Thursday, May 05, 2005

VegNews

I was recently given some back issues of VegNews magazine. The publication itself is exactly what you would expect from a vegetarian focused read, but some of the politically oriented articles are laughable. Take this letter to the editor, which is both well written and strikingly true:

I'm not surprised that vegetarians are as clueless as flesh-eaters regarding the government's proper role in out society, but it still upsets me to read articles by Michele Simon such as "Is Junk Food the Next Tobacco?" and "Uncle Sam's Obesity Rx" (VN #37 and 38) in a vegetarian magazine. The government has no authority- constitutional, moral, or otherwise- to do 99 percent of what it is presently doing. The includes taxing the hell out of cigarettes while subsidizing tobacco farmers, or attacking the obesity problem while subsidizing the meat and dairy industries. There is no such thing as the "Public Health" because there is no such thing as the "Public." There are only individuals who, together, created our government several years ago to protect us from force and fraud, the only two crimes. This was to make us free to make our own choices in out lives regardless of the consequences, as long as we do not initiate force or perpetrate fraud. We did not create government to protect us from ourselves. Government has no authority to do anything not specifically listed in the constitution. The deviation from Constitutional government should concern everyone, but especially vegetarians, since without Federal subsidies to the meat and dairy industries, their products would be so expensive that most people would be vegetarian from economic necessity. -Nick Kyriazi, Pittsburgh, PA


Bravo! But then the VegNews editor shoots back with this drivel:

I completely agree that federal subsidies to the mean and dairy industries should be eliminated and have written so elsewhere. However, arguing that government should not act to protect individuals lays right into the hands of the mighty corporations who enjoy the hypocrisy of government supporting industry while claiming to foster a free market. Whether we like it or not, the government is very involved in the public's health, and thus bears the responsibility to act in the public's best interest, instead of protecting industry's bottom line. -Michele Simon

Sigh. Did she even read the letter? Does she know anything about economics? I don't plan on subscribing to VegNews anytime soon.

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