fat and happy

There's a good discussion on Talk of the Nation today about lawsuits being filed against fast food. The trial lawyer guest is one of the lawyers who spearheaded lawsuits against tobacco companies, and he is adept at justifying his championing of the, ahem, little guy, who is misled into eating unhealthy chili-cheeseburgers.

There is something compelling in the argument that both Big Tobacco and Big Burger make a whole lot of money in selling products that are extremely unhealthy, and somehow should be held accountable. However, in my boundless cynicism I simply do not buy the lawyers' argument that they are protecting the children of America by filing these suits. Will lawsuits really make fast food any healthier or protect people from obesity? It doesn't seem likely. And come on: did you really think eating cheese fries four times a week was healthy? I'll acknowledge the fast food industry's enormous power to shape eating habits (and even neighborhoods), but I'm still not sold on the idea that they should be monetarily held responsible for our overweight USA.