Dalrymple addressed Western civilization’s epidemic of obesity in the Wall Street Journal two days ago, noting the economic costs and warning of the inevitable implementation of authoritarian solutions (which – no surprise – have already been imposed in New York City):
As usual, therefore, prohibition beckons. Regulation of the sugar and fat content of ready-prepared and fast foods is likely to be proposed and perhaps eventually accepted, though not without a very fierce rear-guard action by the food industry. If John Doe will not eat his greens, Uncle Sam will make him, if necessary by restricting the availability of other foods. No one will raise moral psychology of the question of obesity, for fear of sounding uncompassionate and reactionary.
In search for an amelioration, the temptation is to an intemperate authoritarianism, forgetting that the avoidance of obesity, pace the Duchess of Windsor, is not the whole purpose of life. But teaching children to cook and eat together might help overcome the crudity of their eating habits: the price of more refined, and in this instance nonfattening, pleasures always being effort.