Obesity Is Target of “Stimulus” Money

The Administration of President Barack Obama apparently is running out of ideas for projects at which to throw “stimulus funds.”  Last week, the House rushed to accomodate an urgent administration request for additional funds for the “Cash for Clunkers” givaway, which was close to using up its $1 billion allotment after less than one week.  And, in a recent move that raises serious questions about the government’s very definition of “stimulus,” the administration is spending some $1 billion to fight obesity!

The recipients of the so-called “fat money” include public transportation.  In other words,  government Brainiacs apparently have concluded that they can help reduce the number of fat people in America by increasing funding for public transportation — people walk less by riding public transportation more, and the pounds just melt away.  Pure genius.

The government reportedly will also allow these taxpayer-provided “stimulus monies” to be used to get more vegetables and and fruits into our nation’s schools.  Apparently local schools are totally incapable of making such decisions to shift school lunch money aways from hot dogs and macarroni and cheese, toward more healthy vegetable and fruit fare, without Uncle Sam directing them.  Our concerned feds also apparently will use our tax dollars to “encourage grocery stores to sell more produce in poor communities.” Exactly how they will accomplish this remains a mystery; but such a problem certainly won’t stop them from spending the money.

California, which has skirted bankruptcy repeatedly by acts of fiscal legerdemain in recent months, will — I am sure — be delighted to know that the federal government will be sending it some “stimulus money” that helps bus girls to dance lessons in the Golden State.

61 comments Add your comment

Redneck Convert (R--and proud of it)

August 5th, 2009
7:23 am

Well, I might of knowed they would go after people that had big bones or maybe a gland problem. You can’t even fill up your belly with five or six lbs. of mashed potatoes and gravy without getting a big target drawed on your back by the guvmint. And me with a missus that weighs 335 lbs. and looking at a big tax and a shortage of good-tasting things to eat. What’s next? Charging more just because your butt hangs over the seat in a airplane or a bus?

Far as I’m concerned, they need to go after the people that will pay 3 bucks for a cup of coffee and 2 bucks for water that you could get from the tap in the kitchen for free. The guvmint is starting to get in the way of our God-given right to stuff our face with whatever we want. I halfway expect alot of big-boned people will turn to the Libraritarian Party now. Have a good day everybody.

BlindNation

August 5th, 2009
7:27 am

Obama’s idiocies at work again and the mindless morons that follow him. Getting ready to put my “Don’t blame me I didn’t vote for him” sticker on my bumper.

Steve

August 5th, 2009
7:45 am

Now Obama is going to make us all look like Calvin Klein models. That must be some superpower cape Obama puts on in the morning to go to work in.

Trudy

August 5th, 2009
7:46 am

The economy is bouncing back from the mess bush made thanks to President Obama. Diplomacy is making a return and our international standing continues to improve. Thanks, President Obama!

matt

August 5th, 2009
7:48 am

If it is a government organized stimulus, then I am sure it is written in the most inefficient manner possible and will probably just end up funneling money to Monsanto Foods. The way the average American eats is unsustainable for the future of our species. It costs significantly less to medically care for a proportionate person than to repeatedly restart a cholesterol laced heart. That is just the tip of the iceberg of the far reaching costs of overindulgence. It is selfish to tie up so many resources because you “can’t help it”. People with cancer can’t help it, significantly overweight people just have no self control. Your assumption that schools currently seek out and provide healthy lunches is pretty far off base though, they have failed do so for many decades now.

The REAL GodHatesTrash, Superstar

August 5th, 2009
7:57 am

Go to any Georgia Walmart and watch all the pigs in their sweatpants waddling around the store, huffing and puffing. Men and women over 300 lbs. 10 year-olds pushing 200 lbs. Triple chinned freaks.

Fat greasy slimy stinkin’ trash.

The REAL GodHatesTrash, Superstar

August 5th, 2009
8:00 am

The school lunches at Georgia schools are a joke. Pizza every other day, and the days they don’t have pizza some greasy oily slop thrown over macaroni or mashed potatoes. Wash it down with some sugar drinks.

Craig

August 5th, 2009
8:02 am

Trudy you’ve been drinkin the Obama koolaid and as most liberals do, avoiding the facts. The economy has not “bounced back” as you say because of Obama. In fact its taken a dive since he took office and increased our national debt by trillions There have only been spent a few billion of the stimulus dollars so far. Any bouce is due to private sector activity which is where our prosperity comes from. When are you guys gonna get it through your head that its ALWAYS been the private sector that is the source of our prosperity and NOT government abd it will be private initative that will bring us back to prosperity.

Claire

August 5th, 2009
8:08 am

Trudy, people like you really scare me because you have no grasp of what damage Obama is doing, nor do you seem to care. I could give a rat’s behind how the international community views the US, what I do care about is this country and the financial nightmare Obama has thrown us into. The stimulus has stimulated nothing, unemployment continues to grow, and we are on the verge of socialized medicine. Please try to understand the BIG picture. You are indicative of Obama’s base, no concept of how dangerous big government is. Did you even read this article? Can you see how billions of taxpayers dollars are being thrown around for uselessness that creates no jobs, or even remotely stimulates our economy? How do see that as a positive? The mess Bush left? Are you serious? A democratic congress is your mess maker. You are naive if you think your taxes aren’t going up, even though Obama promised to not raise taxes on anyone but the rich. Even you have to understand the trillions he has spent (and is still spending) have to be paid back somehow. Love your President now and blindly follow him, because he will only get four. And you can bet the democratic congress is going to take a beating in two.

Lane

August 5th, 2009
8:15 am

Trudy, the President claims the economy is bouncing back; but the housing starts, sales, and unemployment figures all say he’s mistaken at best and lying at worst. People continue to lose their jobs in the private sector. The only people who have a reasonable level of certainty of remaining employed are government employees, local, state, and federal. The stimulus package has protected those jobs; but largely done nothing for the vast majority of us in the private sector. Do you actually know anyone looking for a job? If so, I suggest you ask him or her how that job search is going.

Candace

August 5th, 2009
8:26 am

I would argue that even people with government jobs are not safe. I know that our local governmental agencies are dealing with 5-8% cuts in their budgets and are not only not hiring for open positions but having to fire people in order to make do. These are the same agencies who have undergone 2%-5% cuts EVERY year for the last few years with no expected reduction in services, just less money to run it on.

ron

August 5th, 2009
8:40 am

Redneck Convert.
I was living a life of ease,no thought of sugar plums or anything else when you again go and dangle that delectible 335 pound wife in front of my imagination.Ya gut to quit doing that.

The government could always start a cash for calories program where people turn in a stale bag of potato chips for,let’s say,$5 and then have to purchase and eat,celery or cucumbers in the presence of a government observer.

Curious Observer

August 5th, 2009
8:40 am

All you mossbacks may feel free to gripe about the economy. I hope you’ll remember that it was the policies you supported that ran it into the ground, including running huge deficits off-budget to support two wars and providing huge tax breaks to the wealthiest among us. Get ready for another beatdown in 2010. You should never again be entrusted with national office.

matt

August 5th, 2009
9:00 am

Hardcore left vs. Hardcore right meaningless banter ruins the Barr column yet again. If I wanted to watch people argue this drivel I could just watch the disposable Fox or CNN shows. Trudy got you to waste your time typing your ‘point’ and you did not even catch it… is anyone going to stick to the subject matter of the article?

Johnny

August 5th, 2009
9:31 am

Bob Barr is a moron.

Floridian

August 5th, 2009
9:37 am

“Go to any Georgia Walmart and watch all the pigs in their sweatpants waddling around the store, huffing and puffing.” Waddling, surely you jest! You mean rolling around the aisles on their electric scooters, power chairs and Hoverounds!

bob barr

August 5th, 2009
9:40 am

Wow Johnny, stay up all night thinking up that gem?

get real

August 5th, 2009
9:45 am

The unemployed liberals in this country are parasites. Their host is the US taxpayers. They will continue to drain the host until it dies or kills the parasites.

gloom and doomer

August 5th, 2009
10:07 am

This program is just another example of a government that is pulling out all of the stops to try and avoid the inevitable. And that inevitability is courtesy of the kind of people who met at Jekyll Island in 1913, and all of the cheerleaders since then (on both sides of the aisle) who couldn’t find their a** with both hands.

jconservative

August 5th, 2009
10:18 am

Mr. Barr you can do better than this.

sharecropper

August 5th, 2009
10:41 am

Frankly, Mr. Barr, a little bit of me was hoping that the Republicans would stop further “clunker” funding, then go home on break and explain it to their Republican car dealer friends. As for fat hunting, get real. What do we care, in essence, where the money might create jobs and inject cash into the economy, as long as it does? That you do not challenge. You just don’t like it. You have become what Ms. Parker describes as the typical Southern Republican. Pretty shameful for a guy who once had some gravitas.

Glenn

August 5th, 2009
10:49 am

The financial mess that Obama got us into ? Wow ! As someone who is fairly conservative , I find the most ignorant person or type of person out there is the conservative Bush supporter . His reasons for spending us into oblivion were just ! Or , as compared to Obama he was quite fiscally responsible . We are to fat as a society , I hope Barry succeeds in causing weight loss . Is it the governments place to push fitness . No ? As far as more money in schools for vegetables go , it personally makes me sick that some of my hard earned money goes to educate your children . Why don’t all you families that have kids in public schools stop draining the taxpayers & educate them yourselves or send them to private schools . The government can’t do anything right remember. Put your money where your mouth is & quit leaching off me .

pd

August 5th, 2009
10:53 am

Mr. Barr, here is a simple fact; it costs more to eat healthy than unhealthy. The school systems are all cutting money from their budgets. They buy their foods in bulk from Sysco who supplies them with frozen, mostly processed foods at a bargain.

Its very unfortunate that so many children have to rely on the schools to eat two of their meals a day. Its even more unfortunate that so many of them eat only processed, steroid injected, antibiotic filled, foods at home. However, thats not the fault of the child. By spending a billion dollars now to try and make these children healthy, we may save billions later in healthcare costs.

Jake

August 5th, 2009
10:58 am

Why are we only interested in selling more vegetables in poor communities? Doesn’t anyone care if the middle class trash eat healthy foods?

Jake

August 5th, 2009
11:05 am

pd – Let’s not feed them at all or provide free health care for them later. Why is it my responsiblity to care for crack baby momma’s kids?

Turd Ferguson

August 5th, 2009
11:18 am

Trudy…you are a clueless idiot.

JF McNamara

August 5th, 2009
11:38 am

“government Brainiacs apparently have concluded that they can help reduce the number of fat people in America by increasing funding for public transportation — people walk less by riding public transportation more, and the pounds just melt away.”

Actually, I’m not sure this is true Bob. The furthest I ever walk now is to my car. It’s likely that the train station would be further than that increasing my walk distance, and I will likely have to do more walking when I arrive at my stop on public tranportation. My amount of walking would increase.

That’s why the people in New York walk much, much further than Southerners do. Their lack of cars forces them to make longer walks to mass transportation.

Also, it’s cheaper to buy processed foods in bulk than fruits and vegetables. I’m not sure it has to do with desire to change the menu as much as the money to do so. If you’re a poor school, you buy what you can afford so that you can spend money on your primary mission, education.

It’s like you’ve been mailing it in recently. Can you get back to some thought provoking issues?

Trudy is God

August 5th, 2009
11:44 am

You’re right Trudy. The current financial mess is the result of the Bush administration and Reepublican congress failure to regulate banks, mortgage loan companies, investment banks, etc. However, Obama is a long way from bringing about a recovery although the stock market rally is a positive sign.

Get Real

August 5th, 2009
12:03 pm

If $1 billion dollars will keep these backwoods idiots from going on disability from diabetes and heart disease I’m all for it. Won’t the country save more than the money its shelling out for this program? And obviously local school districts are not responsible enough to address obesity in their schools. Mr. Barr could not have possibly walked through a local high school recently, or he would be in complete support of it.

People such as Craig and Claire are only ranting because there is a democrat in Congress nothing more. If they had true convictions, they would’ve been screaming about the economy and the deficit for the last 8 years. Instead, they were yapping about freedom fries and fighting the enemy over there so we won’t have to fight them here. Until Obama runs up the deficit to the leave that Bush did, please shut up. People like you were all in favor of going to Iraq and spending trillions to rebuild their infrastructure and schools, while your own country’s feel into disrepair. Socialized medicine, lol? What was Medicare Part D signed into law by Bush, which will cost over $1 trillion? Get Real man. Whats so different now from the last 8 years?

The REAL GodHatesTrash, Superstar

August 5th, 2009
12:14 pm

Public transportation requires a lot more walking than driving a car, unless the MARTA train stops in your garage. And you pigs can’t use the drive-in windows at Mickey D’s and your local liquor store without a car, either, so that means using your fat legs to walk around before you slop down or drink up.

Barr puts no thought and effort into these columns.

Pedro

August 5th, 2009
12:15 pm

Trudy is God, surely you jest. Ignoring the fingerprints of Chris Dodd, Barney Frank, ACORN, etc on the mortgage debacle does not make it a Republican mess. If you stand in the middle of the aisle for a few weeks and look to your right and left, you will see that both parties share blame. The real mess, which you fail to recognize, has been long in the making, but the current deficit explosion is unconscionable . Partisan politics has hamstrung this country and the retarded commentary in most of these posts reflects why – we’re a bunch of ignorant sheep from a two party system who are mostly all in denial. The change that our President promised has proven to be more empty political campaign rhetoric and nothing more. What we are experiencing is neither transparent nor by-partisan. We missed the boat to American recovery when Ross Perot made a gallant run at breaking the two party system and we snubbed him. As for targeting obesity it’s another pipe dream. You can’t legislate skinny any more than you can legislate morality. It’s a waste to try.

The REAL GodHatesTrash, Superstar

August 5th, 2009
12:17 pm

Get Real is right, the real problem you caterwauling crybaby knuckle-dragging idiots have with Obama is his pigmentation.

Tyrone

August 5th, 2009
12:24 pm

The economy’s coming back strong with Obama’s plans, but I’m still waiting to get some of that stimulus money we were supposed to get. I’m getting tired of having to pay all these expenses for rent and food when a bunch of rich white fatkats up in New York are getting handouts. I should get these expenses paid like they do, so I don’t have to work as much. Once again, the minorities are getting hosed by the people up in Congress who are supposed to be giving us money.

Get Real

August 5th, 2009
12:37 pm

@ Pedro. So you really believe that Dodd, Frank, and ACORN is part of the reason that the stock market lost Trillions of people’s money? Or did it have something to do with brokers leveraging 30-to-1 bets where heads they win, tails you lose? That whole ACORN thing is a myth that has been thoroughly debunked, and even if it was true there weren’t enough minorities that received loans to cause the damage of this magnitude. The market played with other people’s money and lost. Nice try though.

Billy Bob

August 5th, 2009
12:40 pm

This additional stimulus welfare is the Obama Administration’s way of saying that ‘we realize that national healthcare will not be enacted unless the Administration shows how it will combat voluntary healthcare decisions, like being fat, that will be encouraged when healthcare is paid by others. Drug use, smoking, drunk driving and other behaviors will also be further encouraged by the pending national healthcare legislation that covers everyone equally. No healthy person discount – the healthy will subsidize the not-so-healthy.

Let obsesity reign.

Jefferson

August 5th, 2009
12:48 pm

I thought Congress spends the money.

Jefferson

August 5th, 2009
12:49 pm

Enter your comments here

pd

August 5th, 2009
12:53 pm

“Jake

August 5th, 2009
11:05 am
pd – Let’s not feed them at all or provide free health care for them later. Why is it my responsiblity to care for crack baby momma’s kids?

If you allow people to starve, they will kill you. See the French Revolution and the dozens of other examples in history of where this has occured.

Do the Math

August 5th, 2009
12:54 pm

Lower obesity rates for transit users is common knowledge for people that read the news.

http://www.obesitypanacea.com/2009/04/public-transit-users-more-likely-to.html

Trudy is God

August 5th, 2009
1:02 pm

Pedro – I agree with you about the two party pork system we have. Obama is just passing out money to his constituents the way Bush did for Big Oil, big banks, AIG, Haliburton, etc. Not so sure about ACORN’s impact. While Frank and Dodd bear blame as well, the Repubs want to dump all of it on them and the Demo-backed CRA, which I believe is inaccurate. ACORN actually came out against subprime lending in minority communities. The CRA didn’t require the securitization of the loans, Bear Stearns started that out of pure Wall Street greed. Barney didn’t require the banks to enter the mortgage bond market, again unregulated greed by the bankers. Chris Dodd didn’t invent innja’s or interest only ARM’s, again greedy banks and mortgage loan companies. The foreclosure signs are more prevalent in suburbia then CRA zip codes. In total CRA banks (only about 25% of the lenders out there are fully regulated under CRA) were about half as likely to make subprime loans and about half as likely to sell them to be securitized. Lastly, Dugan, Greenspan, and to some extent Bernanke, all Bush appointees, were supposed to be watching the store.

Jake

August 5th, 2009
1:12 pm

pd – I’d love it if they’d rise up and turn most of Washington and Wall street into soylent green, but they won’t because they’re government poorly educated sheeple. The backbone/core/heart of this country used to be the working class. the guys that came home from WWII and tried to work their way out of the inner cities lower class into the suburban lower and mid middle class. That was the American dream. Send the kids to college and they’ll live better lives. Now we have a polarized two-party system where the Dems take from the middle class and give to the poor and the Repubs take from the middle class and give to the rich. So for baby boomers like me who fought for this country and have worked their way into the middle class, the American dream has become the American nightmare.

Get Real

August 5th, 2009
1:15 pm

Thank you for finally stating fact TiG. Predatory lending is prevalent in urban communities and ACORN therefore opposed subprime lending. Nice to see people stating facts instead of talking points.

Alice

August 5th, 2009
1:16 pm

Things just get curioser and curioser.

The Wizard

August 5th, 2009
1:17 pm

Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain.

JF McNamara

August 5th, 2009
1:48 pm

Billy Bob,

Our current obesity rate of 30.6% is more than double Canada which already has socialized healthcare. Either there’s no correlation between obesity and system of healthcare, or our current system of healthcare encourages obesity. Either way, your point doesn’t appear to match up to actual data.

http://www.nationmaster.com/graph/hea_obe-health-obesity

Also, the healthy currently subsidize the unhealthy. That’s how insurance works. It’s not going to change.

WBK

August 5th, 2009
2:21 pm

JF McNamara

August 5th, 2009
1:48 pm

How does health care stop obesity? I guess if we give all our money to Obama we will not have any left for Dairy Queen. What is next? My clothes!!!

WBK

August 5th, 2009
2:22 pm

JF McNamara:

I have the right to be fat, eat french fries, greasy hamburgers, and live free. Maybe living free promotes obesity. Maybe food stamps?

JF McNamara

August 5th, 2009
2:41 pm

WBK,

Reread what I wrote. Either there is no correlation “OR” socialized healthcare improves obesity rates somehow. I gave a reasonable response using factual data to refute Billy Bobs claim. I never proclaimed socialized healthcare did improve obesity rates.

I never said you didn’t have the right to do what you want or anything about food stamps. You did, and I’m not even sure why.

I’m a proponent of actual personal freedom, so I don’t care what you do as long as it doesn’t affect me.

Chris Broe

August 5th, 2009
2:43 pm

Brainiac Interrupted.

Barr has a very precarious contextual handle on our language. He’s usually within a few thesaural extrapolations of the proper meaning, but he’s bending the meaning of words that form ideas, and corroding the power of those words to persuade readers about the nature of truth.

Barr is not unique in his ability to stink up the English language. Our ex-presidents are language trolls. Bush’s pronounciation of “nuclear” is now accepted usage. The proper name “Lewinski” is now a gerund; and thanks to JFK, the proper name, “Berliner” still means “Napoleonic”. Worse, Ike’s M.I.C. now means the entire Saudi Royal Family and their adopted son Cheney, (another ex-president).

The AJC is full of writers who fail. Bookman is unable to grasp that summations of news must evolve over time. Read his initial report on the Ralph Reed connection to the Indian Casino scandal a few years ago, and then read his unnecessarily-dry synopsis last week. If I had been trying to remind a forgetful America about Ralph Reed, I would have written one sentence: “Ralph Reed was thrown out of an Indian Casino for counting coups”.

The issue here isn’t whether ex-cia Barr is some sinister fruition of the M.I.C. The issue is that only a corrupt forum would allow voices so immodest in their ignorance to flourish. If Bob Barr is a poet, then let him write poetry, but I’m not going to sit here and let him become an ex-president and “malaprop” the United States of America!!!

Glenn

August 5th, 2009
3:19 pm

Pedro for president ! That was funny to me . Seriously though , I think alot about Ross Perot lately . The things that made him run have come true times ten . The ” giant sucking sound ” he heard was dead on . Of course , China is the bigger elephant as compared to NAFTA . I wonder if he would have ran with someone other than Admiral Stockdale , though a truly great man , if Perot would have had a chance . Anyhow he is coming across as kind of prophetic . I am starting to think , as you mentioned Pedro , that he was our last chance at breaking this stagnant , self serving , two party system .