North Carolina is no stranger to the if you dislike it then you should have made a law against it model of legislation, but this is extreme: The state General Assemblys Replacement House Bill 819 would rule that scientists are not allowed to accurately predict sea-level rise. By all legal calculations, the sea level will now rise eight inches by the end of the century. Sure, so far models have predicted an increase of more than three feet, but if they keep that shit up, theyre going to JAIL.
OK, theres not really a prison sentence attached to this proposed rule, but that doesnt stop it from being crazeballs. See, actual sea-level rise is nonlinear, because theres feedback the warmer it gets, the more the water volume expands, and the more stuff melts, and the more it expands, etc. Thats how most scientific models arrive at their predictions, because that is how physics works. But an increase that big is extremely inconvenient for a state with a beach-based tourist trade. So North Carolinas solution is simple: Change how physics works, or at least change how people do physics.
Accordingly, this bill mandates that models use a linear increase a consistent amount of change every year, based on historical data. This will lead to predictions that are much less catastrophic, and much more reassuring for people building resorts in the Outer Banks. The predictions will also be flat-out wrong, but thats nothing new for North Carolina.
If its not obvious why this is stupid, look at it this way: In 1790, the year North Carolina is stuck in, the population was about 400,000. In 1900, it was 1.9 million. Thats an increase of 1.5 million in 110 years so if there were an analogous rule for population, the state would prepare for 3.4 million residents in 2010. Which might cause some strife among the 9.7 million people who live there now, but you know, whatever the law is the law, so screw you, math. If the 6.3 million people unaccounted for by the legal model wanted housing and services, they should have fallen in line with North Carolina reality.
Anyway, we wish North Carolina the best of luck in staving off disaster by legislating what mathematical calculations people can perform. It will probably be about as effective as fixing the health-care crisis through etymology, or balancing the budget with entry-level yoga. But if it works, Im moving to North Carolina, where living in a fantasy world has the force of law.
If only energy consumption and water usage would follow these laws too! We could fix everything! With LAWZ, y'all!
Aren't there better ways to focus on the obesity epidemic? Hell, if they ban 16oz sugar-laden drinks and I want me some sugar, I'll just buy 2 x 8oz. I'm all for healthy eating and drinking, but this move just strikes me as a waste of time.
It totally contributes to increase consumption. The fact is, you'd buy the 8oz, and be sated so you wouldn't mindlessly drink the extra 12 ounces simply because they were there, and you wouldn't passivly consume an extra 150% of the calories either.
Many, many studies have proven that people eat what is in front of them. This has value.
Maybe, but BANNING them? Really? (They're proposing Coffee enormo-size goes on the bannination list, too.)
Oh, and I've seen quite a few people (myself included) eat MORE by employing "they're only small portions in front of me, so I can have several" argument. Flawed logic, but used to "justify" having my fill, of say, "100-calorie" per pack cookies. AWESOME. Just one more packet! I'm good
I don't care if 7-11 wants to sell Mountain Dew in 5-gallon barrels, the government has no business saying they can't.
It is a ridiculously slippery slope when politicians get it into their little brains that it is their job to mandate responsible life choices for the people.
Besides I thought they said obesity was going to go away once they stopped McDonald's and Burger King from offering Super-Sizes? Oh, that's right, the only thing that changed is now I have to order 2 Value Meals instead.
No matter how many laws you make, fat people are still going to find ways to be fat.
Just reading some more on this proposal: Apparently calorie-laden milkshakes of the large size would be exempt, and, according to the NY Daily News, "Cups bigger than 16 ounces would disappear from self-serve fountains in fast-food joints, ALTHOUGH REFILLS WOULD STILL BE ALLOWED." (My emphasis)
You know, pretty much all of the research in the Childhood Obesity arena refutes what you are saying Hep.
Absent regulation of what we're feeding our kids (read: absent LAWS to stop greedy corporate bastards from feeding our kids shit) we've had the largest increases in childhood obesity, childhood diabetes, and every other scary measure you can imagine.
Children get around 40% of their daily caloric intake from school lunches. Because there are no regulations, most school lunches currently fail USDA guidelines for caloric, sodium and fat intake.
Studies demonstrate that sugary drinks are aggressively marketed to children. Three normal servings of sugary drinks are like eating an additional meal a day in calories.
There is no law requiring PE in schools, yet studies demonstrate that exercise habits learned in childhood carry forward in life. The argument for reducing PE programs is that schools need more time to focus on math and reading scores - when in fact a little PE has been proven to INCREASE student academic performance.
You can basically predict a person's BMI with their zip code - which is the grossest inequality I've heard in years.
There is a role for government in heathy behavior of its citizens - particularly citizens who are minors, and whose parents are overwhelmed by the forces of capitalism who are waging sophisticated marketing campaigns promoting the absolute worst possible foods for them to eat.
This is a question of national health, not corporate freedom to ruin it.
Why stop there? You've got the research on your side.
We need a law mandating exactly what people are allowed to eat, when and how often they are required to exercise, how much television they can watch, and what shows they can watch. While we're at it, let's make a law mandating everyone get at least 8 hours of sleep every night and drink at least 8 cups of water. Fuck it, studies have also shown that there is a definite positive effect when someone prays or meditates, so let's make a law that everyone has to belong to a church and attend services at least once a week.
Why not just publish a government itinerary for each citizen and have police follow up and make sure it is completed weekly? Or better yet, we can put surveillance cameras in every home to make sure they are eating their government mandated diet, doing their required exercise, sleeping their required 8 hours, and not eating any unauthorized snacks. After all, it is in their best interest.
It is chilling that otherwise reasonable and intelligent people think that it is okay for the government to dictate what people can do to such extreme levels. And it's funny that those people almost never consider themselves to be in need of such government hand-holding. It's always for the benefit of those "common people" that just don't know any better.
The only place I do agree with you on is school lunches. Public schools are government buildings, so regulate the shit out of them.
And, correct me if I'm wrong, Squid, but aren't you a smoker? So you support a law banning the sale of 42 oz sodas in the same exact store in which you can purchase cigarettes? That reasoning almost borders on insanity.
There is a role for government in the health of its citizens, but it's not in legislating lifestyle choices that are ours alone to govern as the sole owners of our flesh, nor in dictating dietary restrictions to private enterprises. It is one thing if the food is fatal in and of its own composition, but quite another when the health concern is a mere matter of ignorance and abuse on the part of the consumer.
But ours has become a culture that refuses to take personal responsibility. Nothing is our fault. It's the media. It's the Evil MegaCorp. It's our parents. It's God. It's bullshit.
They can go ahead and broadcast a bunch of PSAs about the many horrors being perpetrated upon us by the likes of McDonald's and Jack in the Box if they like. Oh. No?
This is far too Three Sea Shells for me. My belly, my choice.
Either school lunches are a state thing and your state has no regulation or you're dead wrong on that. My father's job has a lot to do with that and they're constantly struggling to meet the regulations of the government and still make food that kids will eat.
"It is chilling that otherwise reasonable and intelligent people think that it is okay for the government to dictate what people can do to such extreme levels. And it's funny that those people almost never consider themselves to be in need of such government hand-holding. It's always for the benefit of those "common people" that just don't know any better."
You could not have summed this whole thing up any better, period. Those idiots in "middle America" NEED the government to tell them what to do. My pals and I are totally good, though. It's research! Ugh.
This will probably get a tl;dr from most of you, but what the hell. I love you Hep, but you've got me fired up now, because your logic is seriously wanting here.
I'm pretty shocked honestly at how uninformed and successfully manipulated these opinions are. You're all too smart for the: "Your stats don't mean 'nuthin. Mah Freedum's more impotant!" argument.
We're talking about an epidemic of preventable disease that corporate America has lulled you into believing isn't a health emergency because they make wads of cash on every side of this equation - from causing it to ushering you into the grave once you suffer from it.
Your post is absolutely the typical argument fed to sleeping sheep by their corporate masters to prevent any general human advancement in favor of the personally enriching status quo for a few. Those who'll vociferously defend a bastardized and distorted version of the American Dream that completely leaves out the component of said dream that requires that all Americans work together to ensure the rising tide lifts all boats. That somehow when 1% of us are winning, we can call our society a success because the rest of us can see them enjoying their opulence through the cracks in their walls, and maybe we'll climb over one day. Bullshit.
The playbook is so trite: You attack nonsense restrictions on "Freedom"- however sensical - in favor of maintaining the status quo of the freedom corporate fucks really want: the free MARKET which has absolutely no interest in the health of American citizens. In fact, unhealthy America is a booming business where we WANT lots of insulin sold and all the devices that go along with it! Heaven forbid we actually tried to CURE the 100% PREVENTABLE causes of type 2 diabetes in general, let alone childhood diabetes.
As if these concepts are radical and/or new. They're not, and they aren't a 'slippery slope' to the destruction of freedom (which is, by the way the argument the rich ALWAYS uses against common sense regulation of capitalism). Capitalism isn't a governing structure, it's an economic structure. By definition it doesn't care about inputs - it cares about results. Human beings are one of its inputs.
* You're fine with school lunches 'cause those are public buildings? OK, great! Let's do all the regulation you call for there - you've probably just agreed that Government has a role in fixing about HALF the problem. YAY!
* The airwaves of all kinds except cable are public resources. So by your own argument, we should be able to regulate advertising. We already do fairly heavily, so some additional guidelines to protect the weakest members of our society won't be that cumbersome.
* Media outlets of all kinds have a charter-level obligation to make sure a certain percentage of their content is in the public interest, and FCC already regulates what kind of content is good and bad for children by dictating what time certain shows can be on at what time of day, and censoring specific content they feel is inappropriate. So we're already doing that there.
Stop the fucking onslaught of advertising of sugary, fatty, low-nutrition foods. Parents and health professionals are outgunned by Madison Avenue by BILLIONS of dollars and megawatts.
You're not free to shout "FIRE" in a crowded theater because it's a public health threat. MANY, MANY more people will die from this health crisis - if you can't see that, you're downright blind. Don't care if what you're calling "the stupid" die? OK, but are you ready to personally PAY for them until they do? It's bad fiscal policy to treat sick people - the cost of Prevention is a bare fraction of that, and THAT is why it makes sense to regulate.
We're not talking about adults here. We're talking about CHILDREN. People aggressively marketing bad things to children. The last time that happened, it WAS the tobacco industry and Joe Camel. PERFECT corollary that I welcome here!
Look what happened there. At the time, studies showed that Joe Camel was as reconizable to children as MICKY FUCKING MOUSE. Since 90% of smokers start in their teens, that was no accident. Tobacco regulations have worked. When I started smoking around 1980, youth smoking rates were 33% for 18-24 year olds - rates have dropped to 22% in 2009. From 1965-2009, there was a 52.1% drop among this age group smoking. The efforts have WORKED, and it's 100% in the public health interest. 10% at MOST start after this age period.
Which means you and I won't have to pay for it Hep. WIN!!
Cigarette smoking is still the NUMBER ONE preventable cause of death in the USA - although obesity is coming up fast!
For the record, I've not had a cigarette in almost 5 months, but I will consider myself a smoker until the day I die. I'm not sure what hypocrisy you're actually accusing me of for having been a smoker, but I assure you I started when it was ostensibly illegal to sell me the cigarettes I freely bought, saved up the Joe Camel coupons from within like prizes in cereal boxes, which we then aggregated to get a friend of mine a pool cue with Joe Camel's likeness on it. I accept personal responsibilty for the total of 20 years from age 12 to 44 I smoked - but I have never fought any effort to restrict, tax, or limit cigarettes' availability or where they can be smoked. I'd be fine if they outlawed them, frankly - though we'd better have a plan for all the farmers and the families who rely on it for their income in growing it.
We are all going to pay dearly for the way we are feeding ourselves right now. From our wallets and as we watch our loved ones suffer and die from it.
I get it, it's HARD to imagine how to solve this. But to just say, "Fuck it, let's just say it's up to every individual and those that get fat and die it's your own damn fault, you weak bastards" ignores the inability of children to choose for themselves, and ignores the long term goals for societal success of the US of A.
"Think of the children!" The ever-popular Liberal battlecry!
Except they aren't banning drinks above 12 oz from children alone, they are banning them from everyone. If you can't see the complete and utter insanity of allowing me to buy a case of beer in the same exact store in which the government is preventing me from buying a 40 oz Mountain Dew, then I don't think we are ever going to reach a common ground here.
And you didn't address my main point. If you have decided that the government should be in the business of mandating responsible life choices for the people, why stop at soda sales? As you said, we have mountains of data showing what the best choices are for a healthy life, why not make them all mandatory by law? Let's make it illegal to not get at least 45 minutes of exercise per day. Why not get a government panel to determine all of the absolute best lifestyle choices that a citizen can make, publish the optimal choices in a guide, and then pass a law making it mandatory that every person follows those guidelines exactly? Think of the children!
I'm beginning to think that Liberals should be forced to leave their beloved universities and focus groups behind and spend just a little bit of time in the real world. I decided a long time ago that Conservatives really need to spend more time in school. Maybe you guys could switch for a while? What could it hurt?
Also, note that Drug Abuse is the lowest cause of preventable death, but the one that the government spends the most money fighting by far, probably way more than all of the other causes combined. With collective critical thinking skills like that, are they really the ones we want determining our lifestyle choices?
This message has been edited by Hepatitis_C on Jun 1, 2012 9:55 AM This message has been edited by Hepatitis_C on Jun 1, 2012 9:52 AM
And you missed my main point! Here it is again: your argument there is downright stupid. By that logic, you could argue against ALL regulation.
By invoking the spector of government control over our lives you are absolutely throwing our babies out with the bathwater.
It is downright fiscally conservative to want to save the money this health epidemic will cost us by preventing it in the first place, even if we decide our children are expendible in the interests of corporate profits on any number of fronts.
The health epidemic is not going to be solved by banning the sales of anything, especially as Hep says since I can buy beer and a 2L bottle of pop in the same store.
I think you need to:
1. Better educate people so they can be better informed about what they're consuming. Facebook is full of people that willingly admit they don't read food food labels. That blows my mind.
2. Ban ingredients Iike high fructose corn syrup. Hit the manufacturers not the consumers.
With all the education there is about how bad smoking is, new people are still taking up the habit so I'm not sure what the answer is. I'm pretty sure that this ban, as well intentioned as it is, is not going to help.
It's just so confusing. I need a moment.
E Stoopid autocorrect
This message has been edited by Adorabelle on Jun 1, 2012 10:07 AM
At least I have the balls to come right out and admit that I think most people are too stupid for their own good. You prefer to beat around the bush with your, "sleeping corporate sheep" and "corporate marketing budgets" arguments.
Just admit it, you think most people are too stupid for their own good and that the world would be better served if you, and people like you, could make their decisions for them.
There once was a German art student that felt the same way.
I think that children are stupid. Given targetted advertising, they'd ask their parents for ground glass gum.
Feeding our children the amounts of fat and sugar we currently do in a systematic way is tantamount to child abuse. More will die from what we're feeding them than will from getting smacked by some misanthropic parent.
Yes, we need someone to step in.
It's been the free market's turn for the last 40 years. And now we're here. Time for a paternalistic society to step in. Absolutely.
So, it's the children that are stupid. So the "paternalistic" society is for who? The parents? So, it's not the children that are stupid, it's the parents.
You want a paternalistic society, move to China. Your bringing the tide up to float the boat for everybody shit is why we have crap like NCLB. See how well that worked out? That anybody feels so "absolute" about what you are saying is just as disturbing as the people that scream about Obama not being born in the US. How can you not see that you are the other side of that coin and just as much the problem? I think you think you're so smart and so superior to "those dolts" that you fail to see that your rhetoric is just as harmful and just as culpable in the shitstorm we're all currently suffering.
In 2007, diabetes was listed as the underlying cause on 71,382 death certificates and was listed as a contributing factor on an additional 160,022 death certificates. This means that diabetes contributed to a total of 231,404 deaths.
Financial Cost of Diabetes in the USA (most of which we can safely assume is PREVENTABLE)
$174 billion: Total costs of diagnosed diabetes in the United States in 2007
$116 billion for direct medical costs
$58 billion for indirect costs (disability, work loss, premature mortality)
After adjusting for population age and sex differences, average medical expenditures among people with diagnosed diabetes were 2.3 times higher than what expenditures would be in the absence of diabetes.
Factoring in the additional costs of undiagnosed diabetes, prediabetes, and gestational diabetes brings the total cost of diabetes in the United States in 2007 to $218 billion.
$18 billion for people with undiagnosed diabetes
$25 billion for American adults with prediabetes
$623 million for gestational diabetes
I am so sick and tired of human beings not taking responsibility for their actions. their kids, their health. We were not allowed to eat shit all day long when I was a kid nor was my kid. For me and her fast food was the occasional treat. Don't tell me though what to eat or drink or how much and there is hardly any education from parents or schools on what is good to eat or how to grow your own damn food. I am with Hep on this one, what is next? The Whopper? The Big Mac? Sig Heil? A bar code in your arm? Bad bad people for drinking a Big Gulp.......shooooot them.
And no I do not drink soda or eat fast food, wow she can think for herself yay me!
Can you find some statistics to support your very, very right argument that separates Type I and Type II Diabetes, because..not the same thing. And gestational appears to the lions share in that last one there, which is yet another thing.
So you are most certainly ASSUMING that most of it is preventable. Nobody saying it's not fucked up Americans are fat, but regulating McDonald's is ridiculous. Restaurants have already routinely backed down to public pressure. Chili's got rid of the Awesome Blossom. You can't Supersize McDonald's. People are still fat. Go figure. Pouring money into regulating something like this is just as stupid, yo.
Your points make so much sense because Prohibition is historically proven to be super effective. Oh, wait...
Why don't we just hold people responsible for their actions? If shitty parents beat their children with baseball bats, are we going to go after The Sports Authority for selling bats? Think of the children, Squid! The children!
If you are going to pass laws, why not make it illegal to sell any junk food at all to fat people? They're pretty easy to spot and are actually the people you are trying to help. Or how about if a kid is determined to be obese, charge his or her parents with criminal neglect?
But no, Liberals would never support that idea because it's discrimination and could hurt somebody's feelings. So instead, rational people that happen to possess a modicum of self-control have to suffer because a portion of the country is too stupid to realize that Pop Tarts and Dr. Pepper probably aren't good for their kids.
I'm a relatively healthy 40 year-old man. The idea that the government is going to prevent me from buying a 20 oz Coca-Cola because some fucking mouth-breathers in Middle-America can't make their children not be fat without State intervention makes me want to blow up government buildings in my spare time.
Why do we care about their children anyway? Your precious statistics overwhelmingly show that they will most likely end up stuck in the same socioeconomic and educational rut as their ignorant parents are. Why are we so gung-ho to prolong the lives of stupid people? They'll just use that prolonged lifespan to have more kids and fill the world with stupid people.
Fuck it. I say we put more vending machines in Public Schools! Free M&Ms for all the kids that aren't in Honors classes!
Yes, I'm clear that for you individualism is the answer in every case.
I'd love to follow that plan too, believe me. Sadly, it's naive to think that what others do doesn't reverberate in your own life.
No man is an Island. Your rant is funny. I really don't care if you can't buy a 20oz soda or not. Talk about first world problems, you're going to go ballistic because you have to buy two sodas to get your extra 10 teaspoons of sugar? Yeah, you're NOT FREE!
I can perfectly raise my own brats to be thin, healthy, and have good diet and exercise regimens because I care so much, but the country could still go bankrupt if no one else does - and here's a clue: THEY'RE NOT GOING TO ON THEIR OWN. To believe otherwise is to ignore every input available.
As other people's kids are inevitably increasingly fat and lazy, they grow up to be fat and lazy adults who raise their even fatter and lazy kids of their own. They then get all sorts of diseases that they can't pay to solve, and the percentage of our national budget spent on health care keeps going up, up, up and up!
We spent 21 percent on health care last year! That's more than we spent on BOMBS! Where the hell are our priorities?!?! And it's not going down! Especially if the SCOTUS torpedoes RomneyCare rebranded as Obamacare.
That's what I'm trying to tell you, Squid. Sure, I can just buy two sodas, BUT SO CAN THEY! And you know they will. So we're wasting time and money on toothless legislation. You'd think you political types would have tired of that dance by now.
The fat, stupid, and lazy people are going to raise fat, stupid, and lazy kids no matter how many laws you and your ilk try to pass to save them from themselves. Until you agree to start punishing them for being fat, stupid, and lazy they are going to continue to do so with reckless abandon.
Which is all irrelevant because none of these laws are ever going to see the light of day anyhow. Politicians will just hem and haw and waste their time - and our money - arguing about them.
How about: A bunch of older smokers will die off before the death rate from smoking improves. The gains in terms of young people not starting will take a while to be fully realized.
I'm sure the fact that obesity is gaining as fast as it is does have something to do with death rates coming down on tobacco. I couldn't find the preventable death stats over time quickly though, so eff it, I'll just believe it.
In fact I'll go out on a limb. The graph lines for tobacco and obesity will cross in 2018, at which point tobacco will no longer be the leading cause of death. I made that up, but it feels right.
This message has been edited by SquiddyBoy on Jun 1, 2012 4:58 PM
But, the smoking drop leveled off at about 1 in 5 sometime around 2002. It remains there no matter how much additional money they continue to throw at the problem.
I'm no scientist, but that leads me to believe that about 20% of the population is going to be stupid no matter how hard you try to help them. What percentage of the population is obese - roughly 25% as of 2010?
Just let them die, Squid. They obviously want to. We don't have a lot of factories any more, and you guys are working hard to make fast food restaurants illegal, so what role in society could they possibly fill if we keep them alive?
ps - I make up all my own stats. Feels good, doesn't it?
This message has been edited by Hepatitis_C on Jun 1, 2012 5:04 PM
But regulating the sale of sodas over 12 oz doesn't do dick towards achieving that goal.
Why not support laws that make obese people ineligible for taxpayer subsidized medical care instead?
Hasn't the abysmal failure of the War on (some) Drugs proven without a doubt that attacking the suppliers and not the demand just does not work? All it does is exponentially increase the ruthlessness of the suppliers.
I don't know about you, but I don't want to by my Big Gulps from Mexican Cartels. I will if I have to, but I'd really rather not.
Excuse me, but I was always more interested in being funny.
But I still think you're wrong. Unfortunately, time is going to prove me right. About 25% of the population will still be obese no matter what you do to help them, and none of these laws are going to hold up if they even manage to get passed.
Write it in the book where you guys stored my Iraq War prophecies circa 2003. How did those turn out again? Remind me, I don't remember.
ps - I do find it funny that this thread began and ended discussing legislating in a fantasy world. But apparently you only support that approach for certain issues.
pps - You're still one of my favorites.
This message has been edited by Hepatitis_C on Jun 1, 2012 6:40 PM This message has been edited by Hepatitis_C on Jun 1, 2012 6:38 PM This message has been edited by Hepatitis_C on Jun 1, 2012 6:34 PM