This article might finally scare you off of diet soda

I like food. I care about what I eat. But I’m not insane about it. The gluten bit I still have a hard time buying. But aspartame is something I have steadily cut out of my diet, though I still enjoy a nice cold Diet Coke from time to time. It may be time to quit completely however.

Aspartame is an interesting substance as at least some people argue that it would not be allowed in food if it were not for the fact that the soda companies are cozy with the FDA.

Read More

As hunger stalks Venezuela, government encourages city-dwellers to start planting

Apartment friendly potatoes.

Gardens are almost always a good idea. In a country like Venezuela which for the most part is quite verdant naturally and which has a completely dysfunctional economy this is especially the case.

Of course for urbanites (and a good part of the Venezuelan population is urban) to revert to subsistence farming is a challenge to say the least. Venezuela is in desperate need of economic liberalization. It is in desperate need of new leadership.

Read More

Wendy’s to Put Kiosks In all 6,000 Restaurants to Counter Minimum Wage Hikes

One can’t blame Wendy’s. Labor will be too expensive to make money on hamburgers and frostys soon. So they must automate. They have no other choice. By automating they will eliminate thousands of jobs which didn’t pay $15/hour, but they did pay something.

Read More

Socialism fails yet again in Venezuela: Looting breaks out as inflation rises, bread disappears

The French Revolution (and others) was tied to hyperinflation and a shortage of wheat. When people are hungry they get desperate. There is no reason why anyone should be hungry in Venezuela. It’s a verdant country. Yet the socialists have so mismanaged the economy that even here, in a veritable Garden of Eden, people are hungry. Even here, a country which sits on massive oil reserves nearly unrivaled in the world there is not enough energy to keep the lights on.

Read More

DAVID CHANG: Here’s why the restaurant industry is about to face an apocalypse (And he doesn’t even mention a $15/hour minimum wage)

I like David Chang. He’s a Virginian and even had a restaurant in my home town of Charlottesville Virginia.

The restaurant business is brutal. And plain old business is brutal enough. But food, a restaurant? Long hours. Staff drama. Regulatory drama. Meeting payroll. Hungover cooks. Not an easy way to make a buck.

Though Chang never mentions an increasing minimum wage in the attached piece he does give non-restaurant folks a little insight into the economics of restaurants.

Read More

Why a $15 minimum wage is “good” for rich people and bad for the less well off

We’ve been covering the minimum wage debate since its most recent flare up a few years ago and our assessment is the same. If the government decrees that a job be paid $15/hour that does not mean that a job which pays less than $15/hour previously will suddenly be WORTH $15/hour. The government can not just upend supply and demand. The market will just adjust to the new reg. For businesses which operate on thin margins,

Read More

Chick-fil-A: Ditch your phone, get free ice cream

It’s the highest quality fast food one can get. By a lot. Plus it’s closed on Sundays.

This is the market at work.

I do love Chick-fil-a. By the way the best value going in fast food is their 3 chicken tenders order. Plus they always say “my pleasure” when I ask for extra ketchup.

(We have no affiliation with Chick-fil-a.)

Read More

San Antonio Overturns Ban on Food Trucks

Mmmm. Food truck pork.

Foodies in the Lone Star State rejoice.

Food trucks are a gift to humanity. Some of the best food one will ever get, and some of the most interesting, is cooked in trucks. In DC for instance one can get very good Thai, Ethiopian, Mexican, burgers, kebab, and a million other types of food all within walking distance of each other and at very reasonable prices.

Read More

A good idea: City allows people to pay off parking tickets with food donations

I despise parking tickets primarily because they are such a racket. Washington DC, the major city in which I drive regularly collects tens of millions of dollars in parking ticket fines each year. If one visits DC keep an eye out for the folks in the red jackets. They’ll answer your questions and give you directions but they are also patrolling the streets looking to fine drivers.

I’ll grant you that there are legitimate reasons for parking tickets.

Read More

In San Antonio food trucks face fines of $2000 per day if within 300 feet of a restaurant, even if trucks are on private property

This is just an obvious example of established interests using city hall to take out the competition.

Food trucks are great. They can provide good and often interesting food quickly and with little fuss. One can get a high quality meal more quickly and at even a lower price than one could get at Wendy’s or Burger King in many places. Believe it or not DC is actually one of those places and I stop by the gathering of trucks outside of Metrocenter now and then.

Read More

Coca-Cola Ends Financial Sponsorship of Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics

In other news Phillip Morris is sponsoring the Olympic marathon team. (Not really.)

I like a good cold Coke on a hot summer day as much as the next person, but the stuff isn’t healthy. Not that it need be for Coke to sponsor the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, but there is some dissonance there.

Sugar is not unlike a drug in many respects. Some people think it is a drug. For some people it can be addictive like a drug that’s for sure.

Read More