Little Brother is watching you with his red light scam-eras, he lives in your radio with his "Q-Tips," he saves city employees from nasty tobacco, and now he's going to tell you what snacks to eat.
"Ultimately this affects everyone's pocket book. It's not just free choice, it's the whole pocketbook of the nation and the costs of healthcare," said Mayor Chavez.In the name of healthcare, in the name of what's good for you, Little Brother is telling those who frequent city vending machines what they can buy by restricting what the private vendors can sell. Predictably, the vendors are none too happy about Little Brother's interference in their market place. Greg Trapp Executive Director of the New Mexico Commission for the Blind told the Journal, "[w]hen we try to implement an all-healthy-choice option ... the sales just fall through the floor," (Subscription). Duh!
It's simple common sense. If the vending machines don't carry products that the public likes, they won't buy the products offered and the owners of the machines won't make money. If the vendors don't making money, then there won't be any vending machines. Regulation of a free market place for any reason results in shortages, period. The Soviets found that out the hard way and even the Chinese have discovered the power of the free market.
(Sidebar)APS instituted a similar ban on school campuses in order to combat childhood obesity. According to Pepsi, vending machine sales have dropped by 70% since 2002. What do you bet that childhood obesity rates haven't changed at all?
By state law, vending contracts for vending machines on city property are required to be issued to contractors who are blind first. So... Little Brother's attempt to save city employees from evil junk food will starve the blind contractors who sell it. Unintended consequences are damn inconvenient sometimes.
Never mind that government has no business dictating what can and cannot be eaten, people will find a way to purchase the products that they want. If it's not offered by the vending machines at APS or on city property, they'll buy it somewhere else. We'd suggest the hot dog stands and sandwich shops downtown start carrying a healthy supply of unhealthy snacks.
More frightening than junk food depravation is the underlying attitude exhibited by The Almighty Alcalde. Somehow he believes that it's his right to dictate what others consume all in the name of lowering healthcare costs.
Can you imagine what would happen if Little Brother were in charge of healthcare? The freedom to choose what to eat, how much to weigh, how much to exercise, what drugs to take, what medical procedures to have, perhaps even the choice of whether or not to live or die... gone.
Little Brother says "it's not just free choice." The hell it isn't! What's at stake is not a few vendors or some junk food, it's our liberty. When government is given the responsibility to save you from yourself, you necessarily loose your ability to make a choice contrary to government doctrine - doctrine arbitrarily determined by politicians looking out for themselves not you. Little Brother is watching and he's stealing our most precious possession - our freedom... One Twinkie at a time.