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David Gratzer, M.D.
Dr. David Gratzer is a physician and writer. His book Code Blue: Reviving Canada's Health Care System (1999), a national bestseller, won the Donner Prize for best Canadian public-policy book. He is the editor of Better Medicine: Reforming Canadian Health Care (2002) and the author of The Cure: How Capitalism Can Save American Health Care (2006), with a Foreword by Milton Friedman. He has served as a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute of Public Policy in New York for nine years. Dr. Gratzer has been interviewed by CTV, CBC, TVO, and FOX. He is a blogger with Huffington Post Canada, and his articles have appeared in the Toronto Star, the Ottawa Citizen and The Wall Street Journal.
Research Paper proposing a global and non-coercive approach to fighting obesity
In recent years, we have witnessed the emergence of groups that, in the name of public health, seek greater government supervision over our daily lives. This can take the form of taxes or regulations, as the case may be. When it comes to the phenomenon of obesity, the Research Paper by Dr. David Gratzer, in collaboration with Jasmin Guénette, suggests a positive approach that takes account of the complexity of the problem rather than turning to a tax on specific products, a route that has failed to deliver the hoped-for results, as explained in a previous MEI Economic Note.
Economic Note about the ineffectiveness of a soda tax
Roughly one in four Canadian adults is obese ‒ with the percentage of obese Canadians continuing to rise. Every year, obesity results in billions of dollars in preventable health care costs for governments, taxpayers, employers and families. To reverse this trend, many public health advocates, among whom the Ontario Medical Association, have been calling for various types of taxes and regulation on fatty and sugary foods. These include a "soda tax," that is, a tax on soft drinks and other sweetened beverages.