“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Sunday, August 26, 2007

What Happened over Fifty Years? We Need a Fatwah Against Fat.

Friday night, I waited for a friend to arrive on a US AIR flight. The plane was late and I waited outside the security section at the terminal. I watched the travellers arriving for an hour. So much time, so many fat people. Big fat, real fat, fat fat. How did that happen?

1950's stylish woman.

2000's reality in any American public place.


  1. (I know you don't want to take on any professional liability, but still...)

  2. Shouldn't Dentist be required to install Oral Dams when morbid obesity has been attained?

  3. I think a lot of it has to do with the end of shame.

  4. Laura Ingraham ALWAYS has an airplane horror story.

    She's especially fond of Bare feet, shorts, and tank-tops.

  5. The airlines could help. Use the fedex solution. The first 250 lbs. of passenger and luggage is in the ticket. After that, $1 per pound. If you hit the three hundred pound threshold, you need two seats.

  6. Yeah,
    Paris is proud of her...
    These folks seem to be proud of themselves in all their fat, stinking, glory.

  7. I'm sure at least one short haul 'liner went down when the heft of the passengers and their necessary baggage seated aft of the wing rendered the craft uncontrollably tail heavy.
    Was a femail pilot:
    Too bad it wasn't two -thousand pound men in the cockpit!

  8. Did you really HAVE to choose Ash's Main Squeeze for your Example?

    Canadian Bacon.

  9. She reminds me of the Carnival Motorcycle Daredevil in Steve Martin's
    "The Jerk"

    (one of my all-time favs)

  10. Paul said...
    Bush Derangement Syndrome gone yet another step further than anyone would have thought! What are these people going to do when they don't have George Bush to kick around anymore?

    8/26/2007 06:29:00 AM

  11. Economic Geneva
    The New York Times has details of this interesting story.

    The World Trade Organization (WTO) ruled the US violated Antigua's rights by prohibiting Americans from gambling over Internet sites based in Antigua. Now the lawyer for Antigua is asking the WTO to compensate the island nation by allowing it to set aside US intellectual property laws and to distribute copies of American music, movie and software products, among others with impunity.
    - Wretch

  12. "Aluminum Shower" explained:

    But he agrees that corporate jets are increasing the strain on air traffic controllers trying to prevent what’s known in the industry as an “aluminum shower,” a midair collision.

  13. Dear Mr. Doug,
    Thank you for acknowledging me on an earlier EB Blog. Mr. Keller e-mailed me back to confidently say he would still be on a program. Whether he meant the same Tampa station, another TV station or his radio show I do not know. He advised me to contact CBS.
    I also echo your plea that I wish Allen would return. I enjoy your repartees with other commentators.

  14. I didn't think we had truly fat people in my area - just those who go to the gym and those who don't.

    Then I was at KMart late one night and discovered that we do.

    I spent my summers in the rural heartland where everyone over 30, and many under, is of an appreciable size. The Land of Buffet and Fat Genes.

    If it weren't for a fortunate metabolism, which I can't claim as an achievement, and a spotty interest in the Stairmaster - never mind the certain disincentives involved in marriage to a runner - I'd be whirring down the supermarket aisle in a motorized cart by now.

    Food. Is a glorious thing.

    Yes indeed.

  15. Lady Hulk,

    Allen has personal family matters that he needs to attend to.

  16. Fat is unsightly. Especially in the wrong outfit. Fat is a health hazard. Fat is undesirable.

    And yet. There really is no more repulsive creature to my mind than the professional harangue-ers of the public health industry. Those soul-sucking scolds who, after chasing every smoker in the country out of doors (and looking to see what they can do about the out of doors) would like nothing so much as warning labels on ice cream and, if that doesn't do the trick, a national diet and exercise regimen. Malingerers and cheaters to be rounded up and shot.

    Defend the obese, I say.

    Out of malice toward the killjoy.

  17. On my recent travels I kept an eye out for such as this--not that you can miss em. My observation is the western states generally are a lttle thinner, gains of weight as you go east. When I got to Ohio, West Virginia, the tub was in. Particularily West Virginia, where even the cops were fat. And what I don't understand is it was hot and muggy as all get out there, and I sweated like a dog. I'd think it would be hard to keep it on there, if you moved around at all. Dr. Bob blames it on tv, cars, and jobs Americans aren't willing to do. The whole country could use a crop failure. We could live off the fat for a year.

  18. And Trish, you're right, tubby seems to love Wal-Mart(Toxic-Mart), K-Mart, etc. I must have been in twenty different Wal-Marts, using it to get cash. Man, they're going to have to install larger doors soon, cause there doesn't seem to be an upper limit to this.

  19. This comment has been removed by the author.

  20. "When I got to Ohio, West Virginia, the tub was in."

    You betcha. Central and western Pennsylvania, too. Indiana. Illinois. Parts of Virginia and Maryland. Then there's the Further South.

    But I don't get too worked up about it because I have benefited from the pleasantest of times and people in Chubby Country. There may be no upper limit, you may be right about that, and how unfortunate, but those folks have been too much a part of my life to get downright snotty about size.

    My Great Grandmother alone could have crushed you had she tipped over. Trust me.

    But a world class cook.

  21. Folks in Chubby Country treated me right, I do agree about that. Quite courteous and helpful, all around. And always saying things like, 'Man, it's a hot one today, isn't it?' wiping the brow.

  22. List of medicinal Fixes These things never work of course, especially as one ages and the metabolism slows down. What it takes is exercise, work, sweat, no Budweiser, no fries, no chips, iced tea instead of Pepsi.

  23. It has its charms, bob. It always will.

  24. Dear Mr. Metuselah,
    Mr. Allen is in my prayers. I look forward to his return.
    BTW,it is Lady Hawk, not Lady Hulk. I am a treadmill addict, thank you very much. I was timed doing 56 jumping jacks in 30 seconds last year.

  25. Lady, the MR. HAWK IS A VERY LUCKY MAN.

  26. Dear Mr. 2164th,
    I declare you make me blush.
    I am the one who is blessed to have
    Mr. Hawk as my husband. He is the reason I work out so much. He is a most GIFTED gentleman, and I do my best to try to keep up with him, and that is all I will say about that!

  27. I'm fine with the fatties. Let 'em eat all the deep-fried swill they can eat.

    What I despise is socialism and the victim culture.

    You choose to turn into a disgusting fatbody, then all the risks and problems with choosing that lifestyle are your and yours alone.

    I won't pay more for my health care , taxes or airline tickets to soften the blow of your id-driven choices.

    Same thing for druggies, drunks, and smokers. Your life, your choice. I'm not going to ante up to pay for your dumb choices.

    I despise politicians that tell me I will.

  28. Heard somewhere that restaurant servings were 3x larger today than in 1955. That may explain a lot of it. Plus everything has high fructose corn syrup in it these days. We have tried to control it in the diet and lost weight. Also cut out artificial sweetners and feel MUCH better. Aspartame has some nasty metabolites - methanol is one of them - wood alcohol.

  29. I don't really know what all the fuss is about. I for one like the bigger women of today. Maybe they won't live as long as they did in slimer times but they certainly enjoy the time they have. Being big and fat in the USA is the future of our society.

    Besides the blonde pictured looks like my wife when we were at Universal Studios a while back. In fact I think it might just be her.