Soft Drink Industry Using Smokin' PR

Soft drink companies are joining the list of corporations scrambling to use tobacco industry public relations tactics to influence legislation, in this case to scuttle a proposal to tax sodas and sugary drinks to help fund health care. A front group formed and funded by the beverage industry called Americans Against Food Taxes (AAFT) says on its Web site,, that it is a "coalition of concerned citizens" including "financially strapped families," but its members are the world's biggest soda pop and sugary-drink manufacturers, along with the nation's biggest convenience store and fast food chains. AAFT is running TV ads in the Washington, D.C. area that show a slender adult couple and their children on a family camping trip while a voice-over says, "This is no time for Congress to be adding taxes on the simple pleasures we all enjoy. ... We all want to improve health care, but taxes never made anyone healthy. Education, exercise and balanced diets do that." Yale University researcher Kelly Brownell says the soft drink companies are using the same tactics that the tobacco industry uses to ward off taxes: promoting personal responsibility as the answer, offering "healthier" versions of their products that have negligible benefits, abdicating responsibility for abuse of their products and claiming a tax on soda would be an attack on free choice.


If the beverage industry etc. does not want to be called a front group, they should be up front and honest instead of hiding behind the name Americans Against Food Taxes. They are well aware of what they are doing and know that many Americans will believe their propaganda!

Soft drink companies should definitely be taxed, almost as bad as tobacco and alcohol. The amount of sugar, preservatives, and all kinds of other garbage in soft drinks is killing us by the millions in cancer, obesity, and heart disease. There are way more tax problems to worry about before fussing over harmful foods!

Note how AAFT has implemented SEO to make sure that we have to dig at least three pages deep on the Google search to find a page with information showing us who is behind this front group - shouldn't there be a term, like "buried in the astroweeds" for this type of action?"

I just *adore* the way the front group defenders try to squirm with slippery reasoning:

1) They hire some Americans, so it is not a "front group" They ARE "AMERICANS Against Food Taxes".

2) If you dig around on the internet, you can find names of the people in the group. As long as your deception isn't TOO well hidden, then that's the same as being honest and forthright.

Those comments are too clever by half.

So if Al Qaeda (a multinational organization) comes to the U.S. and operates a full tilt set of companies that EMPLOY some Americans, and uses those companies to pay for "pro Sharia" advertising ... then you'd say THOSE companies are NOT "front groups" for Al Qaeda? I mean, as long as enough internet sleuthing might reveal their Al Qaeda ties?

Pull the other one!

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