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Tuesday, September 27, 2016

On the same day that a federal judge struck down New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg’s proposed ban on the sale of some sugary drinks over 16 ounces, Mississippi lawmakers passed a bill that would prevent any similar regulations in the Magnolia State.

The bill, which Mississippians have referred to as the “anti-Bloomberg bill,” passed the Senate by a 50-1 margin Monday after previously passing the state House 92-26. It would ban counties and towns from regulating portion sizes, requiring that calorie counts be posted in restaurants (as New York City mandates) or keeping toys out of kids’ meals (something that Mayor Bloomberg has never proposed). Governor Phil Bryant, a Republican, is currently reviewing the proposal, and is expected to sign it into law.

Predictably, the restaurant lobby is thrilled with the idea. “If you look at how menus have changed, whether it be in fast food or family dining, you are seeing more and more healthy options,” Mississippi Hospitality and Restaurant Association executive director Mike Cashion told NPR. “Not because of legislative mandates or regulatory mandates, but because of consumer demand. Our industry has always been one to respond to the marketplace.”

Consumers in Mississippi don’t seem to be demanding healthier food, however — 34.9 percent of Mississippians suffer from obesity, making it the most obese state in the Union according to the most recent data from the Centers for Disease Control.

Furthermore, there is deep irony in Mississippi attacking Mayor Bloomberg; after all, as of 2010, Mississippi was receiving $2.47 in federal spending for every $1.00 in taxes paid — the third-highest rate in the nation — while New York ranked 37th with just 0.72 cents of federal money for every tax dollar paid. In other words, Bloomberg’s state is heavily subsidizing Mississippi’s high federal health care costs, which are exacerbated by laws like the “anti-Bloomberg bill.”

For his part, Bloomberg lashed out at the legislation when he was asked about it during a Wednesday morning interview on CBS News.

“You know, Saturday Night Live couldn’t write this stuff,” Bloomberg said. “How can somebody try and pass a law that deliberately says we can’t improve the lives of our citizens? It’s just farce. Nobody would believe it if you wrote it in the book.”

“Go out in the street and ask anybody, would they roll back the smoking ban? Would they roll back getting lead paint out of classrooms? I don’t think any of these things would get rolled back,” the three-term mayor continued. “The fact of the matter is, in New York City, people live over two years longer than the average across America and over three years longer than they did when we came into office 10 years ago.”

AP Photo/Richard Drew, File

  • We must make it perfectly clear: undisciplined and irresponsible states that do not embrace Obamacare must not be subsidized by those that do. If they want to supersize, that’s fine, but don’t come asking the rest of us to pay your medical bills when your indulgence catches up with your physical limitations.

    • S-3

      Damn Straight, Dom. I wish most red state were nuked already. That would teach them a lesson – how to properly survive.

    • nobsartist

      Yes, and we should penalize owners of cars that can go faster than 70 miles an hour.

      Land of the free….bullshit. I have not seen anyone propose a law that limits how often you can trade stocks, why do we need a law that limits how much liquid we can consume?

      Plus, obamacare is just another extension of the failed republiCON health care policy forced on us by raygun so why has that law not been revoked but instead made mandatory by Democrats?

      • I don’t believe the government should regulate or interferre with our right to consume whatever we wish, but I also believe that people who act irresponsibly must pay for the consequences of their decisions.
        I confess that my feelings on this issue are exacerbated by the knowledge that some of the people most dependent on government handouts are, precisely, the ones that criticize those handouts and demonize others for their own failings.
        Regarding Obamacare, I would have preferred a single payer system, in fact, I would have loved a system similar to those in Scandinavia, Germany, France, the UK, Canada and other industrialized nations, not only because they lower cost by getting rid of the middle man, and provide services to ALL citizens, but by doing so they lower corporate costs and allow their business community to be more competitive. The sad truth is that we are not ready for such a dramatic change. A large segment of our population is still convinced that government is the problem and that anything that remotely resembles socialism is evil. They believe that embracing some social programs in areas such as healthcare and education is evidence of evil socialism and oppose it even if it means a lower quality of life, and even when countries that do so also embrace private enterprise. Consider the claims of socialism levied by opponents of Obamacare, directed at a program that uses for profit insurance companies to administer it. In a nutshell, we must learn how to crawl before we start running.

        • nobsartist

          Perhaps if our government was actually doing the job that they are supposed to do instead of concerning themselves with the rest of the world, we would not live in the 2nd rate, two bit nation that we are stuck with today.

          If America is not able to change, it is because we have become a nation of over weight imbeciles that would prefer to elect a President based on having a beer with him instead of electing them based on what they can do for America.

          “America” means everyone in America, not just the banks or corporations that donate to your campaign.

          I wonder why it was so easy to change in Canada. You will say its because they have fewer people but in reality, that is a cop
          out.

          We just elect leaders with fewer brains.

    • whodatbob

      Dom, shame on you! This a case of government attempting to control our life. A Democrate doing so is equally as objectionable a repuke.

      • Just to clarify – Bloomberg is now a n Independent. He switched from Democrat to Republican for his 1st term, then ran under the Republican ticket as an Independent for his 2nd term.

    • whodatbob

      Oh, forgot! Bloomberg is a billionaire he like the repucks needs to control allof the unclean.

  • itsfun

    Government is not supposed to replace our parents. The mayor of New York believes he is responsible for people living longer. Talk about a arrogant ass. He must believe he has the power of God in his hands. Get out of people’s lives. He wants to regulate every phase of a persons life. Next, he will tell me where I can live, work, and what hobbies I can have. he will want to set up spy cameras in my home, so he can watch every moment I make. Make sure I exercise the way he wants me to, watch the TV shows he approves of, and how I make love to my wife. This man is nuts.

    • S-3

      You are part of the problem. People like you need to be removed. You are the reason the rest of the world and humanity itself hates innocent Americans liek me who DO know better than that.

      • itsfun

        You want to have me killed because I don’t agree with your views. My, how torrent you are. What is it called when only one side of political views can be tolerated?.

    • english_teacher

      So, what are your feelings about the Republicans efforts to control every phase of a woman’s reproduction health? Seeking to force women to give birth regardless of consequences? Forcing non-necessary procedures on women who have chosen to have an abortion? Making all abortions as well as birth control illegal? Making medical decisions based on religious ideology and not sound medical knowledge?

      I would hope that you would feel the same way about government intrusion into women’s health as you do regarding the health of all the people. Because if you’re against one, then you should be against the other.

      • itsfun

        I do agree with you. These are decisions that women should make. The government should not be allowed to tell you have or not have a baby, or make your medical decisions or any other personal decisions for you.

    • whodatbob

      You are correct. Keep asses like Bloomberg out of our private life. We get up set at republicans termpting to control us. But a democrat get a pass.

      • Can we clarify the issue here. Bloomberg is not a Democrat. He was elected Mayor of NY as a Repulblican (he switched from Democrat for his 1st term to Republican for that race) and then ran under the Republican ticket as an Independent for his second term. So he’s officially an Independent at this time.

  • charleo1

    Somebody said, and they are right. If Barack Obama, or anyone from the Left,
    recommended brushing, and flossing after meals for good dental health. There are
    going to be some in the Republican base, that will allow their own teeth to rot out
    of their heads, on principal. Remember all the humorous pics. of Republican candidates
    eating fried butter sticks? It was not about how delicious fried butter on a stick is.
    It was about Michelle Obama, urging a Nation of over weight, couch potatoes to
    be more active, and watch their fat intake. Especially for the kids. The fried butter
    stick was just another way the Right could show their stiff middle finger, to anything
    Obama.

  • nobsartist

    Too bad America cannot pass an “Anti-stupidity Bill” that would outlaw stupid laws.