Free Markets, Free People


First they took the salt …

Interesting how the Washington Post chooses to begin this article:

The Food and Drug Administration is planning an unprecedented effort to gradually reduce the salt consumed each day by Americans, saying that less sodium in everything from soup to nuts would prevent thousands of deaths from hypertension and heart disease. The initiative, to be launched this year, would eventually lead to the first legal limits on the amount of salt allowed in food products.

Anyone care to guess why the FDA hadn’t planned an “unprecedented effort” before? 

Because until a month or so ago, we could all claim it was none of the government’s business couldn’t we?  But now that they’ve invested themselves with the power to save healthcare in this country by cutting costs – and doing so with “preventive medicine” – where do you suppose this “unprecedented effort” is founded?

If you don’t believe me, read the article.

But for the past 30 years, health officials have grown increasingly alarmed as salt intake has increased with the explosion in processed foods and restaurant meals. Most adults consume about twice the government’s daily recommended limit, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Until now, the government has pushed the food industry to voluntarily reduce salt and tried to educate consumers about the dangers of excessive sodium. But in a study to be released Wednesday, an expert panel convened by the Institute of Medicine concludes that those measures have failed. The panel will recommend that the government take action, according to sources familiar with the findings.

Wow … for you that have been paying attention I sarcastically ask, “are you surprised?” Is this not the next logical step in taking over every aspect of your life.

You see, a panel of experts have determined that too much sodium is bad for you. They have tried to play this freedom game with you and have you voluntarily cut your consumption, but you didn’t. So to hell with the charade – since you don’t know what’s good for you and won’t do what is necessary to comply with the experts, they’ll just recommend you be forced to do so.

Are salt rationing cards far behind?

Ironically (and unsurprisingly) much like AGW, the science is not at all settled concerning the harm salt does.

High-salt diets may not increase the risk of death, contrary to long-held medical beliefs, according to investigators from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University.

They reached their conclusion after examining dietary intake among a nationally representative sample of adults in the U.S. The Einstein researchers actually observed a significantly increased risk of death from cardiovascular disease (CVD) associated with lower sodium diets.

Not that the FDA will pause and consider that. In fact, when it says unprecedented, it means unprecedented concerning the level of intrusion it now plans:

The government intends to work with the food industry and health experts to reduce sodium gradually over a period of years to adjust the American palate to a less salty diet, according to FDA sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the initiative had not been formally announced.

Officials have not determined the salt limits. In a complicated undertaking, the FDA would analyze the salt in spaghetti sauces, breads and thousands of other products that make up the $600 billion food and beverage market, sources said. Working with food manufacturers, the government would set limits for salt in these categories, designed to gradually ratchet down sodium consumption. The changes would be calibrated so that consumers barely notice the modification.

Yes free people, the government will now decide how much salt can be in a receipe and, they promise, they’ll reduce it so gradually you won’t even notice.  Why?

“We can’t just rely on the individual to do something,” said Cheryl Anderson, an epidemiologist at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health who served on the Institute of Medicine committee. “Food manufacturers have to reduce the amount of sodium in foods.”

You people just aren’t reliable enough to do what the experts expect you to do so … so they’ll just take the choice away.

How do you like them apples, boys and girls?  Now, be a good little prole and shuffle along.  Nothing to see here, nothing to see …

~McQ

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Tumblr
  • Digg
  • Reddit
  • email
  • Print
  • Google Bookmarks

33 Responses to First they took the salt …

  • Officials have not determined the salt limits. In a complicated undertaking, the FDA would analyze the salt in spaghetti sauces, breads and thousands of other products that make up the $600 billion food and beverage market, sources said. Working with food manufacturers, the government would set limits for salt in these categories, designed to gradually ratchet down sodium consumption. The changes would be calibrated so that consumers barely notice the modification

    >>>> Just where are we getting the money for this sh*t?   These idiots would take a freaking DECADE to work their way down the left side of any isle at your local big box store. What a boondoggle. “We expect to get to the Rice-A-Roni by July 2016, and once that is out of the way, it’s clear sailing to the Hamburger Helper”  And getting to the mac-and-cheese is probably akin to setting a goal for a manned lunar colony. “One small step for man, one giant step for creamy 3-cheese blend mac and cheese!”

    Go ahead, you tell me just how much  salt is too much salt for Spam? How about ethnic foods? Oh man, god help them if they mess up the taste of Goya products, I smell a racism claim coming on. And I BET they don’t have the stones to try to set limits for Halal food.

    “How do you like them apples, boys and girls?”

    >>>> I dunno. How long until those are regulated out of our reach as well?

  • ““We can’t just rely on the individual to do something,””    Now that didn’t take long at all!

    Hey, you people, can I move this camel’s head and neck into the tent?  Didn’t cause any fuss at all when I let him stick his nose in here, so, it’s all the same right?  Hardly get in the way at all, you won’t even notice, trust me.

    By the way, have you checked your BMI today?   Ah, the road to hell is paved with camel’s noses, or something like that.

    Salt ration cards, Carbon dioxide ration cards.   Boy!  We can all pull together just like we did when we whupped the NAZIs!
     

  • We can’t just rely on the individual to do something.

    If this phrase doesn’t send your blood pressure through the roof with outrage, then I suggest that you really have no business calling yourself “an American”.

    But, in all honesty, it’s only the latest milepost on the road to Nanny State.  Look over your shoulder and you can see some of the ones we’ve already passed.  Motorcycle helmets.  Cigarette warning labels.  Seatbelts.  Fluoridated water.  Illegal drugs.  You may even be able to see the remains of the Prohibition marker if you look closely enough.  All of them put up with good intentions, and all of them put up because enough people had a fundamental belief in the inability of their fellow citizens to live their own lives, manage their own affairs, and basically take care of themselves.  So, why SHOULDN’T we add another marker on the road?  I’m sure you can find plenty of people who will argue, passionately and with some level of scientific evidence, that too much salt IS bad for people.  Even if they can’t discuss the science, they can certainly complain that nasty ol’ food companies put it in without consent and that the consumer has no control over how much salt is present in the food he eats.  Either way, we’ve GOT to “do something” to save those (insert large number here) Americans who die every year from the effects of eating too much salt.

    It’s occured to me lately that the Libertarian Party ought to be able to make hay in the present environment, when many people are becoming fearful of / outraged over our increasingly powerful and intrusive government, for which both parties share responsibility.  It’s a simple platform: “If you don’t want other people using the power of the government to tell you what to do, vote Libertarian.”

    • The problem with the Libertarians “making hay” is that any success they have will undercut the GOP.

      What we need now is the GOP taking back the House and the Senate if possible, and taking the White House in 2012.

      Local victories by the Libertarians are fine, but big picture we need to move to remove Obamacare and the fools who passed it. That doesn’t mean voting for RINOs (unless the situation is such that only a RINO can defeat the Democrat), but splitting the vote between GOP and Libertarian to permit more Dems to remain in Congress is not acceptable.

      • So many folks against a 3rd party yet the government is based on a tri-legged approach – - executive, legislative, and representative (congress).

        • It’s not being against a 3rd party, it’s knowing there’s insufficient mass behind any 3rd party to make it a viable alternative.  So we get A Libertarian senator in, then what, most likely they caucus with the Republicans, and it’s still a 2 party Senate.

    • We can’t just rely on the individual to do something.
      If this phrase doesn’t send your blood pressure through the roof with outrage, then I suggest that you really have no business calling yourself “an American”.

      Careful – you’ll get hypertension.
      Gee…maybe they can ban Congress?

      • Don’t give the nanny-staters any ideas, lest we start seeing JAMA or Lancet articles about how talk radio or Fox News cause health problems and should be banned to reduce health care costs.

        • Didn’t the Soviets do that with mental illness, right before they shipped you off to the gulag.

  • You see, a panel of experts have determined that too much sodium is bad for you.

    Are you disagreeing w/ them?  Perhaps we should teach the controversy……

  • I’m a dietitian with a masters in nutrition and you don’t know how right you are about all of this. There are score upon score of collectivist nannies in the public health arena who just want to legislate all the fun out of your lives, to say nothing of your freedom of choice. I have been working part-time for the past three years after spending a good interval completely out of work. This was after being turned out of a government job in public health. I was told I was “a bad fit” for the job, and when I asked if I could be offered something a little more objective I was told simply, “no”. However I believe I’ve figured out figured out for myself what being a ‘bad fit’ means in this part of the world. A freedom loving individual who thinks people should be free to make their own choices, and that the federal government has a very limited role to play in governing those consenting to be so governed, as specifically delineated by the founders in the 18th century.  I’ve seen the erosion of so many freedoms in my brief lifetime, and they never come back.

  • I love the California laws about the possibility of certain chemicals possibly present causing health problems. Essentially, everywhere you go, there has to be a warning sign – gas station, store, work place, etc. Everyone ignores them of course.
    Signmakers, lawyers, and environmental do-gooders counting their loot.
    I will say that I do find a lot of restaurant food overly salty. Sort of like how Italians did like the trains running on time under Mussolini…

  • Talk about a boondoggle!  Say for the moment that somehow the FDA actually accomplishes something along these lines–how in the world can they possibly think that there’s one level of sodium intake that is acceptable for every person in the country?  And assuming that some foods are going to naturally have higher levels of sodium than others, will my shopping cart have some sort of RFID tag in it that will prevent me from buying that bag of Fritos because I’ll exceed my salt limit?

    Never mind the fact that I run outdoors a lot during the summer and sweat like a pig, so I’m going to need a bit more salt than the next guy.  No, it’s okay, because the FDA’s recommended daily allowance of anything for someone on a 2,000-calorie diet will be just fine for me.  Good gravy, if the government’s going to insist on regulating food, maybe they could actually pay some attention to the animal-processing end of things so we don’t end up with a sequel to The Jungle.

    • GregSay for the moment that somehow the FDA actually accomplishes something along these lines–how in the world can they possibly think that there’s one level of sodium intake that is acceptable for every person in the country?

      Good point.  The nanny-staters don’t think about that sort of thing because they are smugly, arrogantly certain that the know best.

  • The most fanatically religious fascists on the planet are Marxist Communists and they always will be. Their doctrine demands it.

  • Remember taking salt tabs for high temperature environments.  Wonder if the tabs’ll just get smaller, or be done away with altogether.
    If I wanted to live in Nanny State Britain, I’d move there.

  • With apologies to <a href=”http://article.nationalreview.com/345464/first-they-came-for-piglet/mark-steyn”>Mark Steyn</a>:
    Banning food ingredients such as Salt is now a recurring theme in American life. A while back, it was the USDA telling freedom and food loving citizens not to feed children food containing sugar, for surely their teeth would rot.  As Martin Niemöller famously said, first they came for Cane Sugar and I did not speak out because I was not Cuban and, if I was, I prefer a Montecristo #4 to cigars with sweet taste. So then they came for high-fructose Corn Syrup, Sweet ‘n Low, Nutrasweet, Splenda, Sorbital  and Equal, and by the time I realized my country had turned into 24/7 Sour Grapes it was too late, because there was no J. Wellington Wimpy to propose:  “I’ll gladly pay you Tuesday for a hamburger today” and bring the nightmare to an end.

  • I saw recently in another article that food manufacturers use salt for flavor because giving consumers the flavor profile they want with less salt is actually considerably more expensive.  In other words, this new rule will drive up the cost of food for everyone, especially the poor and middle class.  The recent decision to require restaurants with 20 or more locations to minclude complete nutrition info on the menu and menu boards is also hugely expensive except for the largest chains, and will have the unintended consequence of stagnating the growth of local and regional chains to a count lower than 20. That my dear friends, will result in the loss of jobs for young people and minorities, and raise the cost of government support for those classes.  Great idea, create further dependency through government regulation.

  • All’s I know is that if you look at the labels of absolutely any processed food, there is no way to be under 100% of the daily recommended salt serving as shown.  Whether there is any adverse health affects to this I don’t know, but its way easier to add salt to something from a shaker, if you are so inclined, then to find existing items that are low sodium to start with, so as much as I don’t want the government forcing anything on anyone, if not them then who, I certainly don’t have the time or resources to create a nationwide ad. campaign to spread the necessary information in order to have a rational market driven response to this issue.

    • The simple answer for that is don’t buy the food if you feel it is unhealthy for you. What it doesn’t say is you or anyone else should be making that decision for others.

  • Top down, one-size fits all, we know what’s best…

  • “The changes would be calibrated so that consumers barely notice the modification.”

    See: How Do You Cook A Frog?

  • Remember the film ‘Demolation Man’, good movie but bad underpinnings.  An evil Mr. Cocktoe made it the law that ‘everything that was not Good for you is Bad for you and therfor against the law’.  We have got the same thing brewing at the whitehouse with their idea of a Nanny State, but this time the evil guy is not a Cocktoe but a ‘Dickhead’. 

  • No, you are wrong, first they took flushworthy toilets.

  • America wanted change, to empower a community organizer with zero experience in the real world and to make health care a right.  If the government is paying the government wants control.  This is what YOU voted for so quit the sniveling for god’s sake.

  • I was listening to this on National Palestine Radio yesterday afternoon and it just blew me away. 

    “If we cut everyones’ salt intake by 50% it would prevent 100,000 deaths a year.” Sez you.

    Anyway, this does not compute. The moonbats say man is bad, man makes global warming, man pollutes Mother Earth. So, the more men die, the better off we are. Correct?

    You didn’t read it here first, but I’ll say it again . . .  It’s not about your health, it’s about controlling you. Everything you do, the smallest aspect of your life.

    This is just so  . . . infuriating!

  • Harkin and Delauro (US Senate) are now on the job on this crucial and critical issue. I believe they are working with their staff to develop a comprehensive sodium cap and trade mechanism for this dangerous health calamity. Under the plan everyone will be given sodium credits. Those who want more salt will be able to buy sodium credits from a centralized trading exchange. Those who use less salt will be able to sell their credits on the exchange. It is only through such sacrifice can we avoid a worldwide disaster which will result from hypertensive people having their brains and hearts explode.

    Didn’t Gandhi have a thing with the British over a salt tax?

    Didn’t we have a thing with the British over the tea tax?

  • So where will people get their daily intake of iodine once they remove most of the salt from the menu??

  • As I outlined earlier all of these arguments are worthless, not only is it none of the government’s business what I eat, but even their so called interest in prolonging my life is wrong.  People who die young are much less of a social burden on health care costs and pension funds.

    So keeping people alive longer (even though I don’t think there is any link with salt) is counter productive, as the older you get, the more pensions you will use, and the more health care you will consume.