What is “the cheapest, most nutritious and bountiful food that has ever existed in human history” Hint: It has 390 calories. It contains 23g, or half a daily serving, of protein, plus 7% of daily fiber, 20% of daily calcium and so on.
Also, you can get it in 14,000 locations in the US and it usually costs $1. Presenting a champion and an unsung hero of modern life, the McDonald’s McDouble cheeseburger.
The argument above was made by Stephen Dubner and professor Steven Levitt of the Freakonomics blog. They also co-wrote the books on the hidden side of everything.
Dubner built an episode around the debate.
Does fast food from McD’s make us fat? Not necessarily. People who eat out tend to eat less at home that day in partial compensation; the net gain, according to a 2008 study out of Berkeley and Northwestern, is only about 24 calories a day.
Those that rage against the notion of McDouble supremacy — the loose confederacy of snobs such as Vegans (I’m guilty), locavore foodies and militant anti-corporate types are forever proclaiming their support for the poor and are major advocates for higher minimum wages that would supposedly benefit McDonald’s workers. But they’re forgetting the biggest part of the equation: cost.
Driving up minimum wage would drive up McDonald’s wage costs which would drive up the price of burgers for millions of poor people.
For the average struggling person, it isn’t a great option to take a trip to the farmers market to puzzle over concepts such as sustainable versus organic. Organic produce may seem cheap to environmentally aware soccer moms, but if your object is to not be hungry, it is hugely expensive per calorie.
According to a 2007 University of Washington survey for the Journal of the American Dietetic Association, junk food costs as little as $1.76 per 1,000 calories, whereas fresh produce costs more than 10 times as much. A 2,000-calorie day of “healthy food”, would cost $36.32.
The report noted, “Not only are the empty calories cheaper but the healthy foods are becoming more and more expensive. Vegetables and fruits are rapidly becoming luxury goods.”
Where else but McDonald’s can a regular bloke obtain so many calories per dollar?
Don’t even get me started with organic — if you are at Whole Foods and you have to check the price, you can’t afford it.
Activists and Social Justice Warriors are the enemies of the working class.
In NYC, they’ve managed to keep Walmart out of the five boroughs of New York City. The City Council of Washington, DC, recently passed a bill, designed specifically to punish only Walmart, which would mandate a super-minimum wage to benefit a small number of employees while effectively placing a surtax on every Walmart shopper. (Walmart responded by saying it was canceling plans for three stores. )
The attack against Chick-fil-A by leftist social justice war mongrels plays right into their world view, a place with no cars, no guns, no McDonald’s, and where everybody bikes to work with a Laos Rattan Hand Woven Hunting Food Backpack filled with a lunch grown in the neighborhood collective.
That’s not going to work for the average person. What happens when they can’t get a McDouble anymore?