To clarify, I’m not serious about the following, as implementing it except by a democratic process people considered fair, but I consider it worth talking about. Sometimes crazy, impractical ideas spark useful, practical ones.
Should we make stupid shit illegal? We make drunk driving and selling cigarettes to children illegal and no one complains they’re evidence of a nanny state.
How about doof? People can’t stop buying and gorging on food engineered around craving, where its pleasure comes from salt, sugar, fat, convenience, and novelty. I don’t care if people’s habits burden them, but the CDC reports heart disease, diabetes, and obesity cost us more than half a trillion dollars per year.
How crazy is it to consider beyond taxing sodas, making doof illegal? How bad would it be to leave America with its only eating option fresh fruits, fresh vegetables, legumes, mushrooms, and healthy food?
I don’t see how to implement it either, but imagine for a moment only healthy eating options. Imagine farmers growing wholesome food. Imagine everyone knowing how to cook.
If you’re like I was before learning to cook from scratch and before going long enough without doof, you might associate fresh vegetables with not tasting good, but don’t eat doof for long enough and it starts looking more disgusting than food looked bland to a doof-eater.
How about plastic? So far we can’t stop producing it to where plastic courses through nearly all of our bloodstreams. How about we make it illegal? Maybe we can make some exceptions for health care and a few rare uses, or at least 90 percent less than we use.
I know it seems hard to imagine 90 percent less plastic, but is it? Try.
Look at the pictures in Beautiful, modern life before plastic, corn syrup, and Walmart. Nearly no plastic. Imagine Buddha, Aristotle, Laozi, Jesus, or any other luminary—did they need plastic? I think they were pretty happy without it.
How about social media? Or marketing to create craving? Most of us can’t stop ourselves from spending hours feeling like we can’t stop, later regretting overspending time online. Few of us can tell the difference between a fleeting craving and meaningfully wanting something.
People keep saying education will help, but we teach plenty and these problems increase.
A nanny state?
Behaviors only affecting the people doing them, I support people doing what they want. These behaviors affect everyone. Stopping people from hurting innocent people seems a valid use for laws.
I’m also not suggesting making stupidity illegal. But we can stop people from doing stupid things without criminalizing stupidity or stupid people. Not allowing smoking in bars and restaurants worked without assuming or insulting anyone’s intelligence.
I know the ideas seem impractical, what we might do to make them practical?
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