California: The Ding Dong State

Originally published in newsgroup gen.opinions 1991, one of many stories from my Taxi Diaries indexed as "Muskat Muses."

This will only confirm what many people already suspect. You may have read about the California junk food tax, which is a rather dumb idea to begin with. Governor Pete Wilson, (R) in a desperate effort to pay off his Republican predecessor's debt has figured out a way to gorge those who can least afford it. Junk food addicts by choice and economics. At least they should have taxed yuppie junk foods only.

Grocers are going bananas trying to figure out what is and is not junk food. Truffles, which are taxed, have been renamed Mousse Balls, which are not. "Free" newspapers now cost at least a penny. You can save three cents by buying your corporate owned newspaper from a coin box. Now is the time to carry around penny jars.

However, there is a movement afoot - ostensibly to protest this ridiculous tax. The concept requires sending junk-food taxed Ding Dongs to the offices of the Governor and state legislators. Video news footage included clips of both the Governor & our Fashionable Speaker and closed with a package of Ding Dongs. The packaging is of course Red, White and Blue.

This one is going to backfire folks.

To begin with, this thick shit chocolate cake, two to a box - is whipped cream filled and there is NO icing. The cost at the neighborhood Safeway is 90 cents plus 8 cents tax. This 8 cent tax is what is new. OK, now there are some 20 million people in the state and if each of us buys one of these packages to send to Sacramento several things may occur.

Balance the books? Well, no, not right away, but they can be addictive. $1.6 million in the coffers with a single purchase by each resident of the state. Add millions from those on tour, hundreds and thousands who the posse comitas claim cross the border each week from Mexico, and the Gov is on his way.

Ding Dongs are siblings of Twinkies - Hostess is midwife - Continental Baking Co. godfather. This test tube food manufacturer is owned by the gourmet industries leading purveyor of finer pet foods, yes folks, Ralston Purina is mother and father to Hostess Ding Dongs. Mssrs. Ralston & Purina must be giggling all the way home. So must the bankers. Manufacturer and corporate ownership split approximately $18 million with retailers.

As for this state's medical profession which recently announced increased fees for the treatment of obesity, high cholesterol and heart disease, the good doctors estimate they may be able to squeeze an additional 9 clients an hour, into their busy schedules. More then enough to pay for a larger yacht or a second hot tub at the Lake.

Other professions stand to do quite well. Lawyers especially. Even now they are preparing Dan White insanity defenses for the massive onslought of blood sugar induced murders new and present clients will demand. Hostess, Continental and Ralston Purina will each in turn be sued and their legal staffs, with the introduction of the tax, have begun to prepare an aggressive defensive posture. And, who is going to sue all these corporate types? Yup, other lawyers leading to increased sales in all water sports equipment.

What of our legislature? A good number of these packages will be sent to the state legislature and the Governors office where we might find the mighty arbiters of power sugar drunk and crazed - suffering manic ups and downs! People oriented lawmaking in one instance (definition of which might be to include sugar in EVERY meal served in public schools) and death penalty freaks refusing last requests for Ding Dongs on the other. The situation in Sacramento can get worse before the month ends.

Ding Dongs will be ceremoniously donated by the truckload by our state officials to agencies that feed the homeless, and of course, an appropriate deduction will be claimed. Food banks will be half full for the first time since Carter was President.

We hope packages of this gooey paste will not be dumped into the Sacramento and American rivers. Look what these river flushes have already accomplished for the sewer system in the San Fernando Valley? Thousands of fingerlings in our northern rivers may starve or stuffocate as the toxic substance wraps itself snugly around microscopic organisms crucial to the diet of fish and binds itself to their mouths, forever encasing them shut. Plants whose roots are in water will starve - their delicate growth awash in Ding Dong.

Can we Californians bare the jokes? We've heard Mickey Mouse jokes about Bush and Reagan and Dan Quayle jokes about Mickey Mouse. Now we're gonna have Ding Dong jokes.

It is difficult times, be aware of those eating Ding Dongs with guns and badges and remember Harvey.

Have A Nice Day and Eat a Ding Dong for Patriotism & Taxes.

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