Obesity


"The recent conflict over what America eats, and the way the government promotes food, is a disturbing example of how in Bush's America corporate interests trump public health, public opinion and plain old common sense...

"...July 14-15, when the Federal Trade Commission held hearings on childhood obesity and food marketing... FTC chair Deborah Majoras had declared beforehand that the commission will do absolutely nothing to stop the rising flood of junk food advertising to children. In June the Department of Agriculture denied a request from our group Commercial Alert to enforce existing rules forbidding mealtime sales in school cafeterias of "foods of minimal nutritional value"--ie., junk foods and soda pop...

"...late 2001, when a Surgeon General's report called obesity an "epidemic"...

"... the President's Council on Physical Fitness... partners with... Coca-Cola, Burger King, General Mills, Pepsico and other blue chip members of the "obesity lobby"...

"Not a lot of subtlety is required to understand what's driving Administration policy. It's large infusions of cash...

"For their money, the industry has been able to buy into a strategy on obesity and food marketing that mirrors the approach taken by Big Tobacco... denial that the problem (obesity) is caused by the product (junk food). Instead, lack of exercise is fingered as the culprit... the fault not of food marketers but of parents" (Gary Ruskin and Juliet Schor. "Junk Food Nation." The Nation, Sep. 5, 2005: 15-17).


Colby Glass, MLIS