Over at Modeled Behavior, he says this, regarding smoking, the use of salt and sugar, slippery slopes, and, by implication, serrano peppers and meat thermometers.
I left him this comment.
This is an epic – and you’ll have to convince me that it’s not willful, if you even care – failure to see the point.
1) Where does this slippery slope lead? To fewer instances of high blood pressure, ergo fewer heart attacks and strokes. Wow – that’s tragic!
2) Nobody is impinging on your freedom to use salt. Have they come for your salt shaker? Controlling the Na content of packaged products, in fact gives you MORE freedom to make your own sodium decisions, since the food stuff OVER THE CONTENT OF WHICH YOU HAVE ABSOLUTELY NO CONTROL will have a LOWER sodium content. Do the math, and add salt to taste.
3) Re smoking: Nobody has ever said you can’t smoke in the privacy of your own home, or in a variety of open air venues. Smoking bans give non-smokers the freedom to not be exposed to smokers’ effluents.
Remember the old argument that your freedom to swing your arms ends at some distance from my nose?
If that makes no sense to you, then consider that I move my bowels regularly, but I almost never do it in your office.
4) Slippery Slope arguments are inherently fallacious.