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article imageOp-Ed: Liberal policies cause obesity — Rupert Murdoch

By Paul Wallis     Jan 17, 2013 in World
Sydney - Murdoch’s Tweets have been getting him into trouble lately. This time it’s a claim that food stamps make people obese, and that people’s lifestyles cost taxpayers money.
The Murdoch-owned New York Daily News does a pretty fair job of covering the story:
Conservative billionaire media mogul Rupert Murdoch took a swipe Wednesday at the overweight woman who broke an arm when the sidewalk beneath her suddenly cracked, sending her plunging six feet.
“How did fat lady who fell thru street get to 400 lbs?” Murdoch tweeted. “Welfare, stamps, etc? Then leave us all with 20yrs immense health bills.”
The flak was instantaneous. The overall view was incredulous that anyone could believe that living on welfare promotes obesity. Consider the price of food, then consider how many welfare checks you’d have to receive to become obese, and how long it would take.
Murdoch backtracked- To a point:
Did not mean to be unsympathetic to 400lb lady but the fact remains that unhealthy eating by rich and poor driving up premiums for all.
That’s if you assume that insurance companies need to be encouraged to raise their premiums and that America’s standard 40% price buffer on surgery and ridiculously expensive medication have no effect on medical costs. (If it costs that much to do, it’s being done wrong. There’s always a way of improving costs.)
Nobody in fact knows whether this woman is on welfare. She couldn’t be contacted for comment. Lousy, fat and sugar filled food certainly does promote obesity in everyone, but it’s also a matter of opinion whether the media, rather than doctors and dieticians, should be commenting on an individual case.
More to the point- The neocon view of everything to do with welfare says that it “costs taxpayers money”. Who’s receiving the treatment? Taxpayers. People on welfare weren’t always on welfare.
Or is the theory that you cease to be a person when you’re on welfare and become an automatic target for self-righteousness? If you’re a conservative, you lose your job (yes, it has been known to happen) and you suddenly find yourself on welfare whether you like it or not because you have bills to pay, what’s your ideological position? Uncomfortable? It should be. Too many double standards about other people’s misery. 400lb or not, this woman has legal rights, so do others, and those legal rights should be respected. Remember- It could be you.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
More about rupert murdoch twitter, obesity liberal policies, double standards of neocons, factual reporting
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