You are currently viewing the printable version of this article, to return to the normal page, please click here.

EDITORIAL: The nanny goes to court

Mayor Bloomberg wants to revive his ban on Big Gulps

Question of the Day

Should Congress make English the official language of the U.S.?

View results

Mike Bloomberg won't take no for an answer. Like most billionaires, the mayor of New York City is accustomed to getting his way, so he is pressuring the state's highest court to rescue his ban on Big Gulps.

Hizzoner struck out at the trial and appellate court levels, where he was told that it was none of his business how much soda pop his constituents drink, even if the drink comes in a 16-ounce containers. Now he wants the New York State Court of Appeals to intervene. The judges agreed to listen to his appeal, but not until next year. That leaves the matter to Mr. Bloomberg's successor, who is likely to be Bill de Blasio, the Democratic nominee for mayor. Mr. de Blasio, too, is a major-league buttinsky, and he's enthusiastic about Mr. Bloomberg's soda-pop obsession.

The soda saga is an object lesson in how to waste the taxpayers' money, depriving them of their pleasures, and the only people pleased are the lawyers who will continue to rack up billable hours writing and filing briefs about the bad side effects, if any, of a supersized Mountain Dew.

Mr. Bloomberg butted into the feeding habits of his constituents when the New York City Council and the state Legislature couldn't agree on how to discriminate against fizzy drinks based on their size. He told the New York City Board of Health to adopt a regulation decreeing that sugary drinks are a danger to society because they contribute to obesity and poor health.

Justice Milton Tingling, the trial judge, overruled what he called the "arbitrary and capricious" Board of Health rule. The intermediate appellate court was blunter, observing that an administrative agency does not have "unfettered" power to do as it pleases by citing concern for the health of the city. Mr. Bloomberg, the court said, usurped the authority of the City Council, which specifically rejected the ban on big drinks.

Despite the clear rebuke, the mayor persists in defending the indefensible. Everyone else thinks it's the task of parents to control the portions of what their children eat and how much they drink. Mr. Bloomberg wants to impose his own ideas and prejudices on grown-ups, to treat New Yorkers like children. The mayor's scheme is also riddled with exemptions. Mochas are excluded, but pop is not, which suggests the policy is less about health and more about bossing people around. Soon the mayor will have more time on his hands to expand a new role as Mary Poppins to the world. We shudder to think.

blog comments powered by Disqus
TWT Video Picks
You Might Also Like
  • Maureen McDonnell looks on as her husband, former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, made a statement on Tuesday after the couple was indicted on corruption charges. (associated press)

    PRUDEN: Where have the big-time grifters gone?

  • This photo taken Jan. 9, 2014,  shows New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie gesturing as he answers a question during a news conference  at the Statehouse in Trenton.  Christie will propose extending the public school calendar and lengthening the school day in a speech he hopes will help him rebound from an apparent political payback scheme orchestrated by key aides. The early front-runner for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination will make a case Tuesday Jan. 14, 2014, that children who spend more time in school graduate better prepared academically, according to excerpts of his State of the State address obtained by The Associated Press. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)

    BRUCE: Bombastic arrogance or humble determination? Chris Christie’s choice

  • ** FILE ** Secretary of State Hillary Rodham testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 23, 2013, before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the deadly September attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya, that killed Ambassador J. Chris Stevens and three other Americans. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)

    PRUDEN: The question to haunt the West

  • Get Breaking Alerts