Submission Number: 00037
Received: 5/11/2011 12:26:42 PM
Commenter: Lynne Bourque
Agency: Federal Trade Commission
Initiative: Preliminary Proposed Nutrition Principles to Guide Industry Self-Regulatory Efforts; Project No. P094513
Attachments: No Attachments
Why should government agencies decide how a private company markets its products?
These proposed guidelines represent not only an infringement on the free speech of the advertisers, but furthermore, they are part of a dangerous trend in the expanding role of government not as bounded by law, but as ruled by the whims of men: Men we did not elect; Men, whose opinions, no matter their expertise, may not reflect our own, but, who have the power to guide our choices through the force of government.
I say "force of government" because calling these guidelines 'voluntary' is a common, but nonetheless fraudulent bureaucratic practice. Through withheld sanctions and negative innuendo regarding non-compliance, voluntary government guidelines become de facto regulations and therefore carry the force of government, if indeed, they do not become actual regulations in time.
Furthermore, beyond alleviating advertising pressure on children to consume unhealthy foods, it is clear that these guidelines are attempting to alleviate and assume the role and responsibilities of parents as their children's guardians, and as such, are likely to have unintended and quite opposite consequences.
Forcing someone to buy a service or product is violation of rights; Fraudulently advertising a service or product is a violation of rights. It is the proper role of government to protect our individual rights so that we may live as we choose, not to "guide" us in how to feed, clothe, medicate, educate, or otherwise raise our children.
Labeling obesity an epidemic does not trigger a step-change in the proper role of government.
These proposed guidelines exceed the role of government, violate the rights of the advertisers, and attempt to arrogate parental responsibilities.