I wonder when people are going to realise that the medical profession has gone collectively insane?
‘The greatest public health crisis affecting the UK’: Doctors demand curbs on fizzy drinks and fast food
A tax on fizzy drinks, a limit on fast food outlets near schools and child nutritional advice for new parents are urgently required to help address spiralling levels of obesity, doctors have demanded.
The Academy of Medical Royal Colleges (AMRC), which represents nearly every doctor in the UK, said obesity was “the greatest public health crisis affecting the UK” and warned ministers, councils, the NHS and food organisations needed to take action.
Who the hell are they to ‘demand’ anything? They work for us, not us for them.
And, of course, it’s described as an ‘epidemic’.
As part of a 10-point plan drawn up to stem the obesity epidemic, the academy said doctors are ‘united in seeing the epidemic of obesity as the greatest public health crisis facing the UK’, adding that the consequences include diabetes, heart disease and cancer and that people are ‘dying needlessly’ from ‘avoidable diseases’.
Look, there isn’t an obesity epidemic. Obesity isn’t a disease. Fat people aren’t incapacitated by being fat. Nor do they suffer pain. Nor is obesity a transmissible disease.
Influenza is an epidemic disease. So are typhoid and cholera and bubonic plague. Those are real epidemic diseases. Obesity isn’t a disease, and nor is it an epidemic disease. Just like smoking or drinking aren’t epidemic diseases either. No, really, they’re not.
If lots of Polish people come to work in Britain, there isn’t an epidemic of Poles. No. And if it rains a lot, there isn’t an epidemic of water either. And a forest isn’t an epidemic of trees. Nor a city an epidemic of bricks. Just because there’s a lot of something doesn’t mean that there’s an epidemic of it.
The Guardian, surprisingly, voices a touch of scepticism.
These interventions are ineffective – or worse – because they treat “the obese” as an abstract, pathological population instead of a group of actual people who are part of the social fabric. They consider weight loss to be the ultimate remedy for every health and social problem associated with fatness, even though it is almost impossible to maintain in the long-term for most people, including those who have undergone surgical interventions. What is sad about this is that people tend to blame themselves when weight loss fails.
Although they are well-meaning, AoMRC’s proposals are not about health promotion, but contribute to a narrative of blame, punishment, prejudice, stigma and anti-fat scapegoating that is horribly familiar. The only thing that looks healthy in this context is the twinkle in the eye of the diet industry CEOs, who are laughing all the way to the bank.
The problem, maybe, is that over the past century we’ve managed to stem or halt the spread of many of the old epidemic diseases – the real killer epidemic diseases, like bubonic plague -. The medical profession has thereby lost much of its raison d’être. And so it has resorted to conjuring up phantom epidemics to replace them. Like the so-called ‘epidemics’ of smoking, drinking, and obesity, which never used to be regarded as diseases, nevermind epidemic diseases. In a time when people are living longer than ever, thanks to improved nutrition and medicine, is the medical profession delighted? Not a bit of it! They screech and point terrified fingers at a new army of imaginary diseases. Even old age has become a disease, which some people really seem to believe that they will not contract, if only they refrain from eating or drinking or smoking.
It’s not just that the medical profession is conjuring up phantom epidemics, but also that it is converting perfectly healthy conditions into diseases. When people get sick, they very often become emaciated as well, and slowly waste away. Even simple starvation results in emaciation. Being very thin is generally not a mark of good health. But being fat generally is a sign of health and prosperity. But now the medical profession has set out to invert this age old wisdom, and they teach that being fat – renamed ‘obesity’ – is unhealthy, and being thin is not.
Quite often these days, wartime rationing is held up as an example of a time when people ‘ate healthily’. But wartime is a time of universal dis-ease and distress. There’s nothing healthy about war. Wars kill people in their millions. And it is another example of a complete inversion of values that it should now be held up as being ‘healthy’.
It’s almost as if a new Belsen were discovered somewhere, filled with painfully emaciated men and women, it would now be dubbed a ‘health camp’ of a modern and ‘progressive’ kind, particularly if there was plenty of ‘healthy’ exercise in the form of breaking and carrying rocks. But if the new Belsen was full of fat people instead, lounging around doing nothing, doctors would express shock that its inmates had been so ill-treated as to be allowed to become obese (particularly if they were well-supplied with alcohol and tobacco as well), and would call for the camp supervisors to be put on trial, perhaps for ‘crimes against humanity’. Such is the inversion of values.
The same goes with alcohol and tobacco. The moderate consumption of these is also a mark of well-being. Happy people, at ease with themselves, enjoy a few drinks and smokes in the company of their friends. And so inverted modern medicine that demonises these goods acts to create unhappiness, and to create that lack of ease which may more properly be described as dis-ease.
Our modern ‘crisis’ is not one of obesity or smoking or drinking. It is instead the crisis of a medical profession that has lost its way, and lost its reason.