Tuesday, December 05, 2006

From The Dept. Of The Irony Impaired: Banning Trans Fat

December 5th is the anniversary of the repeal of Prohibition--a failed experiment in government control over the unhealthy but pleasurable behavior of adults. H. L. Mencken (left) bashed this idiocy relenlessly and was given the honor of the ceremonial first beer announcing its demise 73 years ago today.

Thus, it was the perfect day for the Food Nazis of New York City to vote to criminalize the use of trans fats by city restaurants.

The arguments against trans fat are unimpressive--the stuff isn't healthy, but eaten in moderation it's irrelevant to your health. In fact, trans fat was promoted by Food Nazis twenty years ago as a healthy alternative to the "naughty food de jour," saturated fats. Now the same groups are threatening lawsuits against the same food companies they pressured into using trans fats.

What makes today's irony even more (pardon the pun) delicious is that, in Mayor Jackboot Bloomberg's New York, it will be illegal for a bar to sell you a plate of fries, but totally legal to sell you six Jack and Cokes--all the alcohol and high-fructose corn syrup you can drink!

Now, really. What kills more people each year, in both per capita and raw number terms: trans fats, or alcohol? The answer is obvious.

So why is the real killer found on every street corner in Bloomberg's nanny-state duchy, while relatively benign trans fats are being cast out as evil? Is it because this is as much Big Brother as New Yorkers will accept...for now?