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A fifth of farmers collect 60 percent of the benefits. One company alone has been estimated to receive $65 million. And driving up prices — to as much as five times the world level — has pushed manufacturers to substitutes, such as high-fructose corn syrup, decimating the domestic refining industry (12 of 22 refineries closed over the last two decades).
But the industry still wants more. The Bush administration has been pushing to increase American commerce abroad with the Central American Free Trade Agreement. The Sugar Association naturally came out against the accord.
OF COURSE, THE INDUSTRY-SPONSORED “truth” website does not mention what really is at stake: propping up industry profits. Although Qorvis claims that it is making no health claims, the website declares that “no one can say with certainty that the substance is safe to eat” and points to safety complaints from nanny-state groups which attack most every food and drink that people enjoy.
Splenda is used by thousands of products and millions of people, and no problems have appeared. Yet can we be certain?
If the safety standard for products was “certainty,” we would have little to eat or drink. It is impossible to prove a negative.
But scores of studies have attested to Splenda’s safety. The sweetener also has been approved by the Canadian Health Protection Branch and Joint Expert Committee on Food Additives of the World Health Organization and the Food and Agriculture Organization, as well as the Food and Drug Administration.
With little evidence on its side, the sugar lobby simply pounds the table. “It’s up to parents to decide whether their children should drink chlorine compounds,” says Qorvis’ Rich Masters.
A cute smear, that one. If Splenda isn’t sugar, as the sugar producers claim, then it certainly isn’t chlorine. Let’s face it, there isn’t much one might want to eat — hotdogs, say — after reading a label of full of bizarre-sounding ingredients. Yet the products are perfectly safe.
“Take ACTION!” demands the sugar lobby. Yes, indeed, the American people should take action. They should back the administration effort to limit federal agriculture spending. They certainly should end the sweet deal that the sugar producers enjoy at consumer and taxpayer expense.
Moreover, Americans should ensure that the sugar industry doesn’t restrict their choices any further. The Sugar Association’s PR campaign against Splenda is the worst sort of special interest pleading.
Should you use sugar or an artificial sweetener? If you choose the latter, should it be Splenda? There’s no right answer. But it should be up to you, not the sugar lobby.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?