How Obamacare Will Try to Control What You Eat
by Amy Payne, Heritage Foundation, November 20, 2013
Did you know there are 34 million different ways to make a Domino’s pizza?
Mary Lynne Carraway can’t fit that on a menu board. But that’s what Obamacare says she has to do: Put up a menu board in each of her 60 Domino’s stores that tells people the calorie count of every possible combination. Of course, all the information is already available online.
“Right now I’m 60 to 70 percent Internet,” Carraway said of her business. “So people can go online and they can look at the nutritional values because it’s all broken up there.”
What would it mean for each of her stores to have to install such a menu board? A cost of about $5,000 per store—and that hits the managers and employees of each store. Those people aren’t numbers; Carraway knows her workers well.
“I have managers that worked for me that some of them have gone to law school, some of them have been accountants,” she said, proud that she is helping people achieve the American dream. And she has worked hard, even though she never intended to be a business owner.
Carraway, a stay-at-home mom with four children, was suddenly thrust into business when her husband became ill with a brain tumor.
“The fact of the matter was, I had to step in and take over this company to save a lot of people’s jobs, to save my husband’s legacy that he built from two stores to the 60 that we had.”
At Heritage’s Bloggers Briefing yesterday, she shared the story of her community supporting her family during that heart-wrenching time—and the responsibility she feels to that community, from her neighbors to her employees.
We really are there to support each other. And sometimes, when things like this are constantly bombarding the small businesses of America, it’s just too much. And you think, “Why am I doing this?” and “What am I doing here?” But I have to look around and to remember I have 1,800 people who believe in this company, who need this work, who need these jobs. And this is a small thing, maybe, that people could think of, “Well, $5,000 for a menu board” or whatever. But it’s the added on regulations, it’s the added things that are constantly being thrown at us. And as a small business person that wants to keep going, it is really, really hard to do that.
Heritage expert Daren Bakst has explained that Obamacare’s menu labeling regulation will be costly and time-consuming for businesses and that the government has no evidence that it would have any benefits. On top of those negatives, why is Obamacare trying to regulate what people are eating?
“The FDA tries to justify the rule by claiming that consumers make misinformed decisions at restaurants,” Bakst wrote. As usual, Obamacare assumes that big government knows best. In fact, Bakst says the FDA is using the rule as a power grab to regulate grocery stores, convenience stores, and other businesses that have little to do with restaurants.
But that big-government approach helps no one. It’s only hurting Americans’ livelihoods and communities.
“I am so busy. I am raising four children. I am in my community. I am working very hard at running this company,” Carraway said. “To think that I have to deal with these things on the side, and continually have to be putting more money into things that are really of no importance, and of no value to the consumer—and really not anything that they’re wanting, looking at, using—it’s just kind of senseless to me.”
For a more sensible approach to health care reform, check this out.
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