At what point does the truth become so watered down, cloudy and overrun with hype that it is no longer the truth? Has it gotten to the point in which we allow billion-dollar corporations to redefine what the truth is?
For years, soda makers, fast food companies and other purveyors of unhealthy “food” have tried to shape perceptions about their products. They don’t want people to believe their products cause chronic disease, even though scientific studies have proven this to be the case.
So what do the folks at Coca-Cola do? They use their money and influence to try and change science.
It was announced last month that Coca-Cola is funding the Global Energy Balance Network, which is trying to prove that exercise is more important to good health than nutrition.
In a video announcing the organization’s launch, its president said, “Most of the focus in the popular media and in the scientific press is, ‘Oh they’re eating too much, eating too much, eating too much’ – blaming fast food, blaming sugary drinks and so on. And there’s really virtually no compelling evidence that that, in fact, is the cause.”
I won’t waste your time or this space citing all of the studies that prove this guy’s statements are absolutely untrue. A simple Google search will show links to mountains of data that show a direction connection between sugary drinks and chronic illness.
What makes me furious is the gall of Coca-Cola.
They see the writing on the wall. They see soda sales dropping. They see soda being banned from schools. They see efforts to tax or even ban sugary drinks in some areas. They see that Americans are finally waking up to the fact that sugary drinks kill people.
Coca-Cola hasn’t been able to change public opinion, so they’ve decided to try to change the truth. More specifically, they’re trying to buy a new truth.
To be clear, the Global Energy Balance Network isn’t a neutral research organization. Its website is registered to Coca-Cola headquarters. Coca-Cola paid $1.5 million to start the Global Energy Balance Network, and it shelled out nearly $4 million to fund projects headed by two of the group’s founding members, according to The New York Times.
Do they think we’re so stupid that we would believe research funded by Coca-Cola is anything but a desperate attempt to reverse declining sales of Coca-Cola products?
Coca-Cola can say whatever it wants. It can spend as much money as it wants. It can buy off as many so-called scientists as it wants.
But science is science. Truth is truth. Reality is reality.
And here’s the reality, Coca-Cola. Your product causes chronic illness. And your attempt to deflect blame by buying a new truth does nothing but insult people’s intelligence and make you look even more desperate than you really are.