The Corner

Carded For Candy?

It never stops…

Via Time:

Sugar poses enough health risks that it should be considered a controlled substance just like alcohol and tobacco, contend a team of researchers from the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF).

Here’s an extract from a statement by those same researchers:

Many of the interventions that have reduced alcohol and tobacco consumption can be models for addressing the sugar problem, such as levying special sales taxes, controlling access, and tightening licensing requirements on vending machines and snack bars that sell high sugar products in schools and workplaces.

“We’re not talking prohibition…We’re not advocating a major imposition of the government into people’s lives. We’re talking about gentle ways to make sugar consumption slightly less convenient, thereby moving people away from the concentrated dose. What we want is to actually increase people’s choices by making foods that aren’t loaded with sugar comparatively easier and cheaper to get.”

That second paragraph is a minor propaganda classic. First we have the straw man (“we’re not talking prohibition”). Then we read the soothing reassurance (“We’re not advocating a major imposition of the government into people’s lives.  We’re talking about gentle ways to make sugar consumption slightly less convenient”. That is in turn followed by language (“the concentrated dose”)  that slyly demonizes the adversary, in this case by  implicitly comparing poor old sugar to some sort of drug (a familiar trope, as it happens). Then comes a conclusion of truly magnificent doublespeak: “What we want is to actually increase people’s choices by making foods that aren’t loaded with sugar comparatively easier and cheaper to get.” What they “actually” mean by that is that sugar-heavy products will be made more expensive and more difficult to obtain thereby making it easier for the child-like American population to “choose” the healthier alternative.

Bravo!

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