The annual present orgy at the Lord household did not disappoint this year. My new son-in-law, Alec, spent his first Christmas day with us, and noted that he’d never seen a Christmas celebration quite like it. Not being a conspicuous consumption guy, I personally have qualms about the excess of the day, but I try to suppress those for the greater good.

Every year, however, I find at least one gem in the pile of presents. Last year, my daughter Diedre bought me Howard Zinn’s “People’s History of the United States,” which oddly enough I’d never read before. This year’s winner is a short book called “Food Rules (an eater‘s manual),” by Michael Pollan. We all know about the horrors of the food industry in America (if you don’t, read “The End of Food” by Paul Roberts, or rent “Food, Inc.”), but this little piece just sets forth some common sense rules for healthy eating. And it was a really easy read. I finished it in a few hours.

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Which leads me to my New Year’s resolution. Pollan makes the obvious point, which we get intellectually but so easily lose sight of in our everyday lives, that the food industry and the health care industry are inter-related in their corruption. The food industry makes far more profit from processed food and meats, the staples of the unhealthy Western diet. Meanwhile, the Western diet leads to incredibly higher rates of chronic health problems, such as type 2 diabetes and heart problems, where most of our health care dollars are spent. Of course, the health care industry and the food industry both contribute heavily to Republicans. So, this year’s healthy eating resolution is different. It’s not about my waistline or my longevity this time. It’s about politics. If I can stop overeating, cut out the processed foods and sodas, and eat more leafy vegetables, The Conagras, ADM’s, and Pfizers of the world will have fewer dollars to contribute to scumbag Republicans.

Your of course welcome to join me — “Food Rules (an eater’s manual).” We can help ourselves and make the world a better place at the same time.

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