Analysis Of Fast Food Nation

Submitted By alexwestman
Words: 645
Pages: 3

Alex Westman
HIST 322
Reading Response 3 - Schlosser's Liberal Agenda

Part of human nature is the process of categorization. Categorization allows to us to classify and organize things in our daily lives. Eric Schlosser's book Fast Food Nation is not exempt from this generalization If one was to apply a general definition to conservatism, it would be a weak federal government with lack of involvement in business nationwide welfare programs; while liberalism would generally be defined as a strong central government with a strong hand in economic affairs along with nationwide programs and influence. While the book, as a whole, is written as an informative exposé, a careful reader can see the liberal agenda buried underneath the information. This liberalism is most apparent in Schlosser's call for stricter government regulations as he critiques the cut throat capitalism exploited by the fast food industry, as well as his critique of the exploited teenagers working in the fast food industry. Schlosser liberalness is apparent when he points out the grievances that huge corporations inflict on the smaller the worker and farmer. He spends two chapters alone discussing the plight of the America potato farmer and cattle rancher. He depicts these two groups as slaves to the fast food corporations who have a monopoly on the potato industry. This monopoly allows the buyers to exert power of the larger number of sellers, resulting in almost starvation wages for the farmers, which in turn has cut the number of potato farmers in half since the 1980's. Schlosser goes on to describe the problem of the cattle rancher as well. As the meat packing monopoly was allowed to reform, due to lack of government regulation, cattle farmers are selling their cattle and quitting, unable to keep up with the larger corporations. Schlosser, using these examples to show the problems that fast food corporations are infecting on the common people of America. Schlosser goes on to argue that these problems stem from a lack of government regulation on the business practices of this industry, thus showing his liberalism. Stemming from his earlier description of Kroc's rise to McDonalds, Schlosser depiction of the fast food industry as a monster only focused on profits ravaging through the weaker, less powerful American worker. This liberal viewpoint is exemplified by the cattle rancher Hank, who took his life after his interview with Schlosser due to financial struggles. Schlosser's portrayal of how the fast food industry exploits teenagers has a liberal