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Trans-Fat and the Nanny State

New York City is moving closer to banning trans-fat foods from restaurants.

Restaurants that keep using trans-fat will have to pay heavy fines and that could wipe out some of the smaller, mom and pop restaurants. In fact, about 4,000 inexpensive Latino restaurants have banded together to protest what they call the government's "Big Brother policy." They say their customers like the taste of trans-fat and they'll go broke if they take it off the menu.

But Mayor Bloomberg's regulators aren't listening.

Of course, many of the fancy restaurants in New York that cater to New York's richest and skinniest have already moved away from trans-fats. They made that choice by themselves, without a nanny regulator telling them what to do. Fact is, when folks are better informed, they generally make healthy choices by themselves.

Those who don't may not be as healthy, but they just might be happier. And maybe that's a choice they should be free to make.

When Jesse Ventura was governor of Minnesota, the legislature wanted to come up with a law to keep snowmobiles off of thin ice. Every spring, some idiot would ride his snowmobile over thin ice and crash through and die. But Gov. Jesse said you could only have so many laws designed to keep stupid people from doing stupid things. He was against what he called "stupid laws."

Maybe it is stupid to keep eating trans-fat foods with all we know about what trans-fat does to our arteries. But do we really need another "stupid law?" Isn't the nanny state, always nagging us about how to be safer and healthier, powerful enough?

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David Asman is the host of "Forbes on FOX" which airs on the FOX News Channel, Saturdays at 11 a.m. ET.

David Asman joined FOX News Channel (FNC) in 1997 and currently serves as host of "Forbes on FOX," a weekend half-hour program that offers an informative look at the business week (Saturday from 11:00-11:30 AM/ET). Asman is also an anchor on FOX Business Network, where he co-hosts "After the Bell" (4-5 PM/ET) with anchor Liz Claman.