“Sometimes, too much is just enough. If we pay for everything, we will never be wanting for anything. This will make consumers happy, and allow those of us who cannot afford food to have it provided for us.” – Grover Lawless
The rising price of food in America has caused some to wonder what the government can do to help those who cannot help themselves. There have even been rumblings that each person should be given food according to their needs, and they should only provide what they can in return. That being said, what could the government possibly do?
According to several politicians, whose names I have obscured for purposes of anonymity, a bill is being drafted that would allow the poorer among us to be provided with food and basic household necessities at the expense of a majority of wealthier Americans. There has been some backlash from big business, but those in the know say that the rich should pay their fair share if they are buying more food than they need.
The details of the bill remain somewhat vague, but the basic framework is this: Every American buys select items at the store according to their needs and likes. From varying fruits to different vegetables, everyone picks and chooses what they want on their table. What the “Poor Man’s Kitchen” act (as it is now being called behind closed doors) would do is force every American to buy the exact same foods as everyone else. There would be a specified list, based on the best nutritional science, that would be provided to each American. This way, the food market would be narrowed to a select few items, lowering the price of production. All items would see price increases for those young and healthy enough to afford them. The money collected from the higher cost of foods would be used to subsidize those who cannot afford to eat.
Now, if any American decides to abstain from the program, they would be charged a simple fee of $95 or 1% of their income—whichever is higher.
Critics of the bill are calling it too broad. They are saying that some people don’t like potatoes (a featured item in the Specified Food Rotation, or SFR), and that it would be a waste for those people to pay for something they ultimately don’t need. But those drafting the bill have called that accusation ridiculous. One Senator actually said it was like “comparing apples and oranges, ” and that “once the kinks are worked out, everyone will love it, just like Medicare.”
Another issue cropping up is that in anticipation of the health law, groceries stores are now having to narrow their list of available foods to accommodate the new health law. If they don’t comply, the government would levy a fine. This is causing many groceries chains to reduce employee hours due to the elimination of entire sections of foods. With fewer items to stock, fewer employees are necessary. Proponents of the health law have declared that the layoffs would have happened anyway because of the rising cost of food, and that it’s not the fault of the health law.
Either way, this controversy seems like it will only continue for a long time to come.