Research analyst: Cookies for Santa yet to come

BY J. JUSTIN WILSON Published: December 23, 2012

By Christmas Eve, you will prepare to lay out cookies and milk for Santa. You will hear a public service announcement reminding retailers and adults: “Remember to I.D. for cookies this holiday season!”

I.D. for cookies? That will be made law, giving three activist researchers from California their way. In the journal Nature, they declared sugar “toxic” like smoking and demanded that it be controlled like alcohol or tobacco. Regulators will start by banning selling drinks with added sugar to teens under 17; prohibition for cookies and snacks will follow in due time.

These visions of all-too-real proposals need not come to pass. Cookies and chocolate milk aren't chardonnay, and everybody knows that. Denmark recently repealed its tax on butter, and Californians rejected soda taxes by more than 2-to-1 margins.

That doesn't mean Grinch-y bureaucrats won't try to make these harebrained schemes happen, even though a recent study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition shows that sugar consumption is falling — by 3.5 percent since 2000 — by personal responsibility alone.

Who would have thought that New York City would ban sodas larger than 16 ounces before this year? But St. Nick's been around the block a few times, and I for one wouldn't bet against the jolly old elf getting his cookies for years to come.

Wilson is the senior research analyst at the Center for Consumer Freedom (www.consumerfreedom.com).