For the sake of full disclosure, I’ll plainly confess that I have a bias against Alec Baldwin. But then again, I have a bias against Jane Fonda and a plethora of other two-faced celebrities that take advantage of the tremendous opportunities this great nation has to offer while denouncing nearly everything about this country. Nonetheless, bias or no bias, Baldwin’s recent Huffington Post op-ed is emblematic of a much larger problem in America: do-gooder Fascism.
Baldwin writes in his defense of Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s proposal to ban the sale of sugary drinks in quantities over 16 ounces in many places city-wide. Unsurprisingly, many are outraged at this obvious Big Brother tactic, but statists like Baldwin love well-intentioned Fascism so long as it jibes with their general perspective.
Baldwin writes that the American perspective regarding snacks and the like has changed since he was a child and he bemoans the rise of fast food chains that offer high-calorie meals. To lend his perspective credence, he discusses his revelation regarding sugars and carbohydrates and his recent loss of 30 pounds. While it’s good for him that he lost the weight and discovered self-control, what about those in society that did not completely miss 10th grade health class? Should those that do not have an obesity problem be forced to buy two soft drinks if they’re thirsty? Or what about those that – dare I say it – choose to live their life they way they want, even if that means they don’t mind being overweight?
The piece also takes aim at Libertarian thought and suggests that those who are against Bloomberg’s proposed ban are sick and do not want their “drug” taken away. While condescending, at least he extended to this group more courtesy than his own 11-year-old daughter, who he called a “rude, thoughtless little pig”. Yes, Alec Baldwin: a defender of the people from themselves and a class act. He’s the whole package.
We’ve already seen this battle fought over smoking. Defenders of those that smoke claimed that such bans were a slippery slope, but benevolent Fascists led us to believe that they would stomp on the freedom of smokers and then be on their way. Now they’re back to trample on your Big Gulp.
This issue is not about Baldwin. It’s not about Bloomberg. It’s not about the merits of a high-sugar diet. It’s about the confusion of “good” versus “just”. As we have statists crusading for that which is good for people, we get further and further removed from a life of self-sufficiency. Baldwin and Bloomberg should make their choices and leave us to do similarly.
In honor of Alec Baldwin, I will be treating myself to McDonald’s and raising a tall cup of Sprite in his honor. I hope others do as well.