Nanny State

A Federal Soft Drink Tax?

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The Wall Street Journal reports that "Senate leaders are considering new federal taxes on soda and other sugary drinks to help pay for an overhaul of the nation's health-care system." One proposal is a tax of three cents per 12-ounce serving (or about 17 cents for a two-liter bottle), which the Congressional Budget Office estimates would raise $24 billion over the next four years. In addition to bringing in revenue, the Journal says, proponents of the soda tax want to "lower consumption, reduce health problems, and save medical costs." Yet a tax of this size is not likely to have a noticeable impact on sugary soft drink consumption, let alone overall caloric intake, and therefore will not measurably affect "health problems." And if reducing medical spending is the goal, we'd better hope the tax doesn't work as advertised, since fat people have lower lifetime health care costs than thin people do.

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  1. Time to que up the old Beatles “Taxman” song.

  2. Regressive tax alert! Regressive tax alert! Why do Democrats hate the poor?

  3. It’s important to remember that the Democrats aren’t going to raise taxes.

  4. It’s beginning to look a lot like Europe.

  5. Hail to thee, fat person! You helped the entitlement programs survive a little longer!

  6. Hmmm, I wonder what income quintile spends the highest percentage of their income on pop*? Might that be the same quintile that spends the highest percentage of their income on tobacco?

    Not to worry, Obama The Chosen One promised not to raise taxes on hose earning less than 250 kilobucks a year. Or we’re doing it for the poor’s own good. Or it’s not really a tax.Or some other BS excuse.

    * That’s right you sissy granola staters, sweetened carbonated beverages are called pop!

  7. We smokers told you who would be next on the nanny state agenda. But did you listen? Noooo.

  8. I wonder if you can homebrew soda, pop, coke, whatever you want to call it.

  9. When are they going to put a tax on gym memberships, since they actaully increase the tax burden of the state?

  10. Pop is the new cigarette.

    Soda drinkers the new jew.

    Looking forward to $50.00 a 12 pack cola.

    I’ll need to see some ID if you are buying pop.

  11. J sub D, funny you should mention the tobacco/coke* correlation.

    I quit smoking a little over a month ago after The Messiah’s tax increase brought my cigarette habit from 80 bucks a month to over 200 bucks a month.

    Since that time, my intake of sodas has increased from 2 or 3 a week to 2 or 3 a day.

    I’m starting to take this administration’s Tax policies rather personally.

    *In Texas, sweetened carbonated beverages are called “Cokes”. At any given party, there will be multiple ice chests… a bunch of orange ones filled with beer, and a blue one filled with “cokes for the kids”.

  12. You know, I really wish the Dems’ fucking of their own supporters didn’t fuck me as well, because otherwise it would be pretty awesome. I don’t drink soda, but in all the other myriad areas, of course.

  13. BATFEP

  14. Oh, and a question: will this tax all sodas, even diet? Because if so, the health reason is even more bullshit.

  15. Aspartame isn’t doing anyone any favors, Epi.

  16. No this tax will not affect diet sodas. Now, who here would not make this trade: End sugar subsidies, tax sodas. I’d take it in a heartbeat.

  17. Given that soda is the tea of the 21st century, I fully expect to see mobs of people dressed as Indians raiding the Coke bottlers and dumping box after box of HCFS into the harbor, giving all the fish diabetes.

  18. Aspartame isn’t doing anyone any favors, Epi.

    You take that back about NutraSweet! Just because he’s not here doesn’t mean you can make fun of him. Wait, what am I saying?

  19. “We smokers told you who would be next on the nanny state agenda”

    Resistance is futile.

    You will be assimilated.

  20. It’s beginning to look a lot like Europe.

    I’ve been saying that for a long time.

  21. Oh, and a question: will this tax all sodas, even diet? Because if so, the health reason is even more bullshit.
    Public Health rules:

    If people enjoy them they are by definition unhealthy(even w/o the HFCS).

  22. It’s beginning to look a lot like Europe.

    Except without the ubiquitous bare breasts.

  23. Duh, Epi. Diet soda is not “natural,” “local,” “sustainable,” etc. Do you think Michelle Obama’s fancy chef serves it? You didn’t expect them to change the way we eat merely by expounding on the virtues of organic produce, did you?

  24. So, this would be Tax Increase No. 2 on people making less than $250K/year, yes?

    I’m almost beginning to doubt that we can take Obama at face value.

  25. Diet soda is not “natural,” “local,” “sustainable,” etc.

    What if we made it with Stevia like the Japanese? OH NOES the makers of artificial sugars won’t let us!1!!111

  26. I wonder if you can homebrew soda, pop, coke, whatever you want to call it.

    I believe you can, to an extent…but you need to use carbonated water.

    And I think I recall seeing a tariff on imported sparking water as well.

    Wikipedia says the following:

    Carbonated water, also known as soda water, can produced in the home by “charging” a refillable seltzer bottle by filling it with water and then adding carbon dioxide.

  27. Except without the ubiquitous bare breasts.

    And hairy armpits.

  28. “So, this would be Tax Increase No. 2 on people making less than $250K/year, yes?”

    Can we count the massive cabon cap and trade/energy tax in advance or do we have to wait for the annointed one and his congressional minions to make it official?

  29. Wikipedia says the following:

    Carbonated water, also known as soda water, can produced in the home by “charging” a refillable seltzer bottle by filling it with water and then adding carbon dioxide.

    I just put that in there.

  30. Except without the ubiquitous bare breasts.

    And hairy armpits.

    And bad teeth.

  31. “Hmmm, I wonder what income quintile spends the highest percentage of their income on pop*? Might that be the same quintile that spends the highest percentage of their income on tobacco?”

    The only people I ever see smoking anymore are black folk and the homeless. I guess Democrats hate black folk and the homeless. Damn those Democrats are cold.

  32. Noooo. This stuff is so dumb. We need a so-dumb tax.

  33. One of the organizations behind this proposal is Center for Science in the Public Interest. If you go to their web site you will see that one of the Board members is William Corr. Mr. Corr is also Deputy Secretary for Health and Human Services. Mr. Corr is also the former Executive Director of Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids. I recommend to you 1) a story at the blog site of Dr. Michael Siegel re Mr. Corr at http://tobaccoanalysis.blogspot.com/
    2) I recommend for perusal a story in the New York Times titled: Congress Plans Incentives for Healthy Habits. The language contained within and the implications for personal liberty in this country should be taken seriously.

  34. I think some of you guys need to visit Europe more.

    Except without the ubiquitous bare breasts.

    There aren’t that many nude beaches and they’re mostly populated by ugly people.

    And hairy armpits.

    Only in Sicily.

    And bad teeth.

    That would be the UK.

  35. I’ve finally been provoked out of my lurking by the balls-out retardedness of this.

    Let me get this straight…
    1) Government collects taxes to subsidize corn growers.
    2) Corn growers grow more corn, HFCS makers make more HFCS, and soda makers can suddenly make more soda for less.
    3) Soda drinkers drink even more of suddenly cheap soda.
    4) The solution to the now impending health crisis is to…raise taxes on soda? WTF?

  36. I wonder if you can homebrew soda, pop, coke, whatever you want to call it.

    I’m going to become a cane-sugar cola bootlegger if they succeed with this nonsense.

  37. From my childhood….

    Take your powder, take your gun, report to General Washington, hurry now there’s not an hour to lose…….

    Track 3, Operation Mindcrime

  38. I wonder if you can homebrew soda, pop, coke, whatever you want to call it.

    Standard home kegging system for beer works just fine for soda pop. Many of the local craft home brewers will make an occasional batch of root beer for the kiddies.

    I have considered getting a set up to make cider as well as pop.

  39. Not only can one home brew sodas, a creative person can make some pretty interesting flavors.

    I had a friend in Las Vegas who made peppermint and cinnamon sodas. They were delicious, and people raved about how they mixed with alcohol.

  40. so…what’s the problem? A tax that won’t effect sales or consumption? We should think of more taxes that fit this model! Boo-ya!

  41. But dude, the socialists/progressives are good on lifestyle issues. Or so I’ve heard.

  42. Will this affect purple drank?

  43. No wingnutz, you can still make your Purple Jesuses like always.

    Assuming they don’t raise the tax on Everclear.

  44. There aren’t that many nude beaches and they’re mostly populated by ugly people.

    Yeah… it’s like watching HBO’s Real Sex.

    Should be called Real Ugly People.

  45. There aren’t that many nude beaches and they’re mostly populated by ugly people.

    NNNOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!1!!!!11!!

  46. Everybody’s beautiful in their own way.

  47. I wonder if you can homebrew soda, pop, coke, whatever you want to call it.

    Yep, I made a nice ginger ale earlier this year.


  48. Since that time, my intake of sodas has increased from 2 or 3 a week to 2 or 3 a day.

    When I started homebrewing beer, my coke* consumption fell to near zero.

    *the proper generic name for coke/pop/soda

  49. Given that soda is the tea of the 21st century, I fully expect to see mobs of people dressed as Indians Mexicans raiding the Coke bottlers and dumping box after box of HCFS into the harbor, giving all the fish diabetes.

    FTFY.

    Tea came from India, good Coke comes from Mexico.

    What? They werent dressed as those indians?

  50. I believe you can, to an extent…but you need to use carbonated water.

    Bullshit, a little bit of yeast does the trick. With a properly sealed bottle/keg, the yeast will shut down before the alcohol level reaches fruit juice level.

    However, if you do it in something like a 2-liter bottle, you need to chuck that thing in the fridge as soon as it gets hard, so it doesnt overcarbonate. I used a corny keg, so that wasnt a issue.

  51. …whan they pry the Moxie bottle from my bloated, jittery hands…

  52. When I started homebrewing beer, my coke* consumption fell to near zero.

    *the proper generic name for coke/pop/soda

    Only if you’re a corporate shill.
    Do you keep in in the Frigidaire?

  53. Noooo. This stuff is so dumb. We need a so-dumb tax.

    See: State Lotteries. Or,

    In other news the Hawaii Senate is working on Senate Bill 126: Dangerous Weapons; Pocket Knives; Sale
    “Any person who knowingly manufactures, sells, transfers, possesses, or transports a pocket knife in the State shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.” A “pocket knife” is “a knife with a blade that folds into the handle and which is suitable for carrying in the pocket.” Blade length doesn’t seem to matter.

    Where was President Obama born?

  54. Will this affect sparkling apple juice?

  55. I was joking. I make my own beer, wine, mead. Carbonation any liquid is relatively easy. Add CO2 under pressure and cool. All my concoctions that turn out too sweet get the carbonation treatment. Coincidentally they get the treatment in 5 gallon cornie kegs used to store soda, pop, coke, whatever.

    I’m gonna become a soda runner, or a sodashiner!!!

  56. DAMN IT! DAMN YOU FUCKING BASTARDS TO HELL!

    And I use an artificial sweetener.

  57. Where was President Obama born?

    Sounds like a trick to me.

  58. robc | May 12, 2009, 8:04pm | #

    Since that time, my intake of sodas has increased from 2 or 3 a week to 2 or 3 a day.

    When I started homebrewing beer, my coke* consumption fell to near zero.

    *the proper generic name for coke/pop/soda

    robc is correct here.Ask anbody from Georgia.

  59. Do you keep in in the Frigidaire?

    Nope. But I use Kleenex and Q-tips regardless of their brand.

  60. Most of the map makes sense, but I dont understand the Milwaukee/St Louis soda clusters.

  61. It’s been a very long time, but when I lived in Atlanta 30 odd years ago the proper word was co-cola (the first co has a very long o)

  62. adding carbon dioxide.

    Need I say more?

  63. So much for that whole “taxing the rich” idea.

  64. Dear National Leaders:

    Taxes on products which are thought by some to be less than ideal in terms of health, that are used in higher percentages by the poor, such as smokes and sodas, are create a hardship on those who can least afford it and are ugly examples of paternalistic nannyism which target the things the poor actually enjoy. Cut that shit out.

    Signed,

    MNG

  65. Right on, MNG.

  66. What’s next, a tax on lottery tickets?

  67. You’re all wrong. The proper name for sparkling sugar water beverages is “tonic”.

  68. What’s next, a tax on lottery tickets?

    Nope! Next is a tax on getting your taxes did. Also, tax refunds will be subject to tax withholding.

    THEN comes the tax on lottery tickets.

  69. I don’t see the problem, it is only a few cents. If this helps to pay for our health care and helps us all keep slim and trim what is the problem?

  70. I’m down with MNG @ 7:38.

  71. Whoa, is someone spoofing MNG?

  72. Why don’t they just do away with the sugar and corn subsidies and use those savings to pay for health care? Then the free market will decide what ingredients are put in our foods and what they should cost.

  73. Wow first the food we need to live, then the money we’ve shed blood sweat and tears for , then our cows farts. Now they are taxing every luxury item they have trained us to be consumers for.

  74. Jay | May 13, 2009, 10:00am | #

    “I don’t see the problem, it is only a few cents. If this helps to pay for our health care and helps us all keep slim and trim what is the problem?”

    Your right, and they should start taxing other things that are bad for us….. TV tax, radio Tax, Gum tax, Candy tax, PC tax, Tax on amount of Fat in meat, chip and cookie tax, sloth tax…

  75. sloth tax… that may not work seeing as most of congress would get hit hard with that tax

  76. What’s next, a tax on lottery tickets?

    Not exactly in the same vein (the jugular), but I’ve always though that a tax on opera tickets would be a splendid way to cover the subsidy to opera.

    Then maybe we could try a tax on train tickets to reduce the Amtrak deficit.

    As you can see I’m a freaking financial genius.

  77. You have got to admit that while “new taxes” are usually bad, sales/excise taxes are far more preferable to income taxes. Much fewer opportunities for “loopholes” and other abuses.

  78. Dems said they wouldn’t raise taxes… they said nothing about imposing *new* taxes. 😛

    Seriously though, how about we stop subsidizing HFCS and go back to real sugar?

    P.S. When can we put a moritorium on refering to President Obama as “The Chosen One” and “The Messiah”? This childish namecalling is NOT helping, in fact, it only serves to drive people away. The fucking election is over, deal with it and start building up someone you think is better NOW. If you want a viable 3rd party candidate, the time to canvas for him/her is NOT after RNC/DNC. Your (I would say “our” but some take exception to inclusive pronouns)candidate needs to be a household name by this time next year (it’s not hard to guess who the 2012 R candidates will be already).

  79. With many new announcement about the wizard of oz movies in the news, you might want to consider starting to obtain Wizard of Oz book series either as collectible or investment at RareOzBooks.com.

  80. “fat people have lower lifetime health care costs than thin people do”???? Jacob Sullum is on crack. Pop is a huge problem in American society, and people should be discouraged from drinking it. For their own good.

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