Harvard public health professor Walter Willett is at it again. This nanny icon, who frequently works in concert with the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), is promoting a new book that would dismantle the USDA’s “Food Pyramid” and replace it with something else entirely. Among Willett’s edicts: “less red meat.” This isn’t the first time the Nanny Culture has tried to tinker with the food pyramid. First came the Oldways Preservation Trust, which was dedicated to dismantling anything that resembled advanced scientific agriculture. Then came the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, which wanted to strike meat, fish, poultry, and dairy – albeit on animal-rights grounds. Even Action on Smoking and Health has gotten into the game.

Willett has gone on record in the past defending a variety of flawed approaches to nutrition, including “twinkie taxes” and a ridiculous study that attempted to link soft drink consumption with broken bones in young girls. In October 2000 he complained to the Boston Globe that “the food industry creates products to exploit our natural instincts and overwhelm our balance.”

The way Willett sees it, the current food pyramid “offers wishy-washy, scientifically unfounded advice on an absolutely vital topic – what we eat.” Physician, heal thyself!