Congratulations on your crusade to cure folk of their sugar addiction, and reverse their innate laziness that has them lounging extravagantly on their sofas comforting themselves with endless packets of Oreos. And, if they’re lucky, an entire box of snowballs. Ryan Tubridy would challenge the most disciplined of viewer not to follow suit. If anyone was going to inspire us to throw it all back up and avoid further calorie consumption , it could only have been you.
Of course, I mean that in the involuntary sense of the term ‘throw up’, lest this be interpreted as promoting bulimic type behaviour. A condition that can also be filed away under the eye-rolled, inverted-comma’d notion of “issues” you fleetingly alluded to during your enlightening “interview” (massive eye-roll) with Turbridy last night. Best ignore this end of the eating disorder spectrum anyway since the shame and self-loathing worn by its victims is conveniently less visible than that of the latest receptacles for your unique brand of activism. Which turns out to be not unlike the cheap ready-meals that have you recoiling in horror – takes roughly 5 minutes preparation , lacks any (moral) fibre, and leaves one craving something more substantial.
In ridding the world of the scourge of fat people, it is your express intention to stem the flow of funds pouring into the treatment of obesity related illnesses from the pockets of the tax payer. Most notably your own. Few would take umbrage with the exasperation felt by tax-payers at the questionable use of precious public funds. Your anxiety is not unfounded.
As a graduate of economics, you will have a more rounded understanding of the generation and uneven distribution of national wealth and the corresponding inequalities that the trickle down fantasy of liberal capitalism has only served to widen. You may even have awareness of the complex relationship between the unregulated sugar industry and the disproportionately higher consumption of low-cost products by those on lower incomes. As a former employee of the British Army, even you will have raised an impeccably plucked brow at the annual defence bill. As a devout Tory supporter, you will have impaled yourself on various elite-friendly economic and social policies that maintain the status quo. As a privately educated, privileged, white woman, you will have little insight to the impact all of this has on the lives and survival psychology of those hovering on either side of the poverty line.
Perhaps inhabiting the life of a “dole scrounger” for a week in a run-down estate in Burnsley under the glare of TV cameras, in return for an immodest fee, could be your next altruistic action to save people from helping themselves to your tax contributions. That way you could crank the Raging Bull method acting up a gear and increase your chances of putting further strain on the NHS by taking up smoking. Why deny yourself the simple pleasures in life? That’s what they are for many. Fear not though, it’s highly unlikely a person will develop lung cancer from a week’s smoking.
Few would argue with the need to liberate children from the fatalistic consequences of obsesity with anything other than a sense of urgency. But in promoting responsible behaviours among parents and citizens, you might also look to your peers. Those bloated with income security, tying gastric bands around their privileges, feasting on the fat dripping from tax breaks, ill-gotten corporate gains, reckless gambling, and catastrophic bank bail-outs , all bouyed up by the taxes of the same fat people you seek to ridicule. Those presiding over the uneven protection of wealth that bankrupts citizens, puncturing the wheels of public services and diverting investment away from opportunities that can mobilise “the undisciplined” up off their “fat arses” towards the prospect of a more rewarding future. Those formulating government policies that will further exacerbate their plight.
Disentangling the complexity of individual lives and responsibilities from those of society and economics, takes longer than five minutes in a mental microwave, or another irrelevant blog post. But unless the fight against obesity gives consideration to the causes of the causes of unhealthy behaviours, and the determinants of health in their entirety, all you’re serving up is the intellectual and moral equivalent of a Big Mac. I usually have fries with mine. And a strawberry milkshake on a bad day. Today I wouldn’t half mind dipping Tubridy in a vat of that gooey curry sauce but I doubt it’d leave me satisfied.
Looking forward to seeing how the project progresses on that obscure satellite TV Channel soon.