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reading]

Fast Food Nation   book icon  
by Eric Schlosser (2001)

read: 22 January 2003
rating: [+]
category: uncategorized

Big suprise, I liked this book. Since came to it late in the game, I had gotten a lot of feedback, mostly from people who either found it “too tough to read” or hadn’t read it because they were afraid it would be too awful. My take on it was that I didn’t think the book went far enough. This is not necessarily a criticism since if your book reads like a PETA advertisement, no one will even turn a page of it. On the other hand, there was definitely a slightly positive flavor to some of it that was not what I was expecting. Schlosser talks about big successful fast food moguls and kids who enjoy their fast food jobs at the same time as he is telling scary slaughterhouse stories and really creepy facts about the industry [like McDonalds makes more money on real estate than they do on food. read that again, they are NOT in the food business. surprising, huh?]

If you’ve never thought too critically about fast food, this book will be a big eye opener. If you’re constantly critiquing capitalism and GMOs and meat eating, then there will not be as much new information. Schlosser seems to sum it all up by implying that Republicans are the reason that we have all this terribly corporate food culture in this country though I think it is really more complicated than that. While Republicans are responsible for some of the more egregious legal loopholes that allow the fast food industry to flourish, a pro-business atmosphere in this country [supported by both Democrats and Republicans] is really more to blame. Add to that the laziness of the average American, the decline in numbers of people who cook at home [or even think they have time to] and the stupid “we have to earn money for our sharegolders or they can sue” US mentality of American capitalism and the mess we’ve made for ourselves should come as a suprise to nobody.

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