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Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]


The notion that it is the state’s business how fat people are is grotesque but we can thank athlete James Cracknell for giving us a superb example of why it does not matter a tinker’s damn which of the three clowns actually ends up in Downing Street:

Tories have what it takes to tackle obesity. The Conservatives have a sporting solution to Britain’s ticking health time bomb, says James Cracknell

The same relentless statist chipping away at civil society will happen regardless, egged on by countless busy bodies like James Cracknell.


12 comments to Mind.your.own.business

  • Jamess

    “The notion that it is the state’s business how fat people are is grotesque….”

    …but inevitable if we have a public health service.

  • Public health service? You underestimate the creativity of the statist. Even the coremost functions of any state at all will be pressed into service.

  • Also if we have a big national army. I recall a US general fretting aloud recently about the fatness of his potential recruits.

  • llamas

    But it is his business. . . . .

    No offence to Mr Cracknell’s epic sporting achievements – good for him.

    But he’s now heavily into the business of sports – he makes his living as a writer and commentator on a variety of sporting endeavours, and he has a consulting business in the same field.

    Of course he’s pushing for more government involvement (= spending) in sports – that’s his livelihood. Since it’s actually awfully hard to assign any ‘compelling state interest’ to sports, the ‘epidemic of childhood obesity’ is what he has selected as the vehicle to petition the state for more money to be spent in the field where he earns his crust.

    Sorry to be so cynical – but you have to ask yourself whether a person who only keeps contact with people if he plays sports with them is what you might call an unbiased observer when it comes to defining the ‘benefits’ of sports.



  • Brian, follower of Deornoth

    Sports cause a lot of injuries every year. This costs the NHS a lot of money. Other people are paying for this. Therefore people who do sports should not be entitled to NHS care.

  • …but inevitable if we have a public health service.

    Beyond the most obvious defence against plagues, which are demonstrably a collective threat, a “public health service” is a truly terrible idea… fatness and non-infectious disease is none of anyone else’s business.

  • renminbi

    If you look at the commnents on Cracknell ,very few of them say he should f*ck off. Your public seems to think all this is OK.

  • Nuke Gray

    A comment from Australia might work here- Our govt. wants to increase taxes on smokes, and give them all a plain brown wrapper. If all these measures do increase lifespans by persuading people to give up smoking, would undertakers be able to sue the government for all that lost income? someone’s gain is another person’s loss…

  • Mikee

    The business of statists is the control of the populace. So in a way, they are “minding their own business,” just not in the way you mean them to do so.

  • Nuke Gray

    Sorry, sporty, i completely disagree with you! I am a no-tax libertarian (The only good tax… is a taxi!)
    Whilst smoking is bad, letting the government dictate our health choices is more bad!

  • Laird

    Nuke Gray, the undertakers won’t really have “lost”, merely deferred the income they will eventually make on all of us. It’s just a timing issue.

  • Paul Marks

    Yes Perry.

    The leadership of the Conservative party may talk a lot about the “big society” but they have no more idea what Civil Society is than the Labour or Liberal Democrat party leadership do.

    Should anyone doubt this – listen to Cameron, Osbourne or Gove (or any of the others) for five minutes or so (which willl be about all you can stand). They soon start talking about what they really want – new spending schemes (on a National Citizens Service, “independent” schools funded by the state, special officers for dealing with fatness – or whatever) and, of course, endless new regulations.

    All tomorrow trhousands of people up and down Britain will be working hard to try and and get a Conservative government in this country.

    Pity there is not one on offer.

    I, of course, stand ready to be refuted by the empirical evidence.

    If Mr Cameron restores national independence (i.e. gets Britain out of the E.U.) and rolls back the state (not INCREASES government spending slightly slower than he says Labour would have) then I will eat my words – and be happy to do so.