Saturday, March 30, 2002
Today, beer. Tomorrow, the worldMichael Judge writes about the silliness of anti-alcohol groups in the United States.
It gets worse. The American Medical Association is calling for local ordinances against "reckless marketing practices" that target students with ads for boozy events like Barenaked Ladies concerts and spring-break packages to Boca Raton. And college boards are listening. Berkeley is just one of the many campuses where events sponsored by alcohol and tobacco companies are no-nos.This crusade against "sin" is certainly not limited to alcohol (and tobacco), though. It's just the first step, as this article from the L.A. Times notes.
Citing California's huge budget shortfall and its growing number of overweight children, a state lawmaker is proposing a new tax on soda to fight childhood obesity.Part of this is simply a fundraising measure, of course. But part of it is an attempt to run people's lives, spearheaded by groups like the California Center for Public Health Advocacy, which campaigns against food that people want to eat, in favor of exercise, and most importantly, in favor of government intervention. The only common thread that runs through their campaigns on behalf of public health issues is that none of them have anything to do with public health.
The larger problem, though, is that as Steven Milloy has pointed out, repeatedly, there's not much science behind the idea that obesity is increasing, let alone that it's really the serious problem activists claim it is.
Doesn't matter to activists, though:
Nonetheless, lawmakers are not stopping at soda and cigarettes as possible tax targets.I wonder how much we could raise if we just taxed stupid legislative proposals? That's one thing there never seems to be a shortfall of.
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