, anyway) is where we are today because of the choices we make in our lives. We don't need government to tell us what to do. Government can, and should disseminate the info to make choices, but then get out of the way. If I want to smoke or drink, allow me. If I want to eat what I choose, then permit me - as long as I don't infringe upon anyone else's well-being or rights. This "Mommy" state we are in is because our liberal politicians believe government is the answer to all our needs. Not only are we heading to a socialist state, where government decides upon everything for its people, most of the "sheep" out there can't even see it coming. The USA is the longest tenured form of governmental process in existence in history (over 225 years)and the writing is on the wall about its demise. But we still don't get it and won't do anything about it.


    I like what you wrote, and also abhor the overreaching path our government seems to want to follow, but the problem is that the way people take care of themselves DOES impact others. The costs associated with our present health insurance system as well as any government run system many seem to favor are impacted by people being unhealthy. People want to act the way they want to, but are rarely willing to be 100% responsible for their actions. The abundance of people incurring higher healthcare costs due to poor habits makes care more costly for others and puts it out of the reach of many. Would you be willing to eat poorly and live an unhealthy lifestyle if only your costs for care rose accordingly? I wouldn't, probably because I couldn't afford to!

    For the majority of the 225 years the US has been around people didn't expect the government or society to bail them out when they acted irresponsibly. Now they do. That will undoubtedly impact what happens in the next 225 years!
    #20
    Adjudicator
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/06 21:39:41 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Tony Bad

    quote:
    Originally posted by Oneiron339

    It all comes down to freedom folks, and the choices we make. Everyone (99.999999%, anyway) is where we are today because of the choices we make in our lives. We don't need government to tell us what to do. Government can, and should disseminate the info to make choices, but then get out of the way. If I want to smoke or drink, allow me. If I want to eat what I choose, then permit me - as long as I don't infringe upon anyone else's well-being or rights. This "Mommy" state we are in is because our liberal politicians believe government is the answer to all our needs. Not only are we heading to a socialist state, where government decides upon everything for its people, most of the "sheep" out there can't even see it coming. The USA is the longest tenured form of governmental process in existence in history (over 225 years)and the writing is on the wall about its demise. But we still don't get it and won't do anything about it.


    I like what you wrote, and also abhor the overreaching path our government seems to want to follow, but the problem is that the way people take care of themselves DOES impact others. The costs associated with our present health insurance system as well as any government run system many seem to favor are impacted by people being unhealthy. People want to act the way they want to, but are rarely willing to be 100% responsible for their actions. The abundance of people incurring higher healthcare costs due to poor habits makes care more costly for others and puts it out of the reach of many. Would you be willing to eat poorly and live an unhealthy lifestyle if only your costs for care rose accordingly? I wouldn't, probably because I couldn't afford to!

    For the majority of the 225 years the US has been around people didn't expect the government or society to bail them out when they acted irresponsibly. Now they do. That will undoubtedly impact what happens in the next 225 years!


    Good point Tony. A lot of folks today don't realize that. In my job I supervise a group of people who allow or deny federal disability benefits and/or SSI benefits. In quite a few claims that we allow, obesity is the original culprit (that has now caused other more serious problems). Hey folks --->>> It's YOUR $$$$ that I am authorizing to be spent here...

    P.S. Actually it's more like YOUR $$$$$$$$ that we are spending.
    #21
    Fieldthistle
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/07 06:19:00 (permalink)
    Hello All,
    I write this as I munch on a slice of pizza and suck down a beer.
    When I was in elementary school, they wouldn't serve pizza because it was
    a fast food, wouldn't serve fries either. Somewhere pizza became a great
    school food because it had meat, dairy and bread all in one place.
    When I was 18, my left lung collapsed. I was extrememly thin and the doctor
    told me I had to gain weight or the lungs many collapse again. Later, my right
    lung collapsed. The doctor told me to drink beer to gain weight. I doubt if
    a doctor would prescribe beer today.
    Adjudicator, I know a guy who is on disability because of his weight. He is huge,
    about 450 lbs., but he had a job on the slide delivering newspapers until he ticked
    someone off who threated to tell the disability people about his job.
    Tony, I am a smoker and already pay higher rates on my life insurance due to that. I don't mind
    doing that. The government also gets a tremendous amount of tax revenue from my cigarette
    purchases. I don't know what they do with that money, but I doubt if it goes into health
    care.
    As I said, I don't mind paying more, but life is more than about dollars. We need some joy and
    compassion. Are we going charge more for people with aids, mental retardation or autism, childhood
    diabetes or regular diabetes? What about blind people? The elderly should be charged more because
    of all their costs. And drunks who falls and breaks an arm or leg shouldn't be treated because they
    brought the accident on themselves. It can become absurd, like my examples were, (and my examples
    were purposely absurd.)
    But we have a social contract with each other, and we don't break it when it becomes expensive or inconvenient. When hurricanes hit, we grumble about people living along the coast, but we don't really expect them to not rebuild their homes unless they choose not to. We help them reconstruct their lives.
    Personal responsibility is very important, but you can push it to such an extreme logic that driving a car
    could become a sin due to the pollution it causes or the fact that the oil money is going to finance terrorist. (Perhaps it is)
    Should you force abortions where it is known that the child may develop certain diseases or developmental
    problems? Should you outlaw abortions without providing proper pre-natal care and eventually take unwanted
    children for the next 18 years of life?
    We are humans, and there is very little that you or I do that doesn't infringe on each other's well-being
    or rights. Sometimes we just learn to love and tolerate, and sacrifice for each other because we the human family. Sounds stupid, I know.
    Take Care,
    Fieldthistle
    #22
    Oneiron339
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/07 06:54:29 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Tony Bad

    quote:
    Originally posted by Oneiron339

    It all comes down to freedom folks, and the choices we make. Everyone (99.999999%, anyway) is where we are today because of the choices we make in our lives. We don't need government to tell us what to do. Government can, and should disseminate the info to make choices, but then get out of the way. If I want to smoke or drink, allow me. If I want to eat what I choose, then permit me - as long as I don't infringe upon anyone else's well-being or rights. This "Mommy" state we are in is because our liberal politicians believe government is the answer to all our needs. Not only are we heading to a socialist state, where government decides upon everything for its people, most of the "sheep" out there can't even see it coming. The USA is the longest tenured form of governmental process in existence in history (over 225 years)and the writing is on the wall about its demise. But we still don't get it and won't do anything about it.


    I like what you wrote, and also abhor the overreaching path our government seems to want to follow, but the problem is that the way people take care of themselves DOES impact others. The costs associated with our present health insurance system as well as any government run system many seem to favor are impacted by people being unhealthy. People want to act the way they want to, but are rarely willing to be 100% responsible for their actions. The abundance of people incurring higher healthcare costs due to poor habits makes care more costly for others and puts it out of the reach of many. Would you be willing to eat poorly and live an unhealthy lifestyle if only your costs for care rose accordingly? I wouldn't, probably because I couldn't afford to!

    For the majority of the 225 years the US has been around people didn't expect the government or society to bail them out when they acted irresponsibly. Now they do. That will undoubtedly impact what happens in the next 225 years!

    Someone once wrote,
    "We, who are too intelligent to become engaged in politics are relegated to be governed by those who are less intelligent and who engage themselves in politics."
    I think that says alot about our situation.
    #23
    ann peeples
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/07 08:55:04 (permalink)
    Fieldthistle-BRAVO!!!!!!!!!
    #24
    abowes
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/07 09:42:00 (permalink)
    Have you seen the ads for the new appetizers at Fridays??? I could cry! Fried green beans?!??! And, the amount of ranch dressing they scoop up in the dip shot of them? I hardly eat out anymore because of the lack of sensible choices offered on most menues - and then they go out of their way to offer things like breaded and deep fried macaroni and cheese!

    Alison
    #25
    roossy90
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/07 12:25:54 (permalink)
    Hopefully, the future will be changing..

    http://www.food-management.com/article/14248/

    http://www.umass.edu/chefconference/index.php
    #26
    Tony Bad
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/07 13:07:09 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Fieldthistle
    Tony, I am a smoker and already pay higher rates on my life insurance due to that. I don't mind
    doing that. The government also gets a tremendous amount of tax revenue from my cigarette
    purchases. I don't know what they do with that money, but I doubt if it goes into health
    care.
    As I said, I don't mind paying more, but life is more than about dollars. We need some joy and
    compassion. Are we going charge more for people with aids, mental retardation or autism, childhood
    diabetes or regular diabetes? What about blind people? The elderly should be charged more because
    of all their costs. And drunks who falls and breaks an arm or leg shouldn't be treated because they
    brought the accident on themselves. It can become absurd, like my examples were, (and my examples
    were purposely absurd.)
    But we have a social contract with each other, and we don't break it when it becomes expensive or inconvenient. When hurricanes hit, we grumble about people living along the coast, but we don't really expect them to not rebuild their homes unless they choose not to. We help them reconstruct their lives.
    Personal responsibility is very important, but you can push it to such an extreme logic that driving a car
    could become a sin due to the pollution it causes or the fact that the oil money is going to finance terrorist. (Perhaps it is)
    Should you force abortions where it is known that the child may develop certain diseases or developmental
    problems? Should you outlaw abortions without providing proper pre-natal care and eventually take unwanted
    children for the next 18 years of life?
    We are humans, and there is very little that you or I do that doesn't infringe on each other's well-being
    or rights. Sometimes we just learn to love and tolerate, and sacrifice for each other because we the human family. Sounds stupid, I know.
    Take Care,
    Fieldthistle



    The only point I was trying to make was that people always like to say they should be allowed to do what they want to do because it is their own body, or health, or whatever...but often fail to realize or accept that their actions impact the lives of others. Isn't irresponsible behavior that adversely impacts others something that violates that "social contract" you speak of?

    There are many adversities that can't be avoided and people need and deserve help when struck by such circumstances, but what if they refuse to help themselves? To use your example of hurricane relief...sure we need to help people impacted by storms...but what if they continue to ignore warnings to evacuate, or insist on rebuilding in harms way? Should society perpetually bear the costs associated with those choices? Near where I live there are ocean front homes that have been rebuilt many times with federal dollars. At what point does it become the burden of that homeowner to take action and move instead of society taking action (by paying again and again) on their behalf?

    While it is hard to think about things in terms of dollars and cents, we can't ignore such factors either. I don't work for free, and assume you don't or can't either. Things cost money. You wrote "Should you force abortions where it is known that the child may develop certain diseases or developmental problems?" There is no easy answer to this, but the reality is that the dollars used to care for this one child could care for the routine needs of many other children. The rising costs of care leave many lower income, working familes without proper care. What can we say about a person's commitment to the "social contract" when they decide to bring children into the world knowing the care of that child will be very, very costly? The social contract needs to be about giving as much as it is about taking, but sadly, I don't think many see it that way. I had a co-worker who had a child with a rare genetic condition. The child required around the clock care. This person was told there was a 75% chance another child would have the same condition. They elected to chance it, and now have two children with these tremendous medical needs. At the risk of sounding cold, the choice to have that second child wasn't in keeping with the whole concept of having a "social contract".

    I know I sound like a heartless, soul-less person here, but I am really just trying to point out the other side of this. I don't think your thoughts about love and tolerance and sacrifice are "stupid" at all, and I hope you don't think I am devoid of those attributes.

    Sorry to have strayed so far from the original topic.
    #27
    Scorereader
    Sirloin
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/07 13:59:40 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Fieldthistle

    Tony, I am a smoker and already pay higher rates on my life insurance due to that. I don't mind
    doing that.
    Take Care,
    Fieldthistle



    The problem is that we also pay an overall higher life insurance because you smoke. We also pay higher health care because there are smokers.
    Not a good example to compare an unhealthy choice with an affliction such as mental retardedness, autism or blindness. It's apples and oranges.

    However, a tax on unhealthy food is ridiculous. There are plenty of healthy foods that can be nhealthy if you over do it. So, I'm all for government education, such as a bigger campaign in the new eating pyramid, a more visible President's Council on Sports and Physical Fitness program. Under Reagan, we had constant advertising through t.v., postage stamps, and other media to get the youth in shape. We need to expand this in the schools by enforcing national standards in Physical Education class set out by AAHPERD.

    "The national standards demonstrate that physical education has academic standing equal to other subject areas. They describe achievement, show that knowledge and skills matter, and confirm that mere willing participation is not the same as education. In short, national physical education standards bring accountability and rigor to the profession."

    By enforcing a level of knowledge and skill, we can begin to help our youths experience the knowledge and skills of a healthy lifestyle.

    This way, like someone else mentioned that Julia Child said, the understanding that a little lard today simply means a salad tomorrow.


    #28
    Dr of BBQ
    Filet Mignon
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/07 14:29:01 (permalink)
    The problem is that we also pay an overall higher life insurance because you smoke. We also pay higher health care because there are smokers.

    Sorry to disagree but that's not true. All of the cost studies prove smokers pay dollar for dollar so much more in taxes and increased insurance premiums that it offsets what they drain from life insurance and healthcare.
    Jack@DrofBBQ.com
    #29
    Dr of BBQ
    Filet Mignon
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    RE: Coming after your favorite foods 2006/09/07 14:32:05 (permalink)
    The City of Chicago banned foie gras...then they threatened to ban trans-fats, but decided they can't force the issue. Now they're asking restaurants to comply. Reminds me of how things work around here. First they had "smoke out" days, asking restaurants to comply. Then when enough of them didn't go "smoke free", they ordered it.

    From the Chicago Sun Times today:
    Council tries softer tactic vs. trans fat

    September 7, 2006

    Chicago aldermen laughed at for banning foie gras are trying to avoid another kitchen-meddling showdown on the issue of trans fats.

    Instead of banning the artery-clogging oils, they're negotiating a compromise with the restaurant industry for voluntary compliance.

    License Committee Chairman Eugene Schulter (47th) and Finance Committee Chairman Edward M. Burke (14th) already have met with McDonald's. Similar meetings are planned over the next three weeks with Burger King, Kentucky Fried Chicken and Pizza Hut.

    Next week, Dr. Terry Mason, the city's health commissioner, will fly to New York City to get a firsthand look at whether Manhattan restaurants have voluntarily agreed to take trans fats off their menu, as city officials there have requested.

    Mason's "status report" will help determine how long Chicago restaurants will be given to comply before the City Council brings the hammer down, Schulter said.

    "We're much better off working with an industry that wants to work with us ... rather than banning things. We're much better off using our position as a bully pulpit," Schulter said.

    Illinois Restaurant Association President Colleen McShane said she's "very optimistic" that a trans fat compromise will be reached.

    "The resolution here is just a matter of time, and it's probably going to be a volunteer program. ... We're already looking at the trans fat issue. It's just a matter of when," she said.

    'Here we go again'

    At a License Committee hearing Wednesday, dietary experts brought in by the national and Illinois restaurant associations argued that restaurants cannot meet the demands of a total ban and that compliance would be virtually impossible to measure.

    "There simply is not currently enough oil available for some restaurant chains. It will be a matter of years before the crop supply is adequate to produce enough trans fat-free oils for some restaurant chains," said registered dietitian Sheila Cohn Weiss.

    On Wednesday, Mayor Daley took yet another shot at aldermen hell-bent on sticking their noses in their constituents' lives.

    "Here we go again. Foie gras ... they're gonna tell you not to eat ethnic foods. They're gonna tell you what to eat. They're gonna go into your living rooms, your dining rooms every day and your kitchen [while you're] sitting there. We have other things to worry about," Daley said.


    #30
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