I recently sat through a lecture on nutrition, and the speaker attempted to make the case that nutrition and restaurant food are mutually exclusive. I agree. After all, if people complained about a restaurant’s food the way they complain about hospital food, the restaurant would soon be out of business for lack of customers.
There are only a few things that bring flavor to food, and those items are: fat, sugar, and salt. All three of them are bad for you to one extent or another. The speaker in this case tried to say that since those restaurants are putting fat, salt, and sugar into food, the government needs to step in and regulate these ingredients and mandate the levels of them. There was something in there about weight gain, health problems, blah, blah.
The speaker was formerly a manager of a restaurant that was a part of a national chain, and he was complaining that the restaurants only want to sell food, and do not care about health and nutrition. He said that as a manager, he was not paid to think about the health concerns of his customers, only sales numbers.
During the question and answer period, I pointed out to the speaker that no one holds a gun to the people who eat in establishments, and overeating is the responsibility of the person stuffing his face, and that making a law to tell me what to eat because others want to lose weight is wrong. He replied, “Not if my taxes are paying for your health care.”
The next speaker in the seminar began talking about cardiac problems. He then made a statement that 600,000 pacemakers are inserted per year all over the world, and more than 58% of them are for white males over the age of 60. He tried say that this fact made the health care industry racist, because white males constitute far less than 50% of the world population. He went on to say that this was accomplished by keeping costs high, ensuring that the whites (who obviously cheat their way to the top) are the only one who can receive care.
He used the example that a pacemaker can cost upwards of $50,000 installed, and that a stent (used to open blocked cardiac arteries) cost up to $5,000. He said that laws should be put in place to set prices at a level that people could afford.
I walked out. How can you argue with people who do not understand economics? If you tell me that I must not sell a product for more than a certain price, what will you do if I simply refuse to produce said product?
I feel more and more every day like I am living in an Ayn Rand novel. It would be funny if it weren’t so true, except it won’t be Reardon metal, it will be some medical breakthrough. Perhaps a drug? Reardonodon? Reardonalanine?