Megan McArdle: You can’t cheat an honest man, therefore scamming customers is okay.

So it seems some restaurants which advertise locally raised food are lying about it (first-rate reporting from Tampa Times’ Laura Reiley here), but Megan McArdle explains that’s okay. Customers don’t really want locally raised food, they want the smug sense of eating virtuously, and they get that whether the food is local or not. (“People walked out of those meals happier than they would have been if they’d been told they were eating regular food.”). And they undoubtedly wouldn’t want to pay what local would really cost, or endure not getting produce when it’s out of season, so the restaurants have no choice. And the customers have to know the price is too low. And “you can’t cheat an honest man” so the customers have to be complicit, right?

All of which assumes, for example, that the restaurants aren’t raising the price as is; that the consumers have some idea what locally raised grassfed beef should cost; and that the restaurateurs really wanted to provide farm-to-table meals but just couldn’t afford it, so they’re really not that fraudulent. Evidence for any of these points is notably lacking. I suspect the subtext is that all those people who say they care about the environment, ethical eating, etc., are just phonies so no need for anyone to care what they think (just as nobody cares about equality of opportunity, so we can keep the poor down in good conscience).

•So according to Trump, Ted Cruz’s father was complicit in the JFK shooting. And said father exhorting evangelicals to vote for Cruz as God’s favored candidate has just shocked Trump, utterly. Which I believe, actually, we already know how poorly Trump reacts to people defying him. Trump’s charge was based on a National Enquirer story, but as Digby notes, Trump and the Enquirer are tight.

•Oklahoma Repub David Brumbagh says if the state yanks the license of doctors who perform abortions, God will improve the economy. I have a strong suspicion he will not say the same about proposals to give our cloaks to the beggar or feed the hungry.

•The Taliban are killing aid-workers providing polio vaccinations because they might be American spies. This is bad, though they’re quite right that we do that.

•Ms. Marvel creator G. Willow Wilson ponders what to do about Marvel’s top guy Ike Perlmutter giving money to Trump. For more discussion of boycotts, see here.

•For Confederate History Month (April) David Neiwert provides a history of lynching.

•Seattle’s increase in the minimum wage has not forced employers to raise prices.

•The Trademark Office believes it can deny trademark protection to offensive ones such as “Washington Redskins.” Now the Supreme Court will decide if that’s so.

Trump’s view of himself as possible commander-in-chief: there are no illegal orders, because he’s the chief!

•North Carolina’s voting restrictions have survived the first round of court challenges.

•God help us, the prison-industrial complex is an important part of our economy. At the link, Mississipi county officials complain that the shrinking prison population is cutting into their funding, to say nothing of not having prisoners to use as slave labor.

 

 

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1 Comment

Filed under economics, Politics, Undead sexist cliches

One response to “Megan McArdle: You can’t cheat an honest man, therefore scamming customers is okay.

  1. Pingback: Gay marriage and other political links | Fraser Sherman's Blog

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