Ronald Reagan is to blame for the American obesity epidemic

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The American obesity epidemic is screwing over our economy. The Campaign to End Obesity is out with a new report showing the staggering economic costs of dealing with an increasingly more obese American population. Today – the number of Americans who are obese has tripled since 1960. Obesity – and the health risks associated with it - adds over $190 billion a year extra to the nation’s medical tab. It also drives down worker productivity – as the very obese are costing employers on average $30 billion a year.

And – as a result of having to transport more weight – cars in America are burning an extra billion gallons of gasoline a year. And who can we blame for this obesity epidemic? Ronald Reagan. As the EqualityTrust in the UK discovered – obesity is directly linked to wealth inequality as the more unequal a nation is – then the higher the obesity rates are. The soaring wealth inequality levels in America today can be traced back to the Reagan tax cuts – which have by and large been kept in place by every subsequent President since – creating a mass redistribution of wealth from the bottom to the top. Working Americans now have to make choices between putting gas in their car, buying health insurance, or paying for healthier – and often costlier – foods.

Time to roll back the Reagan tax cuts – and slim down America.

Thom Hartmann Administrator's picture
Thom Hartmann A...
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Dec. 29, 2009 10:59 am

Comments

I do not understand the causation here between wealth inequality and obesity.

WorkerBee's picture
WorkerBee
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Apr. 28, 2012 12:22 pm

Thom, perhaps Americans are eating more "comfort foods" i.e. carbohydrate laden ones because of the stress that inequality creates? OTOH, I also see so many people at Starbucks buying sugar laden frappes in the morning and wonder how their health will fair 10 years from now. My bet is I'm seeing the members of "Future Diabetics of America" ordering those and some are already way overweight (and probably wondering why). These aren't inexpensive drinks.

captbebops's picture
captbebops
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

I think the obesity problem is more attributable to the criminal capitalists forcing the family farmers out of existence. The food that the agri-businesses produce is intentionally of an inferior quality that is laced with fat or so dependent on high sugar content that it is virtually impossible to eat a healthy diet unless you have a middle class income and a preferential lifestyle that enables someone to learn about, and have the time for, preparing food in a special way. So, while the agri-businesses are only a subset of the overall war on the populace they are directly responsible for all of the early deaths and diseases that are incurred as a result of their intentional lowering of the food quality in the nation and, as such, the owners and operators of the agri-businesses need to be held accountable for all of those early deaths and debilitating diseases. Once the criminals are held accountable for all of the crimes that they commit in the name of population control and profit, then a rule of law will be something that becomes real instead of the current situation where it is merely a stick to beat the general public with.

jmacneil's picture
jmacneil
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Mar. 6, 2012 7:24 pm

I come from a farming community. Some of the farm kids I grew up with went away to college, studied agriculture, returned and started running the family farm as an agri-business. It was an attempt to make the farm more profitable and organized than the slip shod way their parents ran it. However it has gotten out of hand and profit has taken priority over growing quality crops. And some started buying out the adjacent farms making for even larger operations.

captbebops's picture
captbebops
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

The big agri-businesses go beyond the family farm concept and they are actively working to eliminate the smaller producers of quality food, as this link to a farm family that was featured on the Alyona Show on RT will explain,

http://vbs20.com/bakers/

In the last three quarters of a century the amount of farms in the U.S. has dropped from 5,380,000 to around 2,000,000,

http://www.dailyfinance.com/2008/07/20/top-25-things-vanishing-from-amer...

and that is a disquieting trend when it is realized that more and more of the farmland is being used to grow crops for bio-fuel, which means that the farmland base will come under increasing pressure from the speculators out to make a buck with no concern for the overall health of the farming community.

jmacneil's picture
jmacneil
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Mar. 6, 2012 7:24 pm

I agree. There is no definative link to causation, and what little evidence exists is tenuous at best. My own opinion is that the root cause involves those two perenial "bad words" on most progressive forums, "personal responsibility", excepting of course the relatively few individuals who have a genetic disorder.

mjolnir's picture
mjolnir
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Mar. 3, 2011 12:42 pm

Oh, come on. Poor people get plenty of vegetables--by eating KETCHUP on their fries, hotdogs, and grease burgers. And it's cheap, too! Ketchup is a vegetable. Ronnie said so!

lladutke's picture
lladutke
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Apr. 11, 2011 11:05 am

Here is a longer version of Obesity - Blame Reagan

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louisehartmann
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

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