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Too far? New York contemplates trans-fat ban

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  • Too far? New York contemplates trans-fat ban

    http://www.cnn.com/2006/HEALTH/09/26....ap/index.html

    So what's next? Anything with cholesterol? Things make you gain weight?

    Pretty sad and a great waste of money/time, if you ask me.
    [squadl]
    "I am the prettiest african-american, vietnamese..cong..person." -SugarNCamo

  • #2
    Re: Too far? New York contemplates trans-fat ban

    Smoking bans work because smoking affects the well being of nearby innocents. I'd like to hear how artificial trans fatty acids consumption does the same, as I'd think it key to its prohibition justification.

    The only thing I can think of is if the tax payers somehow carry an unreasonable burden due to the consumption of this stuff. I can't imagine how that would work in any way that's unique to this vice specifically.
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    • #3
      Re: Too far? New York contemplates trans-fat ban

      Trans fat has been proven to have absolutely no nutrional benefit. It ups your risk of heart disease (which is a massive problem in America) and bad cholesterol levels.

      It is more or less poison.

      Thats why I won't eat at KFC, high levels of trans fat in their cooking oil.

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      • #4
        Re: Too far? New York contemplates trans-fat ban

        Is it illegal for a person to poison himself (genuine question)? That is, if a person survives poisoning himself, can he be prosecuted? If so, what's the charge, and how does society justify telling that guy what to do with/to his own body if no one else's body is involved?

        Might we see some similarities in legislation which tells people what "foods" they can and can't consume?
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        • #5
          Re: Too far? New York contemplates trans-fat ban

          I think its ridiculous that this is even being thought of. But apparently we are cattle and cannot be trusted to think for ourselves. I don't like the smoking bans either but there is at least some merit to that. Anything to the extremes usually ends up being bad for you. And while trans-fats have no nutritional value, can we just ignore how good the occasional tasty donut is good for the soul? Mmmm donuts.
          Gigan - Shaman (Resto)
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          • #6
            Re: Too far? New York contemplates trans-fat ban

            Originally posted by Wyzcrak View Post
            Smoking bans work because smoking affects the well being of nearby innocents. I'd like to hear how artificial trans fatty acids consumption does the same, as I'd think it key to its prohibition justification.

            The only thing I can think of is if the tax payers somehow carry an unreasonable burden due to the consumption of this stuff. I can't imagine how that would work in any way that's unique to this vice specifically.
            I think it has more to do with the fact that trans fat is a) MUCH worse for you than normal lard, b) MUCH cheaper for the people that make the food. Basically, this is about MacDonalds pulling the wool over their customer's eyes, who were never "informed" of trans-fat, but rather have the information "availiable" to them.

            In other words, the system of trans-fat education relies on MacDonald's customer's rising above the company's expectations and taking it upon themselves to boycott MacDonald's, in an effort to rectify the situation. It reminds me of the state Lottery system, which I also think is discraceful. But thats another story.

            The fast-food industry has embraced trans-fatty acids because of what I said earlier: cheap. OK, so it's bad for you, what else is new? I mean, duh, its fast food.. right? Right, but what happens when every fast food joint in America is using trans-fatty acids? Well, soon, you're gonna start seeing it pop up in frozen foods, then in diners like Denny's, then in grocery stores, and finally, we'll be reduced to the state we're in now with 'organic' foods, where every company has their own little special non-trans-fat products. Which, of course, will cost more. Basically, it's a conspiracy.

            Point is, from a person-to-person basis, I fully agree with Wyzcrak. When I go to MacDonald's, I don't curse them for low quality food. I knew what I was buying when I went there. But suppose I am one of the few MCD's customer's that actually are aware of what a trans-fat even IS, let alone that MCD's uses them almost exclusively, and suppose that I stopped buying MCD's. Do you suppose it would really matter to the company at large? A huge, multinational fast-food join like MacDonald's? NO.

            So, by way of legislation, customer's ARE deciding they don't want trans-fats at MCD's, only they're doing it in a way that is productive, rather than naive. They're banding together (as a state) and (hopefully) will get something done, much like CA did with Hybrid cars.


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            • #7
              Re: Too far? New York contemplates trans-fat ban

              Originally posted by BHack View Post
              It is more or less poison.
              So is alcohol, but I don't see us banning that. There's also tons of other things on the market that have zero nutritional value and are bad for your health (candy, anyone?), but those aren't getting banned either.

              Originally posted by aesop rock
              So, by way of legislation, customer's ARE deciding they don't want trans-fats at MCD's, only they're doing it in a way that is productive, rather than naive. They're banding together (as a state) and (hopefully) will get something done, much like CA did with Hybrid cars.
              It doesn't look like it's the customers, though. From the article, it's the city health department making this move, not the citizens of New York forcing some vote.
              [squadl]
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              • #8
                Re: Too far? New York contemplates trans-fat ban

                I don't have any reason to think anyone got up this morning to punish trans fatty acids just for the hell of it.

                So the question is: what distinct threat exists in trans fatty acids that doesn't exist in, to use your examples, alcohol and candy? Remember, it may be social as much as anything. What is it? Is it consumer ignorance?
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                • #9
                  Re: Too far? New York contemplates trans-fat ban

                  Originally posted by Wyzcrak View Post
                  I don't have any reason to think anyone got up this morning to punish trans fatty acids just for the hell of it.
                  Maybe, maybe not. But it sure smacks of our ping pong health society. We live in a world where today bacon can kill you, but tomorrow it'll prevent brain cancer.

                  So the question is: what distinct threat exists in trans fatty acids that doesn't exist in, to use your examples, alcohol and candy? Remember, it may be social as much as anything. What is it? Is it consumer ignorance?
                  Personally, I think it's the health officials deciding they have the right to determine what we can and can't do with our bodies. I would say there's definitely a problem with people being unhealthy these days with regard to their eating habits. Unfortunately, that's a pure personal choice, and I don't think the government has any right to meddle in that area.
                  [squadl]
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                  • #10
                    Re: Too far? New York contemplates trans-fat ban

                    Originally posted by SmokingTarpan View Post
                    I don't think the government has any right to [tell me I can't eat unhealthy foods].
                    This is why I asked if we allow our government to prosecute us if we survive a poison "attack" on ourselves. Do we?

                    If we do, where do you draw the line between "government can regulate poison" and "government can't regulate trans fatty acids"?
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                    Darkilla: In short, NS is pretty much really fast chess. With guns. Apophis: I haven't seen anyone say that SM's are better than non-SMs. Nordbomber: This is THE first server I've seen where either side can comeback from out of seemingly nowhere with the right teamwork. en4rcment: I have NEVER experienced the type of gameplay that I have found here. Nightly I am amazed at the personalities and gaming talent. Zephyr: Apophis is clearly a highly sophisticated self-aware AI construct that runs on a highly modified toaster oven in Wyzcrak's basement.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Too far? New York contemplates trans-fat ban

                      Originally posted by Wyzcrak View Post
                      I don't have any reason to think anyone got up this morning to punish trans fatty acids just for the hell of it.

                      So the question is: what distinct threat exists in trans fatty acids that doesn't exist in, to use your examples, alcohol and candy? Remember, it may be social as much as anything. What is it? Is it consumer ignorance?
                      I think trans fat is a little harder to voluntarily avoid than these other 'poisons' though.

                      It is on the back of nutritional labels of things you buy in grocery stores, but you don't get nutrional content information when in MOST retaurants. Isn't this what the ban is attempting to do? Remove trans fat from restaurant menus?

                      It is definitely walking a line, but the idea here is that the consumer doesn't have a choice because they don't have any way of knowing. While the hardliner come back is, well they have a choice not to go to any restaurants that don't offer nutrional content, that is the same hardliner response you got about the smoking ban. Being, don't ban smoking in bars because people have the choice to go to bars or not. Well, yea, but.... well I shouldn't have to finish this sentence.

                      I think it is a good idea to do this.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Too far? New York contemplates trans-fat ban

                        If they can prove that artificial trans fats are legitimately dangerous substances, as opposed to just unhealthful elements of legal ingredients, then a ban would be prudent. In the same way that you cannot use sawdust as meat filler. If the science is not sound, however, there really is no legal basis for an outright ban.

                        Unfortunately, with the ability of any mildly wealthy interest group (and McDonald's is more than "mildly" wealthy) to present "scientific" evidence for something that just happens to coincide with their revenue stream, the likelihood of finding scientific consensus on anything is practically nil.

                        This may be designed as a market hit. Raise the spectre of a ban to get media attention and encourage companies to voluntarily change their practices.
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                        • #13
                          Re: Too far? New York contemplates trans-fat ban

                          If Burger Joint came out tomorrow and announced, with full disclosure, that they were including sawdust in the "ingredients" delivered between the buns of their sandwiches, would legislation be appropriate?

                          If so, what property of trans fatty acids distinguishes itself from sawdust such that we think legislation against it so unacceptable?
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                          Darkilla: In short, NS is pretty much really fast chess. With guns. Apophis: I haven't seen anyone say that SM's are better than non-SMs. Nordbomber: This is THE first server I've seen where either side can comeback from out of seemingly nowhere with the right teamwork. en4rcment: I have NEVER experienced the type of gameplay that I have found here. Nightly I am amazed at the personalities and gaming talent. Zephyr: Apophis is clearly a highly sophisticated self-aware AI construct that runs on a highly modified toaster oven in Wyzcrak's basement.

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                          • #14
                            Re: Too far? New York contemplates trans-fat ban

                            Well, legislation against "woodburgers" already exists in some form. Even the most liberal of health inspections would land Burger Joint in the courts for serving inedible sawdust in their sandwiches. (Sawdust is a potential contaminant even when used in the meatpacking process, as it can absorb blood and other bacterial vectors and then transfer them back to the processed meat.)

                            I am actually curious as to what about trans fats makes them dangerous. Is it that they are actually harmful in any dose, or is it the density and ubiquity of their use that makes them harmful? We do, as a society, have the right to influence the dietary choices available to us.
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                            • #15
                              Re: Too far? New York contemplates trans-fat ban

                              http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trans_fat

                              It's just bad stuff.

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