On May 9th in a normal “keep your hands off of my meat” rant I wrote the following, “Of course, I’ve gotta wonder, why put faith in the study in the first place? Whatever they come up with, they’ll reverse it in two years anyway”.
Allow me to explain myself. Once you understand how and why studies are performed, and the real reason behind them, they become a little less shock-worthy. Scientists, and in particular University professors, have to get published in order to maintain their status and in many cases their tenure, in the scientific community. Quite often the only way to get noticed is to wander off the reservation with a wild claim that “x” is really, really bad for you. They bend the scientific process to get a desired result and thereby get published. Politicians then attach themselves to this research and craft new laws to limit the freedom of the people who they are sworn to represent, based on these studies, all the while patting themselves on the back for looking out for the people they’re harassing.
Michael Bloomberg of New York (perhaps we should begin referring to him as Mikael) recently launched such wars on trans fats, soda pop and salt. In fact, he even went so far as to compare SALT to asbestos when he said, ”
“If we know there’s asbestos in a school room what do you expect us to do?” Bloomberg shot back at reporters questioning his new initiative. “Say it’s not our business? I don’t think so. The same thing is true with food and smoking and a lot of things.
“Salt and asbestos, clearly both are bad for you,” Bloomberg continued. “Modern medicine thinks you shouldn’t be smoking if you want to live longer. Modern medicine thinks you shouldn’t be eating salt, or sodium.”
In my post that I linked above, I also wrote, “I’m so tired of being told that anything I do, including breathing for God’s sake, will kill me, give me cancer, or both”… The attack on salt would fall under this category, especially now that it’s coming out that the science behind all of the low-salt BS is faulty. In fact, Italian researchers ran a series of trials, “all of which reported that, among patients with heart failure, reducing salt consumption increased the risk of death”. Those trials were followed by studies, “suggesting that reducing sodium to anything like what [US] government policy refers to as a “safe upper limit” is likely to do more harm than good”.
Now here’s where this gets fun for me, I’ve never been a salt loving kind of guy – unless we’re talking about my Large McDonald’s french fries, in that case, hit ’em hard! I don’t salt my scrambled eggs or my burgers or steaks (I do salt venison before it hits the cast iron skillet though). I don’t add salt to my salad, my poultry, or pretty much anything else (meaning I don’t physically shake much salt on anything after prep, unless we’re talking about Chicken Noodle Soup). I bought into the whole low-salt dealio… Until last summer when I really started increasing my mileage, and thusly the amount that I would sweat in a week. In the first three weeks of 75+ mile intensity I found that my sweat stopped tasting salty. It was quite bland as a matter of fact. It took a couple of days for this to register and had I not been paying attention, I could have really run into some grave trouble. Since then I’ve taken to Gatorade to replenish that which I’ve lost and I stopped, altogether, worrying about salt consumption. Now, even though I’m up to 130-150 miles a week I haven’t had that problem since.
The main point I was getting at couldn’t be more important: Don’t put your health in the hands of Nanny State Politicians – They have an incredible amount of power, should they choose to misuse it (and they usually do), and they don’t know any better than any normal average Joe; their ass from a hole in the ground.
Now, let’s apply this lesson throughout our entire society and what do we know? Everybody wants to fight something. Those who can, do it with their fists – those who can’t use their fists use their politician. From the anti-war movement, to hippies, to militant vegetarians, to class action lawyers…and they do it for one reason only: To make you do what they want. There is no difference between “Don’t eat salt or I’ll kick the s#!t out of you” and “Don’t use salt to prepare your food or I’ll take $1,000 per plate from your wallet”. None.
UPDATE: In the comments section, Idiotprufs brought up an interesting point – Mayor Bloomberg, in the same week as the soda size restriction had to make it acceptable for certain amounts of pot to be exposed to view, because he’s got his police officers searching anyone they pull over (where is that pesky Constitution when you need it, and why isn’t New York under investigation by the Feds for violating it?)… It turns out, so many people carry dope in their pants pocket that they couldn’t handle the innundation to the court system. Nice. So now you can get caught with an ounce of illegal weed in your pants, but not a 20 oz bottle of Coke. You know, that just about makes sense.
A question for your Federal Senator or Representative: Is anyone responsible for New York’s stop and frisk policy under investigation for violating the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution, barring Searches and Seizures?