I saw a news report recently. It asked, The Labor Department says food, gas and airline prices are all up. Can you tell the difference when you check out at the grocery?
We've definitely noticed the increase. The grocery cart is less full, but the ticket price is much higher at the check-out. For the record, we don't skimp on food. In fact, when we buy stuff at the grocery store, we are very, very selective (reading labels and looking for specific ingredients, place of origin, and distributor/manufacturer). Our first choice is locally grown/produced, but not if those items contain non-organic corn, soy, high fructose corn syrup, cellulose, hydrogenated anything, and several other hot button ingredients we've chosen to avoid. There are certain companies we won't patronize, either, which includes most of the larger food producers/distributors, but most of those aren't local, and so it's usually not an issue.
The result is that we spend a lot more than the average person at the grocery store, but it's worth every penny we save on medical bills and/or prescription medication. Even if it's a wash (i.e. we spend as much on buying good food as it would cost for a prescription), we can't eat the medicine, in that it won't satiate our hunger or provide nutrients, like the food will. So, we choose to spend our few dollars on better food rather than drugs.
This video in which a former pharmaceutical executive admits his personal culpability in destroying the health of the world and reveals that the Pharma industry has no interest in "health", but rather is motivated to keep us sick - in particular with long-term, systemic diseases (like diabetes, high cholesterol, and heart disease) that require expensive drugs to treat symptoms (although most of those drugs do nothing for curing the actual illness), reinforces all of the paranoia I have about that these drug companies are really trying to do.
Many years ago, I was sitting at my friend's dining room table, and I must have said something about the drug industry, because she said, "If you feel that way, you should not read Oryx and Crake." I didn't, for a very long time, and then I did, and every time I hear about some drug recall or some new something that "they've" invented or the obesity epidemic or the fact that CHILDREN are now developing Type II diabetes mellitus (which used to be called "Adult Onset", because it only occurred in adults), I think about that book. How easy it is to lace some food product or drink (how about sodas, which most people consume as a routine beverage) with some very damaging substance, and then, produce another something that will treat the symptoms of that "illness", and someone is profiting off of both sides.
What's real and what's straight out of Atwood's twisted imagination?
We don't know. Maybe there's a conspiracy and maybe there's not.
Either way it doesn't matter, because I will still choose to eat better food and stay away from pharmaceuticals, because the good food just tastes better.
Which means I'll probably keep paying more at the grocery store.
No worries, though, because we can make very conscious decisions about how and where we spend our cash. Not spending on things that are free is a start.