Sunday 16 November 2003

Eat your greens - before the food police pay a visit to a dinner table near you

Yes, that's the headline for this story in Scotland on Sunday:
Deacon, the Scottish parliament’s first health minister, says the Executive is already engaged in an "impressive range of work" to improve the country’s diet, including the creation of food co-operatives, breakfast clubs for schools and healthy-eating advertising. But she said that can only go so far.
But of course. We can't have politicians running around with nothing to do, can we? So we'll have to go further:
Deacon says if high nutritional standards for school meals cannot be achieved voluntarily, "the Executive may need to consider whether to use the force of law".

Deacon adds: "The Executive must also work with the UK government to address the enormous power of the multinationals and the force of their advertising, particularly the way they influence young people.

"Again, much can be achieved through dialogue and voluntary agreements, but legislative measures should not be ruled out."

Ms Deacon then goes on about "curbs", "action", "changing the contents of tins" and "changing the eating habits of the nation". And how is this to be achieved? Our brave politician is already thinking ahead:
There is no quick fix or simple solution and the Executive deserves credit for the start it has made. But as work progresses, it is to be hoped that our nation’s leaders are prepared to consider the full range of options on the menu of possible solutions."
So what final solution could there be? For a start that word "menu" needs to go. We can't have the people deciding what they want to eat. That way lays chaos and anarchy. There is a better way.

I note that over in America Wal-Mart has cancelled the testing of Radio Frequency Identification Devices following a consumer outcry. Use of these RFIDs has become very controversial in the US. But here in Scotland we're not troubled by any of that outmoded, eighteenth-century constitutional privacy nonsense, are we? Let's lead the world in the War on Obesity. It's time for Scotland's own RFIDs. We need to put a Real Food Identification Device inside every apple, lettuce and carrot. Then we must all be fitted with internal sensors to make sure that we are eating in the manner prescribed by Ms Deacon. Once a week we shall be herded along to our wonderful new Parliament building to be internally monitored to ensure foodalogical correctness.

A CHIP IN EVERY SCOT: now there's an election-winning slogan for you!