The health care and the clothing industries need to get together, and introduce a stealth fat-tax.
Why? Because presently (with the exceptions of grossly larger food bills for whale-class folks), it’s more expensive to be healthy and slender and fit, than it is to be out of shape and overweight. This is fundamentally fucked up.
Huge money industries are passing a stupid tax on to us as a whole because they’re going for shorter-term profits instead of more financially responsible and beneficial long-term ones. It’d be cheaper for them, in the long run, and in turn, cheaper for us as a people, if they fiscally encouraged being healther and fitter. I’m saying these things with absolutely no active research, no cited facts, no specific figures to back them up. See if my chain of thought makes sense to someone other than myself:
Eating healthier costs more than eating cheaply and less healthily/unhealthily. Yet being less healthy makes a person a higher health risk, be more expensive to care for medically.
Bigger clothes, for the most part, cost the same as smaller clothes. This one really makes no sense to me. A Small shirt costs the same as an Extra Large shirt, but there’s significantly more physical material involved (which, at some point, equates to more time or labor involved as well – more stitches to sew, longer to cut, etc. It may be a small amount per garment, but with thousands as a multiplier, it’ll add up). Sometimes that same-cost-as thing extends up beyond Extra-Large. Kohls, one of my more tempting places to look for clothes at, have no price differences between Small and XXL. The only place that I can remember, offhand (I’m sure there are more), that differentiates a little here, is Walmart, where for “extended sized” it’s $2 more for some things. This one really makes almost no sense to me. Sure, I’m sure some folks in our quick-to-offend, self-absorbed, hypocritical, prudish society would be quick to bitch and moan about “size discrimination” or some such idiocy – but it’s a basic fact, there’s physically more (or less, depending from which side you approach it) actual, real, phsyical goods there. Where else do you see people buying different amounts of things for the same price? Certainly not food – 9 chicken nuggets costs you more than 6 chicken nuggets. Not gas – 3 gallons costs more than 2 gallons. A queen-size mattress will certainly cost more than a full-size mattress.
This concept is almost as if garments are being treated like intellectual property or entertainment. You’ll pay the same ticket price for that 86 minute mediocre brainless comedy as you will for the 140 minute thought-provoking, emotion-rending drama. 280 page mass-market paperbacks may cost the same as 560 page mass-market paperbacks (not always, but it can and does happen).
So, the healthy, fit guy buying a large shirt for $20 is paying more for his clothing – per ounce, or square inch of fabric, or whatever metric you wish – than the guy who’s less healthy and bigger (we’ll presume same height for each and similar bone structure) buying the XXL shirt for $20.
This just all seems stupid to me. By not financially incentivizing being in better shape, healther, etc. – which tends to cost less, overall, medically – it’s a sort of tacit encouragement for people to be lazy unhealthy drones, who have higher risk of health problems, higher cost of treatment, and thus, by aggregate, drive up the costs of health care for everyone.
But no, let’s continue overcharging the people who need less physical clothing for the same degree of decency and protection, and let’s continue profiting on cheap, processed, refined flour based and other cheapo carbohydrate laden foods. Drive that carb addiction for short-sighted profit!