October 28, 2010

"City officials wanted the campaign to have... a 'major gross-out factor' that would make the YouTube video, called 'Man Drinking Fat,' 'go viral' on the Web."

Oh, I'm grossed out all right. 
The video, which has been viewed more than 700,000 times, shows a young man sucking down fat from a can as it dribbles down his chin to a cheery calypso-flavored tune.
I'm not grossed out because I watched it. I didn't. I avoid government propaganda. I'm grossed out that it's done at all.
It was the video that sparked the dispute, with its claim: “Drinking 1 can of soda a day can make you 10 pounds fatter a year. Don’t drink yourself FAT.”
Uh... you already called us fat when you said drinking soda would make us fatter. The government can't get the science right. It can't even get the English usage right.

48 comments:

Quasimodo said...

it's OK. their intentions are good and that is all that matters

edutcher said...

Forget about The Zero. Nanny Bloomberg is probably the biggest fascist in the country.

But, quasimodo, is right; along as Bloomie has good intentions, the Lefties will stand behind him.

Henry said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Henry said...

And then the young man denies anthropogenic climate change and explodes.

jsled said...

The government shouldn't try to address public health concerns at all? Punitive taxes are admittedly a different thing, but even trying to convince people by advertising is going too far?

MayBee said...

That's assuming you don't have any other calories in place of the soda you didn't drink.

Of course, if drinking the soda kills your craving for a daily piece of pie, you're going to be less fatter (!) if you drink the soda.

TRO said...

"The government shouldn't try to address public health concerns at all? Punitive taxes are admittedly a different thing, but even trying to convince people by advertising is going too far?"

There's a fine to not-so-fine line between helpful suggestions - say the old Food Pyramid deal - to scary propaganda like this moronic video.

And even this probably wouldn't be a big deal except government is already starting to make our food choices their business. Nanny Bloomberg is a great example as stated above. And the nightmare that is Obamacare is only going to make this stuff worse.

AJ Lynch said...

If they ran an ad that said don't have kids out of wedlock and don't have kids before you are 20 years, the libs would go nuts. Even though doing either of those is a very accurate predictor of lifelong poverty and failure.

Has Obama or Nanny Bloomberg spoken up about either which is a way more damaging problem than drinking soda and getting fat.

Quasimodo said...

speaking of the old food pyramid ... it has been replaced and a good thing too, considering all the damage it did. So with that in mind I think the answer is ... No. keep the government's hands off my salt, sugar, starch, fats, etc.

safe meat(and the like) ... sure, but don't tell me by law how much I should consume.

America's Politico said...

What should really gross out all the GOP is that they will lose next Tuesday. All time, energy, money wasted.

Hollywood Election Song
-----------------------

The GOP is Finished
Finished
The Party of Living Dead
Dead Finished

Reid will win (Reid has won)
Alexi will win (Alexi has won)
Boxer will win (Boxer has won)
Murray will win (Murray has won)
Feingold will win (Feingold has won)

The GOP is Finished
Finished
The Party of Living Dead
Dead Finished
-----------------------

Gabriel Hanna said...

Punitive taxes are admittedly a different thing, but even trying to convince people by advertising is going too far?

All the roads are in good repair, all the criminals are locked up, no major shortfalls in the budget that need to be addressed, no looming pension crises or burgeoning debt payments?

Guess we have time and money to tackle kids drinking soda with advertising.

blake said...

And then the young man denies anthropogenic climate change and explodes.

That would be the Mr. Creosote sketch, rewritten for the 2010s.

James said...

Hmm... I've drank, easily, WAY more than one can a soda per day for the last 20 years. So I should be 200 pounds overweight. Which means my ideal weight, without soda, is... about 3 pounds. Which would mean I was dead. So either their facts are wrong, or the government wants my ideal weight to be "dead".

blake said...

The government shouldn't try to address public health concerns at all?

Disease, arguably.

If they really wanted to help, they'd stop subsidizing corn (and other things, but especially corn).

But this isn't about helping, it's about control.

blake said...

So, America's Politico.

You gonna be around on Nov 3 to back all that up?

AJ Lynch said...

Gabriel:
That was pretty brilliant and succinct - would make a good TV ad soundbite!

No offense intended but you sound more conservative than I remember. Are the conservatives here rubbing off on you?

Gabriel Hanna said...

@AJLynch:

No offense intended but you sound more conservative than I remember. Are the conservatives here rubbing off on you?

I'm somewhere between conservative and libertarian. I don't have a lot of patience for anti-science BS. I don't ever seem to find any group of people that I don't have some kind of serious disagreement with on SOMETHING. I'm contrary and not a joiner.

shake-and-bake said...

Go Giants.

edutcher said...

If I have to choose between Titus' alter ego and the Irish bookies for my prognostications, the turf accountants win every time.

Sofa King said...

I hardly drink any soda at all. This makes me want to drink MORE soda, out of spite.

Michael said...

They have schmaltz on the tables at Sammies Romanian in lower Manhattan.

ricpic said...

The life blood of NYC is the flow of traffic through its streets, and yet the same government that is lecturing New Yorkers about the dangers of clogged arteries is forcing the introduction of bike lanes on major north/ south and cross streets in Manhattan, bike lanes that will make the loading and unloading of trucks far more difficult and far more traffic choking than it already is. And it's all being done with cavalier insouciance. Tant pis the concerns of the bourgeoisie.

Martin L. Shoemaker said...

From the article...

“CAUTION,” the nutritionist, Cathy Nonas, wrote in a memorandum to her colleagues on Aug. 20, 2009. “As we get into this exacting science, the idea of a sugary drink becoming fat is absurd.” The scientists, she said, “will make mincemeat of us.”

But Dr. Farley argued that the advertisements had to have a message that would motivate people to change their behavior.

“I think what people fear is getting fat,” he wrote.


In other words, if it's in a good cause, it's not lying. It's "motivating"!

And have these people not seen Fear Factor? For a lot of people, gross is funny, or even cool.

c3 said...

Mayor Bloomberg fancies himself the leader of Independants. Surely someone, somewhere is advising him that this IS NOT helping that image.

GH hit the nail squarely on the head. Is this the antithesis of the "broken window" theory?

traditionalguy said...

This a perfect example of why we resist a nanny government running every aspect of our lives. They are the stupid ones. Men and women can usually get things in their lives right most of the time...the Government on the other hand almost never finds any real solution that works worth a damn. Send these all of these government geniuses to Cuba where their skills have already been in use for 50 years.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@c3:

Is this the antithesis of the "broken window" theory?

Actually I'd say it's an application, but not the "broken windows" theory of crime, a different one.

Bastiat's "broken window" parable, as modified by the Austrian economics, demonstrates that society is not not better off when the government wastes their money creating useless things.

Bryan C said...

"Send these all of these government geniuses to Cuba where their skills have already been in use for 50 years."

Even Cuba doesn't want them anymore. And they've already solved the obesity problem in North Korea.

"Punitive taxes are admittedly a different thing, but even trying to convince people by advertising is going too far?"

I'll say yes. Why is the government spending money trying to convince me what to eat? Whenever the government tries to convince you to do something, it's always backed by an implicit "or else". They construct the appearance of a consensus for the extension of their own authority.

rhhardin said...

Fatter is a direction. Fat is a state. Neither implies the other.

Consider Hansel and Gretl.

They were too thin.

A decent video would have featured the witch giving them soda, if it weren't sexist with witches cooking.

ndspinelli said...

We are an obese nation w/ all the health problems associated w/ obesity. Corporations are a big part of the problem w/ huge sizes for portions. Restaurants also w/ huge sizes and constantly trying to sell you stuff..."would you like to supersize that?" Even supposed good restaurants are the same. The waitstaff are really salespeople who try to sell you extras and then give you the bums rush. Go to Italy if you want to see what a real dining experience should be like. I don't buy beer often, but have you noticed, 16 oz. cans are becoming the new standard.

With all that said, it is personal responsiblity that will win this battle, not midget Jewish mayors or uber woman First Ladies w/ toned arms.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@ndspinelli:

The waitstaff are really salespeople who try to sell you extras and then give you the bums rush.

I never worked at place that did that. We were always told to let people stay as long as they want, even after closing. I worked at Denny's and Pizza Hut, not haute cuisine.

We are an obese nation w/ all the health problems associated w/ obesity. Corporations are a big part of the problem w/ huge sizes for portions.

I feel blessed to live in a time and place when food is so cheap that the biggest health problem poor people have is being too fat. Billions of starved and malnourished people over the last ten thousand years would gladly trade places with you.

jr565 said...

Gabriel hana wrote:
All the roads are in good repair, all the criminals are locked up, no major shortfalls in the budget that need to be addressed, no looming pension crises or burgeoning debt payments?

Guess we have time and money to tackle kids drinking soda with advertising.


Except govt will never repair all the roads or jail all the cirminals,and are capable of doing more than one thing at once, and have a budget to take on multiple issues at the same time.
Not saying that therefore govt should get involved in the soft drink business, but only that using the standard you set government coulndn't get involved in anything because there would always be something else that had to be resolved first, and those things would never be fully resolved.

jr565 said...

TRO wrote:
There's a fine to not-so-fine line between helpful suggestions - say the old Food Pyramid deal - to scary propaganda like this moronic video.

And even this probably wouldn't be a big deal except government is already starting to make our food choices their business. Nanny Bloomberg is a great example as stated above. And the nightmare that is Obamacare is only going to make this stuff worse.


Could the govt do a cute commercial about the food pyriamid? and what would be the difference? Is it the content of the video that is at issue or that the govt is doing it at all.

Titus said...

Does any Sconni folks out there have a recy for a 5 star doggy salon where the rare clumbers can each receive deep tissue treatments?

Price is no issue, natch.

Titus said...

People are starving in India.

I say let the people drink what they drink.

Like Meadsy Poo I just want to be free, which I am not.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@jr565:

only that using the standard you set government coulndn't get involved in anything because there would always be something else that had to be resolved first, and those things would never be fully resolved.

Of course you are exactly right and so what I've said is at best, a soundbite--as another commenter said.

But surely we should prioritize. I really hate the nanny-state stuff.

I used to read Fark.com, and a common Fark headline was, "Having solved all other problems, government considers..." which in this case would be ads discouraging kids from drinking soda.

If the government wants to blow money, I think we could all use some dams and nuclear plants. Or maybe they could rebate $5 off my taxes and I would promise to tell my kids not drink too much soda.

Joe said...

We are an obese nation w/ all the health problems associated w/ obesity.

Really? List them. You can't. Only diabetes is directly associated with obesity and nobody is sure which causes the other (with the growing evidence that diabetes causes obesity, not the other way around.)

Conversely, the health problems of the very thin are extreme and well documented.

(Think there's a correlation between obesity and heart attacks? There isn't. The only reliable predictor of heart attacks is high blood pressure and that's still only true a minority of the time--most people who have heart attacks don't have high blood pressure, aren't obese, aren't too thin, don't have high cholesterol; they have NOTHING that could have predicted the heart attack. Yet that had one.)

AJ Lynch said...

Gabriel:

A wise man once told me "Most people want to do someone else's job" and he was right. So our elected officials don't do what you suggested above [because that would be hard work and its sucessful completion could be measured & assessed by the voters] so they get into the touchy-feely issues. Mayor Bloomberg is a prime example.

I would prefer we just give every American adult $1,000 a month and shut down most of the rest of those social idiocy programs. But nannies like Bloomberg & Obama don't trust us and they have to have strings attached to their grants.

Martin L. Shoemaker said...

Tying together last week's outrage with this week's... Let's defund NPR and use the savings to pay for food propaganda!

jr565 said...

Joe wrote:

Really? List them. You can't. Only diabetes is directly associated with obesity and nobody is sure which causes the other (with the growing evidence that diabetes causes obesity, not the other way around.)


Hypertension, diabetes, cardiovascular issues, heightened risk of stroke, breathing problems, certain forms of cancer, mobility issues....

Penny said...

A two page article in the NYT's about state bureaucrats in a quandary over, and I will quote, "WHAT CAN WE GET AWAY WITH?"p

ndspinelli said...

Joe, you're an idiot...and I'm guessing a fat idiot!

ndspinelli said...

Gabriella, "You're literally too stupid to insult."

The Hangover

Gabriel Hanna said...

@ndspinelli

Gabriella, "You're literally too stupid to insult."

That will persuade people that you know better than everyone else what they should have to do.

Joe said...

Hypertension, diabetes, cardiovascular issues, heightened risk of stroke, breathing problems, certain forms of cancer, mobility issues....

With all the hysteria of weight, the word obesity is throw around with little definition. Unfortunately for the hysterics, all the scientific evidence was pointing the the fact that people who were slightly overweight (by the redefined BMI standards) were the healthiest and the "Obese" the second healthiest group. The solution: muddle the issues, make things up and take SYMPTOMS of the morbidly obese and move them down the spectrum.

In reality, many, if not most, of the problems ascribed to the obese, exist across all segments at equal or higher numbers. Moreover, the underweight have much higher predictive rates of disease than the overweight.

Several interesting experiments showed doctors patient limited information, such as weight, height, age, blood pressure and cholesterol, and had the doctors predict what diseases these patients had and/or would get. They consistently did worse than chance.

The danger with the focus on weight is that normal-weight people believe they aren't at risk for many illnesses, especially heart attacks, strokes and even type 2 diabetes.

(For the record, my BMI is 25 and my height/weight are well within normal range for my age.)

Misty said...

I'm thinking this is not the man the "I want a man" YouTube video was taking about.

But seriously, whatever happened to the land of the free? Give people information and let them choose. Life's too short to give it all up.

Sean said...

Two different meanings of the word "fat," Professor. Per dictionary.com.

The first usage, "10 pounds fatter," is using definition 3, "consisting of or containing fat," which pretty much applies to all of us.

The second usage "drink yourself FAT," is using definition 1, "having too much flabby tissue," essentially a synonym for obese.

TRO said...

"Could the govt do a cute commercial about the food pyriamid? and what would be the difference? Is it the content of the video that is at issue or that the govt is doing it at all."

Late seeing this but . . .

I don't mind the government offering health advice. As long as that advice is based on good science and medicine and not politics. Obviously one shouldn't go around drinking fat but no one does that - save perhaps Michael Moore - and comparing that to drinking sodas is over the line. If you want to advise folks in a calm, rational way to not drink as many that's fine. But that's now what this does (yeah it hasn't happened yet but don't think it won't).

In the end, it's not the commercial really, it's the fact that the government is slowly moving from advice to coertion - either through outlawing things like salt or ultimately forcing people to slim down by withdrawing health care when the government is the only provider.

SGT Ted said...

Didn't the nations obesity problem start when the food recommendations were changed from the old one which was the three: meat, veggies and starch, to the food pyramid?