Sugar controversy in the news

As usual, “Chuq nails it”:

bq. Why the US is heavily subsidizing sugar growers while artificially limiting access to global sugar to prop up prices, while at the same time planning to heavily spend on new programs to fight obesity, caused in at least way by too much sugar in the typical US diet?

This in response to a “plastic article”:;sid=04/01/22/07233695 . It seems the WHO is trying to reduce world sugar consumption, as we learn that it is a contributor to obesity. The US response seems to be the same as their response to global warming: “There’s no evidence!”. William Steiger writes:

bq. that there is no robust evidence linking sugar consumption to rising obesity levels and that diet has to be a matter of personal choice. Steiger wrote ‘There is also an unsubstantiated focus on ‘good’ and ‘bad’ foods, and a conclusion that specific foods are linked to non-communicable diseases. The assertion that the heavy marketing of energy-dense foods or fast food outlets increases the risk of obesity is supported by almost no data.’

I always thought that this is exactly the kind of thing that governments should be meddling in. Sadly, people do need to be protected from themselves (with education, if nothing else), and goverments are in a unique position to do that. And, after all, the same governments tax revenue is paying all the health costs of obesity, so you think there’d be a bottom-line incentive too. (Well, ok, there is, but it involves re-election, not tax dollars.)

I guess I’d make a lousy libertarian :-)

posted at 2:49 pm on Sunday, January 25, 2004 in General | Comments Off on Sugar controversy in the news

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