Pork Propaganda

Why is the National Pork Board, an extension of the US government, buying the trademark “the other white meat” for $60M? One economist speculates that it’s because the seller, the National Pork Producers Council, is a private actor, which means the $60M wealth transfer can be used for lobbying purposes and other activities that aren’t available to a government actor. I think it would be hard to find lots of comparable transactions where a trademark like this was valued so richly.

Whatever the case, I remain completely confused why the government is trying to encourage us to eat pork products. It reminds me of the dust-up over the California “Happy Cows” commercials, where the government propagandized (outside of judicial control) that California dairy cows are happy. Given all of the problems associated with the production, distribution and consumption of meat, I find it unfathomable that the government is trying to manipulate us to eat more of it.

UPDATE: Marty makes some other good points.

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