Tuesday, November 29, 2005

The Governor Dad says no to junk food

News Item (from Monday's Trib): Blagojevich trying to resurrect junk food ban in schools

Trying again to rid public schools of junk food, Gov. Rod Blagojevich on Monday called on the Illinois State Board of Education to ban sales of unhealthy snacks and soft drinks at elementary and middle schools.

The proposal excludes high schools that benefit most from vending machine proceeds, and it is less dramatic than a ban proposed in 2003 that state lawmakers rebuffed. This time around, Blagojevich is turning to a board controlled by his appointees to change state rules to battle childhood obesity.

"We know that selling candy and soda to elementary and middle school students is not good for their health, so let's do what we can to stop it," the governor wrote in a letter to the state board.

Comment: Imagine you were a young father. You would want what's best for your family, yourself, the people around you, right? But what could you do, young father? You'd have ideas, but how would you get anyone, especially those darned kids of yours, to listen? Well, if you were Rod Blagojevich, you'd become governor and force your ideas on the people of the entire state.

Blagojevich is not an evil guy. He seems to be like any other normal 49-year-old city dweller that gets a police escort while jogging on Wilson Avenue. Like some guy with a blog, Blago has opinions on what's right and wrong, but unlike that pathetic blogger, Blago has the power to make some changes. You can almost hear him thinking as he introduces legislation and makes proclamations.

A few years back, he declared that he wanted state cops to crack down on slow drivers in the left lane of interstates. Slow drivers are not only a nuisance, he said, but they're dangerous, so we need to do a better job and start ticketing them, it should be our number one priority! Here's the thing: The governor lives in Chicago and must drive down to Springfield, what, at least once or twice a year. So you can almost see the rage building up as he's stuck behind some slow Camry in the left lane. "That sonofabitch ought to get a ticket," he thinks. Then, a smile: "Wait! I can do something about this! I'm the governor!"

At the dinner table, young Amy doesn't want to eat her vegetables. "Why do I have to?" she whimpers.

"Because I said so!" her father says. "Wait, no, because the governor says so!"

Over the course of their lives, Amy, 8, and Annie, 2, have had to deal with the Governor Dad. I wonder if they even know it's their father that is trying to ruin their lives.

"We don't want to read, we want to watch TV," they might say.

"Sorry, my babies, the State of Illinois has provided our family with these books for you to read."

"Can we please get that one fun game for Christmas this year?" they ask.

"Sorry, my babies, the State of Illinois has taken steps to make sure that violent video games do not reach young, unsuspecting hands such as yours."

"I don't wanna eat that yucky asparagus! Can I have some Flamin' Hots?"

"No, honey, the Illinois governor is fighting obesity in children and has declared war on junk food."

"Please, Daddy!"

"I'm sorry, but it's not MY fault. The GOVERNOR doesn't want you to eat chips and drink pop. Notice he doesn't mind if high school kids eat that junk--after all, do you know how much revenue his state gets from the Coca Cola company?--but the governor sure doesn't want kids your age to eat junk food."

"So, when I'm in high school, I'll be able to eat anything I want?"

"Oh, no no no, honey, by then I'm sure we, I mean, the state will find alternate funding."

So, life isn't so bad at the Blagojevich mansion on the sunnyside of the street ... as long as his kids don't ask for details on this governor guy. By the way, the only joke in this post, as far as I can tell, is the assumption that Blago will still be governor when his kids grow up. Yeah, I know, good one. But just think of the legislation he'd pass in the next 10 years as his baby girls grow up--the anti-dating measures, the no-driving-until-age-21 law, the war on acne. It COULD be fun, here in conservative, family-values friendly Illinois ...


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