$650 Million Hidden in Stimulus Bill for Propaganda Attack on What We Eat, Drink, and Smoke

March 12, 2010 01:45

by Phil Kerpen via Big Government

One of the more extreme proposals floated early in the national health care debate was the idea of taxing soda and other sugary beverages. That trial balloon was almost immediately shot down by the American public, but the Obama administration is attempting to achieve, by subterfuge, soda taxes and a lot of other ways to micromanage our lives in the name of public health—whether or not ObamaCare passes. The mechanism is buried in last year’s $862-billion-and-counting stimulus bill, and works by diverting hundreds of millions of dollars that should be promoting economic growth to instead pay lobbyists to push for higher taxes and nanny-state controls over our lives.


It’s on pages 66 and 67 on the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which created a $1 billion “Prevention and Wellness Fund.” Of that, $650 million went to Kathleen Sebelius’s Department of Health and Human Services and has been used to start a new program at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) called “Communities Putting Prevention to Work” (CPPW).

Where does that giant pot of grant funding under the CPPW go? What it calls “MAPPS Interventions for Communities Putting Prevention to Work.” MAPPS stands for “Media, Access, Point of decision information, Price, and Social support/services.” In other words, strategies for changing our behavior, for social engineering on a large-scale, and, it seems, circumventing the normal democratic process. In a 14-page guidance for grant applicants, the CDC details tactics that grant applicants should include in their plans. It includes “counter-advertising” against targeted products, complete tobacco usage bans, limiting “unhealthy food availability” (the really bad stuff like “whole milk, sugar sweetened beverages, high-fat snacks”), and of course taxes (or in CDC lingo: “changing relative prices of healthy vs. unhealthy items”).

A supplemental document explains in more detail what the targets are, including restricting availability of soft drinks “in homes, schools, work sites, and communities.”

It also recommends local zoning changes to put fast food restaurants out of business, trans-fat bans, salt regulation, and food taxes. They even suggest a TV ban of sorts, recommending: “specific regulations/policies that limit television and other screen media.”

The first $120 million of funds has already been awarded to the states, and local grant recipients are expected to be announced soon. In Wisconsin, for example, we already know that the state department of health submitted a grant to use federal stimulus dollars to hire lobbyists to push for bans on flavored tobacco programs at the local level.

Although the grants under this program are supposedly restricted from funding lobbying activities, there is imply no way these objectives can be accomplished without major legislative changes at the state and local level. Our federal stimulus dollars are being used to hire lobbyists to push for these taxes, bans, restrictions, rules and regulations on what we eat, drink, smoke, and do for recreation. It’s a sweeping micromanagement of our lives that we didn’t vote for, made even worse by the fact that it’s being funded by stimulus money that was supposed to put people other than lobbyists back to work.

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