Having already made a name for himself nationwide with a crackdown on crime in the nation's largest city, New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani made his place in history permanent just over a decade ago with his inspiring and firm handling of the Muslim terrorist attacks of 9/11. In the aftermath of that attack, Giuliani brought a city and a nation together, refusing to allow bloodthirsty madmen the satisfaction of our surrender. True, they dealt a devastating blow, but it was a sneak attack in a long war, and like Pearl Harbor, it would be answered with overwhelming force.
A decade later, third-term NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg has taken up the mantle of leadership from the retired Giuliani, and also works diligently to protect the citizens of New York City. Admittedly, I have been highly critical of Bloomberg in the past, as when he accused the Times Square Bomber of being a disgruntled TEA Party member angry at the ObamaCare bill (as it turned out, it was an angry practitioner of Islam, the Pakistani-born Faisal Shahzad ... but in Bloomberg's defense, what were the odds that the bomber would turn out to be an angry Muslim? I'd say the odds were no more than 9.95 out of 10 at best).
Bloomberg also achieved some renown for his brave fight against gun manufacturers, filing huge lawsuits to try and bankrupt the industry in order to keep guns off the streets, and more importantly, out of the hands of law-abiding citizens. That lawsuit managed to bully some of the gun manufacturers, but in the end failed. Now those evil gun manufacturers will have to live with the guilt of knowing that they have put at risk the lives of the hard-working robbers, rapists and murderers just trying to faithfully pursue their chosen profession.
Undaunted by that failure, Bloomberg turned his sites on two other menaces to society, trans fat and salt. Clearly wiser than the average citizen, he used the power of his office to force restaurants to stop cooking with trans-fat, and to drastically reduce the amount of salt in foods sold in the city and eventually the nation (except, of course, for his own food ... he likes his popcorn so salty that "it burns other people's lips." and he adds liberal doses of salt to his bagels and pizza as well). So dangerous was the threat of high salt content in food that the mayor actually instituted a ban on food donations to homeless shelters since there was no way to adequately control the salt content of the donated food. That created quite a controversy when too few realized Bloomberg's wisdom in understanding that it is far better to let the homeless starve than to give them food with too much salt.
This week, Mayor Bloomberg announced his latest salvo in the war on poor nutrition. If he is successful, he will bring crashing down a foe which is a greater threat than Islamic jihadists or even the dangerous TEA Party ... the lurking danger of high fructose corn syrup. That would be the second main ingredient in carbonated soft drinks. Now, before you get all up in arms and claim that this is an unwarranted infringement on our "right to choose," you should know that he has not completely banned the soft drinks; he just wants to make you think about what you are taking into your body. All he is asking (and really, is it too much to ask?) is that soft drink containers be limited to 16-ounces.
So what happens if you want a 20-ounce Coca-Cola on a hot day? You just have to buy two 16-ounce bottles, that's all. And if I don't want 32-ounces of Coke, you ask? Sorry, but that is the price to pay for having someone much smarter than you holding your hand and making these decisions for you.
Even though the foolish among us have protested what they see as heavy-handed, nanny-state restrictions on personal freedom, clearly most Americans are too stupid to make these important decisions on their own. We NEED our intellectual superiors to force these things on us because we can't be trusted to make the right decisions for ourselves, can we? Of course we can't! What would happen if that were allowed? Why, people would be doing all sorts of things that are not good for them. They'd be smoking, and drinking alcohol and eating meat. They'd fail to eat enough fruits and vegetables or drink enough water. They'd drive while talking on cell phones. They'd go SKYDIVING!! The chaos would be unprecedented! No, it is better to follow the Soviet-model where a wise and benevolent government takes these hard decisions out of our hands and tells us what to do so that we aren't forced to bear the burden of making these difficult decisions ourselves.
Luckily, Mayor Bloomberg is not the only benevolent and wise government master among us ...
In Los Angeles this week, the City Council passed a ban on plastic bags (and no, it was NOT because it was creating a shortage of available plastic to be surgically implanted into the citizens of Los Angeles; it was to protect the environment). That may sound odd to some people, since these are the same philosophically-aligned people that demanded the move from paper bags to plastic bags in order to save the trees, since plastic was recyclable and did not require the cutting of trees. So what now? No need to worry, you can purchase re-usable cloth bags! Sure they are walking petri dishes of disease and bacteria and have to be washed constantly, but at least the inconvenience is offset by the knowledge that you've helped save the earth in lockstep with the enviro-Nazis.
In nearby San Francisco, you can be fined up to $500 for failing to properly separate your recyclables, and you can longer get a toy with your Happy Meals, which have also been banned (on the bright side, it is perfectly legal there to walk around nude in public). In San Diego and Los Angeles counties, there are government "food confiscation teams" which bully, ummm ... I mean ... persuade, people who buy raw dairy products into giving up their purchases (http://www.naturalnews.com/035895_food_police_raw_milk_confiscation.html).
As Americans, we have learned to accept the wisdom of our government masters, and have submissively accepted laws which control the amount of water our toilets can flush at one time, the amount of water that can come through our shower heads every sixty seconds, the ban on the century old incandescent light bulb in favor of the less luminous, and poisonous, mercury-filled CFL bulb. We have accepted food police in our public schools inspecting the contents of box lunches brought from home to make sure it meets federal nutrition guidelines. We've accepted government bureaucrats which force children's roadside lemonade stands to close down for a lack of proper permitting. We've allowed the use of the tax code to force us into smaller, lighter, more fuel-efficient cars that are also far less likely to prevent serious injury or death in the event of a collision.
In short, we have become a nation of children, lulled into complete passivity by the siren song of Big Government promises to provide for our every need from cradle to grave, to protect us from the uncertainly of life, and the promise to make everything "fair" and everyone "equal." And all we had to do is give up our individual liberty. What a bargain ...
Louis DeBroux is a Taylorsville resident, married, with eight children. He is chairman of the Bartow County Republican Party. He owns Gatekeeper data backup and recovery. He can be emailed at firstname.lastname@example.org.