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Big Food, Big Government and Big Americans

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posted on Dec, 31 2010 @ 07:54 AM
I think this video explicitly tries to show that poor food policy and government action has led to our growing obesity and overweight epidemic. But, critical analysis will make it clear that food and diet do NOT need policy nor government interference.

Government agencies and pseudo-private/govt companies go back-and-forth. The USDA is ran by corporate wigs from large food companies. Big food corporations are ran by former USDA bureaucrats. Whatever their ultimate goal, they are the same person with the same beliefs and probably promote the same end: you and me buying what they want us to. Of course, they want us to buy cheap, unhealthy food.

The government tells the sheeple they are their to promote their health with the food pyramid and guidelines. Before kids can read they are shown pictures of what they should eat and how much of it they should eat.

This is the image many school children would see growing up in the 90's and into 2005 before it was changed. Adults are free to make their own choices, but these children (me included) were bombarded with this kind of propaganda as young as 5-6 years of age. One problem, if you add up the total servings one would be eating 26+ servings of total food daily. Also, in the largest area of the triangle you find muffins, doughnuts, cereal and spaghetti. People are free to eat what they want, but a government agency that get's their funding claiming to be in place for our nutrition should discern healthy food from unhealthy on their #1 tool. This anecdote sums it up well;

The graphic was the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food Guide Pyramid, and it permeated all aspects of my young life. Every school cafeteria in which I ate for 12 years had a poster on its wall flaunting the Food Guide Pyramid. The milk I bought for 50 cents daily had the Food Guide Pyramid stamped on its carton. Even Saturday-morning cartoons, during which a cereal commercial would remind me of how important it was to honor my food groups, weren’t off limits.

This is the new & improved food diagram that still favors the big USDA corporations and farms, notice how large "Milk" is, shouldn't it at least be called Dairy? And the benefits of unsaturated oils found in olive and grapeseed oil seems to be diminised. Probably no simple chart could lay out a good nutrition plan, and why they even try to is beyond me other than promoting their financial interests. But this may explain part of it;

Why are these products so heavily promoted? The simple answer is profitability. In the case of potato crisps and soft drinks, the cost of the basic ingredients is tiny often less than 5% of the marketed cost of the product. Hence the potential profits are huge even after paying for expensive advertising and slotting fees to supermarkets.

Other than these pyramids, the USDA has other 'functions'. This from their budget report

Mission Statement
USDA provides leadership on food, agriculture, natural resources, and related issues based on sound public policy, the best available science, and efficient management.

Vision Statement
To help America’s rural communities thrive and foster innovation as a result of expanded economic opportunities and sustainable agricultural production that nourishes America’s children and the world and conserves the Nation’s natural resources.

The USDA's budget and expenditures have grown 62% (90 mil in 2008 and projected to 146 million in 2011). I doubt any citizens budget or income has grown nearly that much if at all. This shows that in times of trouble, this 08 financial crisis, the government is not affected. USDA 2011

The USDA is great at creating problems, and then trying to act like the protector and solver of their problem. Good way to keep their selves in power. As shown on,

Domino's Pizza's domestic sales were falling last year. Then an organization called Dairy Management offered to help. They developed pizzas for Domino's that contained 40 percent more cheese, and then devised and paid for a $12-million marketing campaign. But Dairy Management is not a private business -- it is a creation of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The USDA helps helm a government anti-obesity program that discourages some of the very foods that Dairy Management is vigorously promoting.
While warning about fat, US pushes cheese sales

People do have the choice to spend more for healthy food, but unfortunately we do not have the choice of not funding the USDA. Of course, one way to protect children from their campaign is homeschooling which we well know the government opposes and makes nearly impossible for the average family.

Now a little bit from the FDA. It's a bit ironic that Michelle Obama is allowed to grow her own garden, on our taxes presumably, yet the FDA does not think we should be allowed to make our own food or milk, as has been shown in their regulations and statements and this FDA legal brief;

…… there is no “deeply rooted” historical tradition of unfettered access to food of all kinds….To the contrary, society’s long history of food regulation stretches back to the dietary laws of biblical times…. Modern food safety regulation in the United States has its roots in the early food laws of the American colonies, which themselves incorporated “the tradition of food regulation established in England.” …(-citing a Virginia statute passed in 1873, that “made it an offense . . . [to] knowingly, sell, supply, or bring to be manufactured . . . milk from which any cream has been taken; or milk commonly known as skimmed milk”). Comprehensive federal regulation of the food supply has been in effect at least since Congress enacted the Pure Food and Drugs Act of 1906, and was strengthened by the passage of the FDCA in 1938. Thus, plaintiffs’ claim to a fundamental privacy interest in obtaining “foods of their own choice” for themselves and their families is without merit.
FDA wants to control everything you eat

The government would not hold those opinions in a true free society. Looking back at the 1873 law that prohibited skim milk, it was obviously flawed and without merit itself. Why the government thinks it can now make perfect laws, when it could not then, is confusing. I posted that in this thread on the Food Modernization Act of 2010; ATS...

And the FDA has dichotomous control of food and drugs which they exercise their power over as much as they possibly can. The FDA has the same revolving door as the USDA. Many of the 'experts' on the FDA came from the private corporations to which they will probably return. If you look at just the most profitable approved drugs it can been seen why big pharm may have an interest in unhealthy food consumption. Prevacid (for heartburn), Norvasc (for high blood pressure), Zocor (high cholesterol), Nexium (heartburn), Plavix (stroke and heart attack prevention), and Lipitor (also for high cholesterol) are all in the top 10 of the most profitable medications. 10 most profitable drugs

For comparison, the FDA is a mammoth compared to the USDA, having a budget of 3.28 billion in 2010, which they want to increase to 4.03 bil in 2011 (a 23% increase in 1 year). FDA news release

The two problems are that we pay for this USDA and FDA garbage, and also that millions of Americans are overweight and obese. Citizens and many public officials seem to think that reform to the FDA, USDA, and other policies can somehow correct all of this obesity. Not only that, the FDA and USDA think they could fix these problems with one thing, a bigger budget. Charging more for sodas will not change soda consumption any more than increasing charges for cigarettes. Paying for healthy food in schools will do nothing for kids at home and on the weekends. Forcing kids to exercise will not make them exercise into adulthood. Prohibiting toys in happy meals won't stop kids from eating fast food. No amount of government policy will change our behaviors.

This cycle of growing fat as a child, developing severe chronic diseases as young adults, and dying early deaths from those diseases (all the while supporting the big food and pharm companies), will not end until Americans realize they don't need the government to tell them what to do or what to eat in terms of nutrition or safety, or whatever else the USDA and FDA proclaim.

posted on Dec, 31 2010 @ 08:18 AM
in the uk its alcohol that normally makes people fat, but we dont have giant drinks of coke at every shop and fast food place and we dont give free refills everywhere.
people may think i am wrong about the alcohol but all the stoners i know are skinny and all the drinkers are overweight. i know this is not true in every case but you dont see that many young overweight muslims in the uk.
also everything in the us is so big, like when i get my kid a happy meal from mc donalds in the uk it comes with a tiny chips/fries and a drink but in the us the kids get what an adult would get in the uk.

maybe its different in california or new york but when i have been to boston and florida it seems like everything is eat as much as you like, burger shops are everywhere and everything is full of loads of sugar.

i say buy fresh meat and vegetables and only buy kids happy meals for a treat or if you are at an airport or something like that.

posted on Dec, 31 2010 @ 08:28 AM
Once we wake up and realize that we are in a Fascist nation run by corporations this is all easy to understand.

However. We can choose to eat healthy. After watching Food, Inc. I switched to drinking water, eliminating all High Fructose Corn Syrup (now Corn Sugar) eating mostly vegitables and limiting my meat and sugar intake. (They are spending millions to make it sound safe now which ignores the science and pushes propaganda. Notice the NPR article does this.)

Net results: I lost 50 lbs. in 5 months.

We can eat healthy, if we choose too.

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