7-11 announced plans for 40 new stores just in the Denver Metro Area. LOL
Geoff-you cannot blame government for how people eat. Everything boils down to choices. You chose to grocery shop or you chose to go to McHeavy’s. You can’t blame that on farm subsidies. Government COULD act to promote healthier lifestyles such as zoning laws pertaining to fast food to supermarket ratios and sugar taxes, but the question is should they? There needs to be a balance between government action and taking responsibility and deciding where government intervention is appropriate. The spiralling cost of healthcare is a compelling government concern. When taxpayers end up footing the bill for people’s poor health decisions, that effects us all; its not an issolated choice when all of us, taxpayers and insurance rate payers, have to pay for the expenses of an unhealthy population. In my opinion, mandating and regulating behavior becomes necessary when one’s individual actions affect the broader population.
However, what has occured over time is government playing nanny, there has been an overall dumbing down of the population. People just ‘obey the government’ without thinking for themselves. The result? A lot of people who can’t make decisions for themselves! The goal of any parent should be to raise a son or daughter to be able to eventually keep their own counsel and not rely on mom and dad for advise and stuff. The consequences of government intervention is that it fosters a relationship with government of the ‘parent’ always making the decision for us and just handing us the goods. The goals should be to EDUCATE people on healthy living and leave it to them to make the decision. Not just that, but taxing certain habits doesn’t work. Tobacco, alcohol, and sugar have what is called price elasticity. If consumption of these items is habitual, people will neglect other needs in order to get their fix. A person, as I’ve seen, can live a crawl away from a supermarket, but still eat three days out of the week at McHeavy’s. Food stamps can be used to buy junk just the same. Americans CHOSE what to shove in their mouth. The only thing I think government COULD do to facilitate healthy lifestyles is bring back Home Economics in school and require 4 full HS years of PE.