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'Niceguy' Eddie

Political Talk Show Host and Internet Radio Personality. My show, In My Humble Opinion, aired on RainbowRadio from 2015-2017.

Feel free to contact me at niceguy9418@usa.com. You can also friend me on Facebook, follow me on Twitter, and Tumblr, and support my Patreon. Also, if you don't mind the stench, you can find my unofficial "fan club" over HERE. ;)


Wednesday, July 14, 2010

The SECOND biggest problem with this country

This is related to a thread on MMFA this morning.  Was anyone ELSE having trouble with multiple posts today? It seems everthing I posted went up three times!


A few years ago, I received one of those RW emails “proving” how stupid, un-American, etc… liberals are. It was chock full of the typical RW distortions and bullshit, to the point that few of them were even remotely memorable. But there was one that struck me, because it was something that I hadn’t ever even considered: Liberals hate McDonald’s because it succeeded where communism failed: Feeding billions of people both cheaply and profitably.

Now… I’m sure I don’t have to point out the first absurdity here: That American Liberals / Progressives are NOT, by and large, “Communists.” Nor Marxists, Socialists, etc... Also, while there are plenty of legitimate reasons to CRITICISE McDonalds, “hate” in this case would seem to be a particularly egregious exaggeration. I’m sure on most liberals’ outrage-o-meter, Micky-D’s scores somewhere between the Barbie Doll and the derogatory nature of the term, “Mexican Standoff.”

And since we’re NOT and NEVER HAVE BEEN advocating for any form of actual communism, the fact that McDonald’s (and the fast-food industry) HAS undeniably played a roll in ending hunger in this country and in many others is a reason for Liberals to PRAISE and CREDIT them! The problem here is that, as usual, conservatives have no sense of moderation; no sense of balance. They think that if “cheap food” is GOOD, then MORE food, even CHEAPER, must therefore, always, be better.

Goodbye, widespread hunger. Hello, obesity epidemic.

And so here’s my second entry in the “What’s wrong with this country” category:

You can get a 7-Layer Burrito at Taco Bell for $0.99.

The 7-Layer Burrito has:
510 Calories (over 25% of the daily allowance for a 200 Pound male.)
68 Grams of (mostly refined) Carbohydrates (50% of your day’s supply normally, 340% if you’re on a low-carb, weight loss plan, as I am.)
6 grams of Saturated Fat (30% of the recommended daily allowance)
1420 Milligrams of Sodium (60% of the recommended daily allowance)

…all that yummy goodness for only ONE DOLLAR. Not bad… if you’re otherwise broke and starving to death, but any objective look at the numbers will find that, if anything, we’re well into the opposite problem by now.

Meanwhile, 5 Red Bell Peppers, which contain more Vitamin C per Calorie that an Orange will cost you around $9.00. Think about that: One single pepper, good for you yes, but hardly a meal, will cost you almost TWICE what Taco Bell’s “saturated fat, wrapped in refined carbs” does. Another example: One English cucumber costs about $2.00. And granted, I can buy a regular cucumber instead (bleh) but think about that for a moment… How can one, single vegetable cost more than a PREPARED “meal?” That’s a victory for industrialized snacking perhaps, but it’s no wonder why so many Americans (certainly myself very much included) need to eat more fruits and vegetables!

The free market might not let us starve to death, but when we’re all getting triple bypasses we can’t afford, we might well advised to spend some of our recuperation time rethinking what a wonderful fix-all the free-market REALLY is.

PS: I really don’t have the answer to this problem. There’s no simple solution that I am aware of. I’m merely observing that when slowly killing yourself costs ONE dollars, and eating healthy costs TWO (just for the Peppers and Cucumbers, mind you: we’re nowhere near a MEAL yet!) something has gone seriously awry.


  1. This spawned two rants, but text is cheap:

    "There’s no simple solution that I am aware of."

    First half of the solution: allow capitalism to actually take place.

    Over and over again corporations lie, cheat, and collude, where the theory of capitalism demands that the consumers be informed of what's going on. If a light were shone on corporate practice, consumers would choose companies doing the right thing in epic invisible-hand style. In the case of food, any concession to helping consumers choose properly had to be wrung from the companies by force every tiny step of the way. Capitalism would do wonders for us if capitalism were allowed to happen.

    Second half of the solution: defeat bad human nature with technology

    When I was growing up I had a choice: take responsibility and learn how to cook, or slack off and hope technology takes the problem away. I chose the second one and it's worked wonderfully.

    I drink sodas like water. If diet sodas tasted like garbage, I'd drink regular, add 150 calories every ninety minutes, and probably be dead by now. But technology took the need for willpower out of choosing the 0 calorie versions.

    I saw a Jenny Craig commercial where Jason Alexander brags about how much he's allowed to eat in one day, and it was about seven large plates where every single plate was over 90% nasty vegetables. I'm not eating like that in a million years. I'd rather die early. Technology is working hard at populating those seven plates with salivating food that adds up to the same nutrition. I hope it doesn't take much longer.

  2. Yes, I have dyslexia, so I wasn't sure, 5 seconds later, if I actually pressed the button or not. So I made a few repeat polls myself.

    From what I understand, a big factor is government subsidies. The reason junk food is so cheap is because of corn syrup, the reason corn syrup is profitable, is because of subsidies.

    Therefore, using these incentives (not punishment, reward,) not to sound too conspiratorial, I believe the government COULD, if they wanted to, absolutely move us into a direction of a happy, healthier, more cleaner country.

    ...They just don't want to. Why? Because changing stuff around is dangerous to certain people. If you watch "Who Killed the Electric Car", it becomes clear-

    An efficient future is a less profitable future. You'll have to correct me, since you're the automotive engineer here, but from what I understand, electric cars don't contain the oily, greased-up belts and gears that a normal, diesel-based engine contain. This is important because half of car making is creating the replaceable parts for the cars. It cuts down on a continuous profit made by outdated, gas cars.

    Sorry to get off the "food" theme, but it's the profit system itself that's destroying humanity right now.

  3. Dradeeus is right, the so-called free market is propped up in many cases by subsidies. The other problem, of course, is that people LIKE the Taco Bell burrito or the McDonalds Quarter Pounder better than a bell pepper or a cucumber. Sadly, even people who do want to eat healthy often give in to the temptation, and not just for the price. I speak as one who just recently ate a #3 meal at McDonalds (quarter pounder with cheese, large fries and a soda) at a rest stop on the Thruway. What is really needed is a "fast food" place that is cheap like McDonalds but serves healthy tasty stuff. For instance, I had a great vegetarian meal at a restaurant last week that I truly enjoyed. But the veggies have to be made in a way that makes them tasty and desirable. No fast-food restaurants are really doing this. Sure, Mickey D's has salads and stuff like that but I just KNOW the salads are probably just as bad for you, full of cheese or full fat dressing or whatever.

  4. The double posts are due to a problem with MMFA's servers. The 'solution' is to hit the publish button once, then hit your browser's refresh arrow, not hit the send/publish button again. What's frustrating to me is that MMFA seems unwilling to remove those posts even when they're flagged for removal as duplicates. Maybe they'll only remove them if the original poster reports them?

    And I don't know a good solution to the problem, but what it highlights is the insincerity of those on the right who suggest that if only fat people (or, on other topics, poor people or black people) would try harder, and do the right thing, they could eat better/healthier.

  5. Steeve,

    I hear you. Atkins works for me. (13 lbs down so far.) Problem is... back in '03 I lost 40 lbs. By '05 I'd gained back 20 of it. (No longer watching carbs or cals.) So that year I lost that 20 back. But buy '07 had gained it back. So I lost it again. And by about a few weeks ago I had gained about 30 lbs back. So I'm back on the way down. (Like I said, 13 down, 23 off of my peak weight.) I can actually LOSE WEIGHT easier than I gain it. (Faster anyway.) What I find hard to do is MAINTAIN. But yeah... diet soda's definitely the way to go. (Sorry that was WAY off topic!)

    Drad & Maui,

    I never considered how farm subsidies were affecting our diets. But wow! That's a REALLY GOOD POINT, regarding not only Corn Syrup but Corn Starch as well. At least one of those is a key ingredient in about anything that's not good for you.


    I report my own duplicate posts all the time, and lately, yeah, I've noticed too that they aren't coming down like they used to.

    The RW "work harder" mantra is pretty funny when you consider that MANAGEMENT is mostly republican, and they do very little work - they're paid more to get everyone else to work! Seems to me that LABOR (you know - people who actually WORK for a living?) always voted Democrat. At least before the RW convinced them that vague Religion notions were more important than getting a decent day's pay for an honest day's work.

    Thanks for all y'alls comments.