That’s right, that says “FIT” tax, not “FAT” tax. I started writing this last night, so please forgive the time bounce in the first paragraph…
I’ve been debating for about five months on whether or not to post about riding my bike and global warming (or the lack thereof as currently is the case, if you will). If I actually get out on a ride this afternoon (if the rain holds off – it didn’t so I took the fat tire bike out anyway), I’ll have logged about 623 (606 actual) miles for this month. Probably a little more than necessary, but I had a lot of fun grinding out all of those miles.
Here’s the problem. Now that the EPA regulates CO2 as something other than plant food, I have to wonder when they’ll come for my bike. You see, I don’t ride to work – I really can’t, it’s just too far and I must have a car readily available if I get called out of the office. So the point to this is that most gullible people believe that because I ride my bike I’m doing something good for the environment – I’m not, and neither is anyone else who happens to be training for a triathlon, running race, swim meet, or a road race. For those of us who train, our activity is adding to our carbon footprint – not subtracting from it. To be fair, it could be argued that because I cycle for an hour and 15 minutes a day (give or take) I process oxygen more efficiently during the other 22 hours and 45 minutes of a day, but I certainly wouldn’t hang my hat on that – I’ve never met a Democrat that would let facts get in the way of a new tax…
I pump more air in and out of my body when I’m in motion than I do when I’m sedentary, the exhaust coming out is CO2. This isn’t rocket science folks, it’s biology and there’s no way around it.
So the question, especially to all of those folks who like for the government to regulate every little damned thing that “irresponsible” people do – or that should be “what they deem as irresponsible, even if it is highly subjective”, is when are they coming for your bike, or your running shoes, or your swimming trunks?
Of course, the government is also about to be responsible for health care too – so this could go a few ways.
You could have the health care (HC) bureaucrats protect bikes and running shoes from the EPA bureaucrats because those HC bureaucrats can’t have you be fat because that “taxes” the health care system, but let’s face it, we’d never get that lucky.
No, this is how it will go: Once the EPA bureaucrats figure out that they can cut down a few million tons of CO2 simply by outlawing certain types of bikes (road bikes and hybrids – except for those pros whom they deem morally acceptable of course) limiting speed to just above a crawl – the slower you go, the less O2 you require, the less CO2 you emit (*which keeps the health care bureaucrats happy because people can still exercise moderately, and will have to eat less in order to stay trim which is then fair for other “food challenged” nations – stay with me here; how can it possibly be fair that I have to eat twice as much as a sedentary person just because I choose to train? Think about that a minute.). To make this takeover of fitness possible, the EPA bureaucrats call up the HC bureaucrats and they brainstorm. Four months later a scientific study comes out that states high intensity exercise is bad for your [insert body part here]. The study will be shoddy at best, call it junk science, but people’s heart-strings will be pulled… Groups of concerned parents [bureaucrats in parent’s clothes] will band together to save the children from the exploitation of mean, evil and abusive men everywhere who enjoy watching the youth of America trash their bodies for their amusement (it will definitely be the Republicans who will then be demonized as “against American youth” for wanting to kill American children for blocking the bureaucrats from confiscating bikes and running shoes).
The end result will be a grand f@cking compromise. A bi-partisan deal will be struck and all will hail the new technological marvel – the GPS tracking chip that monitors your bike’s speed – go too fast and you’re hit with a fine for exceeding the speed at which [insert body parts here] begin to degrade. After all, your excessive speed will create a burden on the HC bureaucrat’s system.
Two months later, the EPA will come out with a new study that shows people aren’t willingly complying with the HC bureaucrats so they need to be double hammered because riding slower will reduce one’s carbon footprint – they’ll call it Cap and Trade – Too Fast, Too Furious [CAT-TFTF]… Not done yet. Once the bureaucrats realize what they’ve got, with GPS chips in bikes, road taxes for all riders will be collected from those who would ride a bike to miss the tracker embedded in their car or truck. After all, what’s the average salary of a triathlete? $126,000 – the top 5% – you’re next. It’s all about paying your fair share after all, not about tracking your every move, besides – what’s the harm if you’re not doing anything wrong? Papers, please. It’s not like law enforcement officials requested GPS locations 8 million times – from Sprint alone – last year alone – and get this: Without a warrant. Don’t worry though – remember, you have nothing to worry about if you didn’t do anything wrong.
It’s already begun, they just haven’t figured out how to apply it to your bike yet – but they damn well can.
That’s freedom for you – it’s all good, until the government decides that you’re not using it in a manner that they deem appropriate.
*Stay with me on the fairness in caloric intake dealio – I weigh 155 pounds, I’m 6′ tall and run and ride between 500 and 600 miles per month, burning between 26,000 and 34,000 extra calories in a month. To maintain this level of fitness and my weight I have to eat several more pounds of food every month just to keep from fading away to nothingness. How fair is it that I get to eat more from life’s trough?
Admittedly, a lot of what I’ve written here is really far-fetched, but it’s not at the same time because we’re dealing (at least in the US) with every one of the little intricacies that I detailed in this made up scenario – and my far-fetched scenario actually follows the real path used to incite the public in a manner necessary to tack on yet another new tax or limit yet one more freedom that should never have been tread upon in the first place.
So what’s the point? This is not a conservative or a liberal post (possibly a bit Libertarian). This is a post about freedom and how most politicians will steal it from you and turn you against your neighbor, for a dollar. And if you are one of those folks who think they should be in their right to wield this kind of power, you’re bat-shit crazy. Or look at this another way, how do you think the other guys are going to treat that kind of power when your guys are voted out? I guarantee, you won’t like it.
I’m just sayin’