Last month we told you about some of our most ridiculous ideas for what health nannies might one day propose to combat the “obesity epidemic” — including excise taxes on extra large pants, and banning the sale of certain foods to fat people. Now a New York Times columnist has one-upped us by proposing to tax fat people — and he’s serious:
Collect a lump-sum tax from every American and put the proceeds into a reward pool. Each year, anyone who wanted to could go to an existing government office for a simple series of measurements. People who registered normal weights throughout the year would receive cash rewards from the pool … There are about 300 million Americans in total, so setting the lump-sum tax at $100 a year would yield $30 billion for the reward pool — enough to reward about 120 million Americans of normal weight with checks for $250.
Food nanny Kelly Brownell likes to quote from Gandhi: “First they ignore you. Then they laugh at you. Then they fight you. And then you win.” Unfortunately, The New York Times isn’t laughing at a proposal even more radical than Brownell’s twinkie tax. It’s a sign of how far public opinion has shifted in favor of the food police.