Dirty Doubles- Bred and Gluttony
Moderate is an extremely subjective quantity. Coffee, on the other hand…I think I may have a problem.
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If you put a lot of milk, cream, and sweteners in it than there might be a problem but not because of the coffee. North, long live King Tap Water. I hate buying bottled water to. If you have a container or cup and a faucet than you drink all the water you want for free. Lee, Long live king rusty! Re: bottled vs tap — one of the nice things out here is most of our tap water comes straight off the melting snowpack.
Sadly the aversion was already there and drinking from the tap never quite stuck for me.
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Most of the time now the tap water here is drinkable except after a rain when they treat the water and you can smell the chlorine upon turning on the tap. Yes I am a bottled water drinker. My own life experience is the opposite: the water in rural Nova Scotia where I grew up was clear and pleasant. Water in Minnesota at least the public water I sample is much the same.
So I am baffled by why people pay so much to drink it out of the bottle. Hi North, I certainly agree that rolling back unhealthy government interventions is a good start, and I believe I even say that in the article, though perhaps I should have done a better job highlighting it. Also the various boutique drinks and the like are in varying degrees of healthier coconut water is quite good for you while fruit juice is pretty much just flat out sugar. So if you add in sports drinks about as bad for you as soda then the new market is, healthwise, much better than our old soda one.
Very good on the follow up article. It can help people to hold their fire until they get your full arguement. Hi North, coconut water as commonly sold generally has a lot of added sugar, which makes it only negligibly different from soda.
And drink companies are still selling sugary sports drinks in schools i. The question is how much will food prices rise without the subsidies. Food Subsidies seem to be the kind of indirect welfare that Americans love instead of the direct welfare that you see in Europe. Candy, for instance, is manufactured in Canada a lot because you can get the sugar without tackling US sugar barriers. I would expect prices on some food to rise, most likely meat and corn products..
If beef is cheap, steaks are common. True but IIRC there was also a revolt when the Nixon Administration suggested people go back to the lesser cuts of meat and using things like the humbles, kidneys, and liver. Food is extremely expensive in certain parts of Australia e. In Sydney, prices are more reasonable, but not in places like Melbourne, Canberra or Perth. Most food is of course cheaper in southeast asia except things like pizza which is super inflated over here.
I think it would be difficult to match such prices in the US. And yet the Canadians grow mountains of wheat and other agricultural products. I think part of that is just the standard American response to being told to do X by the government, when X is not a palatable option. I agree with your sentiments largely.
The farm bill was one of those American compromises that seems to be going the way of the dodo. Simply it was the kind of wheeling-dealing that makes politics work between ideological adversaries, everyone needs to get something. A lot of my friends from undergrad are of the anti-Monsanto, everything can be organic school of thought.
A good deal of industrial farming is necessary to feed 7 billion people. There is also a tendency for environmentalists and food writers to go for the school of impossible morality. This article is a good example:. It seems like everything you do is going to fuck up the planet and the poor.
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Now I am not fully in the James camp. I think there is room for objective over subjective goods because too much subjective good can become a public policy problem.
I also think that it is important to be relatively mindful and perhaps consume less palm oil or coconut water if it produces poor monofarming and monoforrest growth. Lee brings up a good point that the French can better because of a level of state paternalism that most Americans would find unbearable though. The problems of scale are one of the best arguments against anarchism ever. I disagree. Anarchism scales up just fine.
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The issue is that, in scaling up, it is no longer anarchism. That is an interesting perspective. Makes perfect sense to me Lee. Anarchic societies get conquered by non-anarchic society, or become non anarchic to prevent conquest. This is the kind of claim that requires either some empirical demonstration or one heck of a good philosophical argument. There are still huge public health and other costs that come from rising rates in obesity, diabetes including childhood diabetes , and other diseases and health conditions that comes from our diets.
So I do think public health is a valid concern. There are also huge environmental costs to bottled water especially in the age of drought in the West. The Salon article did have a lot of silliness but it did have serious issues about how almond farming takes up 10 percent or so of annual water use in California!
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There are also huge environmental impacts and problems caused by monoculture growth like palm oil. Proponents of public health subsidy should not use public health subsidy as a rationale to tell people what to do. My biggest concern is more of the environmental impact from overconsumption and monoculture farming that includes razing diverse biological environments. Is preventing obesity an objective good? How would you demonstrate that it was objectively wrong? In general i agree with the criticisms James and North have noted.
However there is one point i think they are overlooking regarding consumer choice.
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Yeah consumers choose what they want and it is hard for the gov to get in their way nor is that even wise in many cases. But consumer choice is not solely a product of internal consumer desires. Companies spend a lot of money to drive demand. If Consolidated Food Co finds through careful experimentation the right combo of crunch, salt, fat, designed smell and dozen other factors how to make a chip that people eat a ton of they are creating a demand based on processes we have no awareness of.
So the counter to taking consumer demand seriously is simply to assert that food companies have powers of manipulation over people? Again, that is empty calories to me. Remember New Coke? How many new products do food companies come up with every year that fail to gain any traction in the market?