From The Daily Capitalist
The Food and Drug Administration is planning an unprecedented effort to gradually reduce the salt consumed each day by Americans, saying that less sodium in everything from soup to nuts would prevent thousands of deaths from hypertension and heart disease. The initiative, to be launched this year, would eventually lead to the first legal limits on the amount of salt allowed in food products. ...
A recent study by researchers at Columbia and Stanford universities and the University of California at San Francisco found that cutting salt intake by 3 grams a day could prevent tens of thousands of heart attacks, strokes and cases of heart disease. ...
"We can't just rely on the individual to do something," said Cheryl Anderson, an epidemiologist at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health who served on the Institute of Medicine committee. "Food manufacturers have to reduce the amount of sodium in foods."
This will get wings because, friends, you are paying for my health care. As health care costs rise because of government regulation and control, there will be pressure to cut costs as the bill for Obamacare spirals out of control. The justification will sound very reasonable. "All we need to do is cut salt intake by 3 measly grams a day, and we would save so much money because people wouldn't have salt related disease." That sounds OK. But ...
... then you need a regulatory apparatus to monitor this reasonable rule. A Salt Intake Control Evaluation Board (SICEM) would be set up to regulate food salt content. Since people really like salt, they would buy more salt at Safeway and use it to flavor things the way they want it.
As the futility of SICEM is apparent, we would have the Salt Control and Rationing Board (SCARB) to regulate individual salt intake. You would need a doctor's prescription to buy salt and, if your blood pressure was too high, well, you would be a parasite on the rest of us because you would be driving up our medical costs due to your anti-social behavior.
Unscrupulous types would then create a black market to meet the growing demand for illegal salt. This would be a huge opportunity for drug traffickers and, after bloody turf wars to control the market, a few cartels would arise. Of course you would have some shady doctors whom you could pay to get a prescription. The fraud would be enormous.
A special regulatory police would be required to audit and control this illicit trade. This Health Enforcement Legislation Police (HELP) would have officers dressed in white lab coats highly trained in salt related health matters. They would have broad authority to audit the health records of suspected salt abusers. A Special Branch would hunt out traffickers. These highly trained officers, known affectionately as the "Salty Dogs," would require greater and greater authority as the salt trade gets out of hand. Raids would be made randomly on households looking for private salt stashes. Tearful moms would be hauled off to salt health re-education camps (SHRECs).
Pretty soon the government would be forced to step in and nationalize salt production to control the market. In order to discourage consumption, they would completely control salt production and distribution, subject to the aforementioned rules. A Salt Czar would set production quotas and prices. This would hugely help the illegal salt cartels, because the government makes it a controlled substance. Lobbyists would seek emergency relief for their clients who needed salt in their businesses. Friends of the Czar would get rich.
This is what Friedrich von Hayek called "The Road to Serfdom."
Don't even think about a Double Quarter Pounder® with cheese. We can't afford it.