by Joel Salatin
According to a recent Pew survey, 85 percent of Americans believe the government is responsible for the safety of their food. Faced with a similar question in his day, Thomas Jefferson adamantly opposed government control of the food supply. It was completely unAmerican.
Oh, but you say control is not the same as responsible. We could parse the difference grammatically, I suppose, but in real life, the two words are synonymous. The responsible chairman controls who gets recognized in the audience. A responsible parent controls where the teenagers are at midnight. A responsible middle manager controls the information seen by bosses.
I wonder if 85 percent would have answered the question the way they did if it were phrased using the word control instead of responsible? Horrible regimes responsible for pogroms are remembered for their control tactics on the population. Can we agree that in that context, responsible means control?
Now let me ask the question: Do you think the government should control food safety in America? When anyone is put in control, our most reasonable query involves their paradigm. Obviously, control can be positive or negative depending on the assumptions of the controller. While all of us would love to think the government is a benevolent controller, I beg to differ.