Politics & Policy

A Handful of Cheese Dust

(Michelle Obama: Andrew Burton/Getty)
Foodie, heal thyself! Michelle Obama’s past belies her disdain for convenience foods.

Before the nation’s Food Nanny guilt-trips you into ditching boxed dinners on a frazzled night, know this: The first lady profited from cheese dust before she was against it.

In the new issue of Cooking Light magazine, Michelle Obama takes another sanctimonious stand against processed foods. The occasion of this latest hectoring is a month-long celebration of the fifth anniversary of her Let’s Move initiative. This time she spins a slickly crafted tale of how her former personal chef challenged daughter Malia several years ago to turn a block of cheese into powder. “She sat there for 30 minutes trying to pulverize a block of cheese into dust,” Mrs. Obama claims.

“She was really focused on it, and it just didn’t work, so she had to give up. And from then on, we stopped eating macaroni and cheese out of a box because cheese dust is not food,” snob momma Obama pontificated.

Hey, Michelle Antoinette: Shunning convenience foods is easy when you’ve got a taxpayer-subsidized cooking staff whipping up four-course feasts every night. Those boxed meals you spit upon are affordable and easy to store, and last a long time. For someone who pretends to be sympathetic to working-class and middle-class families, Her Royal Highness sure has a funny way of showing it.

But the faux populist narrative must be spoon-fed to the masses. Cooking Light’s editor marveled at how “real” Mrs. Obama is and how genuinely “personal” her government health crusade is. Yahoo News similarly gushed over the nation’s enlightened “family meal champion” and touted the fifth anniversary of her “pivotal” Let’s Move initiative.

Message from sycophantic foodie and women’s magazines: Michelle Obama is just like you and me! She’s an ordinary mom who cares!

Except she’s not.

Before she was wielding the power of public office to dictate school lunches and castigate junk-meal makers, Mrs. Obama profited from the very same processed-food industry she now demonizes. What none of the fan-girling mainstream journalists who’ve covered her Let’s Move anniversary campaign have bothered to mention in their glowing profiles is that “cheese dust” was gold dust for the Obamas.

The first lady may not think it’s food now, but powdered edibles provided hefty financial sustenance for her family 10 years ago. It’s just one of the many tasty perks of political influence Mrs. Barack Obama has enjoyed in her adult lifetime.

Let’s move? How about let’s remember, shall we? In June 2005, a few months after her husband was elected to the U.S. Senate, Mrs. Obama snagged a seat on the corporate board of directors of TreeHouse Foods Inc. Currying favor, the food-processing company put her on its audit and nominating and corporate governance committees despite her complete lack of experience or expertise. For her on-the-job training and the privilege of putting her name and face on their literature, the company forked over $45,000 in 2005 and $51,200 in 2006 to Mrs. Obama — as well as 7,500 TreeHouse stock options, worth more than $72,000 for each year.

Mrs. Obama raked in that easy money thanks to the worldwide conglomerate’s popular product line of powdered non-dairy creamers and sweeteners, hot and cold cereals, evil macaroni and cheese, skillet dinners, powdered gravy and sauce mixes, powdered drink mixes, powdered soup, and puddings.

She certainly didn’t look down her nose at milk dust, cheese dust, juice dust, oatmeal dust, or broth dust when it came mixed with a healthy paycheck.

I wouldn’t begrudge Mrs. Obama’s enterprises, except for the fact that she’s using taxpayer money and public office to shove her highbrow tastes and control-freak ideology down our throats. More offensive: Constant posturing from the White House about the need for jobs, while Mrs. Obama now sneers at the food-processing industry that put money in her designer pocket. Kraft Foods alone employs 103,000 people, with manufacturing and processing facilities worldwide, and reported annual net revenues topping $40 billion.

When you look past the phony concerned-mom costumery, Mrs. Obama’s healthy-living campaigns are all about control and cash flow. While she food-shames the rest of us, her Partnership for a Healthier America charity is a conduit for corporations and lobbyists to buy access. Her “fed food” racket is pulling in millions of dollars from secret donors and nonprofits.

Mrs. Obama’s self-aggrandizing food elitism is hard for ordinary Americans to swallow, no matter how much truffle oil her personal chef drizzles on top.

— Michelle Malkin is the author of Culture of Corruption: Obama and His Team of Tax Cheats, Crooks & Cronies. Her e-mail address is malkinblog@gmail.com. Copyright © 2015 Creators.com

Most Popular

Hamilton on the Wrong Side of Cinema

Disney’s presentation of the Broadway blockbuster Hamilton marks a curious cultural turning point: The most heralded production in recent Broadway history has not been adapted into a movie — it’s a digital video recording of a 2016 stage performance — because it has to live up to its hype as an exclusive ... Read More

Hamilton on the Wrong Side of Cinema

Disney’s presentation of the Broadway blockbuster Hamilton marks a curious cultural turning point: The most heralded production in recent Broadway history has not been adapted into a movie — it’s a digital video recording of a 2016 stage performance — because it has to live up to its hype as an exclusive ... Read More
U.S.

The Worrisome Decline of Patriotism in America

Independence Day is a time to celebrate our country, but with patriotic sentiment at perhaps an all-time low, this year’s holiday is also an opportunity for us to remember how excruciatingly lucky we are to be American citizens. With nothing but bad news filling our screens in recent months, love of country has ... Read More
U.S.

The Worrisome Decline of Patriotism in America

Independence Day is a time to celebrate our country, but with patriotic sentiment at perhaps an all-time low, this year’s holiday is also an opportunity for us to remember how excruciatingly lucky we are to be American citizens. With nothing but bad news filling our screens in recent months, love of country has ... Read More
Politics & Policy

Against Trump

Donald Trump leads the polls nationally and in most states in the race for the Republican presidential nomination. There are understandable reasons for his eminence, and he has shown impressive gut-level skill as a campaigner. But he is not deserving of conservative support in the caucuses and primaries. Trump is ... Read More
Politics & Policy

Against Trump

Donald Trump leads the polls nationally and in most states in the race for the Republican presidential nomination. There are understandable reasons for his eminence, and he has shown impressive gut-level skill as a campaigner. But he is not deserving of conservative support in the caucuses and primaries. Trump is ... Read More
Elections

‘Slipping and Sliding down the Polls’

This is an excerpt from episode 233 of The Editors. Rich: So Jim Geraghty, I have the RealClearPolitics Biden versus Trump polling page up right here. I’m just going to read you some numbers going back to . . . This is a CNBC poll from the 10th and 12th of June. And I’m just going to run through to the ... Read More
Elections

‘Slipping and Sliding down the Polls’

This is an excerpt from episode 233 of The Editors. Rich: So Jim Geraghty, I have the RealClearPolitics Biden versus Trump polling page up right here. I’m just going to read you some numbers going back to . . . This is a CNBC poll from the 10th and 12th of June. And I’m just going to run through to the ... Read More