Facing the Future

NEW YORK (CBS 2) — Every time you use your credit card, the store pays up to 3 percent of your total purchase to the credit card company. It’s called a “swipe fee” and now some fed-up retailers are getting ready to pass this cost on to you, in the form of a surcharge.

And this includes your Debit Card with the Visa or MasterCard logo.

While others want to reward you for paying with cash.

Paper or plastic? It’s a simple choice, but it’s about to get a lot more complicated, CBS 2’s Emily Smith reported.

“You’re going to start to see retailers really weighing what they’re going to charge consumers for using a credit card,” said Kelli Grant of Smart Money magazine.

That’s right, major retailers — from supermarkets to drug stores — may soon be charging you more if you choose to pay for an item with a credit card, instead of paying with cash.

“An extra 2 to 3 percent,” Grant said.

It’s all because Visa-MasterCard and several major banks settled a long running lawsuit alleging they conspired to fix “swipe fees.”

As part of the settlement, retailers are now allowed to charge customers a surcharge if they pay with plastic.

“It’s going to be, for consumers, an interesting dance of convenience versus cash,” Grant said.

Grant, a consumer expert, said up until now most business owners rolled the cost of processing a credit card into the prices customers pay. But for businesses that sell small-ticket items and are hit hard by 3 percent swipe fees, it may make more sense to ask for the surcharge.

“To actually discourage people from paying credit when they think ideally you should be paying cash,” Grant said.

Conversely, retailers may also start offering discounts to those paying with cash, a practice that’s not completely foreign and seems to be growing with small business owners.

“If you want to pay by cash, we’ll be more than happy to give you a cash discount for not using a credit card,” said Tony Dicesare of Auto Body Service in New Jersey.

It’s becoming such a popular practice there’s even a website that tracks businesses that offer “discounts with cash” by zip code.

“If I can get an incentive to do so, I have no problem doing that,” one consumer told Smith.

Overall, people Smith spoke with have mixed feelings on the cash-versus-credit options.

“Merchants are going to do what the merchants are going to do and people are either going to pay it or not,” one person said.

But consumer experts said it’s a great way to help your bottom line.

“Not only are you able to stick within your budget but you might actually save a little bit of money, too,” Grant said.

If you’re buying an expensive item, experts said it’s better to pay with a credit card so you’re protected should the product be defective or not as advertised.

These changes won’t happen overnight. Computer systems, price tags and employees will all have to be updated by stores who choose to offer two different prices for cash and credit.

DNC: ATTACK ATTACK ATTACK

Mathews Pierson, director of politics at CBS Local Media, said negative attack ads work better than presenting someone’s success.

“Everyone complains about negative campaigning, but we keep doing it for one really simple reason: it works,” Pierson told CBSDC. “The same voter who tells you he doesn’t want to see anymore of it will then tell you something bad about Mitt Romney that he certainly didn’t learn doing his own research. “

Pierson explained that constantly using attack ads on the DNC’s front page will help to “rev up activists.”

“Driving Romney’s negatives is working to engage activists and generate press coverage to keep pressing until it doesn’t,” Pierson said. “Also, while most of the public is tuned-out and hitting the beach, if every time they tune in they hear the negative Romney narrative it can solidify their opinion of him before they truly start paying attention to the race this fall.”

And it will only get worse with 100 days to go.

OBAMACARE

In the Inland Empire, an economically depressed region in Southern California, President Obama’s health care lawis expected to extend insurance coverage to more than 300,000 people by 2014. But coverage will not necessarily translate into care: Local health experts doubt there will be enough doctors to meet the area’s needs. There are not enough now.

And what happens when demand goes up and supply doesn’t?? And then even, many doctors won’t take you on ObamaCare. So that make this even more fun.

The New York Times

 

Other places around the country, including the Mississippi Delta, Detroit and suburban Phoenix, face similar problems. The Association of American Medical Colleges estimates that in 2015 the country will have 62,900 fewer doctors than needed. And that number will more than double by 2025, as the expansion of insurance coverage and the aging of baby boomers drive up demand for care. Even without the health care law, the shortfall of doctors in 2025 would still exceed 100,000.

Health experts, including many who support the law, say there is little that the government or the medical profession will be able to do to close the gap by 2014, when the law begins extending coverage to about 30 million Americans. It typically takes a decade to train a doctor.

“We have a shortage of every kind of doctor, except for plastic surgeons and dermatologists,” said Dr. G. Richard Olds, the dean of the new medical school at the University of California, Riverside, founded in part to address the region’s doctor shortage. “We’ll have a 5,000-physician shortage in 10 years, no matter what anybody does.”

Experts describe a doctor shortage as an “invisible problem.” Patients still get care, but the process is often slow and difficult. In Riverside, it has left residents driving long distances to doctors, languishing on waiting lists, overusing emergency rooms and even forgoing care.

“It results in delayed care and higher levels of acuity,” said Dustin Corcoran, the chief executive of the California Medical Association, which represents 35,000 physicians. People “access the health care system through the emergency department, rather than establishing a relationship with a primary care physician who might keep them from getting sicker.”

In the Inland Empire, encompassing the counties of Riverside and San Bernardino, the shortage of doctors is already severe. The population of Riverside County swelled 42 percent in the 2000s, gaining more than 644,000 people. It has continued to grow despite the collapse of one of the country’s biggest property bubbles and a jobless rate of 11.8 percent in the Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario metro area.

But the growth in the number of physicians has lagged, in no small part because the area has trouble attracting doctors, who might make more money and prefer living in nearby Orange County or Los Angeles.

A government council has recommended that a given region have 60 to 80 primary care doctors per 100,000 residents, and 85 to 105 specialists. The Inland Empire has about 40 primary care doctors and 70 specialists per 100,000 residents — the worst shortage in California, in both cases.

Moreover, across the country, fewer than half of primary care clinicians were accepting new Medicaid patients as of 2008, making it hard for the poor to find care even when they are eligible for Medicaid. The expansion of Medicaid accounts for more than one-third of the overall growth in coverage in President Obama’s health care law.

Providers say they are bracing for the surge of the newly insured into an already strained system.

Temetry Lindsey, the chief executive of Inland Behavioral & Health Services, which provides medical care to about 12,000 area residents, many of them low income, said she was speeding patient-processing systems, packing doctors’ schedules tighter and seeking to hire more physicians.

“We know we are going to be overrun at some point,” Ms. Lindsey said, estimating that the clinics would see new demand from 10,000 to 25,000 residents by 2014. She added that hiring new doctors had proved a struggle, in part because of the “stigma” of working in this part of California.

Across the country, a factor increasing demand, along with expansion of coverage in the law and simple population growth, is the aging of the baby boom generation. Medicare officials predict that enrollment will surge to 73.2 million in 2025, up 44 percent from 50.7 million this year.

“Older Americans require significantly more health care,” said Dr. Darrell G. Kirch, the president of the Association of American Medical Colleges. “Older individuals are more likely to have multiple chronic conditions, requiring more intensive, coordinated care.”

The pool of doctors has not kept pace, and will not, health experts said. Medical school enrollment is increasing, but not as fast as the population. The number of training positions for medical school graduates is lagging. Younger doctors are on average working fewer hours than their predecessors. And about a third of the country’s doctors are 55 or older, and nearing retirement.

Physician compensation is also an issue. The proportion of medical students choosing to enter primary care has declined in the past 15 years, as average earnings for primary care doctors and specialists, like orthopedic surgeons and radiologists, have diverged. A study by the Medical Group Management Association found that in 2010, primary care doctors made about $200,000 a year. Specialists often made twice as much.

The Obama administration has sought to ease the shortage. The health care law increases Medicaid’s primary care payment rates in 2013 and 2014. It also includes money to train new primary care doctors, reward them for working in underserved communities and strengthen community health centers.

But the provisions within the law are expected to increase the number of primary care doctors by perhaps 3,000 in the coming decade. Communities around the country need about 45,000.

Many health experts in California said that while they welcomed the expansion of coverage, they expected that the state simply would not be ready for the new demand. “It’s going to be necessary to use the resources that we have smarter” in light of the doctor shortages, said Dr. Mark D. Smith, who heads the California HealthCare Foundation, a nonprofit group.

Dr. Smith said building more walk-in clinics, allowing nurses to provide more care and encouraging doctors to work in teams would all be part of the answer. Mr. Corcoran of the California Medical Association also said the state would need to stop cutting Medicaid payment rates; instead, it needed to increase them to make seeing those patients economically feasible for doctors.

More doctors might be part of the answer as well. The U.C. Riverside medical school is hoping to enroll its first students in August 2013, and is planning a number of policies to encourage its graduates to stay in the area and practice primary care.

But Dr. Olds said changing how doctors provided care would be more important than minting new doctors. “I’m only adding 22 new students to this equation,” he said. “That’s not enough to put a dent in a 5,000-doctor shortage.” (NYT)

Low supply and high demand= High prices. Higher Prices= lessm likely your boss will keep your health insurance.

So then you go into the IRS enforced government system that get overloaded and the price goes up.

Suddenly, they need to cut costs, so guess what happens when the government controls life and death… 🙂

Political Cartoons by Robert Ariail

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The Battle Begins Anew

A Little From our Post Traumatic Image is Everything First (Constitution Second) Conscious Chief Justice:

U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts joked that he’ll spend some time on an “impregnable island fortress” now that the court has ended a session that featured him casting the decisive vote to uphold President Barack Obama’s health care law.

Responding to a question about his summer break, Roberts said he planned to teach a class for two weeks in Malta, the Mediterranean island nation.

“Malta, as you know, is an impregnable island fortress. It seemed like a good idea,” Roberts said, drawing laughter from about 300 judges, attorneys and others attending a four-day conference Friday at a posh southwestern Pennsylvania resort.

The only direct question Roberts got about the health care opinion came when those at the conference were invited to ask questions.

That’s when Roberts was asked what he thought his court’s legacy would be in 50 years and “how one recent opinion might fit into that” – an obvious reference to the health care decision.

“Well, I won’t answer anything that has to do with the second part of that,” Roberts said. But he said he hopes that the court under him is remembered as one that “did our job according to the Constitution, of protecting equal justice under the law.”

Lamberth hinted at the controversial decision when he asked Roberts if it bothered him that he can’t respond to his critics.

“No,” Roberts said, his brief answer hanging in the air to more laughter.(AP)

Public opposition to the health care law remains high. Forty-seven percent of respondents in a recent Associated Press-GfK poll said they oppose the law while 33 percent said they support it. Thirteen percent said they are neutral. Those who strongly oppose the legislation also outnumber those who strongly support it, 32 percent to 17 percent, about a 2-to-1 margin.

Critical to both parties, just 21 percent of independents support it, the lowest level of support the AP-GfK poll has recorded on the issue. (AP)

But here comes the old fearmongering and division that Liberals are so congenitally wired for:

“Now the American people are going to say, `Now what’s in that for me?'” Harkin said. “As long as Democrats are willing to go out there and positively say, `Look, now you are guaranteed that you will get affordable health insurance if you had breast cancer in the past … preventive care, free mammograms. … And they (Republicans) want to take it away from you. You have it now and they want to take it away from you. If you want it taken away from you, you just go ahead and vote for them.'” (AP)

So…

Republicans also used the ruling to craft a new attack line. Chief Justice John Roberts’ majority opinion said the law’s requirement that Americans purchase health care is a tax, which Republicans argued contradicted Obama and Democrats who insist they aren’t raising taxes on the poor and middle class.

“The court blew the president’s cover,” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said.

The tax debate will be at the forefront when the House votes the week of July 9 to overturn the law, a largely symbolic step with a Democratic-controlled Senate but one that will put Democrats and Republicans on record and provide fodder for the campaign.

Because guess what, IT’S A TAX!  The Supreme Court says so!!

And who will get it in the shorts the  most– why the middle class and the poor!! Will the Democrats tell them that? Nope. It’s all Fear, Loathing, and Me-Generation Greed.

The Battle begins again.

The medical overhaul is also a choice killer. Many will recall Obama promising that under his plan, “If you like your doctor, you will be able to keep your doctor, period. If you like your health care plan, you’ll be able to keep your health care plan, period.”

Those aren’t the facts.

As we reported in April, the CBO estimates that as many as 20 million Americans will be forced out of their plans as employers toss workers into government health exchanges to avoid ObamaCare’s costs.

A survey by McKinsey and Co. found that nearly one-third of employers will likely to drop coverage for their workers once ObamaCare kicks in.

And an analysis by the Medicare actuary found that ObamaCare’s attacks on Medicare’s private insurance options will force nearly 8 million seniors out of the coverage they’ve chosen.

• Consumer costs will rise. CBO says premiums will increase over the next decade faster than they did in the past five years.

• The Affordable Care Act is just the beginning. It’s the door to a single-payer government system run by a DMV-type bureaucracy.

• The quality of care will suffer. The Democrats’ law will chill the incentives to become a doctor, to create innovative drugs and to produce live-saving and life-enhancing medical equipment.

• Don’t be surprised when treatment is rationed by government. As it takes over a larger portion of health care — it already controls nearly half — resources won’t be able to keep up with demand. Somebody wins, somebody loses based on someone else’s whim. (IBD)

But don’t worry, the Democrats will just focus on fear, intimidation, and “mean” old Republicans who want to throw grandma off a cliff and you to “just die” as former Rep. Grayson once said on the House floor.

Meanwhile, the Democrats WILL tax you to death and give you 2nd-3rd world care (unless you are “rich” that is) but it won’t be their fault. 🙂

And if you increase demand but they supply doesn’t increase or even decreases then what happens? Hmmm….

And it all points to a single solution: Repeal the law before it takes deep root, and replace it with policies that put the patient in charge.

“What has happened in this system for too long is that the patient has kind of been second or third in line behind everybody else,” Ed Haislmaier health policy worker for the Heritage Foundation says.

And then he made a good point on why Democrats may be opposed to it if they get their ideological heads out of their asses:

Critics of the mandate say Republicans and Democrats alike oppose it.

“Republicans are against it because they see it as an impingement on their personal freedom,” says Ed Haislmaier, who works on healthcare policy at the conservative-leaning Heritage Foundation in Washington. “The Democrats are against it because they don’t like health insurance companies in the first place, and they don’t like to be told they have to go buy from someone they don’t like.(VOA)

And I would add, make them aware of how much everything costs because this is far from “free healthcare”.

Yahoo question from the public at large: Since conservatives are so greedy, I am surprised they would oppose Free.

Need I say more? 🙂

How about From a UK message board: congratualations {sp} USA on your free healthcare – now you can do something about your obesity and retardation.

The Bright Spot from the perspective of damage and ability to provide clarity on what this really means:

Because the one ”bright spot” of the ruling was on the matter of Medicaid expansion.

Medicaid is the joint federal-state health insurance program for the poor, in which both governments split the cost. ObamaCare mandated states accept more federal money and expand eligibility to ensnare a larger number of Americans in this dismal government-run plan. But along with that mandate for the states to spend hundreds of millions more than they can afford, the law included a penalty for states that didn’t expand the Medicaid eligibility – the loss of all federal Medicaid money. Essentially it was a choice between spending more money that states don’t have or receiving no federal money, yet still being obligated to provide Medicaid.

The Supreme Court rejected that provision. It said states can be offered the option but can’t be forced to accept the expansion money, nor to extend Medicaid to people who don’t currently qualify. Given many states are going broke now, and Medicaid is their largest expenditure already, it’s highly doubtful many will spend more on this program.

So, given Medicaid was a key component to extending coverage to all Americans under ObamaCare, and given it’s now dead or at least an unlikely option, the uninsured near-poor – the people this whole mess was designed to help – won’t be getting Medicaid. Since they also probably won’t soon earn enough to buy insurance on their own, they finish right where they started – in no-man’s land.

Middle-class Americans without insurance will have to pay an Obama Tax that will grow with each passing year. The near-poor were exempted from the tax, but they won’t get insurance either.

Given the ease – relative to the rest of the world – with which Americans can move up the economic ladder, many will work at jobs that can’t afford to provide insurance under ObamaCare and are too small to be required to provide it. But those jobs will pay enough so employees eventually will qualify for the Obama Tax. So, just as these near-poor approach some semblance of economic security, the IRS (which Obamacare empowered to enforce the Obama Tax) will be right there to whack them back down.

Therefore, and not for the first time, the people ObamaCare was supposed to help will be hurt the most.

Middle-class families also will take a hit.

Most Americans work for small businesses. The law requires businesses with more than 50 employees to provide health insurance or pay a fine. Since ObamaCare forces insurance companies to accept everyone with pre-existing conditions – which is like requiring car insurance companies to insure cars after their owners have wrapped them around a tree – premiums will skyrocket. Companies quickly will notice it’s easier to simply pay the fine. This means a new group of uninsured Americans.

If the slight bump in pay doesn’t permit them to afford insurance, they will be hit with the Obama Tax. (And for those of you keeping score at home, they make significantly less than the $250,000 per year the President promised to never, ever raise taxes on. “Read my lips!” anyone?)

The government doesn’t care about your expenses. It doesn’t care about your kids in private school, your mortgage or student loans or the relatives you’re trying to help through a bad time. It doesn’t care how or really even whether you make ends meet as the Obama Recession rolls into another year. It sees you as a number – the number of dollars you make, whether you make enough to buy insurance according to its formula.

Don’t believe me? Try discussing with a bureaucrat anything you owe government on any level and see if you can appeal to their mercy. You might get a traffic fine reduced occasionally if you catch the right bureaucrat on the right day. But the IRS deals with tens of millions of people over hundreds of billions of dollars. Bureaucracies are not in the mercy business.

So now that Obamacare has morphed into a tax on staying alive, it will become yet another liberal “well-intentioned” attempt to “strengthen the social safety net” that ends up functioning more like a spider web that ensnares people in the life it was supposed to help them escape.

It also forces the health insurance market into a bastardized market that threatens its very existence. It will cause many insurers to fail, which will lead to consolidation, concentration and ultimately corporate welfare. Or the government will step in, take over the entire market and give us the American version of Britain’s detestable National Health Service, which is something Democrats have been working towards for decades. Either way, government wins and we – all of us – lose.

Of course none of these taxes and insurance drops will take effect for these impacted people until after the election, which was by design. Costing people you need to vote for you more before they vote is fool’s errand, a lesson Barack Obama learned from President George H.W. Bush. But once he no longer need their vote, ever, for the rest of his life…lookout.

Did we reject a tyranny 236 years ago to gradually create our own without the accent and powdered wig? Did we replace “No taxation without representation” with “Taxation through misrepresentation”? As you celebrate our nation’s independence this week, commit yourself to talk to as many people as you can about how we’ve lost that which we are celebrating and how November is our next, and maybe our only, chance to declare it again. (Derek Hunter)

Time for a more literal TEA PARTY revolution against our Would-be King. And time to re-instill freedom into this great land.

Political Cartoons by Henry Payne


Follow The Agenda

Remember, long ago in the very distant past of 2008 when $100+ per gallon gas was the fault of rich Oil men like President Bush and Evil CEO’s??

It was all the Republicans fault. As a commenter on a Huffington Post article about the “Bush Legacy” of  High Oil Prices put it “George Bush is from Texas, and has friends (campaign contributers) in the oil industry. Dick Cheney is from Wyoming, where he lobbied for the oil and coal business. Cheney was CEO of Halliburto­n which sells equipment to the oil business. While they’ve been in power the price of crude oil has quadrupled­. Follow the money.” which is very typical Liberal socialist diatribe.

Well, it’s BACK! And not an evil Oil President in sight. But I’m sure it’s still his fault anyhow.

Today, Reuters: “OPEC will only have an extraordinary meeting if oil prices exceed $100 and stay there. We don’t want the market to panic,” the delegate told Reuters.

So Fast forward to today in the Huffington Post reader comments:

“Of course Big Oil, energy, and the insurance industry will continue to raise prices. The plan is to make sure that middle class American’s have very little disposable income. What people don’t pay in taxes, they must pay over to corporate monopolies in the form of inflated prices. Reducing taxes kills the middle class because it destroys the ability of a “United People” to combat the tyranny of corporate fascism.”

Nothings changed.

Only, everything has, but the Liberals are still too obsessed with their Class Warfare Agenda and “green” to see it.

Political Cartoon

The prospect of oil breaking $100 a barrel, last touched in October 2008 after Lehman Brothers collapsed, has raised alarm bells about the impact of fuel costs on the economic recovery.

Obama almost secretly “allowed” some oil companies to start drilling again 6 months AFTER the Oil spill was plugged. Even though a Federal Judge said the Moratorium was illegal they went and did it again anyhow.

The Media just tried to ignore it.

After all, they have to prop up GM’s sales of the fake electric car, The Chevy Volt. I had a few choice words to say on it : https://indyfromaz.wordpress.com/2010/10/20/revolt-ting/

Especially in light of the news about the GM (Government Motors) bail out.

You know the one where the spin is that GM paid it all back and bail outs do work…

The Congressional Oversight Panel reported Thursday that by selling 45% of the stock it had in GM, Washington has “‘locked in’ a loss of billions of dollars and thus greatly reduced the likelihood that taxpayers will ever be repaid in full.”

Bailout defenders had thought that GM’s IPO would show critics that the government could make money on the bailout. But when “Treasury received a price of $33 per share,” it sold “well below the $44.59 needed to be on track to recover fully taxpayers money.”

That seems clear enough. But those justifying the bailout will ignore taxpayers’ losses and focus instead on the panel’s statement that the aided companies are “on the path to financial stability.”

Set your media on SPIN!

But then again, that’s what Liberals want.

You out of that gus-guzzling, Oil-loving, Class Warfare, infernal-combustion, global warming evil machine of death!

They want you to drive an electric car (even a fake one) or nothing.

The fact that petroleum is used in thousands of products besides gasoline, including the trucks and trains that are hauling freight all over the country is completely outside of their Agenda so it’s immaterial.

That orange had to be shipped into your grocery store from somewhere.

But The Agenda is The Agenda.

We all have to have solar panels, wind farms, electric cars and organic food.

The costs of this are immaterial. It “feels good”.

It’s 60’s hippie marijuana-toking stupidity, but  it “feels good”.

And liberals blindness is only 1/2 the problem.

The other one is China and India.

You see, one of the main reasons for the Oil Prices is them.

It’s called Demand. As in Supply and Demand.

That principle of economics Liberals only understand when it suits their Agenda and ignore otherwise.

They have a huge demand. They can pay for it (largely with our debt) so why not sell it to them instead.

With fierce global competiton and  state-run monopolies in Venezuela and China squeezing out Western energy giants, the bottom line is that cheap oil – and subsequently cheap gasoline – just doesn’t work out on the balance sheets of big oil.

At the same time, U.S. commercial oil supplies fell 1.2% to 335.3 million barrels last week. (Investor Place)

They have other customers and bigger costs. And those “western Energy Giants” at least in this country are hobbled by an Administration that is vehemently hostile to them.

So even if we produced more it would help like it did in “the old days”.

But ignoring the problem and sticking your head in the “green” sand also isn’t going to help.

“Green” tech is not economical as of yet, so relying on it, praying for it, waving 60’s peace and love over it isn’t the answer right now.

But that’s the Agenda. And The Agenda is The Agenda.

So expensive gas suits The Agenda.

And that is George W Bush and Big Oil’s Fault! 🙂

Especially as austerity is slapping us in the face.

For Jan 1, 2011 10,000 Baby Boomers EVERY DAY will be retiring for the next 20 years!!

And they want their government money and they want it NOW! (and ObamaCare).

The more we can produce for our own the better we will be for our own sake.

And being responsible for our own is important.

But The Agenda is more important!

In 2008 High Oil Prices worked for them because it was good for demonizing Bush and Big Oil, now it works for their “green” Agenda.

Either way, we all get tarred!

Political Cartoon

A Salt & Fattery

CartoonNutrition professor Marion Nestle’s (The irony of her last name must drive her insane) particular ivory tower is at New York University, where she dishes out anti-food-industry fanaticism. If it tastes good, she’ll find something wrong with it. If it’s also profitable to sell, she’ll go berserk. 

We live in a food culture full of labels. Much of what we eat carries a claim that it’s vitamin-fortified, high-fiber, low-fat, organic, trans-fat-free, heart-healthy, low-sodium, or free of added sugar. These are all marketing gimmicks to a certain extent (especially “organic”), but the government tends to permit them as a form of commercial speech, as long as they’re truthful.

Not Nestle. She thinks the First Amendment ought to be gutted, to make way for restricting food companies she doesn’t like from touting their products’ virtues. Apparently, cereal can no longer be considered part of a balanced breakfast.

In a recent letter in JAMA (the Journal of the American Medical Association), she and co-author David Ludwig write:

The founding fathers clearly intended the First Amendment to guarantee the right of individuals to speak freely about religious and political matters, not the right of food companies to market junk foods to children and adults … We hope that legal scholars will examine current food marketing practices in the light of the First Amendment and establish a firm legal basis for bringing this issue back to court.

This isn’t really about stopping “junk food” marketing. Not even “for the children.”

For five years, Nestle sat on the Board of the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI). If that name doesn’t ring a bell, you may know it by its more common name: the “food police.”

CSPI’s grouchy leader has called for higher taxes on practically everything that tastes good, including butter, milk, cheese, chips, and meat; his group advocates government-mandated limits on salt and federal taxes on soft drinks. CSPI wants the FDA, the IRS, and the rest of our governmental alphabet soup to raid your pantry.

What’s Nestle’s take on CSPI? “I’m a big supporter of what they do. By and large, they’re the major game in town.” Speaking to the New York Times, she said: “I like it better when [CSPI’s leader] takes on the big corporations like McDonald’s.”

Wingnut attacks on corporations are a specialty for Nestle. She has spoken at events sponsored by the American Public Health Association’s Socialist Caucus. (Yes, there is such a thing.) She also presented at the 2003 Socialist Scholars Conference.

Marion the Contrarian (her inside-the-beltway nickname) has an anti-business, big-government streak a mile wide, but she does find some food-company speech perfectly to her liking. Nestle is a big fan of “No GMO” labels, insisting that “the public wants the right to choose.” She is similarly supportive of “organic” labels and others that give niche food marketers an edge against bigger competitors.

It’s a case of “free speech for me, but not for thee.” In Nestle’s world, food marketers deserve First Amendment protection until they start paying stockholder dividends. If you’re on the Fortune 500 list, her logic goes, you shouldn’t be allowed (without government permission) to tell consumers that the food they’re buying has added vitamin C or antioxidants, or that it’s made from whole grains.

Instead, Nestle wants government to dictate what consumers can be told about the food they eat. She favors a “traffic light” graphic on the front of every food package. Bad (translation: delicious) foods — even those with supplemental folic acid or omega-3s — would get the dreaded red light to ward people away. Presumably, kale and spinach would get green lights.

The idea that corporations don’t have Free Speech rights is ridiculous. A corporation is just an organization of individuals who own fractions of the same commercial venture. The law doesn’t distinguish between corporations — nor should it — depending on their size or their profitability. What’s fair for McDonald’s has to be fair for Organic Valley. And for the guy at your local farmers market.

Free speech is fair. And Marion Nestle, along with her dietary control-freak colleagues, should enjoy it too, whatever their batty theories.

“We are not lawyers,” Marion Nestle conceded in her published call for First Amendment restrictions. No kidding. It’s clear what Marion Nestle is, however: a dinosaur, hopefully the last of her kind, hopelessly wed to the idea that the profit motive hurts, rather than improves, America’s food system.(Daily Caller)

McVictim

Liberals loves to make everyone a victim of something, even they are victims of the same things they rail about.

So naturally they should have a name for it. Only a doctor in LA who is NOT a liberal has come up with it.

This week brought an unusually high dose of food fascism and nutrition nannying. But it also gave us the sort of rare op-ed that had us nodding our heads in emphatic agreement. Writing in the Los Angeles Times, physician and Manhattan Institute Senior Fellow David Gratzer takes on what he calls “McVictim syndrome”:

The McVictim syndrome spins a convenient — and unhealthy — narrative on America’s emerging preventable disease crisis. McVictimization teaches Americans to think that obesity is someone else’s fault — and therefore, someone else’s problem to solve.

The truth: In the vast majority of cases, obesity is a preventable condition. So those of us in the medical community must be candid with overweight patients about the risks they face and the rewards of better health choices. But it’s also time for American policymakers to show the same level of candor.

All things being equal, the simplest explanation is often the right one. And the simplest explanation for the dramatic rise in obesity rates — roughly doubling as a percentage of the total population in just a quarter-century — is the surge in our daily caloric intake. Excess food now, excess weight later. And Americans won’t make better choices if the McVictim syndrome provides a convenient excuse to carry on as before.

He’s right, and it drives us crazy. Every time a food cop claims consumers are helpless victims of their “food environment” (or anything else), it fuels this sort of victimization narrative. Hopefully more physicians in the public health community who think like Gratzer will start airing their thoughts—and personal responsibility will make a delicious return to our diets. (consumerfreedom.com)

LA City Council has taken another step toward saving South L.A. (formerly known as gang ridden “South Central” with an Orwellian makeover where the gangs are STILL there mind you) from itself by saying no to more fast food on behalf of its constituents. Citing the statistic that 70 percent of food currently sold in the community is “fast,” Councilmember Jan Perry defended the ban, stating:

This is not an attempt to control people as to what they can put into their mouths. This is an attempt to diversify their food options.

But to the disinterested observer it appears that controlling what people “put into their mouths” is precisely what the City Council is doing.

But it’s for your own good, after all, we Liberals are vastly superior to you mere “little people” who are too stupid not to be victims of the vast right-wing conspiracy against you.

When we talk to our community members and the people that we were elected to represent, the one thing that we hear over and over and over again is: ‘We need more grocery stores, we need more restaurants, we need more choices, we are tired of the choices that have been given to this community.’

In short, businesses—including restaurants—are welcome, even desired, by residents of the community.

As to supply and demand, the residents of South L.A. can complain all they want about the “choices that have been given to this community” and wish for alternatives to fast food. Unless the City Council can devise a method for forcing investors to open eateries with tablecloths and waiters, the locals will simply have to make do with the hand they have been dealt or cook at home.

In addition, the fact that more fast food franchisees are seeking to open restaurants in South L.A. despite the ostensible over-saturation of that market suggests that fast food is what many South Angelinos want. What business is it of the City Council to tell them they can’t have it? (Hot air.com)

Because they are Liberals the rules of logic, free enterprise, supply and demand, and general economics don’t apply to them when they are so MORALLY SUPERIOR and Intellectually Superior to you evil, greedy, capitalist bastards who just want to exploit everyone!

Meanwhile, we’ll exploit them for our own purposes. That’s Fair! 🙂

After all, the neighborhoods of the Crips and The Bloods is just crying out for the next 5-Star Organic Vegan Restaurant. (anything else would just be capitalist exploitation you understand).

Conversation coming soon to a prison cell near you:

“What are you in for?”

“Grand theft auto. You?”

“Butter.”

BALTIMORE — The Baltimore City Health Department issued its first environmental citation for repeat violations of the city’s trans fat ban.

The Health Department issued Healthy Choice, a food facility in the 400 block of Lexington Street, a $100 fine on Thursday.

“It was the second time they were found with a high trans fat level in their ingredients,” said Health Department agent Juan Gutierrez.

Officials said that during inspections in July and this month, the facility was found to be using a margarine product with trans fat levels in excess of what the law allows.

A source tells me the Health Department stormtroopers are referring to this particular type of crime as “a salt & fattery.”

Baltimore’s “Commissioner of Health” (you can’t make this stuff up), Dr. Oxiris Barbot (you certainly can’t make that up), is quoted as saying this (accent added by me for more appropriate Eastern Bloc effect): “Vile vee are pleased vis zee high rates of compliance veev seen since zee ban tuke effekt, vee vill continue to sankshun beeznesses zaht repeatedly fail to komply.”

Join me in standing up to these people and yelling at the top of our lungs, “From my cold, dead frying pan!” (Michelle Malkin).

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