Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Denormalising butter...

There is sits in your fridge. A glistening slab of evil intent. Saturated fats. Sinful fats. Waiting just to do its wicked job, the raise your cholesterol levels, to fur up your arteries and to drag you inexorably towards that devastating coronary heart attack or that debilitating stroke.

And there are children’s poems featuring this dread substance, this cause of obesity. Can this be allowed?

The King asked
The Queen, and
The Queen asked
The Dairymaid:
"Could we have some butter for
The Royal slice of bread?"

It’s mad, I know. Mad and stupid. But the ‘denormalisation’ of foods mankind has eaten since before we invented writing continues apace. And butter has moved – with the decision of the Danish government to slap on a ‘fat tax’ – to the head of the denormalisation queue:

Mr Cameron told the Conservative conference that a similar move should not be ruled out in the UK.

“I think it is something that we should look at,” he said in an interview with Five Live. “The problem in the past when people have looked at using the tax system in this way is the impact it can have on people on low incomes. But frankly, do we have a problem with the growing level of obesity? Yes.

“I am worried about the costs to the health service, the fact that some people are going to have shorter lives than their parents.”

Understand that this proposal isn’t a tax on those foods Guardian readers disapprove of, those greasy burgers beloved of the lower orders. It’s at tax on cheese, on butter on Aberdeen Angus beef steaks – on some of Britain’s finest artisan foods. And the purpose – well that is clear. The intention is to gradually eliminate saturated fats from most people’s diets – the aim is the denormalisation of butter.

I could at this point argue that this whole effort is misplaced – saturated fats simply aren’t the primary cause of obesity:

Processed carbohydrates, which many Americans eat today in place of fat, may increase the risk of obesity, diabetes and heart disease more than fat does—a finding that has serious implications for new dietary guidelines expected this year.

It’s filling up on cheap pizza, ramming down vast bowls of “healthy” pasta and foot long subs that are the problem rather than the butter and the cheese.  But this isn’t the main point.

I could also remark that rates of obesity – especially among men – are no longer rising:

Despite the government ignoring the anti-obesity lobby's urgent suggestions for traffic light labelling on food and suchlike, the latest figures show that obesity amongst men has fallen to 22% and the female obesity rate has fallen to 24%.

So we’re stepping up a campaign in a battle we’re already winning. But again, that isn’t the point.

The point is that the tax would seal an abominable relationship between the nannying fussbuckets in our health system and the rapacious maw of the treasury. The men with calculators will see billions in revenue from ratcheting up the ‘fat tax’ by above inflation each year egged on by the Church of Public Health who will – without the need for any evidential support – propagandise that such actions are making us healthier and happier.

If some people wish for a dull, flavourless existence then they can give up butter, cheese and beef dripping. But there is no place for these to be ‘denormalised’ by those who cannot see that obesity is self-inflicted, brought on by cramming our faces with stodge and sugar while our only exercise is to stretch out a hand to grasp the TV remote control. It really is that simple – so why tax my little pleasures because somebody else has got too fat by eating too much?


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Right with you.

I waited 13 long years for the return of commonsense and common decency.

What do we get?

At his first oportunity, my newly elected Conservative MP rushes to vote against Mr Nuttall's bill that could have helped to save the elderly from their continued social isolation and undeserved denormalisation, under the Health Act 2006

We now have a "nudge unit" and an intent to tax us out of eating wholesome food.

Might I suggest that we have been unwitting victims of a false flag operation?

Because that's the way it's beginning to look, to me at least.