Local councils in Britain have decreed that individuals need to be told how much salt they are allowed apply to their fish and chips. Accordingly, they have taken it upon themselves – at taxpayer expense – to give fish and chip sellers new, government approved, saltshakers.
Pot-holed roads, crumbling schools, litter-strewn streets – there’s no shortage of problem areas crying out for their attention.
But councils believe they have found a better use for their money: reducing the number of holes in chip shop salt shakers.
Research has suggested that slashing the holes from the traditional 17 to five could cut the amount people sprinkle on their food by more than half.
And so at least six councils have ordered five-hole shakers – at taxpayers’ expense – and begun giving them away to chip shops and takeaways in their areas.
Leading the way has been Gateshead Council, which spent 15 days researching the subject of salty takeaways before declaring the new five-hole cellars the solution.
Officers collected information from businesses, obtained samples of fish and chips, measured salt content and ‘carried out experiments to determine how the problem of excessive salt being dispensed could be overcome by design’.
Government is supposed to take care of certain things that are difficult for individuals to organize. Things like military defense, certain infrastructure like roads and bridges or some public health initiatives.
They are not supposed to decree how much salt you are permitted.
Yet the mindset of the local politicians is perfectly described in the last quote in the article:
A spokesman said: ‘Heart disease costs taxpayers £7billion a year so to say that projects such as this are a waste of money is mind-boggling.’
That attitude showcases – perfectly – the ownership that local councils feel they have over the activities of the peasants – er – citizens.
A recent commenter implied we here in America should be more like the "civilized" Europeans. I would only point out that my ancestors came to this country specifically to get away from those "civilized" European ideas, laws and customs. Personally, I'd rather not be "civilized" over my right as an individual to decide what is best for me. That is my right, not the government's.