Saturday, June 16, 2012

Eating the State

In Gotham, Michael the First, King of Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, Bronx and the rebellious province of Staten Island, has returned from celebrating his successful campaign against large sodas, to consider expanding the ban to large popcorn and milkshakes. Los Angeles has voted to ban the plastic bag and add a 10 cent fine for paper bags.

Where does the future of the Nanny State lead? In Sweden, the Left Party is calling for men to be banned from urinating standing up. And why not? If the government should have a say in what food you eat and what you carry the groceries you buy in, why not have it complete the cycle and tell you how to eliminate them?

We have laws that strictly control every aspect of the production, packaging, distribution and sale of food. From there we moved on to laws controlling the consumption and consumer transportation of it. Once every step in the process from planting the seed in the earth to actually putting it in your mouth has been legislated and regulated; all that's left is a government mandated bathroom experience.

Liberals like to claim that they don't believe the government should be in your bedroom. Apparently, they believe that it should be in your bathroom instead. Not to mention in your kitchen and digging through your trash like raccoons on steroids.

The Left Party's rationale for playing bathroom police, is the same one put forward by Bloomberg's soda police and the same one that was used to take complete control of food production. Health.

"Party speakers cited medical research they said shows men empty their bladders more efficiently while seated. Improved bladder evacuation reduces the risk for prostate problems, according to the party."

Twenty years after the fall of the Soviet Union, the formerly free world is being treated to Party lectures on the proper way to use the bathroom. There may even be a little red book with the words of some Socialist leader to inspire us to properly go about our day in harmony with the will of the Party, whose enlightened wisdom informs every moment of our lives.

It's a short hop and skip from the government deciding to fight heart attacks by banning sodas to fighting prostate cancer by banning urination. When government controls health care, it also has complete authority over every aspect of your life. The old public health crises were infectious diseases. The new public health crisis is absolutely everything. And the authorities are in crisis mode all the time fighting wars on a hundred fronts against the habits of the human race.

Want to ban people from swallowing without chewing their food? Invite in a panel of experts to put on a spreadsheet show proving that swallowing without chewing kills 400 people a year and costs the government three billion dollars in health care expenses. And before you know it, that three billion will be used to dispatch food monitors to every public eatery and private kitchen.

During the ObamaCare debate, Keith Olbermann aired one of his more ridiculous broadcasts with the title,. "Health Care Reform: The Fight Against Death". But everyone dies. Not everyone lives. And some live lives of quiet desperation, waiting for the police to arrive and arrest them for their large soda, carried in a plastic bag and then improperly eliminated.

During the American Revolution, it was, "Give me Liberty or give me death." Today it's, "Give me Universal Health Care or give me death." And the alternative to death is a nanny state that controls every aspect of our lives, only for us to die anyway. Fighting for Liberty may occasionally make men immortal, but fighting for government bureaucracy just makes them slaves.

If health is dependent on government health care, and government health care is dependent on everyone being so healthy that they don't need government health care, an irresolvable failure loop develops in which money is being spent on preventative social engineering to avoid spending money on health care, which has to be spent anyway.

Instead of pioneering the treatment of diseases, the money is spent on totalitarian gimmicks like the War on Obesity, while shortchanging patients once they actually do need medical treatment. We are moving toward a health care establishment in which there will be 40 unionized nurses to run weight-loss clinics, but a three-month waiting list to see a heart specialist.

As the health care costs keep climbing, so do the nanny-state gimmicks, with armies of snake oil experts arriving with patent medicine preventative cures for everything, until we're down to a political party proposing to legislate urination. And if you think that's where it ends, you are mistaken. It doesn't end anywhere, because there is no limit.

Give a maniac a gun and he'll shoot up a whole lot of people. Give activists the power to regulate and ban... and they will regulate and ban every single thing that they can think of. If one ban doesn't do it, then they'll try ten more. They won't stop until someone takes away the gun that shoots bills, unloads it and then hides it on a high shelf that they can't reach.

Tyranny doesn't stop where you think it should. It doesn't stop with, "Okay, this might be a good idea". It doesn't stop with "Wait, what?!" And it doesn't stop with "They can't do that." It doesn't stop at all. That's why they call it tyranny.

In a democracy, it has to start slow, sidling up to you like a con artist with a hard luck story at a fair. There's always a good cause, a compelling reason and then eventually a gun to your head when you realize that you've been had and you want out. Because there's no way out. Either you keep falling for the con or the gun comes out.

After September 11, liberals spent the better part of the decade whining that civil liberties had been swallowed up by paranoia over terrorism. Meanwhile they were swallowing up civil liberties by paranoia over absolutely everything else. Terrorism and crime are the only two threats that liberals don't think merit restricting civil liberties for. In their eyes, 9/11 wasn't as big a threat to America as an extra-large Coke.

Why bother fighting Al-Qaeda, when we can fight plastic bags. It's time to stop locking up terrorists and time to start locking up ice cream men. The War on Terror has given way to the War on Obesity and the War on Everything Else. 

Today, we need an ID to buy cough syrup, but not to vote. New York is considering legalizing marijuana but is busy outlawing soda. Los Angeles has already legalized marijuana but outlawed plastic bags. If this goes on, ten years from now heroin will be legal, but ketchup, sneakers and free speech will be considered offenses against the state. But that's when happens when the people making the law smoke pot but don't use plastic bags. When they understand gay marriage but not why anyone would be so gauche as to order a large soda.

This is where it's ending up, but this is not where it began. How many people were concerned when farmers were being arrested for selling unpasteurized milk? That was a "legitimate" public health issue because it barred people from making their own decisions about what kind of milk they wanted to drink. And now we have an array of "legitimate" public health issues that are being crammed down our throat. Like in the Soviet Union, first they come for the farmers, then they come for everyone else.

In Wickard v. Filburn, it was established that Roscoe Filburn couldn't grow wheat for his own use on his own land, because the government said he couldn't. The case was based on FDR's Agricultural Adjustment Act of 1938, which replaced the even more unconstitutional Agricultural Adjustment Act of 1933, which began the collectivization of the American farmer, right around the same time that Franklin's good buddy in Moscow, "Uncle Joe," was hard at work on the same task.

Now here we are in 2012 seventy years after Wickard v. Filburn, and we have as much control over the food we eat, as Roscoe Filburn did over his land. The left begins by seizing control of the means of production, only to control those who consume the production. Now that the means of producing food are seized, we are being told what we can and can't eat, and how we may and may not transport it home from the store. The last stop on the train is to tell us how to use the bathroom. And if there is anything that a government which cannot control its spending is expert at, it's waste management.

A government that begins by telling the people what to eat will end with a state so vast that it eats up the people, their substance, their freedom and their very lives.


Anonymous said...

Hmmm....rigid, codified behaviour in all facets of life. How long before we see "Ask a Bureaucrat"?

Edward Cline said...

Daniel, you're the man! It always baffles me that more people can't connect the dots, beginning with an innocuous tax and ending with Obama cum Bloomberg states of control. But I shouldn't be baffled, because most Americans have been dumbed down to the challenge of an IHOP kiddie coloring page (aka, a degree in one of the humanities). Now, go out and have a super-sized banana-strawberry milkshake on me – or have they already been banned?

Daniel Greenfield @ the Sultan Knish blog said...

Most people get their dots connected by the news and repeat back what they hear. It's amazing how many people recite the talking points of the media as if they were their own and feel clever doing it.

Edward Cline said...

Daniel: This is true. When I raise a political subject in the office, all I get back in the way of argument is what staffers have seen on TV, or been taught in college. And when I refer them to blogs like this one or others, they react as though I was referring them to porno sites or sites run by incubi.

Dovber Schwartz said...

But still one wonders what happened to the common sense of the masses!?

Edward Cline said...

When the average person has been told by his mechanic that his carburetor is on the fritz, his common sense will accept that as a fact. But when he's told that government studies reveal that he's consuming too many carbs and too much sugar, then his common sense is compartmentalized and shunted to the side. The answers to many of these "obesity" questions is to get the government out of education and especially out of the farm subsidy business, viz., subsidizing the manufacture of corn syrup (for human consumption and also for your gasoline).

Daniel Greenfield @ the Sultan Knish blog said...

The government-media complex exists so that people never have to think for themselves. So that they can have all the talking points they need at hand.

Some fall for it, some don't.

But common sense is what sounds reasonable and talking points can be made to sound reasonable, because they dumb down an idea and remove the context and use a catchy hook.

Linda Rivera said...

Daniel, Thank you for a good laugh!

Why bother fighting Al-Qaeda, when we can fight plastic bags. It's time to stop locking up terrorists and time to start locking up ice cream men.

Keli Ata said...

Makes perfect sense. People hate to be nagged and we've been nagged to death over the dangers of pop, trans fats etc. People would prefer having the gov't order them around rather than nag them to death.

I don't like being nagged and I definitely don't like being controlled. I don't fit into the scenario.

Anonymous said...

Did your article have a subliminal message attached? I started to read and then had the insane urge to stop in order to get a bag of Cheetos and a Coke to finish. No kidding...I REALLY did. Tasted gooooood.


Anonymous said...

Too bad there are soon many Julia Obam's, too willing to let everyone rock the cradle but her. Thereby, allowing bureaucrats to dig her an early grave..
Good piece, Dan

Dovber Schwartz said...

Daniel I hear you but still. Were not taking about complex equations. It simply is fascinating how malleable the human mind can be. I wonder if theres any academic research on this.

Dovber Schwartz said...

Also I'm so happy I stumbled upon your blog. I've been telling everyone about it!

Post a Comment