When the benign hand of the bureaucracy starts reaching for freedoms you don’t know where it will stop. In this case the government of Australia is attempting to legislate the entrenchment of the food police. This will clearly lead to higher taxes for all.
From Chris Berg
If there was one area of human existence which should be left to individual choice, you’d think it would be what we eat.
So the National Preventive Health Agency Bill, now ferreting through federal parliament, is quite a big deal. The agency is charged with preventing chronic disease caused by obesity, alcohol and tobacco through education campaigns and the mass-production of research papers.
It sounds harmless, but if it passes, it will represent the institutionalisation of the Australian nanny state.
The agency is to be a government-funded body with the specific purpose of expanding the scope of government – colonise spheres of human existence that have, until now, been left free from state interference.
We got some indication of the ambition of the new agency from the Kevin Rudd’s Preventative Health Taskforce, which, when it reported in 2009, recommended its formation. That and 121 other recommendations to tax, regulate, and impose national standards on food, beverages, and tobacco.
Julia Gillard announced last week the agency will not have the power to impose taxes on junk food. But that misses the point: the agency has no power to impose taxes on anything. It will, however, be empowered to lobby the government incessantly to do so.