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SAVE OUR SODAS! - Government Plans to Remove Sugar Soft Drinks From Public Schools

May 6th 2006

SAVE OUR SODAS! - Government Plans to Remove Sugar Soft Drinks From Public Schools


Dear Mr. President: You can have my can of Coke when you peel my
cold, dead fingers from it.

The May Day Surprise engineered by former President Clinton where beverage companies agreed to pull soda-pop, potato chips and even whole milk from schools is a tribute to his diplomatic skill --and a milestone of corporate, anti-freedom moral cowardice.

There is no evidence that any number of parents have a problem with sodas in the schools--and many students will tell you a caffeine buzz is their only hope of staying awake during mind-numbing, poorly presented, irrelevant schooling. And as long as one bright student wants a Coke--leave him alone!

The United States of America is suffering from something new in its history--a squeeze play to demonize anything pleasant engineered by an unholy and cynical alliance of the religious right wing extremists and the leftist Stalinist nostalgics who see an opportunity to continue government growth while the right takes any rap for their dirty work.

They move from issue to increasingly bizarre issue, in part benefiting from the fact that many intelligent people can't believe what they're reading and assume this will all pass. It is true that US politics is known for silly measures such as legislatures declaring that pi shall no longer be 3.14 but measure a neat and round 3. But when Left and Right kooks, abetted by large corporations and pseudo-science known by whatever the finding it means more government regulations, are pushing this stuff in tag teams--watch out. 
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What the Left proposes, the Right disposes--and vice versa, with you in the middle.


Thus a conga-line of proposals whose common denominator is anything that would please Torquemada: that is, proposals united by the denominator or that if it feels good or involves personal choice, don't do it, there must be something wrong with it. The proposals all use the discourse of the unscientific concept of addition--which is really the idea of irresistible temptation in disguise--to impose neo-religious legislation. For then, as the comic says, you'll find you can't Torquemada anything.

First they banned the drugs. Then the cigarettes. They criminalized marital relations with the absurd concept of marital rape ("We've abolished marriage and people are too stupid to see it" boasted a Canadian bureaucrat) which has now been extended so about anything qualifies in many states. Then dancing, books on bullfighting, murals on bullfighting, and tumbledown games. There is a child sex hysteria that has migrated from concern over deranged adults getting fresh with toddlers to a horror of sexuality so lusty young adolescents are criminalized--how dare they lose their virginity at 17 and 11 months!


Then bans on teen kissing and racy language. Then the ban on the most effective cold medicines because some nitwit could make meth out of it. Then came immigrant bashing and books on sex, fat, etc. addiction. Soon we'll see internal roadblocks and identity checks in the US based on 'undocumented immigrants' or gas rationing and fears of Chicken flu--they announced the government is studying such options this week, so the trial balloons are floating up. And it will, I suspect, come with articles denouncing the new problem of travel addiction. Last week on a talk show experts solemnly warned against thinking to much, particularly when young.
Now it's sugary drinks and and milk fortified with vitamins.

Why not? People are being taught that any desire is evidence of potential addiction. o why not continued conceptual confusion-- that as a matter of course we ban sugared drinks like drugs...since, as I reported at FMNN not long ago, police were arresting kids for sugar possession sugar might be confused with Heroin or some other funny white powder. How long before we see arrests for felony Coke possession in a schoolyard--Coca-Cola, that is.

We used to laugh at the Ayatollah Khomeini--a crazy old man who was catapulted to power and as his country collapsed about him wrote lengthy tracts on how the faithful should urinate, what they should eat, and had people shot for dancing in the streets and drinking sugary drinks. We denounced the Taliban when they made Khomeini look like a genially winking Hugh Hefner, Playboy magazines (I forgot--the politically critical magazine is now banned on public transports and most stores). And as the US became more like the Communists in the McCarthy and then the Viet-nam hysteric LBJ years, now the Republicans and Democrats imitate the Moslem menace...and bring us our own American Taliban. Ayatollah you so: everyone realized that for the Muslim fanatics the real crime was being different, enjoying life and thinking--and that's what is really being criminalized here.


I never thought I would see the day when I compared my generation--which took to the streets to get Coke and tasty hamburgers into the schools ( as opposed to the anemic cardboard tasting overpriced junk then served) and Troops out of Viet-Nam--favorably to this generation today--though I regularly get e-mails from young fans who are struggling against the establishment. But perhaps I am unjust; we opposed a system of adults who thought nuclear annihilation and mutually assured destruction were all very sensible. This generation confronts their intellectual heirs, who've discovered that few no how to name, rally against, or motivate people to oppose utter inanity.

They'll be snoring soon enough at new levels. many high School students today work two jobs, are bored out of their skulls and can barely stay awake. They'll be snoozing in class for sure now, with sleep inducing high-fructose juices and other boring oodies that will be allowed.
They will, Clinton yells us brightly, be allowed diet Soda (Just what a growing boy needs--denatured sweeteners linked to cancer), bottled water (think that one through--they'll be charging school-kids to drink water) and Skim Milk (That mixture of watered down, chalk added goodness for those who are unaware they can more healthily just cut their Whole Milk with plenty of ice).


Sure, I know all about the problems with cow milk and sugar--I was avant-garde in pointing out the problems in some quarters--but so slap a label on it. Here is a different model: When I went to school in Spain in 1966, schools sold not only sweet goodies but beer to pre-teens. These were in Catholic schools, under Franco. But Spanish parents exercised communication and encouraged moderation, and a healthier people was hard to imagine.

I mean, in 6th grade I drank beer, studied algebra, had 2 hour recess for soccer, read the Confessions of St. Augustine ("lord, save me from excess--just not quite yet...") and once a year we had a bull to fight: the very idea strikes most sheltered Americans misled by myopic bureaucrats--government, Hollywood, and corporate--as a parallel science fiction universe...but for me, well, now THAT was a school. Now we have the Spanish economic miracle created by that well educated, tough, and realistic generation--but also Spanish parents, bamboozled by US propaganda, anxious to shelter the next generation, heading in the direction of expecting restrictions and unrealistic Puritanism to do what parenting should if Spanish newspapers are to be believed. How long before they ban dancing in Spain?

They arrest kids for dancing spontaneously in the halls here--while we project with approved ballroom dancing on TV, like dogs watching hunting shows for a glimpse of lost glory--or Puritans sneaking erotic magazines, they dare know not why.

Meanwhile, here in Florida I know a young man who is in the correctional system for charges that essentially stemmed from one incident--he called a teacher a silly twit. There is no doubt in my mind his troubles arose only because this was true. He is 14, wants to be an architect, admires Frank Lloyd Wright whose building he draws endlessly, is well mannered and spoken, and has heard the 'Fountainhead' is a wonderful book. In his view, corrections are preferable to school, all in all, where his gullible mother was taking advice to have him placed on Ritalin for 'hyperactive attention disorders shown by inappropriate persistent question asking' and having a girlfriend.


How long before that's routine, with a charge for Cherry Coke addiction thrown in? How long before they arrest kids for bringing milk to school in their lunch bags-- and imprison parents as child abusers for allowing their kids to run wild, slurping illicit Chocolate milk? How long before divorcing parents charge each other with neglect for letting little Johnny or Jane eat a potato chip on school grounds or drink unapproved water?

Meanwhile, alternative medicine experts say there's a hidden cause of the US obesity (let alone cavity--state welfare systems have often stopped paying for any adult dental work of any significance) epidemic. This is aside from the government pushing the wrong carbohydrate heavy foods for years through subsidies and curious campaigns. The problem? It's dehydration.
US tap water is tasting worse than ever as government monopoly systems break down...and more people just don't drink that ever more fluoride and chlorine laden, for many hard to digest, dead bacteria soup stuff, billed as 'the best and healthiest water in the world.' Hence the bottled water boom. Hence the drinking of large quantities of soda by people seeking to slake their thirst. Hence the unconscious slip in ad campaigns for soft drinks to themes that are 'Slake Your Thirst' related.

Hence, as Dr. Atkins told me, the strange phenomena of the 'European Cure' for fat--simply sending people to stay for a few weeks in European countries with good water systems or cheap bottled mineral water starts better eating habits. Hence what many weight reduction professionals such as hypnotists have noted--that by hypnotizing people to drink plenty of water daily, they automatically lose weight, eat more fruit and other healthy foods, and cut soft drinks. Is Government attempting to ban the symptom yet again--while contributing to the root problem?
Write you school. Visit the principal. Call Clinton. Complain to the beverage companies. Consider a private school or home-schooling and join silent, panoramic Exodus of the growing number of parents who are taking a tip from the Libertarians, realizing the US government is just another business service gone sour with compulsory programs of the week hatched by strange alliances of crackpot fanatics--and just taking their business elsewhere.
Save Our Sodas. It isn't the 'Real Thing' as Coke describes itself that's going down for the count--it's reality.

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Michael Gilson-De Lemos
Freelance Writer

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