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New York’s Sugary Drink Ban Struck Down

A judge strikes down New York’s ban on big sugary drinks. What do we do about American obesity?

 In this July 9, 2012 file photo, protester Eric Moore sips on an extra-large beverage during a protest against Mayor Michael Bloomberg's proposal to prohibit licensed food establishments from using containers larger than 16 ounces to serve high-calorie drinks at City Hall in New York. (AP)

In this July 9, 2012 file photo, protester Eric Moore sips on an extra-large beverage during a protest against Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s proposal to prohibit licensed food establishments from using containers larger than 16 ounces to serve high-calorie drinks at City Hall in New York. (AP)

Starting today, big sugary drinks in New York City were supposed to be history.  Banned in restaurants across the Big Apple.  New York mayor Michael Bloomberg’s way of saying, “lighten up, New York.”  Lose some weight.  Don’t be obese.

But yesterday, on the eve of the ban, a top New York state judge said no.  No ban.  Not this one anyway.  He called Bloomberg’s scheduled ban “arbitrary and capricious” and over-reaching.  Ok.  So what do we do about this country’s exploding obesity problem?

This hour, On Point:  no to a ban, yes to what, on American obesity?

-Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Fred Mogul, healthcare reporter for WNYC. (@fredmogul)

Diana Winters, expert in health law and associate professor of law at the Robert H. McKinney School of law at Indiana University.

Randy Barnett, professor of legal theory at Georgetown University.

Walter Willett, professor of epidemiology and chair of the department of nutrition at the Harvard School of Public Health.

From Tom’s Reading List

Reuters “A judge on Monday invalidated New York City’s plan to ban large sugary drinks from restaurants, movie theaters and other establishments, one day before the new law was to take effect. State Supreme Court Justice Milton Tingling in Manhattan ruled the new regulation was “arbitrary and capricious” and declared it invalid, after the American Beverage Association and other business groups had sued the city challenging the ban.”

Nature “Authorities consider sugar as ‘empty calories’ — but there is nothing empty about these calories. A growing body of scientific evidence is showing that fructose can trigger processes that lead to liver toxicity and a host of other chronic diseases. A little is not a problem, but a lot kills — slowly… If international bodies are truly concerned about public health, they must consider limiting fructose — and its main delivery vehicles, the added sugars HFCS and sucrose — which pose dangers to individuals and to society as a whole.”

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  • WorriedfortheCountry

    Nanny Bloomberg is apoplectic that his dictatorial powers were thwarted.  Perhaps a nobel cause but exactly the wrong way to achieve the goal of fighting disease and improving health.

    • Tyranipocrit

       according to your reasoning–drugs should be legal and smoking should be encouraged in schools with cigarette vending machines in every middle school.

      • Tyranipocrit

         because we should never ever impede the dictatorial powers of corporations–no matter how abusive and destructive their aims–whether its pipelines, strip mining, mountaintop removal, war, gun manufacturing, cigarettes, oil spills in the gulf, rape of the water table, the assault on the air you breathe, poisonous gm food and chemical laced food….because corporations have rights and people dont.  Down with the people.  Long live The Company.

        • Wahoo_wa

          Corporations are pouring sugary drinks down people’s throats now?  What ever happened to personal responsibility for your choices?  Has that been replaced with the demonization of corporations?  If it has our society has really reached a point of decline.

          • Tyranipocrit

             no, i agree people should take personal responsibility for their choices–but we shouldn’t enable it either–these things are forced down our throats–thru marketing, government tax breaks and subsidies..and children are impressionable–and most people are uninformed, manipulated, and simply cant make rational consumer choices–myself included.  I drink coke.  I hate that i do.  Coke is bad for me and its a terribly unethical company.  BUt one reason i do is because i grew up with it and it is marketed to children and made easy for children to consume–like cigarettes.  It becomes nostalgic, comfort food, and addictive–like the MacDonald brand–also marketed to children–and probably has trace amounts of opium in it.  if this stuff is not coerced on us as children we wont crave it as adults–we should not enable it and encourage it as we do in public places and in schools–that is just sick–that so many schools have coke vending machines.  It is irresponsible and immoral.  we live in a society.  A community.  One nation united–right?  We are not just individuals.  Reagan Psychotics must be abolished.

          • Wahoo_wa

            So you had parents with poor parenting skills who did not teach you to make good choices?

          • Tyranipocrit

             choit

          • Wahoo_wa

            Be a man.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

         No.  He refused to pass his nanny regulations through the elected body of the city.  Instead he did it through the board HE appointed.

        We need massive education and personal responsibility.  Obesity (and related disease) IS an epidemic in this country but this is not the way.

        • Tyranipocrit

           what is the way–The Way”–its never the way, its always your way.  Get your tea bag out of my face.  What is the way?  You always have enormous nothing coming out of your fingertips but you never have solutions or suggestions or rational debate or discussion–why can’t you just have a discussion?  How can you go thru your whole life and still have the intellect of the 6th grade bully?  What an enormous waste of an entire life.

          • Wahoo_wa

            I think your idea of a discussion is having everyone agree with you.  Sadly that’s not the way the world works.  It must be tough for you living each day of your life. I mean…you make a choice; don’t take responsibility for the choice; admit that you have no self control; blame marketing and the big bad corporation for your choice; expect government (and the rest of society) to coddle you; and then get upset when others suggest taking control and be a responsible adult. Is that a fair evaluation? Oh…and then resort to name-calling. I guess that’s the best one can expect from your ilk though.

          • Tyranipocrit

            no. i want to hear reasonable contributions and solutions. nothing more. You cant do that. I appreciate whn i am wrong and when i am pushed to see things differently–thats how one grows and learns–the mind like a sword on a grinding stone. But if you can do nothing but sling mud you will cut down. I really dont want to discuss nonsense–i am truyly really honestly willing to listen to your opinions. But please offer me thoughtful examples and solutins–no talking points. I wil offer no more mud in return. Let us wipe the slate clean…

      • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

        drugs should be legal, my middle school had a cigarette vending machine but it was in the teachers lounge

    • Don_B1

      The problem is that sugar is addictive and the resulting obesity is not something that can be easily remedied by “personal control and responsibility.”

      Please watch some of the YouTube videos created by Dr. Robert Lustig of UCSF, titled, “Sugar: The Bitter Truth”

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dBnniua6-oM

      where the insidious actions of refined sugar in the body are documented (2009 video goes into detailed chemistry, the 2011 video covers the effects without some of the details).

      Sugar, without the fiber that accompanies it in all vegetative sources, overwhelms the body’s chemistry from the liver to the pancreas, and does immense harm, from diabetes to heart problems.

      But the individual has no way to understand this from “daily life” because the effects, while huge, are slow-acting, without “pain,” until the damage is done.

  • Wm_James_from_Missouri

    Life Extension Foundation has run many articles about the effect of the supplement Carnosine on reducing, AGE by-products, (advanced glycation end-products) that result from sugars linking to proteins. They, and others, claim that 1000 milligrams are necessary to overcome the enzyme that causes these unwanted links.

    Read more at:

    http://www.lef.org/magazine/mag2012/abstracts/jun2012_Carnosine_02.htm?source=search&key=carnosine

    Also From : The Baseline of Health Foundation

    This article will explain more about Carnosine and DMAE and its’ anti-aging effects.     Excellent article.

    http://www.jonbarron.org/article/end-old-age

    Lastly, maybe McDonalds should replace their ‘happy play rooms’ for kids with a gym for adults. If you want to super size, drop and give me 20 !  Woooo aaaaah !

  • Wm_James_from_Missouri

    SLASH DIABETES RISK BY 67 % OR MORE !

    I almost forgot to mention that coffee has and is being demonstrated to be an effective tool in the prevention of diabetes. Read the article from Life Extension Magazine, below.

    http://www.lef.org/magazine/mag2012/jan2012_Discovering-Coffees-Unique-Health-Benefits_01.htm

     
    Note that the National Institute of Health did a “meta” study involving HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS of people and confirmed this.

    Drinking 12 to 20 cups of coffee, BLACK, per day could reduce diabetes numbers significantly, and thereby reduce Medicare Heath care cost in a VERY BIG way !

    Decaf or instant works well also !

    • Cabanator

      12 to 20 cups of coffee a day? This is being pitched as beneficial to health? I am sure NIH would endorse nothing of the sort. 

      • Wm_James_from_Missouri

        The proof is in the literature.

  • Tyranipocrit

    This should read–”a bought judge struck down…” or “a whorish judge…”

    • Wahoo_wa

      Really?  Wow….just wow.

      • Tyranipocrit

         again you have nothing to say–just wow –uh-uh choit–try having a real discussion.  Or just go away.  Put down your big gulp fat boy.

        • Wahoo_wa

          How about you take responsibility for your choices?  That’s my point.  I am sorry you are having trouble being an adult and instead resort to insults and blaming others for irresponsible behavior.  People of your ilk are the problem in this nation.

          • Tyranipocrit

             but isnt that what u do/  u republicans love to reverse everything–u are clearly the child here–u have never said anything without insulting anyone.  U can yell grow up to you are blue in the face but you are clearly the one acting like a child–what purpose does it serve to argue over something so ridiculous and off topic?  BUt yet thats what you do with every single comment–you have never contributed to the conversation–you derail it at every turn.  So please just go away.

          • Wahoo_wa

            Asking one to take responsibility for one’s actions in lieu of creating unnecessary regulations is off topic and derailing a conversation…or better yet not contributing to a conversation?  Wow….you are so off-base it’s kinda scary.  …and because I don’t agree with you I am automatically a member of a specific political party?  Sad….just really sad.  Again…this kind of perspective is what’s truly wrong with our nation.  Poor logic and a desire for coddling.

  • Shag_Wevera

    Careful now, fat people in America are beginning to have a sizable bullseye on their rumps.  Employers and insurance companies are beginning to gouge fatties for their dimensions.  My employer (a very large healthcare provider) began by offering free health risk assessments.  2 years later they are jacking up your rates if you don’t lose a certain percentage of your weight yearly.  The skinny tend to say “good, why should I have to pay for obesity related medical treatment”.  I just can’ wait until unionless and powerless employees are required to submit a full health history or even their personal genome when it becomes readily available.  How would you like higher insurance premiums because grandma ha diabetes or papa had a pollop in the pooper?  Don’t think it’ll happen?  Let’s just say it will help the bottom line of insurance companies.  Nuff said.

    • NrthOfTheBorder

      I deplore discrimination of people who are overweight or obese. However, statistics are not on their side. 

      • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

        you know what the difference is? its not a perminate condition. other protected classes are perminate like being black or gay. if fat people dont like how they are treated there is a simple solution: lose weight

  • LinRP

    Sugar is highly addictive and very damaging to our health. Most people walk around in a high-glycemic, insulin-spiked state day in and day out. The health impact of all that sugar is very real. Metabolic syndrome,
    diabetes in people of normal weight, constant inflammation are just some
    of the risks.

    The giant Cokes are one thing. But when was the last time you really read labels when you shopped? The amount of ADDED sugar in EVERYTHING will astound you. Take the time to look at labels next time–it’s in your bread, it’s in grey poupon–we don’t even have to talk about the sugarfication of breakfast. You can easily consume an extra coke a day, and not even know it.

    A couple of good stories to point to:

    It’s The Sugar, Folks
    http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/category/mark-bittman/

    The Extraordinary Science of Addictive Junk Food
    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/24/magazine/the-extraordinary-science-of-junk-food.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

  • Wahoo_wa

    Good decision by the court!  Bravo!
    I think Americans should take it upon themselves to be better parents.  We don’t need government interfering in our lives.  We need citizens that take responsibility for their choices and parents who can effectively raise their children.

    • LinRP

      Keep ‘em uneducated,jobless, and plunked in front of the boob tube from infancy through adulthood bombarded by the corporate marketing machine indoctrinating people to think that what they’re selling is actually food, rather than pesticide-laden, additive-laden, sugar-filled artificial pieces of crap masquerading as food. Yeah, that’s a better choice. Let the corporate machine be their guide.

      Hamburger Helper, anyone?

      • Wahoo_wa

        Or take responsibility for parenting and choices.  It’s ALWAYS someone else’s responsibility with people of your ilk.  Grow up!  Be an adult! 

    • Tyranipocrit

       yeah but your parents failed.  Didn’t they?  Accusing others of bad parenting is not an argument or a discussion? What makes your parents so brilliant?  what makes you so brilliant.  I really believe if i had you as a parent i would do everything you asked me not to.  Tyrannical parenting is NOT GOOD parenting.  You are a flaw.

      • Wahoo_wa

        Blaming others for personal choices and then expecting a nanny state to coddle you is certainly not a good character trait.  Scape goating the “big bad corporation” that you support through your own lack of self control is not a good character trait either.

  • AC

    wasn’t the other day’s show on anorexia?
    can you please cover exactly what the proposed ban said? maybe there is a reason the judge did this we’re not imagining…..drinking high calorie drinks is what is known as ‘cutting off your nose to spite your face’

    anyway, it doesn’t matter – in the end, you drink it, you going to be fined by your health insurance company….seriously, i see a future where the sick are treated as hostile enemies of health care costs – & if it’s on purpose from poor dieting habits?!! prepare to pay or face forced compliance!

    or maybe there will be an epic corporate war between the soda & insurance companies!! wonder what their weapons of choice will be?

    • http://twitter.com/Dragonsong73 Eric R. Duncan

      The weapon of choice will be us. It always is.

      • AC

        good point

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      The judge’s ruling was 36 pages.  He cited the ban as “fraught with arbitrary and capricious consequences.”.  He also took issue that Bloomberg did not get his ban passed through the elected body — the City Council.  Instead he used the appointed board of health.  Bloomberg personally appointed every member of the board of health.

    • nj_v2

      It took about 15 minutes, but i found the text of the proposed law. I always find this kind of thing annoying;  so much reporting on a subject often fails to give readers (or viewers in the case of the teevee) the basic information about a story, instead preferring to give only a summary or excerpts of the source materials. Why don’t they respect their readers enough to provide the source materials?

      It wasn’t given in the Reuters article in the “Reading List.” The Nature article from the “Reading List” isn’t even viewable unless one buys it or subscribes (though the comments are accessible and interesting).

      This WSJ article links to the text of the Supreme Court ruling:

      http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323826704578354543929974394.html

      Here’s the Court ruling contains the text of the proposed rule:

      http://online.wsj.com/public/resources/documents/sodaruling0311.pdf

      And here’s the NYC Dept. of Public Health hearing announcement for the proposed rule (text of rule begins on page 5):

      http://www.nyc.gov/html/doh/downloads/pdf/notice/2012/amend-food-establishments.pdf

      • AC

        this is bubble bath reading, or when i next have a chunk of open time…..

        • nj_v2

          The reg itself isn’t very long. Just takes a couple of minute to read through.

    • AC

      now that i think about it, there would be no epic battle between the 2. since the insurance company can charge more to cover you if you consume sugary drinks, so why would they bash the drink companies? maybe they’ll even own one….

      that’s too bad….

      • keltcrusader

        You would be amazed to see the connections between businesses that don’t seem to have connections to each other. Most seem to be owned by just a few huge conglomerates. I wouldn’t put it past one company in a “family” to sell unhealthy products on one end and market the medical “fix” for those product on the other. Vicious circle.

        • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

          like CVS? selling ciggeretts and nebulizers what a racket!

  • Roy-in-Boise

    Now that the Nanny State has been beaten back warning labels would be a much more effective idea. Hopefully the practice will catch on. We do seem to forget though that Government is not some 3rd entity and that any Government is us,

  • RolloMartins

    Let’s see: be offended at the death spiral that the food industry has us in, or gov’t interference (minor though it is) in our freedom. On balance, I’m more terrified of the food industry. Ever try and buy a drink less than 16 oz now? Frankly I could be satisfied with 8oz. Kudos to Bloomberg for trying to kick some corporate butt. 

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      if he wants to kick corporate butt he should kick his own. has bloomberg banned soft drinks from advertising with him?

  • NrthOfTheBorder

    Why not a tax commensurate with the health consequences caused by obesity?  If you consume bad-for-you food your appetite might be curbed a bit if you had to pay a hefty tax for your sins. 

    • Wahoo_wa

      I love that idea!  It makes people responsible for their choices as well!

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      Will the tax revenue be used to offset the high cost of healthcare for non-sinners?  I guess if your big gulp is diet soda then there is no tax –right?

      • jefe68

        No diet soda is a just as bad in other ways.

      • NrthOfTheBorder

        This tax would be more acceptable the more it addressed the problem directly.  

        Or simply tax the beverage industry’s profits which they could consider as a cost of doing business. After all who are they to skip out of town before the problems they created came home to roost?  

        • keltcrusader

          They just fight to prevent those too. Nothing to get in their way of making a quick buck off junk.

    • AC

      that would depend on whether or not it went into a dedicated fund or a general fund that anyone can raid from (like it does now).
      plus what if you are obese from a bad thyroid or something? you would be unfairly ostracized by everyone!! 

      • NrthOfTheBorder

        Allocation is a problem isn’t it? Such a tax would be more acceptable if it really went to offset health costs due to the over-consumption of sugary drinks.  

        As to the ostracization you talk of, I don’t see the connection. 

    • nj_v2

      Remarkably stupid idea. Three people “liked” this? Really?!

      • NrthOfTheBorder

        nj why is it stupid?  You sound adamant but offer no explanation. 

        • nj_v2

          Did you think about this at all?

          How would you administer your “tax”?

          How would you identify which ailments were caused by which diet choices? How would you establish causality? How would you monitor and enforce it all?

          If your tax is tied to “health consequences,” you’ll have to establish the Federal Bureau of Health Monitoring and have it keep track of everyone’s doctor visits, health ailments, hospitalization, etc.

          There would have to be categories of “health consequences” which could be tied to dietary choices. There would have to be some sort of rating system to scale the penalty to the severity of the “bad choice.”

          Parallel to that, the BHM would have to establish if, in fact, a particular health issue was tied to what someone ate.

          Would people be required to keep receipts for all the food they purchased? Would food purchases be automatically monitored and recored somehow? Even if, somehow, some way all this could be accomplished, imagine the endless court challenges and appeals from people who could argue—in many cases justifiably—that causes other than diet contributed to a particular ailment.

          • NrthOfTheBorder

            Too complicated. Soft drinks are bad for everyone – and statistically amount  to an extra burden on health care. 

            Like all sin tax, all who indulge, pay.  

          • nj_v2

            Of course it’s too complicated. You were trying to tie the tax to the health outcomes.

            Just tax the foods your trying to discourage.

  • Markus6

    I can’t make up my mind on this issue. Banning large sugary drinks seems reasonable on its’ surface. They’re bad for you, they cost all of us health care money and who needs a giant gulp in a theater. But then the slippery slope kicks in. A bag of Twizzlers (my favorite) may be just as bad, as may be just about any of the treats they offer. The perfect shouldn’t be the enemy of the good, but it’s easy to see how the next step is banning large bags of sugary treats. And it’s just a tiny step to putting restrictions on how much salt restaurants can use or how much fat they allow. 

    These are tiny steps. But it’s not inconceivable that in 20 years, given the justification that if it’s bad for you and costs others money in health care to take care of you, any activity that is perceived to be risky, could have severe restrictions put on it. Skiing, cycling, scuba diving, hang gliding won’t necessarily be banned, but I could see restrictions put on that take all the fun out of them. 

    I guess I’m leaning towards not banning large sugary drinks, but increasing education on their effects and probably some limits in how they’re advertised. Though, I doubt the former would have much effect and the latter drops us on that slipper slope again.

    • NrthOfTheBorder

      Your comment raises issues common to all vices a society gets tangled in. 

      How does a society restrain the misguided from indulging in behavior that takes a toll on all of those who don’t indulge?

      This dilemma is everywhere. 

      We have no problem sending a felon to jail at a cost of $60k/yr, but scream bloody blue murder at raising taxes to support early childhood intervention in poor neighborhoods.  Likewise, we resist regulation to restrain a runaway problem, yet are blind to costs that we’ll be saddled with if we do nothing.  

      Figure this one out and you could run for congress. 

  • Gregg Smith

    How did a law like this even get passed in the first place?

    • WorriedfortheCountry

       It isn’t a ‘law’ passed by the City Council.  It is a ‘regulation’ by Bloomberg’s board of health.  That was one of the issues cited by the judge.

      • Gregg Smith

        That explains it.

  • Gregg Smith

    Just wondering, is there anyone who supports banning big gulps but opposes banning pot?

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      pot heads love big gulps they are great for “cotton mouth”

  • jefe68

    All junk food is bad for you. Chips, fires, giant soft drink portions, all of it. I’m old enough to remember the the 8oz
    coke bottle. Now all this garbage is marketed in supersize portions. What is it with Americans and large portions?

    One way forward on this is a kin to tobacco.
    There use to be a lot of tobacco ads everywhere.
    Now not so many and none on TV.
    Education, which worked for smoking somewhat and controlling how this junk is advertised seems a better way to go in my view.

    • Ray in VT

      Have you seen those anti-smoking commercials on TV?  I’ve told my kids what it was like to have a grandfather who had to have an oxygen tank due to years of smoking, but those commercials have really driven the point home to them.

    • NrthOfTheBorder

      Great question: “What is it with Americans and large portions?”

  • madnomad554

    Why should I have to take care of you, because you chose not to take care of you??? There are preventable health issues and there are non-preventable health issues. For instance, if a baby is born with webbed feet, we should all pay to take care of it until it is better. If a five year old develops a brain tumor, we should all pay for it’s removal and that child’s recovery. If a tornado sucks you out of your house and breaks half the bones in your body, we should all pay for your health care and recovery.

    But if you smoke your way into lung cancer, drink your way into liver disease and or eat your way into obesity and in doing so, riddle your body with copious sickness and disease, I don’t want to take care of you. Your health is your responsibility as far as preventable sickness and disease is concerned.

    I don’t want to take care of you because you “CHOSE” not to take care of yourself…   

  • northeaster17

    If more people really knew what was in the food they ate and what it did to them, one would think that corrective action on a personal level would be taken. Obviously that’s not happening. Forcing advertisers to be truthful about what they sell is a different matter. That is the way we should be going. If I see one more cereal commercal telling me how their particular brand of garbage is good for me I’m a gonna scream.

  • donniethebrasco

    What a crazy law to try to enforce.

    There are probably 500 bars in NY that don’t ask people to stop smoking.

    • J__o__h__n

      I’ve never noticed people smoking in bars in NY since the ban.

      • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

        you arent hip enough for those bars

  • nj_v2

    I see the proposed ruling as well intentioned, but kind of dopey.  What would keep someone from just buying two smaller drinks? Getting a refill? Bringing their own jumbo mug and filling it at the tap (some stores have these)?

    Why were some establishments exempted? And why just drinks? What about sugar in other products? Or salt? Or trans fat?

    Seems like education ought to be a main priority, and, even then, people are still going to eat things and do things that are bad for them. Which is their prerogative, but everyone else shouldn’t have to pay for it.

    • DeJay79

       New york already banned trans fats.

      But I agree. i read some of the exemptions like diet pop and I thought “that total BS.” If your going to ban them then ban them all.

      My wife had a better idea to just require that shops sell a standard sizes of small 8oz, regular 12oz and large 16oz. Then if they wanted to sell other sizes they could. That way someone wanting a 36oz would have to order the XX-large or something like that.

      I think it is a good idea, one increase choice not limiting freedom and two makes people think about what they are doing a little more.

      • nj_v2

        Easy solution: Tax the things you want to disincentivize. Tax sugar. People would buy less. 

  • DeJay79

    My wife had a better idea to just require that shops sell a standard
    sizes of small 8oz, regular 12oz and large 16oz. Then if they wanted to
    sell other sizes they could. That way someone wanting a 36oz would have
    to order the XX-large or something like that.

    I think it is a
    good idea, one increase choice not limiting freedom and two makes people
    think about what they are doing a little more.

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    “What do we do?”

    Wring our hands and coddle those who choose to make poor decisions about obvious things.

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Animal farm.

    Why don’t we just round up all the dumb people and put them in a fence and give them “healthy whole grains” by the bucket full.  They’ll still be overweight, but at least we will feel a sense of control and be doing what the progressive prescription of the day tells us to.

    • Ray in VT

      Agreed.  We can call is Soylent Green Acres, and I have for you a modest proposal that would also combat the problem of hunger, should you care to hear it.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

         LOL.  Channeling a little Jonathan Swift I see.

        • Ray in VT

          I often like to call my satirical proposals modest proposals in honor of the good Mr. Swift.

          • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

            lol i bet you are in dennis miller percentages with that one. someone should reprint that work in the NY times

          • Ray in VT

            It depends upon the audience of course.  Most of my friends are prone to dropping literary or historical references, but I’ve given up making those sorts of statements when I’m at my brother’s place.  His milkers rarely get the references, so I’ve just stopped bothering.  Of course I don’t get a lot of their references to motorsports or sleddin’ and such either.

    • J__o__h__n

      Shouldn’t the free market take into account externalities instead of passing on their cost to society?

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        Yes buying your own health care, either doctor services or insurance would fix that in a jiffy, but you won’t let it happen.

        • Government_Banking_Serf

          You prefer to tell us how to live and force us to participate in your managed economy-insurance schemes, instead of letting organic markets, and choices/consequences unfold naturally.

          • J__o__h__n

            I support single payer heath care which the corporations killed.  Tyrany from corporations isn’t better than when the government interferes.  They aren’t banning soda.  It just limits the amount people thoughtlessly pour down their throats.  Do you miss your freedom to eat trans fats?  No one wanted to eat those it just made it cheaper for business.

          • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

            if you cared to address the thoughtlessness why not require a label on fountian drinks? then people wont have any excuses when they pour 500 calories of sugar down their throats

  • J__o__h__n

    Mississippi passed a bill to ban Bloomberg type soda bans.  Someone should introduce a bill limiting how much soda a pregnant woman can expose her fetus to and watch their heads spin on how to vote on that one.

    • Ray in VT

      Or perhaps a ban on pregnant women smoking or drinking alcohol, given the known side effects.

    • MurielV

      And Mississipi has the highest obesity rate and we all pay for that and it is more exensive than what someone else has called the “ban on soda”.

      We regulate all kinds of things that threaten the health of the public and that are extremely costly to society as a whole.  Sodas are slowly killing kids and making them unable to have a normal kid life.  Good luck if you want to eat a healthy diet.  It will be very time consuming because manufacturers add all kinds of stuff in your food that you have never even heard off.

      • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

        so make it a crime to give soda to kids. next

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

    It’s been a bit annoying how the media has gone on and on about a “soda ban”, when it’s nothing of the sort. People can continue to drink all the soda they want.

    It’s like saying that when they restricted ordering rounds of pitchers of beer in bars, or selling a pitcher to an individual, they banned beer. They didn’t.

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      ironically you can still buy a 32oz beer in NYC

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Time to ban alcohol, ban pot, ban sugar, ban wheat, ban fat, ban “bad” movies, ban video games, ban bad art, ban religion, ban guns, ban knives, ban pointy things, ban corporations, ban lawns, ban candy, ban slim jims, ban ice cream, ban sunbathing…..

    Can I be a decider so that my favorite things aren’t infringed?

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      just heard that China story, Ban pigs.

    • NrthOfTheBorder

      GBS you worry too much about some regulation throwing a straight jacket on what it is to be American.  You’re argument would carry more weight if it didn’t sound so reactionary. 

      • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

        drinking as big a soda as you want while fireing off a AR15 is the american dream

    • jefe68

      The trope of the inane.

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      you forgot tall buildings cars and trains and boats

  • DrewInGeorgia

    What about convenience stores? What about grocery stores? Soda Junkies are going to get their fix one way or another. How much TAXPAYER money has been spent on The War on Soda? Here’s an idea Bloomberg: Why not let the TAXPAYERS vote? Poll results from all sides have already confirmed how that would play out…

    • DeJay79

       I don’t think this regulation was trying to Stop and control all sugar-junkies. It was meant much more to help the casual unthinking citizens cut back a bit on the amount they drink.

      if I order the biggest size and it is 16oz. i find i’ll drink all of it and feel satisfied. if i order it and it is 24oz I will also drink it all and feel satisfied. the point is I did not need that extra 8oz and yet that is what I was given.

      • DrewInGeorgia

        That is not what you were given, that is what you ordered and paid for. You could have chosen to drink water which is in most instances free of charge. You cannot legislate common sense. Yes Corporate America has the majority of the population snowed but only because we allow it.

        • DeJay79

          Funny enough, I typically do order water. I gave up soda in 2002 and have rarely had any since.

          I was just trying to point to the studies that have been done that people eat and drink the amount of food that is put in front of them.
          http://mindlesseating.org/lastsupper/pdf/bottomless_soup-OR_2005.pdf

          • DrewInGeorgia

            I understand and have tried to look at it as objectively as I can. Please don’t take my reply the wrong way, there was no offense intended.

          • DeJay79

             absolutely no offense taken, I we are very close to agreeing on this point. I to struggle with both sides of the issue.

            Ironically freedom spins both ways with this issues, freedom to drink what I want and freedom not to pay for the bad health choices of someone else. :( ??? IDK

          • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

            the latter can be used to justify any type of restriction on liberty so lets drop it. if we can have universal health insurance and liberty thats fine but i dont want to give up anymore liberty for healthcare if there is no way to work it i say junk the healthcare

        • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

          Tangent, since we’re dealing with selling things: Restauranteurs have a name for that free glass of water: A “tap water incident”, a lost opportunity to sell you something.

  • http://twitter.com/beauthebault Beau Thebault

    Here are my thoughts on the issue from Jeff Fowle’s blogCommon Sense Agriculture blog found at http://commonsenseagriculture.com/2012/07/18/just-the-beginning/#comment-2546

    “The key perspective on this conversation is to look at the serving
    size (different than quantity) and the supply side marketing behind the
    strategy.
    Giant serving sizes are not the product of consumer demand, but
    rather the outcome of marketing data and distribution / sales strategies
    (artificial demand). That data says that if you offer a larger single
    serving of sugary soft-drink, people demonstrate they will buy it. If
    data supports consumer activity, that justifies increased production.
    Increased production justifies lower unit costs. Lower unit costs
    increase sales. Increased sales at a lower unit cost with smart
    distribution means significant, incremental increases in profit.

    The soft drink marketers were not responding to any consumer demand
    when they started offering super sizes. They were implementing a serving
    size strategy they had market tested to increase profits.

    The proposed ban is on serving sizes over a certain quantity. It does not apply to the actually quantity.

    Now a few key distinctions to keep in mind regarding some of the other contextual considerations:
    . Alcohol and tobacco are regulated and illegal for sale to or
    consumption by minors. This ban is trying to protect kids from giant
    super size portions that they buy regularly because they can.
    . Alcohol and tobacco carry with them a certain social stigma
    (disclaimer: I have a hearty appetite for both!) Most would think twice
    before purchasing 40′s throughout their day. Most don’t think twice
    about buying giant sized sugary drinks throughout their day.
    . The conversation is about the serving size of sugary soft drinks, not
    alcohol nor tobacco, so we should keep the conversation grounded in the
    merits of soft drink serving sizes.

    So when you consider the…
    1) lack of real demand, instead profit motivated, marketing driven, artificial demand
    2) the real health consequences hitting real people
    3) what distinguishes sugary soft-drinks in the consumer market from other potentially dangerous consumer products…”

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Just because a judge wants to respect elemental liberty, you don’t have to jump to the notion that he is a lackey of the evil soda industry. 

    • WorriedfortheCountry

       I know.  I guess we know where Tom stands on the issue.

  • hennorama

    Meh.

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Bloomberg and his nanny-state progressive defenders are “Arbirtary and Capricious”

    This is the whole problem.

    We trust that “you” smarty pants folks know-better and we follow like sheep.

    How’s that demonizing natural fats and embracing carbs from the 50′s and through the McGovern report etc in the name only of “science” working out?

    • NrthOfTheBorder

      GBS: what’s wrong with the rest of us insisting we don’t get saddled with costs stemming from indulgent behavior of a minority?

      If only gluttons paid I’d more inclined to agree to  no-holes barred laisse-faire capitalism. But the world only works that way in your dreams. 

      What’s that saying: “you’re perfectly free to swing your fist up until the point it comes in contact with my jaw”.  

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        And which economic model would allow you NOT to be saddled with the impacts of others poor decisions? Collectivism or Free markets?

        Who is making you pay for that indulgent behavior?

        • Government_Banking_Serf

          Hint: Same people that made you pay for the Bail Out.

        • NrthOfTheBorder

          Well, first it’s not either Collectivism or Free Markets. I’m only advocating reasonable regulation to temper what gets abused if there isn’t any. 

          No one makes me pay directly – but everyone pays higher insurance premiums to cover cost burdens that wouldn’t be there otherwise.

          Moreover everyone pays through loss of productivity, heck – even airlines are having to buy bigger planes because - corporeally  - “we” weigh more. 

    • jefe68

      You post a lot of BS.

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    Bloomberg will NEVER be President. Just another billionaire with too much time on his hands.

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Are folks aware of how “public interest groups” led the outcry against saturated animal fats and pushed the fast food restaurants to switch from those fats to the trans-fats that are now being banned?

    Saturated fats are now re-known to be a healthy part of balanced, whole-food diets, lower in refined carbs.Living at the whims of the capricious and arbitrary do-gooders of the day, regardless of good intentions, is not the way to go.  People can be wrong, people can be corrupted, etc etc.

    Free information, free people.

  • ToyYoda

    I agree with Bloomberg in spirit, but I don’t agree with the ban.  Why not require restaurants to add on their menu “Free cup of water”?

    When I eat out, I always ask for water.  The server always wants to charge me a bottle of water.  I am loathed to pay for something I know I can get for free so often times I have to correct them.  I think there’s alot of people who would opt for water if they didn’t have to pay for a bottle of it, but they are too afraid to ask, don’t know they shoul ask for a “cup”, or just don’t want to bother.

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

      The restaurant industry has a name for your “shenanigans”: A “tap water incident”, a sale of something else lost to people who can deal with tap water. (And I can tell when tap water has been filtered or not.)

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      maybe they can muster up the courage to ask if they care

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    How do “we” get a handle on obesity? Start by asking how do “you” get a handle on obesity.

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

      We can start by acknowledging that the job of the Coca Cola Company is not to make us happy and give us funtimes like unto a Coke commercial.

      It’s to sell us every drop of Coca Cola they can, and when we’re too sated to drink another drop, create other categories of drinks and dominate them also.

      This ban wasn’t the answer. But the idea that “personal responsibility” kept obesity down, say, a half century ago, and will suffice now in the face of the marketing and distribution advances of the Coca-Cola Company (to name just one) is facetious.

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        The rest of aren’t as dumb as you think, nor you as smart.

        If one can’t turn down a can of Coke in this world, one has much bigger things to worry about.

        Maybe “overcoming” Coke, would be a good life lesson that would allow one to continue to profit from thinking and making sound decisions.

        But we wouldn’t want that now would we.

        • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

          You’re like a damned robot. Anytime you want to address my question about the might of the “free corporation” to cram every dram of Coke it can sell us, with the distribution and marketing advances of the last half century, while you pretend it’s still 1960, give it a shot.

      • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

        oh the ad are so powerful we can no longer resist them? gimme a break, gimme a break, break me off a piece of that

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      and what will become of love handles?

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Tom please don’t frame this as an either/or, Nanny or Evil Industry group, issue.

  • Ken Lee

    You can decide for yourself how much to eat or drink.  It’s not the government’s job to micromanage peoples’ lives. 

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

    As long as the law requires ER’s to treat people regardless of ability to pay, people, businesses and the state have an economic stake in unhealthy behaviors.

    If there was a way to effectively monitor diet, private health insurance would have set up their own requirements years ago much the same way they have for smokers.

    Drop the requirement that ER’s treat and let them do it only when it’s clear they will get paid and then let people do whatever they want.

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      well why does the state not just mandate exercise?

  • peterlake

    This is a shocking affront to those people in New York City who expect the Very Rich/Very Smart People to run their lives for them.

    Now they’re going to have to think for themselves and make their own choices…….The Horror!

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Bloomberg/Rodman 2016

  • Human898

    What about the cost of health insurance to ALL the people that pay into it?  Why is it so many people forget “rights” are a two way street and how our actions affect others, it’s not just about how others affect us.

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      ban rock climbing

      • Human898

        Are soft drinks banned?
        How many people are obese and what health risks are associated?

        http://www.cdc.gov/obesity/data/adult.html

        What portion of the population rock climbs?

        http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20632737

        • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

          so its not about how risky your behaviors are just if they are popular risky behaviors? is everyone who drinks a big soda obese? if i had known the result of obomacare would be that people feel justified to legislate how others how to live “for the greater good” i would have fought against it.

          • Human898

            Would you suggest we let people drink and drive or is there some benefit to “legislating” that “freedom”?

            Did Obama make up that law?   Who wants to ban abortion while at the same time not contribute to the lives they spend so much time obsessing about before they are born?   Once born they complain about welfare mommas and their babies because they cost too much.   Maybe you’d suggest people should be free to rape?   How about murder?   Seems to me, when enough people in society do things they cost society, then society moves to mitigate the problem.   Is that unfair?    Once the world was much smaller and had a lot fewer people in it.  They could feel free to do all kinds of things and the impact was not felt or had such a low impact it was insignificant.   With lots more people, the “freedoms” of some people run up and rub against the “freedoms” of other people because not everyone’s idea of freedom is the same thing and in many cases they conflict.   That is when a compromise is needed to mitigate the conflicts of interest, but you seem to think you should be free to block other people’s freedom, so you can enjoy yours.

          • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

            was it my post you were responding to? it does not make much sense

  • malkneil

    Not that I don’t see the problem with downing 72 ounces of sugared beverages, but if they’re going to limit the sale of them wouldn’t banning the sale of cigarettes be higher up on the list?

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      in NYC they perfer to tax them to the extent that they have created a black market for ciggerettes already

  • http://www.facebook.com/JoeyCorrao Joe Corrao

    I appreciate this show but will turn this off…enough of the devil’s advocate arguments….this woman is wrong…she doesn’t know whats best for me neither does a billionaire

  • Elizabeth_in_RI

    Just as with many of our environmental resources, we need to add the true cost of these killer beverages (new science is showing just how hazardous sugar especially in liquid form is) to the purchase price. Sadly, largely due to farm subsidizes of corn and sugar, too often fountain soda is far cheaper than healthier options. Soda provides nothing but empty calories, which negates Coca Cola’s argument that all calories are the same – many have protein, fiber and vitamins associated with them, soda doesn’t! So if soda cost what it ought to (without subsides and/or with the added health care costs) perhaps more families would choose juice or milk options.

    Until we recognize the role of the convenience food industry on our national health care obesity crisis, we will continue our blotted ways (of us and the industry’s profits)! This is where personal responsibility SHOULD play a role – but look around you and you’ll know that most us have become addicted to the fats, sugars and salts in mega amounts that the food industry is peddling.

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      then “most of us” need to kick the habit when they realise that

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    I don’t drink soda. I’ve heard they can be habit forming, make you fat and rot your teeth.

    I don’t need a government official to strong arm me into that common sense decision.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

      True – but do you want to be strong armed into paying for people’s bad choices? Because you are.

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        I wouldn’t in a more free health care market. Being forced into insurance schemes, and then forced how to live by actuaries is not appealing, or a good long term solution for free people.

  • http://www.facebook.com/JoeyCorrao Joe Corrao

     kids are fat because of bad parenting…

  • Wahoo_wa

    Ban bad parenting first.  Jail parents who abuse their children by allowing them to be enormous!

    • nj_v2

      Require would-be parents to take a training course to obtain a parenting license. Oh, wait, more government regulation.

      • Wahoo_wa

        I was being facetious.  It is too easy for these people to blame others instead of taking responsibility for their own choices.  You really can’t fight ignorance and laziness.

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Lets ban crappy parents.

    I’m all for banning crap processed foods in public schools, BTW.

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      but then who will agribusiness dump them on?

  • Davesix6

    Unless something changes we are all going to be enslaved by this government for our own good.

    These progressives are of the same cloth as their predecessors who passed the 21st Ammendment outlawing Alcohol.

    It’s not the job of the government to tell the people what is best for them.

    What do librerals/progressives have against personal responsibility and freedom?

    • jefe68

      Bloomberg is not a progressive nor a liberal.
      This has nothing to do with being a progressive or a liberal.

      By the way I can use the same argument about the right regulating woman’s health issues.

      • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

        of course you can jefe because both are stupid ideas

    • Elizabeth_in_RI

      No, we’re being enslaved multi-national corporations who are profiting by our government subsidies, by policies at every level of government gained through lobbying, the constant bombardment of marketing and adulteration of convenience foods to maximize profits. 

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

      “Liberals/progessives”? Bloomberg? Hahahaha.

      Maybe he should just not regulate serving size, but use those happy horsecrap regulations that Mississippi has enacted to drive womens’ health clinics bankrupt for no health reason. But that’s not “banning” anything.

      What do conservatives/Republicans have against personal responsibility and freedom?

      • nj_v2

        To most of the TeaBagger/conservobot crowd, anyone who does something they don’t like is a “liberal.”

  • http://www.facebook.com/JoeyCorrao Joe Corrao

    my god the crisis is we are cowards and sheep

  • DrewInGeorgia

    Caller Carol says “Stop advertising”.
    Maybe she should try turning off the television.
    And what about parental responsibility? The kid can’t buy “pop” all day if the parent isn’t providing the funds to purchase them.
    Brown Bag Lunch.

  • BHA_in_Vermont

    So when you say Coke originally came in 6 oz bottles:
    Was that the ORIGINAL Coca Cola that contained 9 milligrams of  COCAINE?

    6 oz was probably more than enough to get the desired effect :)

  • nj_v2

    Whoa! Mr. Barnett sez that people are obese because “experts” have been telling us to eat the “wrong foods” for a long time?

    What the hell is he talking about?

    • jefe68

      Amazing, simply amazing.
      It’s the Dunning-Kruger effect.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dunning%E2%80%93Kruger_effect

    • adks12020

      My thought exactly. What a bogus argument.

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      Are you joking? Have you heard about the McGovern report?  The whole fat/cholesterol hysteria based on bad science and correlations, and how it steered us to the last 25+ years of trans fats and too much carbohydrate (sugar) which is what we are talking about?

      Public Advocacy groups in the 70′s pushed restaurants to switch from animal fats (actually healthy) to un-natural vegetable oils and trans fats, and eating more carbs, which has now led us to an obesity, cancer and general health care crisis!

      The force of government and corrupted agencies created the mess in the first place! 

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Fat is good for you.

  • DrewInGeorgia

    Not more attractive Tom, more addictive.

  • Wahoo_wa

    The marketing argument is laughable.  Try some self control!

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Carbs/Grains Wheat industry is bad for you, not Natural fats.

    Lets ban the USDA

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Geez Tom, you’ve spent enough time defending the nonsense. Follow your logic for a moment, if we decided to micromanage our lives in this way.

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Imagine the Discretionary chaos of opening this Pandora’s Box of micromanagement and enforcement!!!

    This issue will be a boon to the Libertarian movement.

  • DrewInGeorgia

    So how about a ban on tv? I’d be willing to bet that sitting in front of the idiot box for hours on end contributes more to the obesity ‘Epidemic’ than soda.

    • pk boston

      Or rather, a ban on the amount of idiot shows are on TV during ‘kid hours.’  If most programs shown between 6am & 9pm were educational, (and that does not include man-eating shark shows or Top Chef but could include cooking, crafting as well as how to play sports, how to do trig, etc) you’d find a lot less TV watching.  And those that did, just might learn something.

      • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

        lol make tv boring like in canada

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      they should limit how many posts a fat person can post

  • Davesix6

    The guest keeps talking about the government “helping” people to make better choices.
    The law is not a suggestion, it is a mandate enforced like all laws at the point of a gun.

    • TomK_in_Boston

      Yeah, that’s what the righties don’t get. The “freedom” from gvt they get so excited about is actually freedom for the corporations to run their lives.

      The B Movie actor prez said “The scariest words are “I’m from the gvt and I’m here to help.”” What a crock! How about “I’m from WellPoint, and I’m here to cancel your health insurance.” or “I’m from  Citigroup, and I’m here to take your home.”???

      • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

        “I’m from Pepsico, and I’m worried that you’re not getting enough…caramel coloring.”

        This is not fifty years ago. No part of the country is “undercolaed”. The idea that a certain level of “personal responsibility” was here and kept us trim then has disappeared now  sorta ignores the entire marketing arm of the industry.

        And there’s nothing that industry wants more than this to be reduced to “personal responsibility v. little tyrants”.

        PS On the whole food industry research v. health, I don’t think anyone has linked to this NYT report yet.

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        Is your life run by a corporation? Or is it just the dummies who get run, while the smart folks can navigate effectively.

  • Josiah Vanvliet

    One point that I see being missed is that someone is, right now, deciding for you how much soda you get at the movie theater. Right now it is corporations who decide how much soda we get. 

    The government stepping in isn’t a sudden limit on freedom, its the addition of an institution who cares about more than its own profits into the dynamic.  

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      how does the theater decide how much soda i drink? do they force me to buy one? do people go to the movies and drink big sodas daily?

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Exactly.  Ban voting by smokers and soda drinkers!

  • MarkVII88

    In Vermont, there is a proposed tax on sugary beverages (1 penny/ounce).  Problem is that, as proposed, this tax will be levied on beverage distributors instead of at the cash register on those who make the choice to buy a sugary drink subject to this tax.  In the end, beverage distributors will raise prices across their drink lineup to cover these costs (even bottled water).  There will be no incentive to buy healthier drinks as everyone will be forced to pay higher prices for all beverages.  I would fully support this tax if it was paid at the register by the consumers but not like this.  As it is this tax is a complete crock of…..you know what.

    • NrthOfTheBorder

      I’m surprised. VT’s idea seems full of unnecessary complications. 

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      good. bottled water is stupid and bad for the environment anyways.

      • MarkVII88

         While that’s true and I don’t disagree with you, can you possibly think of a less sugary beverage than water?  Why should buyers of water be subject to paying a sugary beverage tax? 

        • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

          why should anyone? i agree with you the tax is bunk

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Eric-Koscher/1822388 Eric Koscher

    Sure, you have a choice to drink as much soda as you want, fine. But do I have a choice not to pay increasing health care premiums because countless sloths can’t control their weight or their health issues? No, I don’t. Let’s talk about the ways that these people’s “choices” affect my life in an adverse way. 

    • http://www.facebook.com/kyle.rose Kyle Rose

      The proper response to this is to stop government from spending your money on others’ health care, not to limit everyone’s freedom. If you want to put restrictions on recipients of your largesse, then give that money directly to a charity that enforces your preferred model of behavior on the part of their beneficiaries. Just leave me alone, slaver.

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      what about skinny people who drink big sodas? are they harming you in some way?

  • http://www.facebook.com/bpomfret Bonnie Pomfret

    An important part of the problem is that government subsidies for agriculture, namely corn for high fructose corn syrup, have artificially lowered the cost of low-quality food.  

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

    “If you choose to have your transfats, you can’t.”

    Does anyone choose transfats the way they choose 1 liter v. 12oz can or Mountain Dew v. Gatorade? I thought it was just something added to make food stay longer on the shelf.

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      no worries they just put less than a gram of trans fats in now and the USDA allows them to round that down to 0 on the label

  • adks12020

    Barnett is angry and not at all persuasive. I thought a professor of legal theory would be able to make a good argument but apparently not.

    • nj_v2

      Sounds like he has drunk a little too much Libertarian Kool-Aid™.

      • J__o__h__n

        64 oz serving

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    This guy speaks the simple truth, listen up!  Won’t all you little benevolent dictators be thrilled when some born-again mayor takes charge and starts arbitrarily and capriciously telling you its time to pray and what to wear.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Eric-Koscher/1822388 Eric Koscher

      I doubt that prayer could be justified as a public health issue but your fear mongering is noted. 

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        Eric, it just illustrates that the word arbitrary and capricious have actual meaning, and that we our protected from such actions by our government by our Constitution. You can’t just pick and choose with discretion when you can tell people what to do because some panel of the day thinks its a good idea, it would lead to chaos and strife.

      • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

        i did not think we would ever have to fly naked. then they started with the naked scanners. they just need some studies that show people who pray live longer then it could be justified as a public health matter. after all you would not want to pay for the increased healthcare costs associated with not praying right?

  • Rex Henry

    Wow, Randy. Sounded like a bunch of rehearsed talking points instead of an actual discussion.

  • http://www.facebook.com/davebates82 Dave Bates

    This is a silly argument. WE ARE TALKING ABOUT SODA. Most of the callers are saying “people need to make their own decisions.” Great. Most people don’t order or want 20+ ounces of soda. But unfortunately there are people who DON’T have that self control. There are people who are just unaware of the harm these drinks cause over the long term and that there are BETTER options. They are called children. It’s not about freedom, and “don’t tread on me.” It’s about the fact that kids and some adults aren’t AWARE of how unhealthy these drinks and foods are. Restricting the access they have to these is simply a smart way of protecting them. And for those who say “I can make my own desision, I don;t need your protection” I say again, IT’S JUST SODA. 

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      ahh paternal protectionism, thank god the govt is in the business of protecting people from themselves, what would we do without our nanny?

  • DanielWReed

    When children see these items for sale and adults buying them they reason that it must be okay.

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      children can’t legally work so they must get money from their parents. so their parents should be able to control what they buy are they really are not very effective parents

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    I’ve got it! Lets just use Drones to shoot all the people in NYC carrying Big Gulps and threatening our country’s future!

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      Who needs the Constitution!!!

  • http://twitter.com/keenan1960 Keenan Powell

    If it our right and our choice to guzzle down the extra large drinks, then wouldn’t it be our right and our choice to smoke tobacco products as well?

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      it is

  • http://www.facebook.com/kyle.rose Kyle Rose

    This guy sounds like Kif from Futurama.

  • http://www.facebook.com/JoeyCorrao Joe Corrao
  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Please ask you Nutritional guest if we should ban flour.

  • burroak

    Obesity is an epidemic in America; this will increase health care costs.  But, people have a choice of what to eat. Maybe one problem is there are no whole-food-convienent-stores, or whole-food-fast-food-restaurants.
    The American food landscape is saturated with junk food.
    As mentioned on a WBUR program, a book worth reading: Michael Moss’ “Salt, Sugar, Fat: How the Food Giants Hooked Us”
    Bon appetit.

  • dsnows

    No one needs the amount of sugar that is artificially added to soft drinks or even so called sports drinks. People drink them, despite the well known health effects because they taste good and we don’t have the will power to resist. Manufacturers add more sugar than necessary because they know people will drink it. They have us hooked on sugar. The governmental pressure should be on the drink makers to add less sugar during the manufacturing process. We will drink what they provide us.

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      wow too bad you cannot control what you drink

  • http://www.facebook.com/JoeyCorrao Joe Corrao

    another “expert” that wants to save the world by making people do what he thinks is best…

  • BHA_in_Vermont

    “Diet Coke”
    = aspertame or other artificial sweetners
    = migraine
    (not to mention nasty after taste)

    I can understand the desire to deal with obesity but some of us don’t have weight problems. However, if deciding to restrict “sugary” drinks causes the soda makers to replace it with artificial sweeteners in their products (so they can still sell big containers), it removes MY ability to choose to drink soda in ANY size container.

    I once bought a “75% less sugar” version of a well known cereal ASSUMING it meant they let YOU decide if you want to put sugar on it. It was a very painful day when I found out they replaced the sugar with fake rather than removing the amount of “sweetness”.

    • DrewInGeorgia

      Artificial sweeteners have also been shown to produce bladder cancer in laboratory rats. Of course the sweetener industry backed “studies” have “demonstrated” that they don’t have the same effect on humans.

      • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

        look into how donald rumsfeld got aspartame legalised

  • http://twitter.com/Givemeliberty92 Patrick Henry

    “arbitrary and capricious”. This is not a surprise. There is a pattern among people who like bans-and we know a lot of them here in Massachusetts.

    Just like the assault weapon ban sen. Feinstein is proposing or the AW ban they passed in New York…: there it bans a .223 Ruger with large capacity magazine capability because it is black and with a pistol grip (Ruger mini 14 tactical rifle) but not the same .223 Ruger with large capacity capability that has a wooden stock (Ruger mini-14 ranch rifle)…i.e. it bans certain rifles but it exempts functionally identical ones almost randomly. This is arbitrary inconsistency. You can have a magazine but only up to 10 or 7 rounds. Yet one can buy as many 10-rounds magazines as he wants and use them. So the law is irrational.

    In the soda ban case, you ban certain kind of sugary drinks but not others that are functionally identical. You ban certain sizes of drinks, but you can just have more of them. You appeal to public health interests, but obesity, like gun violence, is a complex phenomenon that is only partially related to sugary drinks, and bans are invasion of individual choices in both cases. oh, and the evil industry lobby germane to the issue is attacked and reviled in both cases, just to add a layer of populism against the evil capitalists….

    The AWB is even worse actually, because while the right to have a large coke or a 7up is not constitutionally protected, the right to keep and bear arms in common use at the time for lawful purposes is. While one can make the case for a somewhat reasonable link between sugar and obesity, there is no link between the type of rifles banned in AW bans and the overwhelming majority of American gun violence (Sen. Feinstein cites 35 death per year attributable to so called “assault rifles” out of 12,000 firearm non-suicide deaths; homicides rates are a historical minimum and mass shootings are basically at a constant yearly number), and any other rifle -or bomb or fire- can be used just as effectively to cause mainheim and destruction.

    Sodas is not cocaine or crack, Tom, as AR-15s are not military-grade machine guns or rocket launchers. Sodas are drinks in common use for lawful purpose. AR-15 are common rifles for a lawful purpose.

    Stop treating people like children. Antigun and now anti soda people suffer from the same delusion concerning what the proper role for government is: they have to tell people how to live, they can’t just let people choose for themselves and let them be responsible. It’s a mindset akin to fascism.

    Like for guns, to prevent problems, educate your kids, spend time with them. That is the way to change the world.

    Bans are never a proxy for good parenting and education.

    • jefe68

      Amazing, the level of immaturity in this comment is ironic. And of course you have to add the meme about fascism. 

    • nj_v2

      Righto, no laws or regulations of any kind needed. Everything is solved by good parenting. 

      Life is interesting here on planet Earth. You should come and join us sometime.

      • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

        on planet earth everyone is the victim and no one is personally responsible for their behavior or that of their children. sounds terrible

  • mikey

    While your libertarian guest may be sincere in his first amendment right to big soda argument, the manufacturers of the product are simply motivated by profit. I therefore suggest the solution lies in billing them for the health care costs associated with their products

    • http://www.facebook.com/kyle.rose Kyle Rose

      …or let people pay for their own health care, thus automatically taking into account their lifestyle choices. The proper response to health care costs from bad lifestyle choices is to stop government from spending your money on others’ health care, not to limit everyone’s freedom. If you want to put restrictions on recipients of your largesse, then give that money directly to a charity that enforces your preferred model of behavior on the part of their beneficiaries. Just leave me alone, slaver.

      Yes, I’ve posted this multiple times, but you people really need to be beaten over the head with a cluestick.

      • jefe68

        50 million people can’t afford health insurance.
        Which is not designed to help with health care only as a way to deal with the risk of health care costs.

        One way or another we all pay for it. This is not 1780 anymore.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Eric-Koscher/1822388 Eric Koscher

        Kyle, you need to consider the real effects of such a policy. Do you want us to be the type of country that lets the poor and elderly die in the streets because they do not have enough to pay for a doctor visit. Are we no better than a third world country? Perhaps one day, when someone you know or love is slammed with absurd health care costs you’ll wake up. 

        • http://www.facebook.com/kyle.rose Kyle Rose

          I can guarantee you that will never happen. There is simply too much wealth in the US for people to be dying in the streets. Third world countries have people dying in the streets because they are poor, not because they don’t have enough government.

          • jefe68

            People are ding on the streets.
            They are called homeless.

            You are aware that if you slip on the ice today and fall and hurt your head or break your leg that you could wind up with a $15,000 bill or more for the ER visit. Even with decent health insurance you could wind up owing thousands. 

          • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

            Now all we have to do is sit back for the inevitable gambit that “the poor have free healthcare it’s called an Emergency Room”.

            Don’t know if Kyle Rose will say it. But too many people do to ignore how pernicious an idea it is.

          • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

            what?!?! and they still allow people to walk on ice? we need to ban ice. no one” needs” ice

          • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

            thats why we have a civil court system

          • sickofthechit

            We already have people dying in the streets, or have you not opened your eyes?  They are called homeless.  Aren’t you aware that the majority of bankruptcies in this country are due to health care costs?

          • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

            maybe those people should not have bought so many sodas

        • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

          i have insurance and i did before obomacare. its just more expensive now

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      a tax like on ciggeretts is fine a ban is not

  • jane201

    Quick but critical point – the government is ALREADY deeply involved in the way we eat.  There are subsidies for certain crops and products that make some of the most unhealthy foods also the least expensive.  Regulations affect prices, factory farming, with it’s powerful lobby, has tremendous impact on what we can and cannot find in our markets.  The libertarian argument of personal responsibility and choice is ALREADY MOOT.   The government and special interests manipulate us extensively.  We are NOT truly make our own choices as it is.  

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      yeah balme the lobbyists if you are fat it must be their fault for allowing large sodas to be sold. fat people are fat because they make choices about diet and exercise that make them fat. once they take responsibility for that then they can change their lifestyle and loose weight. don’t make them a victim

  • http://www.facebook.com/SolarHartland Chuck Fenton

    The elephant in the room is health care costs. It people who consume sugar were content to just go die in the street, perhaps there would be no problem (except for the smell). However, as long as they expect to be “taken care of” when they develop sugar related diseases, then we have an option to control their behavior. It’s called Public Health!

    • http://www.facebook.com/kyle.rose Kyle Rose

      The proper response to this is to stop government from spending your money on others’ health care, not to limit everyone’s freedom. If you want to put restrictions on recipients of your largesse, then give that money directly to a charity that enforces your preferred model of behavior on the part of their beneficiaries. Just leave me alone, slaver.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Eric-Koscher/1822388 Eric Koscher

        Kyle, your argument holds up until the point at which you, or someone you care for needs help from the government. At that point I’m sure your tune will change dramatically. Libertarians love putting down the government when it’s convenient but when they actually need the government those beliefs fall away pretty quickly.

        • http://www.facebook.com/kyle.rose Kyle Rose

          Stop projecting: I have enough issues of my own that I don’t need you adding imaginary ones to the list.

        • Government_Banking_Serf

          We can’t afford everything we want, just because we want it.  And most people won’t in the end accept a highly micromanaged life in order to allow efficiency for the “system”.  We are not lab rats or ants although we sure are getting closer.

        • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

          The particular voicing of “you should be on your own” is akin to the idea that “young people don’t need to be in a health insurance pool (a.k.a. subsidize older, iller peoples’ healthcare), because young people are healthy.”

          That idea gets hit by a bus an awful lot.

        • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

          im from the govenrment and i am here to help

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      you dont think that could apply to many other things? i am thinking of things like skateboarding or basketball which cause many debilitating long term expensive injuries.  if thats true then we should tax the sugery drinks just as we do tobacco not try to limit peoples choice or access to those things

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Eric-Koscher/1822388 Eric Koscher

    Tom, can we please talk about how obesity affects our healthcare system and drives up costs for ALL of us, even those who take responsibility for their own health.

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      Why are smokers life insurance rates higher that non smokers?

      Obamacare would make us all pay for everyone else’s sins. No choice. Then we empower the government to tell us exactly how to live, so that we can afford it.

      If we had to actually pay for health care at the doctors, and cut out the middlemen of government and insurance industry, the market would bring prices of basic health care down, and your health care costs would more accurately reflect your lifestyle choices.

      But you guys don’t want personal responsibility, yet you don’t want to pay for peoples choices.  This confusion is why we are going bankrupt, and and headed toward more micromanagement of our life and loss of liberty.

      We are becoming ants.

      • jefe68

        If we were like ants obesity would not be a problem. 

  • pk boston

    I am suspicious about the Professor Barnett’s interests.  Does he have any friends at Coca Cola or McDs?   KIDS buy these drinks, not guys like him.  Should we let kids have the freedom to choose what they eat, drink & watch on TV???  It’s elitist of him to argue for the freedom of doing so, yet stating he, himself hasn’t bought a softdrink in 30 years????  Educating parents?  We can barely educate parents about how to encourage their kids to stay in school.  Parents are tired.  Parents are trying to make ends meet.  A GIANT soda makes some people feel like they can GIVE a little more to their kids, but they don’t have TIME or ENERGY to think about how healthy it is!!!!!!!

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      and whos fault is that? parents need to take responsibility for their kids.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

    Absolutely zero mention of how people’s actions can economically affect others. Very lopsided discussion.

  • http://www.facebook.com/emily.h.lacroix Emily Harvey Lacroix

    Notice how everyone, callers and guests, on both sides, is taking the time to note that they don’t drink these sizes. Clearly we have an education problem. 

    We’re also being extremely uncharitable to the overweight. There are many that are making healthy choices, or the healthiest choices available, who are still obese. Obesity and laziness are not the same thing.

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      sure, you can be lazy without being fat

  • JanaHod

    There’s enough science to back the angle that certain food products are openly designed, engineered, and marketed to be addictive, affordable, and accessible to the most vulnerable in our society.  The classification of these products as food complicates what is so clearly a predatory industry.  

    The stigma of obesity as a lapse in personal responsibility needs to change.  

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      Vote with your wallet, and try to influence the people around you with science if you want.  The banning rabbit hole is not the answer.

      Or sue the food engineers like we do tobacco nicotine spikers. That’s how our system works. If they harm you/infringe your liberty/trick you, you can sue under your constitutional rights.

      • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

        “You can sue” (in civil court, I believe).

        Wow. That’s some incredible “doesn’t get it” right there.

        PS Curious if you’ve ever uttered the words “tort reform”.

        • Government_Banking_Serf

          You forget so soon i’m the Rule of Law guy.

          • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

            And I didn’t forget that your “Rule of Law” permits me to hire as many lawyers as Coca-Cola and McDonalds put together.

            Odd how that works out in real life.

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      so whats left for people to be personally responsible for?

  • Wahoo_wa

    OMG Ban bright red cups! STAT!

  • jane201

    Just as many would object to my access to insurance-negotiated contraception, I might object to paying for the tremendous costs that the typical American diet is costing ME.  I resent paying for the heart disease, diabetes, medications, surgical interventions and so on for those who are exercising their precious CHOICE to destroy their health.  Their rights are curtailed when they affect the rest of us through cost.  

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      so have you protested obomacare?

  • annmariez

    No one has mentioned the government subsidies that artificially lower the cost of sweet sodas and other junk foods. It’s not truly just a consumer choice when the prices of less healthy items are being kept low because we are all paying for it through our taxes.

    • NrthOfTheBorder

      Great point!

    • WorriedfortheCountry

       Actually the government subsidies for ethanol are increasing the costs of corn sweeteners dramatically and more than offset the farm subsidies to which you refer.

      • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

        lets cut those too the ethanol is killing engines across our nation burning food

  • mbmcq

    Please use the term TYPE 2 DIABETES when referring to the disease caused by obesity.  The constant use of DIABETES sounds inclusive of those living with Type-1.  It’s painful for those living with type-1 and the parents who care for them as they are constantly hearing how diabetes can be prevented  by lifestyle choice.    It’s a different disease, please respect those who have it.

    • AC

      i agree. totally unfair.
      here she is again; imposed on the rest of us! like all sickness is based on consumption!!! this is bad. sick people will be persecuted…

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=771188000 Tom Gauthier

    big tobacco and big soft drinks. We still have have those that smoke! 

  • brian copeland

    I heard a statistic that 80% of the industry’s profits come from the heavy drinkers of the substance. No wonder the industry doesn’t want drinks over 16 oz to be regulated.

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

      That statistic, is it about soda or beer?

      (I don’t know if I’m kidding or not.)

      • brian copeland

         soda

    • nj_v2

      There’s a huge mark-up on beverages of all kinds, especially so on soft drinks.

      Waaaay back when, when i managed a little food concession, our cost for a 12-ounce cup of soda (including the cup itself) was about $.04, and it sold for $.25 or so.

      There’s enormous profit in this for the beverage companies, which is why they’re fighting so hard against any regulation.  

  • Marion Geiger

    I’m surprised no one has brought up that eating at fast food places, where large drinks are more likely, is also more common in the lower income families. It’s cheaper than buying fresh produce. Is that fair to those who are trying to make day to day choices on what to eat and how much they can spend?

    • http://twitter.com/Givemeliberty92 Patrick Henry

      excuse me: and who makes you go back to the soda machine 3 times per meal? you can also get water at the soda machine. 

      Getting obese because of sodas is a dosage issue. Stop making excuses for people bad choices. It’s not the way to educate children and it’s not the way of running a country of free people….

      • nj_v2

        It’s not entirely a “choice.”

        Institutional barriers work to keep certain segments of the population marginalized and poor.

        Industrial “food” conglomerates spend millions of dollars formulating and marketing “food” to be addictive with the key components being sugar, salt, and fat.

        People can actually become addicted to this crap, in much the way smokers become addicted to nicotine.

        Addicts do no make rational choices.

        • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

          i forgot we are all powerless

  • brian copeland

     not to the degree or percentage of those that did.

  • DCCalkins

    Let us be very clear here. When it comes to the marketing of these products,from a very specific point of view there isn’t free will. 

    I can have just had a nice meal and be perfectly satisfied, but the science of stimulating involuntary physical responses is so advanced that a well crafted advertisement can MAKE me hungry or thirty. I cannot control this response, I feel hungry because the advertisement artificially stimulated a physical response whether I want to or not. As an adult, I can learn about this sort of manipulation conciously tell myself that I’m a victim of a from of manipulation, but I cannot control the response. But how do you explain this to a 5 year old kid?

    Libertarians do not acknowledge that this is a limit on a person’s free will, and proof that it is not absolute.

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      you don’t have to explain anything to a 5 year old kid. just don’t buy them a giant soda. or cant you control yourself either?

      • DCCalkins

        Got it, Futo… I don’t have to be a parent who teaches my kid (aka explain). Even a child who eats healthfully can over-eat.

        Your a real gem, defending the mind and body manipulators over children who are too young and developmentally immature to understand that the hunger they feel is an involuntary response to a stimulus.

        As for self-control, given that you have responded to so many people, I think your should evaluate your own self-control. 

        My self-control is fine. I just object to a company forcing me and my kid to feel hungry when we really aren’t hungry.

        • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

          it does not matter much what children want, the parents control what they choose to give them. if they are old enough to work and earn money its only a slightly different story.
           “the mind and body manipulators” only have as much power over you as you choose to give them.
           whats wrong with responding to people? thats what you do in a conversation.
          if you stop the “mind body manipulators” from making these things where will i get a dorito taco if i should happen to have a hankering?(not that thats likely to happen as i avoid fast food like the plague despite their best efforts to manipulate my mind and body)

  • http://www.facebook.com/carol.p.waite Carol Peronace Waite

    When you package something in a certain size it gives people the impression that it is the correct serving.  Limit people to 16 ounces (which is still way more soda than you should have) and hopefully they will stop at that size.  I don’t drink soda myself it doesn’t quench your thirst it is made to be addictive.

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Our healthcare crisis stems from the Government-based McGovern report and misguided turn away from natural fats and whole foods, to more grains and unnatural fats.

    Now we want give them more power via running our Health Care system and telling us how to live?

    No thanks.

    The Road to Hell is Paved with Good Intentions.

    Grandma knew best.

    • jefe68

      If she cooked with lard, not so much.

  • Frances5

    Large, sugary drinks are not the only factor in creating the obesity crisis. If people choose to be obese, then the rest of us should not have to pay for that decision. If a person is a certain percentage over their ideal weight, make them pay higher insurance premiums. If a person is obese, they should lose their Medicare and Medicaid benefits. People can choose to engage in any unhealthy behavior they want as long as they are willing to pay for it.

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Wow this Dr. Willet guest would be good for the sequester fear-mongering as well!

    What would be do without all the omniscient and well meaning technocrats and experts!?

    Who would come up with misguided McGovern reports?

    Who would cook up our financial disasters?

  • pk boston

    What’s behind the NY Court decision?  Who voted how?  Who might have friends in what industries, & is going out to nice restr, taking holidays at their country homes, etc?

  • http://www.facebook.com/linda.b.chase Linda Beitzel Chase

    If you search scholarly journals for “sugar opioid” you find too many articles which report conclusions such as “Evidence That Intermittent, Excessive Sugar Intake Causes Endogenous Opioid Dependence” and “Thus, intermittent, excessive sugar intake sensitized D-1 and mu-1 receptors much like some drugs of abuse.”   It’s not as simple as “people make their own choices” – when addictions kick in, the factors are more complex than that.  Now that we have seen the relationship between glucose and opioid receptors, it is reasonable to begin treating sugar similar to any substance which is a two-edged sword – valuable but potentially damaging.  

    • http://www.facebook.com/kyle.rose Kyle Rose

      Expand the War on Drugs to be a War on Food. Excellent idea! :-P

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      addiction is not a diesease.

      • jefe68

        Really? Addiction is in part genetics and a disease not unlike heart disease. Some people have a genetic predisposition to heart disease and some get it do to bad choices such as smoking and diet. 

        There is a point when habitual conditioning does come into play. The brain does have receptors that respond to the frequent use of substances such as sugar, tobacco, alcohol and we all can develop a dependency even if you do not have a genetic disposition to addiction. 

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    In related news, the Feds have decided to spend $1.5M to study why lesbians are fat. We must have a lot of extra money kicking around.

    http://cnsnews.com/news/article/feds-spend-15-million-study-why-lesbians-are-fat

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

      Yeah, for some reason I don’t trust CNS (sic on “news”) to accurately describe anything the government does. Funny, that.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

         Classic.  Again you attack the messenger instead of addressing the issue.

        • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

          Yes, the messenger is of ill repute. Funny how many right-wingers here can’t tell what real journalism is. Anything I can say which is derogatory to CNS is warranted.

          If it’s real news, it’ll be somewhere besides Conservative News (sic) Service.

          Real news services get their reports picked up and published in newspapers. Real news services don’t exist simply to have their “reporters” read laundry lists of talking points at the other party’s president during a press conference.

          • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

            the “real news” is pretty disfunctional. it became very apparent to me with the whole “occupy” movement where the coverage in all media “mainstream” included was very very biased to the point of being misleading. not that i am a consumer of rightwing news either. i am now of the opinion it is all BS maunfactured to serve an agenda. just look at how the role of pharmacuetical drugs in the recent massacres has gone entirely unreported upon, drug companies buy lots of ads

    • jefe68

      I think there should be a study in why the right is so inane.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        Submit the paperwork.  You’ll probably get your grant approved.  Aim high.  You could probably get $millions.

        • jefe68

          Maybe we could do a joint study. You on the left and me researching the right…

          • WorriedfortheCountry

             Tempting but whatever principles I have left won’t let me take the Government cash :) ..

          • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

            that would certianly be a threat because you might discover that both “sides” are mearly designed to distract and devide us

    • jimino

      Studying why any sector of society is obese, let alone in disproportionate numbers, would seem to be a good use of our research dollars.  Would you have the same criticism of a study into why, say, rural New Englanders, had a health threat out of proportion to their percentage of the populations?

      • WorriedfortheCountry

         I see you point but I still think this study is at best borderline.  Again, we have limited resources and need to prioritize.  I’m sure if we could address the general obesity issue then lesbians would benefit too.

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      your tax dollars at work. did they actually find out why?
      it would probaly be pretty un politacally correct to speculate.

  • Aviator32

    Ref “arbitrary and capricious”.  If we can believe that Mayor Bloomberg has our best interests at heart why has he limited this effort to only hi capacity soft drinks to protect his city’s health?  Clearly there are a great many food products which are injurious to the public health.  To demonstrate that he’s not being arbitrary and capricious why doesn’t he undertake a major effort to seek and eliminate all such unhealthful products from the market place?  Start with the grocers’ shelves, follow with fast food pushers and of course our school lunch (breakfast too) programs.  Don’t arbitrarily attack one small aspect of the our food problem, go after the whole enchilada.

  • DrewInGeorgia

    Effective Education + Universal Healthcare = An end to this discussion.

    • WorriedfortheCountry

       How does universal healthcare change the peeps bad behavior? Just asking.

      • jefe68

        Good question. But it does help with cost of this.

      • DrewInGeorgia

        Guess you missed the Effective Education part. jefe68 provided the rest of the answer.

        • WorriedfortheCountry

           I have no problem with education.  btw – I  agree there is a REAL problem with obesity and related diseases.

          I hate to say it but our society seems to have eliminated shame and embarrassment — from unwed mothers, teen pregnancy and obesity.  Shame and embarrassment kept some of these detrimental issues in check in the past.

          • nj_v2

            Think of the economic opportunities for scarlet-letter manufacturers.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

             Good one.

            I left off welfare recipients.  Not too long ago ‘relief’ was administered by the local government so folks would avoid getting on welfare like the plague since they had to request aid from their literal neighbors.

      • jimino

        Some people will change their behavior at the urging of medical providers, as opposed to some government entity.  Even if they don’t, ongoing and preventative care is a lot less expensive than acute care of the symptoms that result. 

        • WorriedfortheCountry

           I see your point.  Thanks.

      • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

        it justifys the govenrment telling people how to live

  • Cabanator

    Although I recognize and greatly lament America’s obesity epidemic, I don’t agree with the ban of any particular unhealthy substance. This is a slippery slope that doesn’t really do much to change behaviors; it just limits personal freedom. How far do we want to take this? Ban fried foods? Potato chips? Candy? People are likening this to restrictions on cigarettes, but actually, we DON’T restrict cigarette purchases. People can buy as many as they want, and we don’t force them to buy lighter versions either. What we do instead is tax the heck out of them and charge higher premiums for smokers on health insurance. I much prefer that approach. If we recognize that sugar, like tobacco, is harmful in large quantities, then tax it. Right now, sugary beverages are often cheaper than water. Fresh, healthy foods are often expensive and not even available in some neighborhoods. Use the money from the tax in public health campaigns geared at healthy eating and exercise, and to make healthy foods more widely available. Also, give people an incentive to be at a healthy weight, through breaks on insurance premiums. 
    Many of the callers are right that this is a crisis that we Americans are paying for, and they claim that gives us the right to tell people what to eat. It doesn’t, but we should also make people face the consequences of their decisions. If they choose to eat themselves to a point that jeopardizes their health, then they should be responsible for paying for their increased healthcare costs, through taxes on unhealthy foods and paying higher healthcare premiums. Don’t start picking and choosing individual products to limit or demonize, instead, work the costs to society of consuming those products into the prices that people are actually paying for their food and healthcare. 

  • DeJay79

    I struggle with both sides of the issue.

    Ironically freedom or liberty spins both ways with this issues, the freedom to drink what I want and the freedom not to pay for the bad health choices of someone else. :( ??? IDK

  • http://www.facebook.com/linda.b.chase Linda Beitzel Chase

    Am I missing something here or are the same people who say to our governing officials “it is my right to raise my intermittent blood glucose levels over 140 as often as I want” are the same people who say to our governing officials “It’s your responsibility to manage the course of my health complications:  diabetes type 2, morbid obesity, knee replacements and subsequent physical therapy, back surgery, orthotics for broken down arches and other foot joints, cellulitis, neuropathies, amputations, blindness, heart and blood pressure problems, dialysis, nursing home care.”?   Personally, since as a country we have chosen the path of paying for people’s complications even when they are the direct result of their free choices, I think that gives permission to begin taking small steps for our country to manage harmful variables.  We have already taken some small steps in managing other potentially harmful health variables such as dioxin pollutants, air quality, tobacco, contaminated foods, toxic food additives, etc.  Admittedly, the operative words were “small steps”, but even so, our national health bills are less than what they would be if the steps had not been taken.

  • jefe68

    If people think this black and white they are very much mistaken. It’s clear to anyone who wants to do a little research into the junkfood and soft drinks that they are designed to be addictive. Why is this not the same as what the tobacco industry did with additives to cigarettes to make them more addictive?

    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/24/magazine/the-extraordinary-science-of-junk-food.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0
    http://www.thatsfit.com/2010/03/30/fast-food-is-like-heroin-studies-find/

    Classic Lay’s potato chip commercial from the 60′s sums it up…

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5h-w2aXN-Zc

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      nope they are deisgned to be tasty. should they design foods that people do not want to eat?

      • jefe68

        This industry spends a lot of money working on the right balance of salt, fat, and sugar to get you to eat this junk. It’s not the same as you making some home fries and then putting on some salt.
        McDonalds use to produce fries with trans-fats already in them to increase the effect it has on your taste receptors and brain.For the record, I think the ban is idiotic and I am not a fan of Bloomberg. He’s an awful mayor.People would just buy more of the smaller portions and there you go back to square one. I think there needs to be more labeling on the health risks all kinds of junk food. Like they do for cigarettes. One has to wonder though, why would anyone even want to drink 45 oz’s of soda in one go.  

        • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

          is it bad that they want to make their product as appealing as possible? how long would a buisness that made bad tasting food last? i don’t see anything wrong with them trying to make a product to sell to make money. no one has to eat them “addictive” or not. what people forget is that fountain drinks are mostly ice anyways

          • jefe68

            Wow, you are either delusional or you work in this sector.

            It’s not about how good it tastes, it’s about getting you to crave more.
            You level of obtuse verbiage is noted. 

          • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

            yes things that taste good make you want more. why is getting you to crave more of their product bad or somehow unfair to you? do you uncontrollably munch big macs and doritos? if you did would it be their fault for making them so tasty?

  • http://www.facebook.com/linda.b.chase Linda Beitzel Chase

    Carbs are the cheapest energy source at grocery stores as well, for lots of reasons, one of which is government subsidies of grains and sugars.  It makes a dilemma for low income people.  The very calories they need to survive come in a form that causes blood glucose peaks which damages the pancreas, causes opioid receptor addictions, damages the healthy hunger-satiation mechanisms that normally should signal when to quit eating, and more.  The problem is multi-faceted and people who make small steps on any side of it have my vote!

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Cooking up some grass fed beef in coconut oil with butternut squash for lunch.  I wish the Government would tell you all to do that.

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      they could classify the coconut oil as a fat and then limit your portion size

  • http://www.facebook.com/linda.b.chase Linda Beitzel Chase

    And BOTH make big money for their industries and run up amazing health-related bills.  That’s not a problem of course if people either pay their own bills or die, but as it is, I, as a tax-payer and insurance holder, pay their bills. So it is a problem to me.

  • Anton_Chehov

    Left’s pattern of operation is always the same, be it food regulation, guns, healthcare, “global warming” – whatever:
    1) WE know what is better for YOU
    2) We will impose our will on you whether you like it or not (for your own good, of course)

    • jefe68

      And the rights pattern is denial of commonsense. 
      As your comment is a good example of.

      • Anton_Chehov

        Alas, common sense has departed Mayor Bloomberg and his fellow lefties long time ago…

        • jefe68

          Bloomberg is a conservative. He was in the  republican party until a few years ago.

          You sound like someone who would be calling Teddy Roosevelt the same kind of names for wanting to regulate the meat packing industry and for wanting government to have oversight on the inspection of the food industry.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

             Don’t conflate conservative and GOP.  Bloomberg’s actions are certainly not conservative.

            I think Bloomberg has been a Democrat, GOP and independent.

          • jefe68

            I’m not a fan of Bloomberg, for the record. I find him to be someone who changes his political hat to get votes.

            I was only stating that Bloomberg is very far from being a left winger or progressive. 

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            You are correct.  He is a billionaire with too much time on his hands and in a position of power.   He also seems to have a bit of a Napoleon complex.

          • jefe68

            You think?

          • Anton_Chehov

            I don’t care how he calls himself. As long as he implements left’s policies, he is a leftie for me
            Wasn’t it Bloomberg who pushed an idiotic regulation requiring restorants to display the number of calories for each item?

          • jefe68

            And yet he’s against the progressive ideals. The man called out the police in droves against the Occupy movement. 

            You seem to be having difficulty in parse the nuances of ones mans political ideas with that of different movements. 

            I get it you hate anyone with left wing tendencies.

          • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

            yeah one of those anti gun conservatives

        • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

          “Fellow lefties” gives it away.

      • notafeminista

        Being the arbiter of common sense that you are…..

        • jefe68

          More absurd right wing memes no doubt.

      • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

        oh “commonsense” again? he left that off the list

    • harverdphd

       Don’t forget –
      3) Choose a scapegoat for your own failings and attempt to confiscate the scapegoat’s property.

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Bottom line is when you don’t let/make people take responsibility for these choices, you are enabling them to continue to be the type of people who make poor choices and need to be “taken care of”.

    And yet you complain of having to bear the cost of their choices indirectly.

    Your misguided sympathy of protecting them from themselves, is what ends up being more costly in the long run.

    Give a man fish, teach a man to fish kind of thing.

    But then if people actually improved themselves, what would all the do-gooders do?

    • DeJay79

       not that I disagree but just to be the devils advocate.

      If you take your point and apply it to driving and road safety. Then you would be suggesting that traffic lights, in the long run wind-up costing society more than they help it.

      If the rule of the road was drive where you want and when you want just don’t get hit and don’t hit other people and if you do you have to take responsibility for your actions. Then traffic lights tell people who can’t drive safely on their own how to drive and when to go or not.

      • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

        actually when they removed all the traffic lights and signs and other controls from 2 cities in germany they found that there were fewer accidents and less traffic. it forced people to pay attention to the other drivers and what they were doing instead of being distracted by lights and signs.

        • DeJay79

           I love it! I was hoping someone would bring that up. hence my opening line.

          I only wish we could do that here, alas…

          • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

            we are too stupid to do things that work here we like to stick with the tried and true things we think should work but don’t

    • J__o__h__n

      As long as I don’t have to pay for it, it doesn’t have an impact on me, and the person is fully informed about the results of his or her choices, I don’t care what he or she decides to do. 

      To consider your example, there wouldn’t be any fish to catch because you would oppose catch limits, anti polution laws, etc.

    • jane201

      But the truth is that people are not actually making informed decisions.  I am a lobbyist, and I can assure you that the power of massive processed producers is mighty.  I believe in the process of lobbying, of informing policy makers of information from all sides of an issue, but when we have massive corporations able to  largely dictate the regulatory process through their collective power, our freedom to be informed is diminished.  Marketing has us all under a spell – a meal isn’t a meal without meat, artificial sweeteners are “natural” because they are derived from sugar before they are chemically processed, so on.  So no, folks are not making informed choices.  We could try to level the playing field through campaign finance reform and stricter regs on advertising – perhaps one answer to the problem.  

      • twenty_niner

        Congratulations, you’ve earned 50 master-class mental-masturbation points.

        “Question: With the increase in antismoking education and ad campaigns, are fewer children smoking today than in the past? Are young people today getting the message?”

        “Answer: According to the recently released 2012 report from U.S. Surgeon General Regina Benjamin, despite all the antismoking education in place, young people are smoking at rates far greater than adults. Nearly 25 percent of high school seniors are current smokers, compared with 33 percent of young adults and about 20 percent of adults. Worse yet, about 1 in 10 male high school seniors use highly addictive smokeless tobacco and about 1 in 5 smoke cigars.”

        http://www.philly.com/philly/columnists/mitchell_hecht/20120514_Smoking_rates_still_high_among_teens__young_adults.html

        In college, I remember tons of kids who smoked pot (and a lot of them regularly). Funny enough, I don’t remember a lot of ads for pot.

        People drink soda and eat crap because they taste damn good. An ad may plant a seed that will affect your purchasing decision that day (maybe he gets the Whopper instead of the Big Mac), but a guy who eats salads everyday for lunch isn’t going to start scarfing down Big Macs because of something the Hamburglar said, and vice versa.

        • commons3nse

          The logic here is fuzzy. The finding that more young people smoke than older folks is not incompatible with the view that smoking in general is down. It just means people quit as they get older. As always, smoking is a flashy young person’s thing. I can almost guarantee that more than 33% of young adults smoked cigarettes in the 50′s and 60′s. . .

          • twenty_niner

            Don’t disagree. In my view, peer pressure, teen angst, and the rest are much bigger factors than cigarette ads, which were largely banned in ’97.

  • GlobalCCC

    Health is the fabric of nation.  I was appalled this winter when I visited Disney with my nieces and nephews from South America.  At the ice cream parlor, they requested a small ice cream, and we had to hold of the line the line to change our order because they a were served three giants scoops as a “small serving.” Instead,  they shared  one between them.  Luckily, the people behind us were Europeans and  understood why we had to cut down purchases and they learned what was a small ice cream at Disney, for which one pays $7.00.  When we stepped out, the saddest picture: three twelve to fourteen year olds sipping large sodas visiting the recreation park in wheel chairs and each youngster was over 200 lbs.

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      welcome to america.we are free to be as fat as we want here

  • Mattyster

    Randy Barnett is a shill for the food and beverage industry.  He’s not concerned about our right to free choice, he’s concerned about the ‘right’ of business to manipulate us into buying their products without any interference from that pesky government whose purpose is to protect the common good rather than maximizing profits.

    • WorriedfortheCountry

       And your evidence please?

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      do you feel manipulated by giant sodas?

  • http://www.facebook.com/hzucherman Hannah Zucherman

    The caller who just called regarding malnutrition relating to obesity and that can be related to poverty and how cheap we have made this caloire poor food. If we made healthier food more affordable then we can make sure that those who are at risk for poverty are not at risk for malnutrition as well. 

    • twenty_niner

      Urban myth.

      Mc Donalds sells a side salad for $1.00 and a variety of other bigger salads for the same price as Bic Mac meal.

      I like Big Macs, but most of the time I force myself to get the salad with an OJ. It’s matter of choice.

      Also, most big gorcery stores have salad bars for about $5.00/lb. A pound of salad is a fairly substantial lunch, and still less than the Big Mac meal.

      Full disclosure: every once in a while, I get the Big Mac.

      • nj_v2

        By what estimation is a small salad of nutrient-free iceburg lettuce treated with anti-browning chemicals dressed with a sugar-laden dressing a healthy meal?

         

        • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

          Yeah, the “You can choose salad” means one thing to a suburbanite like me and another to someone trapped in a food desert.

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        Throw the bun away, put the burger on the salad and your good to go. The Vegetable oils will get you after a while, but ok in a pinch.

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      instead of wasting more taxpayer money on subsidies how about we quit subsidising the production of high fructose corn syrup and let the market set the price and consumers decide accordingly. would anyone buy a soda if it was $8.?

  • twenty_niner

    What’s interesting is that it seems the same people who want to liberalize pot (with which I don’t necessarily disagree) want to restrict soda consumption and probably cigarette consumption as well. I wonder what’s going to happen when they realize that every draw on a giant spliff fills the lungs with wicked nasty carcinogens. Will they want to go back to restricting pot use?

    Being a control freak is so confusing sometimes.

    • J__o__h__n

      I think tobacco, pot, and soda should be legal.  I support reasonable restrictions to prevent other people being affected by their use.  Smoking anything should be banned where other people have to breathe it.  If you can shoot heroin and you can hold a job and dispose of your needles properly, I don’t care. 

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        Yes but John, you are a libertarian crackpot. Sometimes. When it suits you.

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      thats funny but inaccurate

  • http://twitter.com/anniet anniet

    rather than trying to restrict consumer autonomy/decision-making, the government might have more luck forcing consumers to simply take more responsibility for the results of their decisions – drink all the sugary beverages you want, but don’t expect the government to pay for the effects. lets bring back the discussion re: charging obese individuals a fee if they don’t fit in standard airplane seating, insurance companies cracking down on their coverage of obesity-related ailments, companies choosing not to hire individuals who smoke, etc. and this from a bleeding heart democrat…

  • DeJay79

    My wife and I had an idea. To simply require that restaurants, shops and stands sell a standard set of sizes: small 8oz, regular 12oz and large 16oz.Then if they wanted to sell other sizes they could. That way someone wanting a 36oz would have to order the XX-large or something like that.I think it is a good idea for two reasons.1. It increase choice and does not limit freedom.2. It would make people think about what they are doing a little more.
     
    Also the cup industry would support it because of an increase in production.

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      that actually sounds like a decent idea and is much more in line with liberty. clear labels and uniform labels are something the govt can require and do not violate anyones liberty. maybe just require that all cups be labeled with the nutrition facts just as other products are so that the extreme big gulp says how many calories and grams of sugar it is so consumers can make informed decisions.

      • J__o__h__n

        The food industry doesn’t even want labels.  They want to hide their GM foods.  They wouldn’t let a farmer advertize that he tested all of his cows for mad cow.  There are far bigger threats to an individual’s food choices than restricting cup sizes.

        • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

          agreed, maybe bloomberg should work on that

  • Krista Conley

    Doesn’t matter if you support the ban or do not support the ban, the issue is EDUCATION.  People don’t change because they don’t know HOW-TO change.  Behavior modification programming should be in every school, company and organization in America.  Learning how to change food choices, fitness choices, portion sizes, etc, is critical to change.

    • commons3nse

      That’s one approach. Too bad the Republicans practically oppose education (if you do not prioritize funding for education, then in an objective sense you oppose education). . .

  • Anton_Chehov

    “We live in a democracy, not anarchy.”

    Bloomberg’s decision had nothing to do with democracy and everything to do with burning desire to impose his views on everybody else.

    “Personal rights are extensive, but they have never been absolute.”

    May be you should re-read the Declaration of Independence

    “If you want the right to live like a fool and harm everyone around you”

    And how exactly 64-ounces drinks lovers are hurting everyone around them? By carrying concealed Coke bottles?

    “such idiotic rights ”

    And who exactly will decide which right are idiotic? You?

    “but promoting radical Christian and Ayn-Randian ideas that really have nothing to do with the social good”

    Oh, the sacred “Social Good”. Decided by noble, rational people with best intents, guided by scientific methods. Sometimes social good demands to isolate the stupid retrogrades in concentration camps, but, hell,  when you cut wood, splinters fly, don’t they?

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      “Bloomberg’s decision had nothing to do with democracy and everything to do with burning desire to impose his views on everybody else.”

      Now he just needs to get in the Senate and push all-encompassing Nutritional guidelines that turn out to be misguided 50 years later and contributed to another wave of ill-health.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xbFQc2kxm9c

  • msully72

    I think the large soda ban is silly and paternalistic (and yes, arbitrary and capricious as well) but Mr. Barnett is over the top with his cries of despotism.  Doesn’t help his side and makes it embarrassing to be on it.

  • msully72

    Now Mr. Willet is as overdramatic as Barnett but in the other direction. I don’t think anyone has studied the specific effect of these portion sizes?

    Personally, the last time I bought soda in a size > 16 oz was at a pizza place when I shared 2 2-liter bottles of said with three other adults and three kids.  This legislation would have made that meal more expensive.

  • Carl Benda

    This is a free country. 
    If you’d like to have 64 oz sodas to the tune of 200 lbs. that is up to
    you.

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      so people just need to inform their insurance company when they drink a 64 oz soda. what about a bag of chips? where does it end?

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        It never ends, think of all the government jobs  we can create for all the monitoring and enforcement!  And the willing Fed will keep printing money to pay us!

        I think the drone program can zap the bags of chips. If it mistakenly hits the eater…. oh well, efficiency has its costs, and the Constitution? that’s so…….1700′s!

      • jefe68

        Actually it’s pretty simple.
        You get an annual check up and if you are obese or pre-diabetic or diabetic (type 2) due to your eating habits then you are charged a higher premium. Just like you are for being a smoker.

        It’s that simple. 

        • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

          sounds better than limiting cup size for everyone

        • DCCalkins

          @Jefe68:twitter you’ve made a critical error. At least with my HEALTH insurance plan there are no higher premiums for smoking or obesity. There are for my LIFE insurance policy. Huge difference.
          I should say that the Affordable Care Act has some monetary incentives and disincentives for lifestyle choices, but these are new.

        • Anton_Chehov

          That would be a discrimination against fat people, wouldn’t it? How should we call it… weightism, huh?

  • jeremy_hh

    After Mayor Bloomberg and others mandate EXACTLY what foods can and cannot be purchased with EBT/Food stamp benefits then and only then would I wbe willing to listen to additional legislative ideas.

    Go to any low income neighborhood grocery store on EBT day and you will see cart after cart filled to the brim with products that no responsible parent would feed their child. Not only are they not nutritious but they are expensive.

    Yet these people pull out the magic EBT card and their junk filled carts are paid for by taxpayers.

    You want to make a difference in childhood obesity? Begin by telling parents they are only allowed to purchase nutritious food with my money.

    • J__o__h__n

      You pay for it three times: subsidized farms, unrestricted EBT cards, and health care. 

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      Yes, lets at least focus our tyranny only on the dumb, poor people.

      In a free, unsubsidized food market, processed foods would be more expensive than raw foods, and the truly needy, using the safety net as intended, could use food stamps for basic nutrition.

      Of course what we now is run of the mill collusion and corruption State Captialism in which the force of Government programs are used to enrich the big Ag and Food Corporations.  Food stamp expansion $ goes right to the Corporations who support the 2 parties that subsidize them.

      But you all love your State Capitalism and the naive dream that they will “do the right thing” with their power.

      A competitive free market with multitudes of buyers and sellers, as opposed to Government-enabled Oligarchys, would serve us much better, economically and nutritionally. That is, if you are for the people and not the State.

      • msully72

        I think you underestimate cost savings of taking perishable, potentially unaesthetic scraps of food and turning them into a stable packaged item that will easily last long enough on the shelf to be sold.  Sure, I’d like to get rid of a lot (maybe all) of the subsidies that processed food manufacturers get – but that doesn’t necessarily mean healthy stuff will become cheaper.

        • Government_Banking_Serf

          I just have enough common sense not to eat it. Don’t need to ban it.

      • J__o__h__n

        The market gave them the freedom to be dumb and poor.  Don’t pretend you care about them now.

  • Moby10

    I would start with ending the subsidies that enable cheap production of HFCS.  Maybe consumption of the ‘bad’ foods would decrease if people had to pay the unsubsidized higher price for the product.

  • Carolcw

    Call me old fashioned but I had to learn Home Economics in grades 7 through 9. That was where I learned to cook and sew. If all schools had mandatory cooking classes for girls and boys then fast food wouldn’t be dinner and this debate would not be necessary.

    • msully72

      I agree, though content is important. I took home ec in Junior high but the only things we learned to cook were cheesecake and french bread pizza.  We did learn nutrition as well, but I think any home ec class should also teach basic cooking techniques such as sauteing, roasting, steaming, etc for common meats and veggies.

  • jefe68

    Not to mention all women as well.

  • http://www.facebook.com/veronica.loucks Veronica Loucks

    It’s arbitrary because it’s trying to limit soft drink size, not all sugar.  We need sugars in our diet, fruits and whatnot have different sugars. What about a family that wants to share that one drink for the week?  What about focusing on health education and exercise in schools and at work.
    Take the soft drinks out of the schools and let the parents decide what to pack in the lunchbox.  And send a social worker to help parents of kids that aren’t having their health looked after at home. 
    Stay out of our liberty and capitalism, and aid in adding positive choices. Get V8 juice subsidized, tax breaks on selling more water, or publicly funded exercise programs.Tax sugar the same as tobacco.  If there are long term use disabilities, you have the right, but we also need universal healthcare or it’s unfair for me to pay for someone else’s diabetes while I paid for insurance privately. Tax the base, not an arbitrary point in the food chain.  What about all the fatty foods? 

  • Brent Larimer

    Completely disappointed with tonight’s show, and the one-sideness exhibited. You had one opposing view point for a portion of the show, for what seemed to be only to berate his belief systems; moreover the screening of the callers seemed to be directed that way… Sounded like a load of rhetoric.

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      its his base

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      A billionaire who wants to run the world? Nawww…….

    • Sy2502

      NPR biased? How about that? Next you are going to tell me the pope is Catholic?

  • pwmfnp

    If people do not believe government has the right to act in the interest of public health, they should of course not avail themselves of Medicaid, Medicare, the VA, etc when they need treatment for the medical consequences of their ”freedom to choose”.

    • WorriedfortheCountry

       Perhaps you think the government should act to prevent gay sex in the name of public health too?

      • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

        i guess now they are for banning anything that “no one needs”. seems anything besides food water and warm air could be banned. oh wait they are trying to ban a food. i don’t know where it ends

        • Government_Banking_Serf

          That is exactly where this is going, as the only way to afford a completely controlled existence for millions or billions of people is total control for efficiency’s sake.

          Let alone the dehumanizing effect that living like rats or ants has over time.

          Unfortunately, as history shows, but Statists ignore, Kings, tyrants or even well-intentioned despots make mistakes in judgement, or science etc, and when all our eggs are in their basket, we all go to hell with them.

          The basic disregard for freedom and open competition of ideas and the ability to pragmatically sort them our by trial and error, and then be free to choose the successes, is alarming today.

          Pure historical ignorance.

          • nj_v2

            Hey, it’s Leather Dave from Connecticut! Back again with more Libertarian fantasy.

          • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

            And from the looks of it, Dave has had no shortage of caffeinated goodness pumping through his vein. Apparently (apt for the Big Gulp show), Dave has not been introduced to the idea of “less is more”.

          • Government_Banking_Serf

            Sorry, missed what part you disagreed with….

      • pwmfnp

        Study your US history; the government,until recent years, DID act to “prevent” “gay sex”, if by that you mean sex between persons of the same sex. These were called sodomy laws.As a matter of fact, contraception was also illegal. I am certainly not suggesting these laws were appropriate, only that your example is not hypothetical. If by “public health”, you are referring to STI’s, these have  been reportable diseases for decades and are still reportable. What I was saying is that if people make lifestyle choices that are known to cause health problems, they should not expect everyone else to pay for the health care required  to treat the consequences.In 35 years in health care, I have seen the costs of obesity time and again. 

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      so you are in favor of goverment mandated portion control? where in the constitution do you see that the govt has a right to portion control? where does it end? am i going to be limited to one pat of butter? I am not fat why can’t i eat or drink as much as i want? lets ban the nutrasweet which is toxic, causes cancer and only legal because of the corruption of donald rumsfeld and we will see less obesity.

    • Sy2502

      Let me remind you the purpose of the government, which is clearly stated in the Declaration of Independence:

      We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men

      Did you get it? The purpose of the government is to secure our rights, including that of Liberty. If there ever was a worthy way of spending public money, this is it. Note also that it doesn’t say “secure Liberty unless it costs too much, in which case feel free to do away with it.” Personally I am Libertarian and believe in a pay-as-you-go health care system, but frankly I don’t mind one bit to pay taxes to insure people are free. In fact, it’s probably the only use of my tax dollars I don’t mind one bit.

  • Tyranipocrit

    for those of you who think you are such great parents and of course your children always always do what you command–but how do you know that when you are absent, when they are with friends?  How do you know they are not gulping down the big gulp of diabetes and smoking and whoring and whatever?–they will do what you tell them they cant–that’s the facts.  If you act like a tyrant, if you forbid TV, soda, pizza–they will get it anyway they can–you cant watch them 24/7, nor should you.  And teenagers, children are expected to be responsible adults–they cant be–they must live life–and so your waffling about parenting and people responsive for their own choices is nonsense.  Kids cant make responsible choices.  If you were good parents you would do everything you can to fight corporate jackasses shoving this down your child’s throat–you would be fighting coke vending machines at school–a place of education, not corporatism and binge behavior–that is just the lifestyle and philosophy of a tard.  So Worriedforyourcountry and wahoohead–you are not good parents because you are not fighting these issues–in fact you are quite irresponsible, antisocial, and detrimental to every child’s health.  Such bad parenting.

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      So arrogant.

      How do you know how anyone is privately, locally dealing with these issues as a parent?

      Just as Tom often did in the discussion, you oversimplify the issue into either you accept this nanny-state approach, or you are in cahoots with the corporate/marketing sharks.

      Life has perils, humanity has sharks and charlatans. Use the law to defend yourself when wronged. If drink and sugar companies use false advertising or collusion or coercion against us, we should hold them accountable to law.

      Should we ban holiday Poinsettias because a kid could eat one? Those evil florists.

      Nobody likes/defends the sharky, almost predatory aspect that marketers use these days to sell us everything from soda to refined flour to cars to a lifestyle. But banning everything is not practical or compatible with liberty.

      Punish cheaters and liars in the marketplace, but otherwise, use free information and encourage others to make wise choices or suffer the consequences.

      • Tyranipocrit

        Pointsettas and coke in shools are very different things. I was told by you people that i had bad paretns–of which you CANT know. Attacking my family is not logical or related to this discussion. So in repsone I must say–yes–if oyu do nothing baout corporations invading public schools that is neglect and therfore bad parenting. NOt me and not mine. So you ar eillogical and rude and unable to debate ratinally without slinging insults–typical of your kind.

  • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

    if this action is justified “for public health reasons” could not a stronger argument be made for mandating exercise for the same reason? whats to stop that if this is ok?

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      Of course.

      Enforced treadmill minutes.  Rats in a cage. For our own good. 

      Of course friends of those currently in power can get waivers. Discretion and all.

      • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

        oboma will end traffic and all the hassels with roads and bridges and fix obiesit,y slow the rise of the oceans by making us all ride bicycles!

  • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

    This sad incident is the perfect example of why we must pass the Mandate Amendment.

    http://www.mandateamendment.com/faqs-what-can-i-do-to-fight-the-obamacare-decision/

  • Mattyster

    Reading these comments I can’t believe how successfully corporate America has convinced us that their unfettered ability to sell us things that are bad for us is all about our ‘freedom’, and that when the government regulates them to protect public health that’s all about ‘tyranny’ and ‘taking away our freedoms’.  You guys need to take a deep breath and use some common sense.  The government is not our enemy – it’s us.

    • Anton_Chehov

      The government is our servant, which we hired to perform a very specific set of duties defined in the Constitution.

      When
      your servant starts telling you what to eat, what to drink and which
      cars to drive, you have a right to feel a little pissed off, don’t you?

    • jefe68

      Been trying to say that, but alas to no avail.
      The reply below to your comment sums it up.

    • Sy2502

      Your attitude is condescending, and in line with Bloomberg’s. It boils down to people being brainless idiots, too stupid to make their own decisions, so daddy Bloomberg has to save us from the “big corporations” and make the good decisions for us, or we stupid puppets with a slow mind wouldn’t be able to. 
      Here’s some news for you: people aren’t infants, they are entitled, and perfectly capable to, make their own decisions. Sometimes their decisions will be different from yours, and sometimes they aren’t going to make the healthiest decisions. It isn’t the government’s job to look over their shoulder to ensure they make the right decision. What’s next, the government telling women not to marry a loser? The government forcing you not to drop out of school? The government making sure teenagers don’t get knocked up? Give me a break! 

      • jefe68

        No, actually your the condescending one. As if a corporation os going to look out for your best interest. They are not. Bloomberg did this in the wrong way, that’s for sure. But to support the idea of the corporate entities that are selling this junk is bizarr. It’s absurd. Of course you don’t want here this, as you want the “freedom” do what you want. That’s not freedom, that’s childish behavior.

        • Sy2502

          Nobody with some gray matter between their ears thinks corporations are charity organizations. But you think the average person is so stupid they are powerless puppets in the hands of big corporations. Maybe you are, but please don’t project your shortcomings onto everybody else. The rest of us does just fine without needing the government to make decisions for us.

    • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

      as long as you have an unfettered ability to choose to not buy their products then why should they not sell them?

  • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

    i thought this was about a white man(bloomberg) imposing his will (making smaller sodas) on athiests blacks women and the poor? i dont understand why anyone would want the govt regualting portion size of food. restaraunts might love this they can charge the same for smaller portions. i bought a box of m+ms at the theater the other day and it was what looked like a good size box but inside the box was not full of m+ms but it had a small packet of m+ms! and of course it cost much more than what you would think a box of the size it appeared to be should have to begin with. anyways I just learned not to do that next time i dont think we need to pass a candy law or a theater law.

  • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

    it seems like this is certianly a scam. if someone could actually prove that a particular beverage or a particular vendor was selling a product that they could prove made them fat or unhealthy they should be able to prove damages in court. let them sue if there is harm being done. that would cause the companies to change their policies and we dont even need nanny bloombergs benevolent dictations

  • http://www.facebook.com/futo.buddy Futo Buddy

    i am not sure why no one has pointed out that fountain drinks are half or more ice. so you can devide the calories by 2. thus a 32 oz fountian drink has less than 150 calories which is really not that many

  • Regular_Listener

    There are too many people getting fat and sick from consuming lots of soda pop (and other things) – tooth decay, diabetes, obesity.  Why shouldn’t the government make some attempt to make these products less attractive?  And Bloomberg’s plan was just a small step in the right direction – it only banned large portions, and didn’t prevent anyone from drinking all the high fructose corn syrup-packed beverages that they want.  I hope that there will be more initiatives along these lines in the future. 

    To the point that this is an obtrusive, parental act by the government – well, I have to agree, and there are a number of obtrusive, parental things the government is doing that I don’t like, and these types of actions have grown over the years, but this one I do agree with.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1042982598 facebook-1042982598

    Want a way to fix obesity AND the American economy?  PROHIBIT Medicaid/Medicare from treating these people, if it can be shown that they made themselves fat.  How can you tell the difference?  People BORN fat have distinctly large appendages.  People that BECAME fat have slender legs (they look like Humpty Dumpty when viewed from the side).  If we also apply that logic to junkies and alcoholics, imagine how much the American taxpayer would save!  Obesity, though, costs us and WILL COST US TRILLIONS in the future, be it from the complications that obesity causes, such as diabetes.

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Pallbearers carry a coffin out of a military transport plane during a ceremony to mark the return of the first bodies, of passengers and crew killed in the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, from Ukraine at Eindhoven military air base, Eindhoven, Netherlands, Wednesday, July 23, 2014. (AP)

Secretary of State Kerry to Israel. Obamacare back in the courts. Mourning as remains of Malaysia Flight 17 victims come home. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

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Jul 25, 2014
Guest Renee McLeod of Somerville, MA's Petsi pies shows off her wares. (Robin Lubbock / WBUR)

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Jul 25, 2014
Pallbearers carry a coffin out of a military transport plane during a ceremony to mark the return of the first bodies, of passengers and crew killed in the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, from Ukraine at Eindhoven military air base, Eindhoven, Netherlands, Wednesday, July 23, 2014. (AP)

Secretary of State Kerry to Israel. Obamacare back in the courts. Mourning as remains of Malaysia Flight 17 victims come home. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

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