As you may have heard, over the weekend, Denmark introduced a tax on fat. The measure is aimed at “increasing the average life expectancy of Danes” but obviously it’ll make the country a little extra coin, too. Great for them, not so great for hedge fund manager Julian Robertson, who had to sit at home steaming over the fact that his idea had been stolen. For those who supposedly don’t remember what we’re talking about, perhaps this quote will jog your memory?

“I would love to be the Obesity Czar.”

That’s what Robertson told Erin Burnett in a live interview on CNBC last November. And yet, here we are, 11 months later, no fat tax enacted, no golden pointer in JR’s hand with which he can go out into the streets and poke any “offenders” while offering a knowing glance as part of his official czar duties.

Obviously, he’s miffed something fierce but as luck would have it, it appears we have an opportunity to make it up to Julian and to ourselves. Here’s the deal: this country’s finances are in the toilet, correct? According to JR’s rough calculations, taxing fat would save us $1 trillion a year. It wouldn’t solve all our problems, but it could help and it’ll make a certain someone who sits home nights dreaming about ticketing Twinkies eaters who think they can game the system very happy. Something to think about.

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Comments (55)

  1. Posted by guestapo | October 5, 2011 at 6:10 PM

    This post was aimed at me, wasn't it?

    – Bill Gross

  2. Posted by bogey4 | October 5, 2011 at 6:24 PM

    Even a small "fat-tax" would balance the US budget in a heartbeat. And indirectly you'd be taxing pot as well, so it's a twofer!

  3. Posted by maria bartiromo | October 5, 2011 at 6:26 PM


  4. Posted by PermaGuestII | October 5, 2011 at 6:36 PM

    Finally, a tax that will piss off Michael Moore.

  5. Posted by DSK | October 5, 2011 at 7:08 PM

    It rubs the lotion on its skin or else it gets the hose again.

  6. Posted by BullMktCowboy | October 5, 2011 at 7:31 PM

    If you were able to successfully tax the fat, would it be large enough to offset the costs associated with longer-life? i.e. old age homes?

    Or is the fact that overweight people have relativley short life spans – and i would guess relativley small medical costs (as opposed to someone with lung cancer) – are helping to reduce the cost of aged care in the future & medical wellfare?

    If the above is true, is there an ethical dilema in either
    1) Saving the fat to make them live longer – but then have a greater burden on overall socitey..
    2) Not trying to save the obese and not increasing the burden on overall socitey

  7. Posted by guestapo | October 5, 2011 at 7:32 PM

    Shut up.

    -retired hf manager with a dream

  8. Posted by Bob | October 5, 2011 at 7:38 PM

    Billionaire Julian Robertson’s Frivolous Lawsuit Heads to Appellate Court

    (Oct. 5, 2011) Former hedge fund manager Julian Robertson, founder of Tiger Management, just can’t file enough frivolous lawsuits.

    In 2000, the litigious Robertson, who has a history of filing nuisance lawsuits, sued Business Week Magazine for $1 Billion because it was a “nice round number.” This phony “defamation” lawsuit was settled with no money changing hands.

    In 2005, failed hedge fund manager Julian Robertson sued publisher Uri Dowbenko, columnist Al Martin and the Al Martin Raw and Conspiracy Planet websites for “defamation.”

    Since that time, publisher Uri Dowbenko has defended himself pro-se — without a lawyer — in this David vs. Goliath legal battle, which is essentially a free speech issue — but has instead hinged on judicial oversights by the US District Court – Southern District of New York.

    After a summary judgment by the court, Julian Robertson is scheduled for his next court appearance for oral argument in the Second Circuit Court of Appeals at 500 Pearl Street, 9th Floor, in New York City on October 14, 2011 at 10 A.M.

    Meanwhile on April 17, 2000, Business Week called the collapse of Robertson’s Tiger fund “the biggest hedge fund collapse in history.”

    So what happened? Robertson was the head of Tiger Management, which had $23 Billion under management at the time. When he shut down the firm, there was only $6 Billion left.

    To this day, Robertson has never explained where the $17 Billion went.

    Was it redeemed? Or did it simply vanish on a “bad bet” – like a lot of other Wall Street losses?

    As for his financial losses, the Times of London reported that Robertson confessed — "We are in a market I don't understand." It should be remembered that Julian Robertson is allegedly a “professional,” whose “business” was to provide financial management of Other People’s Money (OPM).

    For background on this case, please see this column by Al Martin called “Failed Hedge-Fund Manager Julian Robertson Threatens Lawsuit against” ( as well as the “Julian Robertson Lawsuit Archives” (

    For an audio interview with Uri Dowbenko on Erskine Overnight (Oct.1, 2011), please see Uri Dowbenko 100111E.mp3

  9. Posted by Fat Zate | October 5, 2011 at 9:42 PM

    Currently slim Robertson was a pudgy kid.
    JR was a fat teen and has been 20 pounds over weight most of his life. Southern Fried Chicken and Chocolate cake, he owes some FAT back taxes !

  10. Posted by Greedo | October 6, 2011 at 8:14 AM

    It's nice to know that Denmark is taking a firm stance against Roseanne and other notable Fatsters

  11. Posted by Occupy 7-11! | October 6, 2011 at 9:59 AM

    Pay your fair share, Michael Moore!

    -the other 99%* (*percentiles 2-100 in distribution of BMI)

  12. Posted by Separated at Birth | October 6, 2011 at 10:48 AM

    Peter Boyle and Julian Robertson are twins? I had no idea.

  13. Posted by Guest | October 6, 2011 at 3:58 PM

    Where's your $17 billion?

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