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Michelle Obama’s Unhealthy Earmark

by Keith Koffler on December 13, 2010, 7:08 pm

It was little noticed that at nearly the very moment Congress was approving the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act, it was also, as part of the “compromise” on the Bush tax cuts, extending the egregious ethanol tax credit and the protectionist ethanol import tax until 2016.

It was little noticed because the relationship is not readily apparent, though it’s very real. Because if Mrs. Obama really wants to reduce hunger in America, what she should  have done is tell her husband the president to force Congress to keep the ethanol business off the tax deal and then refuse to extend the subsidy.

The Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act is the cornerstone of Mrs. Obama’s anti-obesity campaign and a gift of love from her husband and the Congress. It also includes provisions to expand free school lunch offerings to poor kids.

Ethanol, as you probably know, is a fuel made from corn that is blended into your gasoline. Why? Well, ethanol advocates have long claimed it helps the environment, but now even environmentalists have figured out that this is a load of crap. What it really does it help farmers sell more corn, and help presidential candidates in the Iowa caucuses. It’s not a way to save the environment, it’s a way to shove corn into your fuel tank.

And it’s a way to raise the price of corn, by increasing demand. Which enriches mostly big farms, and makes the food purchased by inner city children more expensive. That because much of their processed food is made with corn and other grains whose prices rise with the price of corn. The government pays corn farmers to make ethanol, and then it gives food stamps and “tax credits” to poor people to buy the more expensive food.

It’s the biggest scam going, and Obama is totally signed on.

But instead of making a courageous stand for the poor, we have the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act. A significant chunk of the bill is paid for by stealing from the food stamp program, so it’s hard to see how it’s going to do much to make kids Hunger-Free.

Michelle on McDonald's soda cup

And I doubt it’s going to make kids healthier. If they’re not getting indoctrinated in healthy eating at home, they’ll just find something unhealthy in the cafeteria or refuse to eat the unwelcome vegetables being ladled into their plates.

The bill is stocked with all kinds of new regulations that will take time and money to fulfill. If local schools want to take steps to improve the health of their lunches, they should do it. They know what they can afford and what they can get for the kids.

This is another large government program that will be expanded in the future – larded, let’s say – with more money and rules. It already includes frivolous measures meant to assuage Mrs. Obama, like forcing schools to grow gardens.

Mrs. Obama’s non-legislative anti-obesity campaign is a laudable effort, consistent with campaigns by other first ladies to try to change the culture for the better. It’s Just Say No to junk food.

Kids are bombarded by bad food, through advertising and lousy parenting, and the results are spilling over the front of their belts and filling out their pants’ seats. The culture needs to change, and Mrs. Obama is leading the way.

Unfortunately, she decided she needed her own government program too. Let China know we’ll be needing more money from them down the road to keep our kids from exploding.

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srdem65 December 13, 2010 at 10:01 pm

Kids from poor families have been getting free lunches for decades, then they found out that they needed breakfast, too. This bill will allow more inner city schools to also serve them dinner making the cafeteria ladies full time SEIU employees. So what kind of a family, in this age of food stamps or food banks, doesn’t have enough food to feed their kids at all? Kids who do NOT live in the inner city will not be bused to their schools for the extra feedings. Only kids who are within walking distance will be able to eat at the school.
These new all-day feeding stations will be open every day of the year, not just during the school hours.
This bill will also regulate or prohibit the fund-raising “bake sales” or sales of candy for school projects. No more sugary or high calorie stuff in the vending machines. The bill will set approved menus and determine from whom and where the schools will buy their supplies and food.
This bill is a trojan-horse that will allow the unions to futher add to their membership, reward certain food suppliers and override local school district policies from Washington.
It’s funded by stealing money from the food stamp program and was passed in the Senate by decree (no vote was taken) and approved by Congress after the Prez promised to re-fund the food stamp program by Executive Order

So, what will MrsO do for the next two years?.

Star December 14, 2010 at 10:09 am

We never got Big Macs in school–we got mystery meatloaf and cardboard pizza squares. Why, in my day, sonny….

Keith Koffler December 14, 2010 at 5:45 pm

Oh I still remember the taste of each of those. Delicious. Poor kids with those damn salads coming their way.

Sara B December 14, 2010 at 11:18 am

The McDonalds visual you provided would scare me off that meal and I LOVE McD’s fries. I might just have to toss the wrappers and eat it anyway just because I don’t want the government involved in my kids’ food choices.

Keith Koffler December 14, 2010 at 5:47 pm

I know. I think I’d eat my McDonald’s if they put Mullah Omar on the boxes.

Jeff December 14, 2010 at 12:57 pm

I choose to just ignore what comes out of her mouth,and that’s alot considering its usually being filled with food.You cannot say she hasn’t packed them on during the last 2 years..The throne is such a workout..
Blah. I told him. Blah. Blah.Bush.
Yesterday I seen somewhere where she called it a National Defense Emergency because to many people was overweight to get in the military and if that continues,it will affect the future military.
Blah. Blah.Victory Garden.Blah.Blah.
Meanwhile the DPRK and Iran go full speed ahead in a race to be the number 1 security issue for the world of 2011…
Dont get me started,I already hit Boltons page….

Jeff December 14, 2010 at 1:00 pm

Excuse me..
Blah.It was a National Security Emergency,my bad.Blah. Blah.

Star December 14, 2010 at 1:06 pm

Seriously? Nobody will be left to play football, basketball, or get thru boot camp? All from having vending machines in school? As for that Victory Garden or whatever it is the SS is weeding, I thought it was declared a Super Fund site or something from too much Turf Builder on it or something.

Star December 14, 2010 at 2:19 pm

I combined the lobster and the school food…well, you will see… I swear you people inspire me!

Keith Koffler December 14, 2010 at 5:52 pm

OMG she did say it. Can’t believe I missed it. Imagine if Bush said something like that?

Anonna December 14, 2010 at 8:23 pm

Yes, Keith, our First “Lady” said fat kids are destroying our ability to defend ourselves. I feel very sorry for the fat kids of America — this broad in the beam harply has turned the white glare of attention upon them.

I don’t understand why parents who can’t produce one decent meal a day for their kids are allowed to have kids living with them. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner at school! Who says the kids are eating this food anyway? I would love to see some photos of what is thrown out.

I say take the kids away from the biounits and put them in good orphanages. Let’s be honest, the kids will have a better chance of making a future for themselves than that would have with Baby Mamma and her latest Baby Daddy.

Keith Koffler December 14, 2010 at 9:01 pm

If they’re not getting one good meal a day there’s something wrong that school ain’t gonna fix . . .

Star December 15, 2010 at 12:02 pm

I am not that great a cook–you guys are making me feel a little uncomfortable here…

Letty Y December 15, 2010 at 5:54 pm

I complained at my 10 year old’s school this year and I immediately was rewarded (yeah) with a meeting. I met with a supervisor for Sodexo, the company that provides the school breakfasts and lunches, as well as the principal. This is the Atlanta Public School System, by the way. After I was informed that the school menu would be including brown rice, no salt, etc, I asked,”If a child is not eating, how is this healthy for them? My daughter comes home every day starving because she can’t stomach the trash you are trying to serve her, so where is the benefit?” Their suggestion: pack her a lunch. I can’t afford to pack a lunch for her everyday, so they said I should send her a snack.
What is the point? These children are not eating this crap they are serving and it is a waste of taxpayer money by trying to push this onto the children.

Keith Koffler December 15, 2010 at 9:12 pm

Sounds like a perfect example of good government intentions making a problem worse. Most kids are not getting three meals a day in school. Parenting needs to be done at home.

Nea | Self Improvement Saga January 2, 2011 at 10:25 am

If only you actually knew some poor people. I happen to know that free lunch (and free breakfast where available) is often the only food these children have to look forward to.

If the parent works a minimum wage job, they get very little (if any) food stamps. With those food stamps, they buy cheap crap like canned ravioli, pot pies and soda. When that “food” runs out and there are no more food stamps for the month, they come home to eat bread & mayo sandwiches or nothing at all. On many nights, dinner = hunger pangs. A healthy lunch may not make a difference for children of middle class/upper class families, but for poor children the value is amazing.

If you require seeing benefits for yourself (as many selfish Americans do) in order to value a change in school lunch menus, consider the impact that diet has on health care costs for us all. Let me break it down:
1. We feed them crap.
2. They get diabetes, high blood pressure, nutrient deficiency, and a whole range of other diseases/illnesses related to eating crap.
3. Healthcare costs go up for everyone to pay for medicaid and emergency medical bills that can’t be paid by the poor. Governments gain more debt, taxes get increased, more people can’t afford health care, emergency rooms get used as doctor’s offices, hospitals don’t get paid, costs go up even more….. This goes on and on and on and on.

Eventually, we all benefit when we try to do right by others. When we don’t do that, there is backlash to teach us against the disgusting level of selfishness.

Keith Koffler January 3, 2011 at 10:33 am

Thank you Nea. We are all indebted to selfless people like yourself, even snarling ones, for lessons in caring about those less fortunate.

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