Views & Reviews Between the Lines

The wisdom of Falstaff

BMJ 2008; 337 doi: (Published 27 August 2008) Cite this as: BMJ 2008;337:a1417
  1. Theodore Dalrymple, writer and retired doctor

    The government, I have read in various newspapers, wants to try bribing us into shape. Those of us who are fat will be given cash incentives to lose weight, apparently. Of course, I can quite see the logic of this: it will save the country money in the end. But perhaps an even better idea would be televised humiliation sessions for those who failed to lose weight, in front of a paying, and possibly even a baying, audience, complete with punishment for the worst offenders, as voted by the viewers. Not only would this save money in the long term, it would positively raise money in the short term. The television …

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