(The following appeared on Planet Moron on February 28, 2014.)
Our old friend, New York Times columnist Mark Bittman, has identified what is possibly the single biggest peril facing America, one that, according to Mr. Bittman, “Poses greater threats to our existence than any communicable disease you can name.”
What is this hazard that stalks us?
Or, as he prefers, “rights,” because the only rights that are truly legitimate are those rights that are exercised in a fashion that would be agreeable to Mark Bittman.
And therein lies the problem. As it turns out, you’re simply a victim of the “the corporate consumption complex,” in which “companies engineer hyperprocessed foods in ways precisely geared to most appeal to our tastes.”
Yes, that’s right, companies continue to insist on producing products that will appeal to you.
How. Dare. They.
But the products they sell don’t appeal to Mark Bittman, of course. Unlike you, he’s not a complete imbecile who cannot possibly be trusted with the “right” to choose what is best for him. That imbecile would be you, what with your tiny mind, poor education, and non-New-York-Times editorial job.
Why, you might even work with your hands. <shudder>
And, according to Mr. Bittman, it’s not just food, it’s all manner of industries selling things “in ways that will cause premature mortality.”
Sure, you may think you are capable of weighing the tradeoffs and risks associated with certain products and endeavors based on your own values system, priorities, and personal circumstances, but the problem with that is you are not taking into account Mark Bittman’s values system, priorities, and personal circumstances when making your decision.
And really, isn’t that more important? After all, he’s written books! Well, cookbooks.
Incidentally, here is a brief list of things that can bring on premature mortality:
- Any job other than potato farming.
- Any sport other than swimming.
- Any city other than Fishers Indiana.
We are aghast that anyone would risk their life doing anything other than swimming at their potato farm in Fishers Indiana.
It’s like you people don’t care if you live or die.
So, what can we do about people exercising their “right” to make decisions different from Mark Bittman? According to Mr. Bittman, it’s all spelled out in the book, “Lethal but Legal,” by Nicholas Freudenberg. We’ll be exploring this book in the near future, but rest assured, the solution involves doing something about those “rights” of yours.
The current occupants of the White House share a similar concern regarding your seeming inability to choose the same things that they would, particularly Michelle Obama, who has worked tirelessly to tackle the childhood obesity epidemic that doesn’t exist. However, they believe they have hit on a possible answer:
As they see it, one of the main problems with people eating more than people in the White House think they should, is that nutritional labels are obscuring the number of calories food contains by cleverly hiding it next to the word “calories.”
It’s a brain tickler all right.
The new label at least partly solves this problem by making the number bigger in a way that just screams, “Hey, look over here! Big number! Big! Pay attention to the big number. Big scary number.”
The proposed label also changes some of the nutritional content provided since studies have demonstrated that it is healthier for people to ignore how much vitamin D is in their food rather than ignoring how much vitamin A there is.
They also add the category “added sugar,” because as everyone knows, sugar that has been added is worse, possibly due to contamination by cooties.
And finally, we’ll leave you with the White House exercise video that is sweeping the nation:
Thus demonstrating that if you run limply for one minute in your dress shoes once a week, you just might one day develop a nearly complete inability to stretch your quads.