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Hogarth judge

February 2018

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Hogarth judge

"The Big Fat Con"

This story from The Guardian confirms what I've been saying for quite some time now. The U.S. war on "obesity" is an elaborate snow job. A definition of "overweight" that puts two thirds of the population it was made for in the "overweight" category is self-evident nonsense under any reasonable version of statistical logic.

The real problem is that no one ever went broke selling a new pseudovirtue based on abstinence or bodily purity to Americans.

The first line of defence will be a series of ad-hominems. Someone dared question one of the sacred truths that lie at the fundament of morality. Scoffers are apologists for the weak-willed and self-indulgent, and almost certainly must have a weight problem themselves. They should instead get in step with the program. These predictable reactions are a clue that something else is at stake besides the weighing of scientific evidence.

It will next be claimed that fatties and their apologists cost you money because of tax supports for the medical care they will receive. Another obvious untruth, BTW: if your concern is for public funds paid in support of medical benefits, anything that makes people die early represents savings. It is considered impolitic to point out that this strain of moralism is itself pretty morally repulsive. Moreover, this is a very slippery slope: accept this premise, and nothing can ever be "nobody's business but my own." Which is, of course, the point: those who espouse this vision have an excuse to regulate -anything-.

A long stream of American culture shows us that we can never be truly happy unless we have something to feel guilty about. Since we've taken some steps to put sex on the back burner, food is the obvious choice. These beliefs contribute to human happiness by making us miserable the way we like it.

Comments

Two things told us that it was a shuck:

One of our livejournal friends (it's silenceleigh does lots of exercise, eats right and is in good shape and looks very nice from her photos and webcam. She's a size 12, yet according to the government standards for body mass index, she is still considered to be overweight.

Then the other night, we saw a brief news bumper that said dress sizes were being decreased even as ladies are putting on weight, what was going on? Film at eleven. Why would they decrease dress sizes? Obviously to make ladies feel badly that they can't get into a size 12 any more because 12s are now what 10 used to be. Up in Canada where this insanity has not yet reached, those ladies (who often aren't fat at all) would be considered "small" or "medium" -- certainly not the XXXL they're forced to resort to down here in the land of the free.

The idea that being fat is intrinsically unhealthy doesn't take genetics into account. Generations of our Lithuanian ancestors were much heavier than this body is now and lived well into their 90s.

This will probably all end in anything over a size 10 being considered overweight and officially designated as a disease, but of course overweight people are ineligible for health insurance. The medical industry will repeat its tired old lines about exercise and eating right, in spite of the fact that this simply doesn't work for everybody (even champion athletes). Eventually they'll probably come up with medicines and procedures like the ones they're monkeying around in the laboratories with right now, but these will be available only to the rich. The rest of us, as you've pointed out, are simply Bad.