The Ban on Big Drinks: New York Supersizes the Nanny State

Yesterday’s proposal by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg to limit sugary drinks in the Big Apple left a sour taste in the mouths of Americans nationwide.

Criticism spanned the political spectrum, as consumers expressed outrage over the plan to ban sweetened beverages in cups or containers larger than 16 ounces. Even comedy newscaster Jon Stewart—hardly known as an anti-regulation ideologue—took a shot, noting that the proposed ban “combines the draconian government overreach people love with the probable lack of results they expect.”

Stewart is right. We can only hope that the idea fizzles out like a day-old bottle of Coke.

The ban, meant to reduce obesity among New Yorkers, would apply to restaurants and delis, movie theaters, stadiums, and even street vendors. On the forbidden list would be all drinks in a container exceeding 16 ounces that contains sugar, unless it is 70 percent or more fruit juice or milk. The plan will be put before the city’s Board of Health for approval, bypassing the city council.

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