“Balsamic” ketchup

In a similar artery, my favorite “Food Day” newspaper blog post (it had goddamn better not have been an actual story) was the one offering gruesome recipes from some organization fronting for a dairy marketing group. Nearly every suggestion for healthful, wondrous shit for dinner included cheese/butter/cream/cheese. To which, being Mrs. Sprat, I would have no objection. But can’t newspapers just pull back the curtain and show who’s manipulating minds?

Short answer, given the news on the latest attempt to make nutrition labels easier to understand: No. As long as avocados and pistachios and spinach and other foods straight from the tree/field are not what most Americans are presumed to consume, the subterfuge can continue in the guise of elucidation. Whatever the “Institute of Medicine” might be has the bright idea of giving processed crap labels like the Energy Star ratings, but of course they would only apply to processed crap, which is where all the money is in food. The real answer would be to educate consumers from kindergarten on, to train them to think, but that’s not going to happen in what’s left of my lifetime, although it did back in the last century. One of the best classes my small high school required was General Business, in which we learned everything from how to make change and balance a checkbook to how to analyze the propaganda catapulted at us in advertisements. One assignment required reporting on a single ad on what it both revealed and hid, and I remember one of my choices was the then-new Pop Tarts, which even my relatively poor family had started eating. As I recall, the ads told you nothing except “eat me, be happy!” Imagine that exercise in a school where the vending machines are loaded and the corporate insignias are on everything and you raise money for uniforms by selling . . . processed crap. As always, my big fear is reincarnation.