FCC Names Obesity/Food Marketing Task Force

Citing "a public health problem that will only get worse unless we take action," Federal Communications Commission Chairman Kevin Martin announced a joint task force on child obesity. The task force currently brings together mostly corporate and conservative members, including Walt Disney, media watchdog Parents Television Council (which recently lauded General Mills for "family friendly advertising" and specializes in indecency complaints to the FCC), and the Beverly LaHaye Institute, which opposes sex trafficking, promotes abstinence and attacks feminists. Sesame Workshop and Children Now reportedly have also been invited to participate. Children Now's board chair is marketing consultant and former ad exec Jane Gardner. Sen. Sam Brownback (R-Kan.), who urged Martin to create the task force, said that he did not consult with any other members of Congress. In the press conference announcing the task force, Sen. Brownback appeared to propose his own conclusion to the task force's work: further voluntary restrictions, rather than FCC regulations on media marketing to children. "If we start down the road of saying we're going to limit everything and we're going to do it with a regulatory regime, I think you get everybody in a quick adversarial relationship." The Institute of Medicine of the National Academies has already recommended specific food marketing restrictions.


They could care less about kids. They just need a new moral issue to use after all the disgraces they have suffered. I am sure they latched on to childhood obesity before Foley, but now their efforts will only intensify. Why bother with introspection or a little humility when they can step right back up on the pulpit with a safer issue? Same dynamics, they preach, judge, moralize and gain the upper hand through guilt. They are exploiting obesity the same way Joe McCarthy exploited communism. Funny, Disney was in on that too. The bright side for me as a sociologist interested in deviance scares created by social breakdown, I couldn't ask for any more text book examples than these folks. They are practically archetypical! (And don't expect any real change in the industry's marketing efforts any more than you should expect those in power to stop molesting children! The point is to turn your disfunction into an advantage for as long as you can get away with the charade!)

"Fat can be beautiful. Intolerance is ALWAYS UGLY!!!"