Mass Delusion – Fat Is A Capitalist Plot

Mass delusions are those fashions that sweep through society from time to time. The South Sea Company will make a fortune from the assiento when no one else ever did. Tulips are worth more than houses. Socialism is an answer to anything other than the question of how do we impoverish the population? Mass delusion is slightly different, being much more locally confined:

Sofie Hagen: ‘Fat is a neutral word – I want us to reclaim it’


In her first book, the Danish comedian is calling for fat liberation – and happiness. She talks about anti-capitalism, abuse and how her view of her body changed overnight

OK, great, tubby bird trying to work through her issues. Good on her. True, most of us pay the therapist rather than asking others to pay for the therapy notes but whatever floats boats.

Then there’s the delusion:

For Hagen, learning to accept her body wasn’t a drawn-out process; the change came instantly. One day her university friend Andrea asked her to think about where self-hating thoughts come from, and who profits from them, and her whole perspective shifted. “I used to think – of course fat is ugly, lazy, stupid and bad. I never questioned it. But when Andrea said: ‘You feel bad then you buy more stuff, so they make money,’ it clicked. Overnight I stopped seeing it as a fact.” This is the political centre of Happy Fat: the argument that fatphobia is a product of capitalism – designed to keep us consuming diet products and miracle foods; and patriarchy – which demands women exert an impossible level of self-discipline around their looks. She sums up the argument with a Naomi Wolf quote: “A culture fixated on female thinness is fixated on female obedience.” To challenge fatphobia is to challenge capitalism and to see fat people in the context of other marginalised groups.

Perhaps delusion is the wrong word, wibble being better. Wobble?

There is no capitalist plot to do anything because the capitalists are in competition with each other, not a cabal working together. And the reason people are fat is because they ingest more calories – over time – than they expend. It’s fine to be happy about that result and given the variability of human tastes and desires many will be.

But blaming it all on the Rothschilds really won’t do. We might even note that only capitalist societies seem to produce enough food for the generality to become fat but that’s still not a plot by the capitalists, just a happy side effect. As with the more usual dribble about feminism necessarily being anticapitalist. It’s only the result of a few centuries of capitalist free marketry which allows women’s liberation or the existence of porkers among the general population.

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Matt RyanLeo SavanttDodgy GeezerJonathan Harston Recent comment authors
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Matt Ryan
Matt Ryan

and patriarchy – which demands women exert an impossible level of self-discipline around their looks

Really? Who is the consumer of the frocks and make up that models are used to peddle? Who buys Cosmo?

Is it men? No, it’s women who are the worst bitches about each other.

Leo Savantt
Leo Savantt

Sharing a name with high levels of refined carbohydrates, i.e. fattening, ice cream is either a plot by the evil patriarchal tyranny or just another one of fate’s ironic twists. Um, which could it be?

Dodgy Geezer
Dodgy Geezer

“……And the reason people are fat is because they ingest more calories – over time – than they expend……..” I’m not at all sure about that. For a starter, people don’t ingest more calories than they expend – otherwise they would heat up and catch fire. They must use all the calories that they ingest – by definition. It’s a question of how the body allocates those calories, and for some people it allocates them into more fat storage than others. Researchers are slowly beginning to understand that body weight control is more complex than just limiting calorie input, which… Read more »

Jonathan Harston
Jonathan Harston

Excess of input over expenditure is how you *become* fat, not how you stay fat. I’ve been a steady-state wobbly 16 stone for years. If my input was greater than my expenditure I wouldn’t be the same weight now as I was five years ago.