Free Markets, Free People
Happy Meal toy ban followup
You remember the story yesterday about Santa Clara county’s desire to ban toys in meals the board of supervisors had decided were unhealthy?
They’ve passed the provision:
On Tuesday, the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors took action by prohibiting fast-food restaurants from using toys to lure kids into buying unhealthy meals. The vote was 3-2.
Have to love the “reporting”. Obviously a supporter of arbitrary government intervention the LA Times’ Karen Kaplan gives us another example of unbiased reporting:
Not surprisingly, the toy ban has angered folks who resent government efforts to help Americans eat healthier.
And if you’re wondering, the link above brings you right back to the QandO story yesterday on this subject. I, of course, make no bones about being biased, never have – this is more “nanny state goodness”. You see, Ms. Kaplan obviously thinks it is the role of government to “help Americans eat healthier” even if it means banning things. My guess is she’d not be quite as ready for government bans it they had to do with, oh I don’t know, books or something similar.
In Santa Clara County, one out of every four kids is either overweight or obese. Among 2- to 5-year-olds from low-income families, the rate is one in three. The county health system spends millions of dollars a year treating kids for health problems related to obesity, and the tab is growing.
If you haven’t yet figured out that the passage of ObamaCare has emboldened the nannies at all levels, this ought to make the case. Trust me, this reporter didn’t dig this nugget out. It was handed to her by those trying to justify this power grab.
Anyway, how will this work? Well, just as the FDA is going to be fiddling with the salt content in your favorite spaghetti sauce, the board of supervisors – all board certified nutritionists I’m sure – have decided on these criteria for a “trinket” to be included in order to “lure kids into buying” the meal:
In order to combine trinkets with burgers, chicken nuggets or other children’s fare, a meal must meet some basic nutritional requirements. Among them:
– No single food item can contain more than 200 calories, the drink cannot have more than 120 calories, and the entire meal cannot exceed 485 calories.
– No single item can contain more than 480 milligrams of salt, and the entire meal is limited to 600 mg of salt.
– No more than 35% of the calories can come from fat.
– No more than 10% of total calories can come from added sugar.
What has to be understood here is this is one of those precedent setters – if you give the Board of Supervisors this without a fight, how can you deny them the right, next time, to go after something else? Legitimate question. Because you know if they win this, there’s very little to restrain them from managing the rest of your life.
So where does this fight have to be won now that the board of supervisors have voted? Well thankfully it has to be approved again at a second Board of Supervisors meeting in May. If the article cited is to be believed, a poll shows 80% of the county opposes the ban. A bunch of that 80% needs to be in attendance at that BoS meeting next month and tell the emboldened nanny to butt out.