Thursday, January 24, 2008

Ways to Increase Obesity: No 94

So the government wants to give fat people vouchers or cash as "rewards" for losing weight. Have you ever heard of a more crackpot idea? If you give a fat person five pounds, which six words are they most likely to utter next? Yep, Big Mac and Large Fries, please. And I should know!

Mind you, having said that, I have lost half a stone in the last month. Where's my reward?

27 comments:

simon said...

Another crackpot/waste of money idea from the NuLab/liberal alliance. Give money to fat f'rs to gorge themselves even more! Bloody hell. The remedy to losing weight is well known and in your own hands to do something about- eat sensibly & exercise! God, people should take MORE responsibility for themselves (ie) don't expect lovly Mr Broon et al to find you a job- etc!). The 'nanny-state' has gone too far now. What next? Ars* wiping free on the NHS for fat fr's?! Home-help telly channel changing for the lazy? Spot squeezing specialists for teenagers?

Anonymong said...

So if you already currently excercise and eat healthily, you effectively get penalised in favour of those who don't? Makes me want to put on weight just so I can then go on to lose it and make some money!

machiavelli said...

Half a stone in the last month? There'll be nothing left of you soon, Iain!

Chrlotte Corday said...

I am normal weight but I'm looking for ways to earn money. If I become fat, will the government then pay me to return to my previous weight?

curly15 said...

Incredibly stupid idea from an incredibly stupid government, eat less get paid to buy more food, and we'll teach you how to cook it too!

Bring back competitive sports in schools and make the streets safer, that's what I say.

Chris Paul said...

Vouchers for clothes won't buy a big mac and fries. But for those poorer than you losing each dress size means needing to afford new clothes. And healthy food need not be but certainly can be more expensive and/or difficult than junk. Not cash Iain.

As I understand it the amounts are fairly trivial compared to Guido Fawke's daily lunch budget. And certainly cheaper and wiser to prevent ill health than to deal with it down the road.

Tories believe on principle in incentives rather than penalties, no? This is incentives rather than penalties and should save the tax payer money. So isn't it a good thing? Rather than something to poke fun at?

Lew said...

I can only assume all us non-fat folk will get our large financial reward in advance?

Oh..

neil craig said...

It is one of the signs that government always wants to increase government spending (empire building is a natural human activity) & that as a society we are so wealthy that it is no longer possibly to find really poor people in need of help so government has to expand into new areas, such as this, or windmillery or the general "war against fire" or an awful lot of anti-terrorism.

I don't object to the welfare state & we can afford all the legitimate expenses of providing a safety net. We cannot afford the purely parasitic extension of the state. If I were running the Tories I would require a 2% reduction in government employees annually. This would be low enouigh to mean no forced redundancies but enough to ensure a contraction of the state.

Anonymous said...

Would people with cancer, who desparately need to keep their weight up to fight their terrible disease, also receive these vouchers as they waste away?

Or would the givernment 'exclude' the ill from this little earner?

Please, don't say this is a tasteless comment. All it shows is that this idea is utterly, utterly bonkers.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, see, you should have waited...

By the way, the fur seems to be flying over in the Lib Dem Voice house over that pesky EU referendum..

Gordon Brown's All Seeing Eye said...

lew said...
I can only assume all us non-fat folk will get our large financial reward in advance.


Thin folks will get even thinner as they work harder to pay the taxes to pay for the bloated bureacracy, fine buildings, new computer system and indexed linked pensions that will be needed to operate the system. Still at least Gordoom Brown wil be able to crow about high levels of employment.

Giles said...

Why on earth do people need to be incensivised to keep themselves healthy? This is left-wing idiocy at its worst. If people want to get fat or drink and smoke themselves to death then let them. It's their silly fault.

Of course judging by the state of the people on the Labour benches in the Commons it would seem that overweight people are more likely to vote Labour. So presumably this idea is simply another attempt to use taxpayers' money to shore-up the Labour vote.

Machiavelli's Understudy said...

Chris Paul,

Why don't we pay people to go to work, as an incentive, if we're going to go down the trivial route?

And what about the rest of us? I'm fed up of seeing the money of my family, my friends and people around me spent on niche vote-rigging projects. They get f*ck all in return, aside from a mediocre education for their children and healthcare on someone else's terms.

When will the Government start dishing out other people's money to me, as an incentive to not go out and drink?

Where's the incentive to not get fat in the first place? You're naive if you think that people are as self-conscious as we are.

Feel free to pay for someone else's selfish individual choices- I don't think the rest of us should be coerced in to it, though.

Alex said...

Hey! Great idea, leading to the 2 most logical next steps:

1. The Poverty Tax, eradicating poverty in the same way that the government reduces CO2 emissions and alcohol consumption (by taxing them) and

2. Tax handouts for capitalists, because these people create real jobs and the rest of the population dan't.

With policies like these this government will go far.

molesworth 1 said...

I had this marked as f***-wittery of the highest order before the Sky newsreader had got to the end of his sentence.
Also Guido has another Labour health-scare story over at his place.
I don't feel very well...

Patrick said...

As a postman, I know from bitter experience that the best way to motivate people really hard to do some running is when fleeing from a large and determined looking Rottweiler in the front garden.

I therefore propose that henceforth all benefits must be paid in cash only and that to get them claimants must successfully dodge the resident hungry pitbull to be installed in the lobby of each welfare office around the country.

Double whammy - a workable solution for too many dangerous dogs and the 'obesity epidemic'.

(Bows). You're welcome.

(It makes as much sense as these nannying chimps ever do).

asquith said...

What a bag of shite!

canvas said...

Does Ms Jac Smith think it is a good idea to promote take away kebabs while the government is slamming junk food?

I'm confused about the message Labour are sending out.

The government can be fat and eat junk - but the public can't ?

Is that the message? Weird.

Sophie King said...

Chris Paul at 11.21am says, "But for those poorer than you losing each dress size means needing to afford new clothes." I'm so delighted by this hilariously spendthrift notion it's going to keep me chuckling all day. Has he not heard that it is possible to make existing clothes smaller and shorter using those old-fashioned items called scissors, needle and thread? If these fat people lose enough weight they might be able to create 2 new items where previously there was only one. What an utter, utter moron.

Anonymous said...

declaring an interest here - I am a morbidly obese woman and have been vastly overweight all my life. I think the idea is indicative of a government that truly, truly does not understand the nature of the problem (not only on this issue of course!). I am not fat because I am poor, I am fat because I am addicted to and obsessional about, food. I love food more than I love life. I can't see how this will help any more than giving an alcoholic vouchers to buy mineral water would help them. I worry about the medical advice the government are receiving - do they really think that this will help in any way???

The money should go towards more investment in mental health support and research. It’s in all our interests - not just "fat fr's" for us to have a greater understanding of and help for, people with mental illness and how this relates to the reward mechanism in the brain. Apart from reducing crime, you might even stop a few people drinking or taking other drugs and get some to lose weight as well.

dehautenbas said...

Chris Paul wrote: "Vouchers for clothes won't buy a big mac and fries. But for those poorer than you losing each dress size means needing to afford new clothes"

Have they never heard of a needle and thread?

(Mind you, our nanny government would probably make them do a risk assessment and a training course before they were permitted such a dangerous tool.)

botogol said...

apparently it's based on US studies where they find that if you offer people as little as $150 they actually do lose weight.

so perhaps it's not so silly.

JHK said...

We need more detail. Given the rising cost of food, is it going to be worth fattening my husband up for the payout?

John M Ward said...

What is your reward, Iain? Why, nothing less than to be pictured cheek-by-jowl (almost literally!) next to Simon Heffer. Chin-chin!

John M Ward said...

Botogol's comment is of interest; but the US situation is markedly different from ours, and for largely different reasons.

We don't want this country to get anywhere near that state, so we need appropriate policies to how we are as a society now, and also to how things might otherwise go if we did not take the right kinds of actions for our society, not someone else's.

As others here have already said, what is being proposed by the Government is (as usual) the wrong way. They just do not seem to have a clue between the lot of them.

Oh, and I for one have learned to completely ignore the ignorant, so I have stopped reading or responding to Chris Paul, in the interests of saving wasted bandwidth...

verity said...

Botogol - how about offering them a reduction in benefits? That way, they wouldn't have as much to spend on the junk rubbish they stuff their faces with. Why should the taxpayer support herds of bovine continuous munchers clad in polyester stretchwear and unlaced trainers?

As long as you people support the NHS, you are giving the government a licence to deal with anything it identifies as a problem with schemes which continue to verge on lunacy.

verity said...

First, Chris Paul, who I don't usually bother with, states with the confidence of a couturier that losing a dress size will require the purchase of new outfits. No. These ambulatory tents that these women walk around in, and the polyester stretchwear, are "versatile". You can go up a couple - or more - sizes, or down (as if) - and it will make no difference to the fit, because it was never designed to fit.

"Tories believe on principle in incentives rather than penalties, no?" Yes. Incentives in private industry. The government doesn't have any money to hand out to people to incentivise them because all the money in government belongs to the taxpayer.

So your economics, Chris Paul, are stretch pants.