Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Think-Tank Calls For Unhealthy Food Tax
The Telegraph ^ | 7-15-2002 | Andrew Sparrow

Posted on 07/15/2002 2:50:10 PM PDT by blam

Think-tank calls for unhealthy food tax

By Andrew Sparrow, Political Correspondent
(Filed: 15/07/2002)

Unhealthy food should be taxed, a Left-wing think-tank will argue this week.

Demos, which has close links with the Government, will urge ministers to consider imposing a levy on "fatty, highly processed and fast foods" in order to encourage people to eat more healthily.

In a report that covers "food poverty", Demos will point out that poor diet is to blame for health problems such as obesity and that this is a particular problem for low-income families, who are proportionally more likely to eat food with a high fat and sugar content.

The issue is contentious because food is exempt from value added tax and politicians in the past have been reluctant to consider putting a tax on such an essential commodity.

A Demos spokesman said: "We are saying there should be some disincentive mechanism to tackle the issue of low cost, high fat, low nutrition food, which is bought disproportionally by low income people. But it has got to be done in a way that penalises the manufacturers, not the consumers."

The spokesman added: "It is vitally important that it does not just further penalise people who are already being penalised because they are forced into buying low nutrition food."

The report, Inconvenience Food, will argue that any money raised from the tax should be used to encourage healthier eating habits. But it will not explain in detail how any of this could work.

Demos will launch its report in the Commons on Wednesday.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: food; tax; thinktank; unhealthy
Only in western nations is obesity associated with poverty.
1 posted on 07/15/2002 2:50:10 PM PDT by blam
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: blam
A Demos spokesman said: "We are saying there should be some disincentive mechanism to tackle the issue of low cost, high fat, low nutrition food, which is bought disproportionally by low income people.

Some people can't take a dump without bringing class-envy into the picture.

2 posted on 07/15/2002 2:53:15 PM PDT by Paul Atreides
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: blam
Those B#$%ards. Just another revenue stream for them, and it will have absolutely no effect on obesity nor any other malady, since people will buy what they want. As it is, people pay already pay a premium for fake food - low salt, low sugar, fake sugare 'reduced' fat, etc. etc. Look for lawsuits against McDonalds and others, too.
3 posted on 07/15/2002 2:53:48 PM PDT by Freedom4US
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: blam
Two Thoughts:

One, this brings back a recent scene I just saw at a 7/11. A lady was using food stamps to buy slurpees and candy bars for her screaming kids.

Two, over a century ago, being overweight was a sign of being prosperous. In California, we had the Big Four running the show. The group included Collis Huntington, Mark Hopkins, Charles Crocker and Leland Stanford. The reason these men where called the Big Four was not because they were the wealthiest men in California, but because they all were huge. Not one of them was under 300 pounds.

Where is my bag of Cheetos?
4 posted on 07/15/2002 2:59:09 PM PDT by OC_Steve
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: blam
What business is it to the left wing groups what people chose to eat? What happened to "lifestyle choice?"
Hell, they've just about killed their fair share through AIDs, their "lifestyle choice" alone.
Tell 'em to shut up, mind their own problems, and find an infected bath house somewhere.
5 posted on 07/15/2002 3:01:24 PM PDT by concerned about politics
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: blam

6 posted on 07/15/2002 3:01:49 PM PDT by Oldeconomybuyer
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: blam
will argue that any money raised from the tax should be used to encourage healthier eating habits.

Yeh, right, just like our state lotteries were to pay for public schools, the Socialial Security was suppose to be used for Social security, and the cigarett tax was to aid smoking cessation.
Sure, they'll use it to help people eat right -- NOT!
This is just another "share the wealth" Socialist sceem to deny the laborer his due.

7 posted on 07/15/2002 3:07:08 PM PDT by concerned about politics
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: concerned about politics
What business is it to the left wing groups what people chose to eat? What happened to "lifestyle choice?"

Ask the smokers, to paraphrase Orwell "some choices are more equal than others"

8 posted on 07/15/2002 3:09:20 PM PDT by NeoCaveman
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: blam
But it has got to be done in a way that penalises the manufacturers, not the consumers.

Only a lifelong liberal would not realize where the manufacturers get their money. Taxing something that poor people buy in disproportionate amounts means that prices go up correspongingly. I thought these morons were against "disparate impact..."

9 posted on 07/15/2002 3:12:14 PM PDT by Billthedrill
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Billthedrill
correspongingly = correspondingly. Durn keyboard...
10 posted on 07/15/2002 3:12:57 PM PDT by Billthedrill
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: blam
The brits can tax themselves in whatever fashion they please, but over here, this is akin to what taxing tea was in 1776. If you want a sure bet for a second revolution (meaning people angry enough to take up arms), then f!#k with our favorite foods, or try to tax them out of reach. The congresstwits would find out very quickly that a lot of us "old white fat men" have more than enough energy to move against them and most of us can shoot pretty straight.
11 posted on 07/15/2002 3:13:07 PM PDT by RJS1950
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: blam
The real issue - governments want to garner more taxes. Cigarettes, alcohol, Big Macs are all mere details. More money means more power; and with that greater power, further and deeper control.

The reason to oppose this is not that the nanny state needs to get it's nose out of our plate, but rather that the growing omnipresent State needs to have it's revenues controlled.

12 posted on 07/15/2002 3:14:00 PM PDT by neutrino
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: blam
All taxes are unhealthy.
13 posted on 07/15/2002 3:14:07 PM PDT by SamAdams76
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: blam
Unhealth for who? I'm 5-10, 140lbs and like my red meat, whole milk and peanutbutter and bacon sandwiches, thankyouverymuch. And my BP is 110/75 and my cholesterol is 140. I burn cholesterol.
14 posted on 07/15/2002 3:14:21 PM PDT by tacticalogic
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: blam
Any food is unhealthful if you EAT TOO MUCH of it, with the possible exception of lettuce or celery.
15 posted on 07/15/2002 3:18:06 PM PDT by mombonn
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: mombonn
"Any food is unhealthful if you EAT TOO MUCH of it, with the possible exception of lettuce or celery.

I'd go light on the celery.

16 posted on 07/15/2002 3:23:30 PM PDT by blam
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 15 | View Replies]

To: OC_Steve
One, this brings back a recent scene I just saw at a 7/11. A lady was using food stamps to buy slurpees and candy bars for her screaming kids.

Of course if restrictions were placed on the types of food that can be procured with food stamps, the same people calling for a tax on junk food would be whingeing about how it is not our right to tell poor people what kinds of food they can and cannot buy with food stamps!

17 posted on 07/15/2002 3:24:14 PM PDT by Drew68
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: Drew68
I think the difference is that food stamps are a transfer payment from the taxpayers to the recipient, and can be subject to conditions, while the food tax aims at regulating how we can spend self-earned money. A man gives me a gift, he can choose the gift. I walk into a store with my own money, I get to buy what I want.
18 posted on 07/15/2002 3:40:13 PM PDT by wretchard
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: RJS1950
The brits can tax themselves in whatever fashion they please, but over here, this is akin to what taxing tea was in 1776

Doubtful. The sheeple of America have already fallen into the "us versus them" games the left plays with taxes, pitting one class against a smaller target class. Just look at the smokers. They've already gotten their tenticles firmly entrenched with nary a peep from this outraged population you refer to. Just look at what they take out of your paycheck already. And they think up such pretty names other then the word "tax" in them.

Buy gas for your car. Taxed.

Make a phone call. Taxed. Don't make a phone call, and you're still taxed.

Purchase an item at a department store. Taxed.

Stay at a hotel. Taxed.

Buy a house. Taxed. Refuse to pay and the government takes your house away even though you've paid for it.

Buy a car. Taxed.

Take a drink of water or flush the toilet. Taxed.

Go see a movie. Taxed.

Buy McDonalds and sit inside to eat it. Taxed.

Buy some smokes. Taxed.

And the list goes on and on. And you seem to think that one more tax is going to cause some sort of 'revolution' against Congress? Heck they've been robbing Social Security for decades and no one has said a word. No, this tax will be imposed on the people of this country due to the fact American's have turned into a bunch of political morons over the past few decades, wanting their decisions spoonfed to them in 30 second sound bites.

19 posted on 07/15/2002 3:44:47 PM PDT by zandtar
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: blam; All
These effers are really hoisting my craw with this. Think tank, my power glutes. When you mess with a Repogirls food, she don't go crying to the man. She pontificates.

I'm a classic mesomorph. I'm five feet one inch tall, built like an east german power lifter, and I can bench press 85 lbs (okay, okay...in my defense, it IS more than half my weight, so perspective is key here...) I spend more time in the gym than anyone I know, my bp is 110/50, and my resting pulse rate is 52. Could I stand to lose a few pounds--sure, if I want those really cool veins in my arms. I live across the street from a Wendy's, and my idea of a good, balanced lunch is their single combo with cheese and extra pickles.

If any of those limp-wristed girly men think tankers want a fight on their hands, they picked the wrong she-wolf to taunt. It'll be akin to wrestling a smoked pig-ear from a teething rottweiller pup. They tax my combo with cheese, I'll put a kink in their tofu-eating elitist fire hoses, knowhuttamsayinvern? I'll frigging thumb wrestle 'em to death...

They Can Tax my Single with Cheese when they pry it From My Cold Greasy Hands,

RepoGirl, bane to liberals, lover of Wendy's combos and Biggie Teas...

20 posted on 07/15/2002 3:57:24 PM PDT by RepoGirl
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: concerned about politics
Liberals really SUCK! They seem to want to prove it daily!~
21 posted on 07/15/2002 4:05:27 PM PDT by Warren
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: dubyaismypresident
It's for your own good!
We ought to be greaful.
I know I am, bet you are too!
22 posted on 07/15/2002 4:07:02 PM PDT by Warren
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

To: blam
Demos, which has close links with the Government, will urge ministers to consider imposing a levy on "fatty, highly processed and fast foods" in order to encourage people to eat more healthily.

I want to know when they will begin to address the second-hand fat issue?

23 posted on 07/15/2002 4:26:58 PM PDT by TightSqueeze
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Paul Atreides

The issue is contentious because food is exempt from value added tax and politicians in the past have been reluctant to consider putting a tax on such an essential commodity.

Trivial compared to the fact that the whole idea reeks of fascism. Which is why some are advocating a junk-food tax. Notice the gussied-up junk food spun as unhealthy tax. Food that is un healthy is junk food.

A Demos spokesman said: "We are saying there should be some disincentive mechanism to tackle the issue of low cost, high fat, low nutrition food, which is bought disproportionally by low income people.

Some people can't take a dump without bringing class-envy into the picture.

Especially putrid since the government is the biggest cause of poverty. Plus, the diet the government advocates and supports by subsidizing production of those foods, many of those foods are unhealthy.

Government is not the solution -- it's the problem!

24 posted on 07/15/2002 5:24:06 PM PDT by Zon
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Paul Atreides
Some people can't take a dump without bringing class-envy into the picture.

Reminds me of one of those old "Ethiopian Jokes"....something to do with 'what do you call an Ethiopian having a perch?.....a braggart'.......

25 posted on 07/15/2002 5:27:16 PM PDT by ErnBatavia
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: ErnBatavia; Zon
It's interesting; AIDS is infinitely more dangerous than junk food. Are they going to tax homosexuals and intravenous drug users?
26 posted on 07/15/2002 5:42:00 PM PDT by Paul Atreides
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 25 | View Replies]

To: blam
"It is vitally important that it does not just further penalise people who are already being penalised because they are forced into buying low nutrition food."

Who are the people who are forced to buy low nutrition food?
My local farmer's market accepts food stamps, and even better, at the end of the day they reduce prices. They also sell "irregular" fruits and vegs. at low prices.
I've lived in many different areas of the country, and farmer's markets have always been available. Also, nutritious food, like rice and vegs, is not the most expensive in normal markets. The less nutritious food, like sweetened cereals and fast food, is more expensive.

27 posted on 07/15/2002 5:56:17 PM PDT by speekinout
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: speekinout
You can say that again. Frosted Flakes, per pound, cost more than Filet Mignon.
28 posted on 07/15/2002 6:12:31 PM PDT by patton
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 27 | View Replies]

To: Paul Atreides
Every government form, building, politician and bureaucrat should have a warning label that reads:

WARNING: Government can be harmful to your health wealth and well-being.

29 posted on 07/15/2002 6:37:46 PM PDT by Zon
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 26 | View Replies]

To: patton
Frosted Flakes, per pound, cost more than Filet Mignon.

OK, I'll say it again :-) No one is forced to eat highly processed foods like sweetened cereal. This is not an issue about money or nutrition. It's about education.

30 posted on 07/15/2002 7:16:18 PM PDT by speekinout
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 28 | View Replies]

To: speekinout
The issue is power, the issue is always power.
31 posted on 07/15/2002 7:48:23 PM PDT by Old Professer
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 30 | View Replies]

To: speekinout
You said that rice and vegetables are nutritious; people whose diets consist solely of rice and vegetables are not healthier than those whose diet consists of red meat any more than whales are healthier than sharks.

Obesity is a phenomenon of specialization which is a manifestation of mass socialization; why would or should it concern those of us unafflicted by the condition unless the fat slobs are trying to share our beds?

32 posted on 07/15/2002 7:54:05 PM PDT by Old Professer
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 30 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson