'The Daily Show' Takes on the San Francisco Nannies

Chris Field
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Posted: Jan 05, 2011 11:29 AM
In a "report" this week on Comedy Central's "The Daily Show," Aasif Mandvi took a look at the buffoonery that is San Francisco's Happy Meal ban. In an interview with councilman Eric Mar, Mandvi aptly points out the nanny statism of the ban and makes Mar look like the ignoramus he is.

Mar actually believes that "if there's no toy, the kids wouldn't eat the meal."

Riiiiiiight. My 3-year-old totally rejects the Chicken McNuggets and fries and goes straight to chewing on the plastic toy. Very filling and delicious.

Our friends over at the Center for Consumer Freedom wrote this about the piece:
Last month Eric Mar, the San Francisco Councilman behind his city's notorious Happy Meal ban, breathlessly tweeted that he was about to be interviewed on The Daily Show. Mar probably expected that the late-night mockfest, known for its urbane, liberal comedy, would be sympathetic to him.

Not so much. The report, which aired last night, hoisted Mar by his own petard and mocked food paternalism.
In the piece you'll notice that Mandvi also interviews S.F. Mayor Gavin Newsom -- leave it to this liberal city to make Newsom look like a free-market conservative. Quoth Newsom:
It's a bad idea. We're getting into private business decisions.

It's not the role of government to decide what's in the best interests of the kids; it's the role of parents to decide.

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San Francisco's Happy Meal Ban
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Here's the money part of the Mar interview:
MAR: My 10-year-old has had a number of Happy Meals growing up, but she's wise enough to know that the food that she was eating when she was younger is very unhealthy for her.

MANDVI: How did she figure that out?

MAR: I think she watches [the anti-fast food movie] "Supersize Me" with me.

MANDVI: So, she learned from her parents?

MAR: That's a large part of it.

MANDVI: Would it be hard to pass a law to force Netflix to send "Supersize Me" to every parent in San Francisco?

MAR: You can't force Netflix, a private company, to do something like that.

MANDVI: Are you serious right now?

MAR: We have no power to force Netflix or a private company like that to change a business practice.

MANDVI: So, on one hand, you're, like, "We can't do that." But on the other hand, you are doing that.

MAR: We don't have that kind of power.

MANDVI: You just said you did.