The Nanny State’s ‘Common Sense’

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I heard someone on the radio today defending New York ex-Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s various bans–large sodas, too much salt, smoking, etc.–as “common sense.”

“For all practical purposes,” the speaker argued, “we  have socialized medicine in New York City. If you get sick, we have to treat you. But why should we have to pay all that money treating medical problems that people have brought on themselves by doing things that aren’t good for their health? It’s really just common sense to ban those things.” (I am simplifying here, but that’s the argument: I’ve heard it before, and so have you.)

It seems to be common sense; but the question that must arise is, “Well, then, where do you stop?”

How intrusive do you want the government to be? If it’s going to ban unhealthy actions–eating too much fast food, drinking too much soda, what have you–why not mandate healthful behavior? Wouldn’t that save a lot of money? Go to bed at such-and-such a time. Get up in time to do your mandatory calisthenics. If you have to go anywhere, walk or ride your bike. And we’ll check to make sure you do those things. We’ll hire a whole army of busybodies to keep tabs on you.

I think the term for that kind of life is “dystopia.” Or “perpetual childhood.” If that’s common sense, they can keep it.


8 comments on “The Nanny State’s ‘Common Sense’

  1. Masculine republics give way to feminine democracies, and feminine democracies give way to tyranny. Aristotle

  2. How uncommon common sense is becoming. The Dems have an impeachment inquiry but do not let the President have due process – where is the common sense in that? Sportsmanship used to be an American attribute – you know, let the best man win. Now if the deep state doesn’t like who the American people legitimately elect as Commander-in-Chief they have the Congress try and remove him/her – being “poor losers” is an understatement.

    1. No Republican president at least. I hope the NeverTrumpers and RINOs really think about that. It would be the end of the GOP. I don’t think that will happen though, I think the real intent is to damage the president going into 2020. I don’t think that will succeed either. The real worry for me is 2024.

  3. The problem with rules, such as bans on large sodas and salty foods is that rules, even well intended rules, don’t fit every situation. I haven’t had soda in any quantity since becoming an adult and I don’t think it’s a good choice, but I know construction workers that can down a 12 pack of Mountain Dew every day with no ill effect, because they work exceptionally hard. I tend to salt my food and, as I wrote this, my blood pressure checked at 111/67 with a pulse of 62. Thanks Mr. Bloomberg, but I’ll make my own choices regarding salt. You’re not my physician, you’re just a politician.

  4. Any time I hear a law or regulation being described as “common sense,” I know it makes no sense whatsoever.

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