Belt-Tightening: German Legislator Calls For Taxing the Obese

A conservative German legislator, Marco Wanderwitz, has called for a formal tax on citizens determined to be obese. Wanderwitz insists that obese people are imposing public costs that are unreasonable — akin to polluting industries.

Wanderwitz appears to view most obesity as a deliberative lifestyle choice, stating “I think that it would be sensible if those who deliberately lead unhealthy lives would be held financially accountable for that.” Many would disagree with the assumption, citing studies of genetic predisposition to weight gain and a multi-billion dollar industry supporting difficult and often fruitless weight-loss efforts.

Some school teachers, however, are calling for kids to be weighed every day as part of this crackdown. I can only imagine the emotional toll such weighing would produce for obese children.

Source: AOLNews

36 thoughts on “Belt-Tightening: German Legislator Calls For Taxing the Obese”

  1. As to the article itself … straight from the culture that brought us the Holocaust.

  2. State Fair of Texas winners:
    2005 Most Creative Viva Las Vegas Fried Ice Cream
    2005 Best Taste Fried PB, Jelly and Banana Sandwich
    2006 Most Creative Fried Coke
    2006 Best Taste Fried Praline Perfection
    2007 Most Creative Deep Fried Latte
    2007 Best Taste Texas Fried Cookie Dough
    2008 Most Creative Fried Banana Split
    2008 Best Taste Chicken Fried Bacon
    2009 Most Creative Deep Fried Butter
    2009 Best Taste Fernie’s Deep Fried Peaches & Cream

  3. Blouise I am not kidding you. Last year deep fried butter topped the fried twinkies as fair food of the year.

  4. Swarthmore mom
    1, July 25, 2010 at 6:52 pm
    The Texas State Fair features twinkies fried in butter.


    Are you kidding me??!!

  5. Swarthmore Mom,

    Here’s a photo of Deep Fried Butter from this year’s Orange County Fair in California. No need for the Twinkie to get in the way. 😉

    The description:

    “…The deep-fried butter, which is created by injecting churro dough with a butter-and-cream-cheese mixture. This is the garlic version, but you can also choose a sweet cinnamon-sugar variation.”

  6. AY,

    I stole them and am enjoying them with some straight-up high fructose corn syrup this afternoon. I prefer the straight stuff instead of diluting it with soda and other fillers.

  7. It’s the processed foods that make us fat–and, most particularly refined sugar. However, losing weight is a whole different story than quitting drink or tobacco or drugs. To stop other problems, a person usually makes sure their isn’t any of that product in the house. You can not do that with food; thus, temptation is always there. You do need food every day to stay alive. Additiionally, the original chart put out about ideal weight for different height and frame was based on white, anglo-saxon, protestant men in the Northeast part of the country. What do those men have in common with me a Pacific Northwest Indian woman. We are all biologically and genetically programmed to weigh a certain weight. Society needs to recognize this and stop ostracizing those of us who don’t look like the average anorexic model or Hollywood actress. Men are given a lot more leeway regarding weight than women. Obesity cannot be solved with one solution for every one, which is why it continues to worsen. No one is going to tell the large companies that process our food and make tons of money on it to stop doing that. And, that is really the first step of a multiple stepped solution that would be needed. Since that first step will never happen, other solutions are just bandaids on a large gaping wound.

  8. stress, Hypercortisol, Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, hypothyroidism, any physical illness that causes an inability to maintain physical activity, being a kid in the USA over the past 15 years, tumors, hormonal imbalance,steroids…natural or imbibed, kidney disease, heart failure, liver failure, depression, anti-depressants, TV, beer…..and so on……

    …buying a new wardrobe will make you just fat enough that nothing fits…..

  9. George:

    Nal is right for the majority of overweight people. It takes about 2,000 calories a day to run a human body if you sit most of the day it takes about 1,200-1,500 calories. You want to lose weight then take in less than that and shazam after about 6 months you are a thin person. It isnt rocket science.

    People today eat too much and they eat the wrong types of food. Most people eat processed food which is high is sodium, carbohydrates and high fructose corn syrup. Put that Hostess Susy Q down and pick up an apple or an orange or a banana or a piece of chicken or a hard boiled egg or a handful of nuts.

    Fresh food and the right kind will keep you trim, oh and don’t forget the vegetables and leave the rice, pasta, bread, sweets and potatoes alone. It’s actually as simple as Nal says it is for the majority of us, even if you cant be active.

    Show me a fat person and 9 times out of 10 I will show you someone who loves fried chicken, apple pie, french fries, mashed potatoes with gravy, brownies, ice cream and diet coke.

  10. . .Conservative German legislator, Marco Wanderwitz, should also propose a tax on politicians who do far more damage to the economy than the Fatties.
    . . Wanderwitz did not propose how this tax is to be collected.
    . . Should it be collected by stopping motorists and citing them because they are driving with an expired tax sticker because they have not paid their vehicle tax on time, which police pursue on the streets of the U.S. every day.
    . .Or, should it be collected by police citing Pedestrians because they are fat (not yet in force).
    . .Or, should tax be collected by police citing Pedestrians because they look “foreign and illegal” (currently the law in Arizona).
    . .What about a tax to tax German legislator, Marco Wanderwitz, because he is mentally “nuts.”

  11. My weight stayed the same until I was 35, then it went up and stayed the same at the new level. It seemed to have absolutely nothing to do with diet or exercise. I am lazy and have a sweet tooth.

    Obviously I am genetically superior, as the germans might say. An ubermensch in the BMI department.

    I think I should be given a small town in the Czech Republic to govern.

  12. In Germany they are also considering weighing kids everyday at school. I can’t wait for the daily blood draw, body scan and weigh-in.


    With all due respect, I find your response lacking in understanding and thoughtfulness. I’m not saying you’re wrong. FOR MOST PEOPLE, that formula works. There are many cases, however, where other conditions, including mobility issues, prevent people from getting much needed physical exercise. There are also those with thyroid conditions, psychological conditions, and other factors that contribute to obesity.

    Please consider that it is easy for a healthy person who has the ability to get out on the Hike and Bike Trail everyday to overly simplify a complex issue like obesity prevention. When you see a fat person it is apparent that they are overweight. It is much harder to know how they got that way.

    I encourage everyone who is educated and embraces a healthy lifestyle to be more compassionate and less judgmental towards those who are overweight.

    Thank you.

  13. And just imagine the cost to society of the deformed, the mentally handicapped, and the gypsies!

  14. It’s a very simple equation, calories taken in versus calories expended.

    I think I’ll go for a walk on the Hike & Bike Trail.

  15. I could and would say a lot of things but this is after all Sunday morning….

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