Right Thinking From The Left Coast
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Thursday, December 16, 2010

Suing Ourselves Thin

Oh, come on:

With perfect Grinch timing, a consumer group has sued McDonald’s demanding that it take the toys out of its Happy Meals.

The Center for Science in the Public Interest, an advocacy group,

All right, I’m stopping this in mid-sentence. CSPI are the embodiment of the Nanny State.  Since their foundation, they have been pressuring the public to live and the government to force the public to live like impoverished monks.  They want everyone to be as skinny, malnourished and miserable as they are.

They also have a record of using weak science or no science at all for their various fatwas.  Remember that these assholes were the ones who pushed trans fats on all of us based on iffy science, then shrieked for them to be withdrawn based on iffier science.  Now they are claiming ... OK, I’ll let the article explain.  What were you saying again?

The Center for Science in the Public Interest, an advocacy group, claims it violates California law for the hamburger chain to make its meals too appealing to kids, thus launching them on a lifelong course to overeating and other health horrors. It’s representing an allegedly typical mother of two from Sacramento named Monet Parham. What’s Parham’s (so to speak) beef? “Because of McDonald’s marketing, [her daughter] Maya has frequently pestered Parham into purchasing Happy Meals, thereby spending money on a product she would not otherwise have purchased.”

First of all, I need to see proof that eating fast food meals leads to a lifetime of obesity.  I don’t mean proof as in, “everyone knows” or “people have gotten fat”.  I mean longitudinal studies of thousands of people that show causation not just correlation.

Second, are you kidding me?  Her daughter pestered her into purchasing Happy Meals?  My daughter pesters me for a lot of things.  That does not make me helpless.  If she had her way, she’d watching Dora the Explorer all day and all night.  If I let her do so, is that Nickelodeon’s fault?  Or mine? And, as the article points out, there are healthy options for Happy Meals, such as milk and apples in place of soda and fries.  Is it McDonald’s fault that she’s helpless before her daughter’s pouting?

Any you know what?  There’s nothing wrong with giving your child the occasional Happy Meal.  Just as there’s nothing wrong with the occasional sweet or a little bit of TV.  Part of enjoying life is occasionally abusing your body.  My daughter likes fries and likes the toys that come with Happy Meals and we let her get one maybe once ever month or two (with apple juice, not soda).  She’s in excellent health.

The problem we have in our society is not the existence of indulgences.  The problem is the lack of people’s willpower to limit these indulgences—either for themselves or for their children.  I know it’s fun and lucrative to blame a big corporation for that lack of willpower.  But it’s garbage.

Walter Olson thinks the State of California is unlikely to allow the suit.  I certainly hope so.  Because if they do, it means we parents are going to be eventually raising our children in a CSPI-approved open-air gulag where every choice, even bad ones, is taken away from us.

That’s not America.  That’s not even Mexico.

Update: Later notes make it clear the mom in this case doe stand up to her daughter.  So what she’s complaining about is ... that she has to say “no” to her kids?  It’s also indicated that she may be a food advocated for the state.  So it’s not her kids that are in danger, it’s yours because you have a weak spine.

Ah, paternalism.

Posted by Hal_10000 on 12/16/10 at 09:27 PM in Decline of Western Civilization  • (0) TrackbacksPermalink
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