Before Item the Second, recall anti-tobacco campaigner Jack Banzhaf's 1991 dismissal of slippery slope arguments:
"They use the 'slippery slope' argument. 'My God, if they can do this to smokers today they can do this to people who eat Haagen-Dazs ice cream or whatever.'"Item the Second: The University of Otago's Janet Hoek wants New Zealand to implement plain packaging for soft drinks. The anti-tobacco industry used to warn that there was no slippery slope from anti-tobacco proposals to other products; tobacco just wasn't like other commodities. Hoek writes:
Tobacco is a very unambiguous product because it is uniquely harmful - some foods are closely analogous to tobacco as they offer no nutritional benefit and the research evidence suggests changes in food supply, particularly the widespread availability of inexpensive, palatable, energy dense food have contributed to, if not at least partly caused, the rising prevalence of obesity.Hoek warns about a different kind of slippery slope: she says the food industry has been adopting tobacco-industry style tactics to delay government regulation.
* I think it's inframarginal for NZ.