June 7, 2012

“We have evolved to need coercion.” [Darleen Click]

When science stops telling us the facts and steps into politics:

The food industry has made a fortune because we retain Stone Age bodies that crave sugar but live in a Space Age world in which sugar is cheap and plentiful. Sip by sip and nibble by nibble, more of us gain weight because we can’t control normal, deeply rooted urges for a valuable, tasty and once limited resource.

What should we do? One option is to do nothing, while hoping that scientists find better cures for obesity-related diseases like heart disease and Type 2 diabetes. I’m not holding my breath for such cures, and the costs of inaction, already staggering, would continue to mushroom.

A more popular option is to enhance public education to help us make better decisions about what to eat and how to be active. This is crucial but has so far yielded only modest improvements.

The final option is to collectively restore our diets to a more natural state through regulations. Until recently, all humans had no choice but to eat a healthy diet with modest portions of food that were low in sugar, saturated fat and salt, but high in fiber. They also had no choice but to walk and sometimes run an average of 5 to 10 miles a day. Mr. Bloomberg’s paternalistic plan is not an aberrant form of coercion but a very small step toward restoring a natural part of our environment.

The professor is not as hysterical as most of the Left, as they bounce from one new “epidemic” to another as The.Worst.Problem.In.America (but it should be noted, their “epidemics” have little to do with confronting actual evil, such as violent crime or terrorism) but he presents as fact that individuals have no power over their own choices. As Amanda Marcotte asserts when reviewing yet another “obesity epidemic” program

I thought [it] was a nice, clear-cut way to get the audience out of the “personal responsibility” framework of utter meaninglessness, and move them towards the “collective responsibility” framework that actually suggests solutions. From there, we’re treated to two episodes where food marketers, agriculture subsidies, conservative politicians, increasing work loads, and underfunded schools and communities are targeted as the cause of the problem.

Free will, you understand, is not only over-rated, it doesn’t really exist.

Really? Then let’s have at it. We don’t have to go back several hundred years in order to find a reason to “regulate” Big Food with increased Nanny Government. Just tweak the tax laws and nudge coerce businesses to send married women back home.

What? Well, McDonald’s, tv dinners, malt shops, sugar, et al, were prevalent in the 1950’s and obesity was not. Because moms were home to do the shopping, make meals from scratch and kick the kids out of the house to play every afternoon. Because of single incomes, homes were smaller, too, reducing the carbon footprint.

Win, win!

I’m sure Leftist professors of evolutionary biology and Left-feminists will support this obvious and easy solution. You know, because ‘choice’ was never a real option.

Posted by Darleen @ 7:39am

Tags: , , , , , ,

Comments (31)

  1. When you think about it, they’re just forcing us to understand. It’s for our own good, really.

  2. oops, left off the /sarc tag.

  3. That’s interesting, only my second comment displayed. Oh well.

  4. OCBill

    I rescued it from the SPAM filter. :-)

  5. I was wondering where Amanda Marcotte stood on this.

  6. Because the new Democratic party’s mindset of collectivism requires coerciveness. And, regularly scheduled two-minute hates!

  7. What I find most interesting is the “we evolved to be oppressed” argument. How long until they start using that elsewhere?

    And how willing will they be to hear that it’s straight out of the Nazi handbook?

  8. I was wondering where Amanda Marcotte stood on this.

    Firmly planted on her back, Abe, ready for any ‘ole lefty ideologue to stroke her degenerative process loop thingamajig. )

  9. Because moms were home to do the shopping, make meals from scratch and kick the kids out of the house to play every afternoon. Because of single incomes, homes were smaller, too, reducing the carbon footprint.

    Darleen, like me, you are obviously a tool of the Patriarchy. Let’s hold hands and give Amanda a Bronx cheer.

  10. – I think Amanda’s problem is no one wants to put her on her back.

    – The feminists eternal search for good reasons why they shouldn’t have to give up all their irresponsible freedoms and just let the little bastards raise themselves.

  11. The Left is only in favor of one choice.

  12. It’s funny (strange funny, not ha ha funny), but I have found that kids who are raised with no boundries are often very hands-on parents with traditional homes of their own. Of course there is the converse wherein they have no respect for anyone or anything, especially themselves, and lead very destructive and law-breaking lives.

    It’s a puzzler.

  13. Note to Amanda:

    – Hey bunky, if you want to live your miserable life as a puffy faced sagging, barren old scorn, go for it. No one really gives a rats ass.

  14. – The feminists eternal search for good reasons why they shouldn’t have to give up all their irresponsible freedoms and just let the little bastards raise themselves.

    bh, it’s my understanding that feminists make better l esbians than mothers. Seems the natural order of things, really.

  15. (take that, evil spam filter! For some reason l esbian is a denied word. CENSORIOUS!)

  16. Abe, where Amanda Marcotte stands on this is the tender junction of neck and shoulder, just over the carotid artery. Because VAGINA POWER!!

  17. Wow, was I late to the party! That’ll teach me to refresh oftener.

  18. Have we also evolved the need to be lied to?

    Minutes of the meeting on January 11, 1996, of the New Party’s Chicago chapter read as follows:
    Barack Obama, candidate for State Senate in the 13th Legislative District, gave a statement to the membership and answered questions. He signed the New Party “Candidate Contract” and requested an endorsement from the New Party. He also joined the New Party.

  19. These boots were made for Walker, and thats just what they’ll do….

    The post-modern Democratic party….putting the Mock back in Democracy

    Union groups and their supporters spent much of Wednesday castigating billionaire donors, Citizens United and corporate power in the wake of Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s victory over the effort to recall him from office.

    “Texas billionaires” and “multinational corporations” can “spend unlimited money to sway an election,” American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) president Richard Trumka told reporters on a conference call Wednesday afternoon. Trumka, whose union was one of many groups that actively supported the Walker recall, said this fundraising change holds “serious repercussions for our democracy.”

    “Citizens United has ushered in a new era of elections and it’s not a pretty picture,” Trumka said, referring to the 2010 Supreme Court ruling–Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission–which determined that independent political spending by corporations and unions is protected under the First Amendment.

    – But I’ll bet they’d be perfectly fine with it if the word “corporations” wasn’t in the clause.

  20. If you haven’t already read James Lileks’s bleat on the this topic, it’s worth your time.

    Let’s get one thing clear: when the TV talk-show people lavish praise on the idea, it has nothing to do with some abstract notion of the costs of obesity. They just don’t like fat people. Fat people, at best, are a rebuke their own finicky vanity – I look good, why can’t you? [emph. orig.]- and at the worst, aesthetically unpleasant. If they all went away, the trim pert types woudl[sic] miss them after a while, and realize that people no longer came pre-packaged in a style that made them easy to dismiss.

    A thin woman with three children by three men who can’t get by is an object of concern. A fat women with two kids who can’t get by is a toad, and probably a smoker.

    A culture that redefines food choices as moral issues will demonize the people who don’t share the tastes of the priest class. [emph. add.] A culture that elevates eating to some holistic act of ethical self-definition – localvore, low-carbon-impact food, fair trade, artisanal cheese – will find the casual carefree choices of the less-enlightened as an affront to their belief system. Leave it to Americans to invent a Puritan strain of Epicurianism.[emph. add.]

  21. Once the Progressives succeed in banning all workable means of generating electricity, then we’ll have to go back to running to catch our food instead of getting it at the refrigerated/freezer section of the grocery store. Of course, the best way to preserve food without electricity is by salting it. Or smoking it with a wood fire. Oh wait…

  22. That Lileks piece is hilarious, Ernst. I like the helpful “poison” and “not poison” graphics.

  23. Since your typical Progressive thinks food appears in the stockroom of their locally-owned organic co-op (or Whole Foods, if they’re not that sanctimonious) as if by magic, I expect that typical Proggtard to wish (s)he had the energy stores of your typical low-brow fattie, if and when we revert to catch-kill-cook your own supper.

  24. If and when we suffer a serious food shortage through crop failure or lack of available transportation (strikes, fuel shortages, government shutdown, &c) city living isn’t going to look so rosy. In your average crackerbox apartment in Manhattan, where are you going to store more than three to seven days of food? All of your off season clothes are already stored under your bed.

  25. We have evolved to need coercion — indeed we have, precisely in order to keep tyrannically minded morons like this professor out of the governance of our lives, the enslavement of our persons to his purposes, the extraction of our liberties from our own determined disposition.

  26. It”ll be South Park in Manhattan!

  27. I’ll give you my fat when it decomposes off my cold, dead ribs.

  28. That Lileks bit is great.

    I’ve taken to calling them the Savonarolas of Soda.

  29. On the one hand, you have Nate Silver diligently prepping the bullshit field, telling us that the best ROI on campaign dollars is in Virginia and Ohio, Colorado and Iowa. Utter and complete horseshit, of course; if the battle in 2012 is fought in Virginia and Iowa, BO wins. This is going to be a landslide and a sweep of both Houses and the battle is really going to be fought in Wisconsin and Michigan and Pennsylvania. And the former Democratic governor of PA, who seems to be following the Slick Willie playbook, says Pennsylvania is in play.

    It’s clear from the WI exit polls and voting results that there is an intimidation factor at play, resulting in a big discrepancy between publicly stated opinion and votes.

    Daily Kos to the New York Times to Obama’s Colon. Quite a career arc for Nate.

  30. mv, if you have time, could you please take a look at the last few posts on the New Party thread? I referenced your take-down of some flawed sampling, but I can’t find the actual post.


  31. I recall certain legislators and an idiot Governor of North Carolina bitching about the debt ceiling crisis and in the course of that implying that it is an unjust form of coercion for potential voters to remind our leaders that if they don’t do what we tell them to do then they’ll be voted out of power.

    Coercion is a two way street.