When we have true and whole land whales announcing that it’s just absolutely fine to be twice and thrice a useful bodyweight for ones height then we do have this little problem with obesity. For obesity has costs which the rest of us have to carry. This is comparable to the costs of carbon emissions – we the general public have to pick up those costs of a private action.
That, at least, is the problem being alluded to here:
Concerns about causing offence to obese people will bankrupt the NHS and social care, councils warned as the cost of caring for the overweight rises.
It’s not so much causing offence as being afeared of 300 lb women chucking their empty ice cream cartons at you. And they’ve got a lot of them.
In a report published on Thursday, the LGA said weight-related stigmas needed tackling to help prevent increasing levels of obesity and severe obesity from having a significant impact on demand and cost pressures in adult social care.
Research shows that the yearly cost of council funded community-based social care for a severely obese person is nearly double that for a person with a healthy Body Mass Index (BMI), which equates to an extra £423,000 in annual excess social care costs for a typical council.
When we’ve a significant social movement dedicated to insisting that being 300 lbs overweight is simply an expression of delightful sassiness then yes, this is a problem.
At least, it’s a problem given the framing of the question above. For the reality is that obesity really does kill. That means that the state – us taxpayers – need to support the fatties for fewer years. That could mean higher costs overall, lower, and as it works out it’s lower. Yes, higher costs per year is outweighed by those fewer years and so less must be spent in total.
Meaning that the only real problem with obesity – there are no public financial costs to be carried as a result of these personal decisions – is aesthetic. Therefore easily solved, anyone more than 40 lbs overweight may only shop at Dorothy Perkins – job one.