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Published by KC Riley on Smashwords
Copyright 2012 by KC Riley
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He stood in line waiting for the cashier to finish scanning the grocery items from the person’s cart in front of him. He nervously fiddled with the permit card in his hand eyeing his basket with the Cherry Garcia ice cream and thinking of the party guests enjoying his desert choice. Maggie would be there and he knew if he served ice cream she would probably agree to anything he proposed later after the guests left for their own homes. That would be worth all the trouble to get the permit he thought as the cashier finished ringing up the person in front of him.
He placed his basket down on the shelf for the cashier to start scanning items. She spied the ice cream and stopped mid movement and said in a mundane tone without looking up, “do you have a permit for the ice cream?” He could tell she asked that question a lot and expected to not ring up the ice cream. “Yes,” he said, “right here,” and he handed her the permit card. She scanned it and a red light blinked on the register. She waited for the authorization to come through. “You know there is a tax on ice cream in addition to the normal price?” She asked in the same mundane tone of expecting things to not move or function as expected. “Yes, I know.” He answered. Since the beginning of the year the new law on Food Authorization Taxation Enforcement or FATE was in full effect. No food with a fat percentage of 6% could be purchased without a permit. The law included ‘unhealthy’ foods to get at non-fat and low fat products. Cookies and crackers took the biggest hit and movie popcorn and candy were simply lost. Permits were issued based on your current weight/height BMI and that number could not be higher than 26 to get the permit. You could not purchase foods with a high fat percentage more than two times in a 30 day period. You went to a permit station to be processed and once you had a permit you were subject to additional monitoring of your activities, which you had to agree to in order to get the permit. Anyone caught selling their permits or authorized food would be fined up to $5,000 and possibly jailed up to one year. This was the latest government strategy to reduce healthcare costs and boost the economy.