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Sin taxes

PARADIGM_L0ST
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1/29/2011 3:28:36 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
The government often loves to tax people under the unscrupulously false pretense of protecting people. For instance, higher taxes are placed on things the government deems as vices, such as pornography, tobacco products, alcohol, and even soda.

Their argument for taxing something as innocuous as soda is built around the straw man that soda increases obesity. While it may or may not increase soda is a moot point.

They say that taxing it will be a deterrence, which is simply idiotic. Even if that were true, the government is in effect sabotaging businesses to fail. If they wanted to prevent people from smoking, or drinking alcohol, or viewing pornography, they would make it illegal. But they don't want to get rid of that cash cow, so instead they'll just poach of the customers while acting pious.

So what's the truth? They know damn well it won't deter a thing, it's just a piss poor argument to generate revenue for them. And since their avowed intent is benevolent, they hope that no one will speak out against it.
"Have you ever considered suicide? If not, please do." -- Mouthwash (to Inferno)
LaissezFaire
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1/29/2011 3:59:30 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
What I think is funny is that in their economic models, they assume that taxing soda will deter soda consumption, but taxing income won't deter working.
Should we subsidize education?
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: At 6/22/2011 6:57:23 PM, el-badgero wrote:
: i didn't like [Obama]. he was the only black dude in moneygall yet he claimed to be home. obvious liar is obvious liar. i bet him and bin laden are bumfvcking right now.
FREEDO
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1/31/2011 9:29:47 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 1/29/2011 3:59:30 PM, LaissezFaire wrote:
What I think is funny is that in their economic models, they assume that taxing soda will deter soda consumption, but taxing income won't deter working.

This right hurr.
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Sieben
Posts: 2,736
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1/31/2011 10:16:57 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 1/29/2011 3:28:36 PM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:

Their argument for taxing something as innocuous as soda is built around the straw man that soda increases obesity. While it may or may not increase soda is a moot point.
Why is it moot? It increases government health expenditures.

Even if that were true, the government is in effect sabotaging businesses to fail.
Why? Businesses compete on forecasting uncertain market conditions, including government edicts. Just because they can't sell product X doesn't mean investment won't shift to other more profitable venues. Basically what I'm trying to say is that there won't be any visible economic losses because the market won't invest in unprofitable venues, even if they are only unprofitable because of stupid sin tax laws.

If they wanted to prevent people from smoking, or drinking alcohol, or viewing pornography, they would make it illegal. But they don't want to get rid of that cash cow, so instead they'll just poach of the customers while acting pious.
I think they want more money to waste. Their pretense is that its cool if people want to ruin their bodies, they just have to pay for it.

So what's the truth? They know damn well it won't deter a thing, it's just a piss poor argument to generate revenue for them. And since their avowed intent is benevolent, they hope that no one will speak out against it.
Your arguments against the state need to be better.
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Reasoning
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1/31/2011 11:24:20 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 1/29/2011 3:59:30 PM, LaissezFaire wrote:
What I think is funny is that in their economic models, they assume that taxing soda will deter soda consumption, but taxing income won't deter working.

Kevin Carson makes a good argument that taxing income encourages work.
"What we really ought to ask the liberal, before we even begin addressing his agenda, is this: In what kind of society would he be a conservative?" - Joseph Sobran
LaissezFaire
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1/31/2011 11:38:50 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 1/31/2011 11:24:20 PM, Reasoning wrote:
At 1/29/2011 3:59:30 PM, LaissezFaire wrote:
What I think is funny is that in their economic models, they assume that taxing soda will deter soda consumption, but taxing income won't deter working.

Kevin Carson makes a good argument that taxing income encourages work.

No he doesn't.
Should we subsidize education?
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: At 6/22/2011 6:57:23 PM, el-badgero wrote:
: i didn't like [Obama]. he was the only black dude in moneygall yet he claimed to be home. obvious liar is obvious liar. i bet him and bin laden are bumfvcking right now.
Reasoning
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2/1/2011 1:04:24 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 1/31/2011 11:38:50 PM, LaissezFaire wrote:
At 1/31/2011 11:24:20 PM, Reasoning wrote:
At 1/29/2011 3:59:30 PM, LaissezFaire wrote:
What I think is funny is that in their economic models, they assume that taxing soda will deter soda consumption, but taxing income won't deter working.

Kevin Carson makes a good argument that taxing income encourages work.

No he doesn't.

I think it's rather convincing.
"What we really ought to ask the liberal, before we even begin addressing his agenda, is this: In what kind of society would he be a conservative?" - Joseph Sobran
Sieben
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2/1/2011 9:02:25 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
I don't think you can run incentive arguments against theft. It could disincentivize working. Or it could incentivize it because people want to have X amount of money and now have to work harder for it.

You have to run capital misallocation, subjective utility, and moral hazard arguments.
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Reasoning
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2/1/2011 11:17:29 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 2/1/2011 9:02:25 AM, Sieben wrote:
I don't think you can run incentive arguments against theft.

I wasn't trying to.

It could disincentivize working. Or it could incentivize it because people want to have X amount of money and now have to work harder for it.

Right.
"What we really ought to ask the liberal, before we even begin addressing his agenda, is this: In what kind of society would he be a conservative?" - Joseph Sobran
Caramel
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2/1/2011 11:24:37 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 2/1/2011 1:04:24 AM, Reasoning wrote:
At 1/31/2011 11:38:50 PM, LaissezFaire wrote:
At 1/31/2011 11:24:20 PM, Reasoning wrote:
At 1/29/2011 3:59:30 PM, LaissezFaire wrote:
What I think is funny is that in their economic models, they assume that taxing soda will deter soda consumption, but taxing income won't deter working.

Kevin Carson makes a good argument that taxing income encourages work.

No he doesn't.

I think it's rather convincing.

No you don't.
no comment
PARADIGM_L0ST
Posts: 6,958
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2/1/2011 11:38:02 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 1/31/2011 10:16:57 PM, Sieben wrote:
At 1/29/2011 3:28:36 PM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:

Their argument for taxing something as innocuous as soda is built around the straw man that soda increases obesity. While it may or may not increase soda is a moot point.
Why is it moot? It increases government health expenditures.:

No, it doesn't. That's just a bullsh*t scapegoat. If it was such a problem they'd simply outlaw it altogether.

Even if that were true, the government is in effect sabotaging businesses to fail.
Why? Businesses compete on forecasting uncertain market conditions, including government edicts. Just because they can't sell product X doesn't mean investment won't shift to other more profitable venues. Basically what I'm trying to say is that there won't be any visible economic losses because the market won't invest in unprofitable venues, even if they are only unprofitable because of stupid sin tax laws.:

If the government's entire premise for sin taxes is to shift people away from unhealthy lifestyles, then how is that not sabotaging a business? Look at cigarettes. If they cared so much about shifting people away, they'd simply outlaw it altogether. But they don't. They just needed a scapegoat so they can increase taxes. What a better way than under the pretense of helping people.

And what about porn and strip clubs? Do they cause obesity too? It's nothing more than government nickle and diming because they can.

I think they want more money to waste. Their pretense is that its cool if people want to ruin their bodies, they just have to pay for it.:

You don't find that slightly fascist?

So what's the truth? They know damn well it won't deter a thing, it's just a piss poor argument to generate revenue for them. And since their avowed intent is benevolent, they hope that no one will speak out against it.
Your arguments against the state need to be better.:

Okay...? Thanks for sharing your opinion.
"Have you ever considered suicide? If not, please do." -- Mouthwash (to Inferno)
Sieben
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2/1/2011 11:52:02 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 2/1/2011 11:38:02 AM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:

No, it doesn't. That's just a bullsh*t scapegoat.
I'm pretty sure that junk food causes many cases of diabetes. Are you saying its equally expensive to treat someone with diabetes than without?

If it was such a problem they'd simply outlaw it altogether.
Why? They can get more money this way without telling people what to do or creating black markets.

If the government's entire premise for sin taxes is to shift people away from unhealthy lifestyles, then how is that not sabotaging a business?
Its sabotaging business MODELS, but not businesses themselves because they can just forecast/adapt.

And what about porn and strip clubs? Do they cause obesity too? It's nothing more than government nickle and diming because they can.
Dunno. Maybe they cause crime or some intangible social "problems" like destroying the nuclear family/moral fabric of Amrica.

At the end of the day, the sin tax kills two birds with one stone for the state. It raises revenues and imposes their morals on the rest of the population. How is the state stupid for doing this?

You don't find that slightly fascist?
I'm totally 110% against sin taxes and taxes.

Okay...? Thanks for sharing your opinion.
Its called poisoning the well. It makes it hard for people to take liberty seriously when half its advocates are just generically outraged and easily dismissed with 3rd grade statist arguments.
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PARADIGM_L0ST
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2/1/2011 1:01:20 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 2/1/2011 11:52:02 AM, Sieben wrote:
At 2/1/2011 11:38:02 AM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:


No, it doesn't. That's just a bullsh*t scapegoat.
I'm pretty sure that junk food causes many cases of diabetes.:

So does pasta! The point is that there are any number of causes to diabetes. Why does that give the government the right to tax it higher than some other consumables? I thought you were a libertarian?

Are you saying its equally expensive to treat someone with diabetes than without?:

It's a slippery slope. I never said I wanted government health care to begin with, so it is entirely moot.

If it was such a problem they'd simply outlaw it altogether.
Why? They can get more money this way without telling people what to do or creating black markets.:

Sieben, they can use this bullsh*t pretense for ANYTHING they want. The possibilities are endless and it sets a potentially destructive precedent. They can raise taxes on spray paint because aerosols are harmful to your lungs and the environment. They can tax gum because of the high sugar content. They can raise taxes on non-sugar gum because artificial sweeteners are bad for you. They can tax coffee more highly because coffee isn't good for your heart.

On and on it can go unless somebody calls them out on their bullsh*t.

Its sabotaging business MODELS, but not businesses themselves because they can just forecast/adapt.:

It just so happens that companies like Pepsi and Coke, who rely on soda, have called the government very selective. They've pointed out that the sugar content in Gatorade is just as high as it is with soda. Let the pressure come from the consumer, not the government. The companies should have to adapt because of market failure, not government forcing them to.

Dunno. Maybe they cause crime or some intangible social "problems" like destroying the nuclear family/moral fabric of Amrica.:

And does that ridiculous argument sit well with you? That's utter nonsense. How about, the government causes social problems like, completely destroying the value of the entire monetary system.

At the end of the day, the sin tax kills two birds with one stone for the state. It raises revenues and imposes their morals on the rest of the population. How is the state stupid for doing this?:

It's not stupid in the traditional sense. It's stupid in the sense that it's unethical, to say the very least.

You don't find that slightly fascist?
I'm totally 110% against sin taxes and taxes.:

Then what are you arguing about?

Okay...? Thanks for sharing your opinion.
Its called poisoning the well. It makes it hard for people to take liberty seriously when half its advocates are just generically outraged and easily dismissed with 3rd grade statist arguments.:

Then it's a shame that your 3rd grade statist arguments didn't stand up to scrutiny.

Why do I suspect that? You say you're against the sin tax too, so give me your arguments against the sin tax. We'll see how much they differ from mine.
"Have you ever considered suicide? If not, please do." -- Mouthwash (to Inferno)
Reasoning
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2/1/2011 1:39:30 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
You wouldn't need to work as much to have the same standard of living if you weren't taxed as much. Therefore, you would work less if taxes were less burdensome.
"What we really ought to ask the liberal, before we even begin addressing his agenda, is this: In what kind of society would he be a conservative?" - Joseph Sobran
Sieben
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2/1/2011 1:40:19 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 2/1/2011 1:01:20 PM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:

The point is that there are any number of causes to diabetes. Why does that give the government the right to tax it higher than some other consumables? I thought you were a libertarian?
They don't have the right. But it isn't a stupid means to their (nominally good) ends. I.e. there are good practical and honest reasons why the state might enact sin taxes.

Are you saying its equally expensive to treat someone with diabetes than without?:

It's a slippery slope. I never said I wanted government health care to begin with, so it is entirely moot.
Okay. But if government IS going to provide health care, it makes sense for them to try and manage their costs. Taxes on unhealth are one way of doing that. So sin taxes aren't stupid. After all, you don't b*tch if smokers have to pay higher insurance premiums do you? Well that's like a sin tax that the market puts on you. So what's the difference if the state is just mimicking the market?

Sieben, they can use this bullsh*t pretense for ANYTHING they want. The possibilities are endless and it sets a potentially destructive precedent. They can raise taxes on spray paint because aerosols are harmful to your lungs and the environment. They can tax gum because of the high sugar content. They can raise taxes on non-sugar gum because artificial sweeteners are bad for you. They can tax coffee more highly because coffee isn't good for your heart.
So? They can also just raise taxes cus they feel like it.. maybe say something about balancing the debt or providing better services. The fundamental problem is that the state is judge in its own case, not "sin taxes".

It just so happens that companies like Pepsi and Coke, who rely on soda, have called the government very selective. They've pointed out that the sugar content in Gatorade is just as high as it is with soda. Let the pressure come from the consumer, not the government. The companies should have to adapt because of market failure, not government forcing them to.

If Pepsi and Coke are really in danger of losing market share, they can just lay off employees and sell capital so that other industries can use them. Just because you have to downsize doesn't mean you lose your rate-of-return.

And does that ridiculous argument sit well with you? That's utter nonsense. How about, the government causes social problems like, completely destroying the value of the entire monetary system.

"Oh yeah I'm a little statist and any problems with the state should be reformed. The federal reserve should have 6 oversight committees with accountability rings elected democratically with checks and balances"

So you can see why its futile to rip on specific mistakes the government makes.

It's not stupid in the traditional sense. It's stupid in the sense that it's unethical, to say the very least.
Stealing from people just because they exist? I agree its immoral. But you were saying "If it was such a problem they'd simply outlaw it altogether.", which is demonstrably false. Sin Taxes are in principle a very intelligent and efficient route for the state to go.

Then what are you arguing about?
How you need to improve your argument quality for the sake of liberty. In truth, do you convince many people? You should be able to rip mainstream politics to shreds in seconds.

Then it's a shame that your 3rd grade statist arguments didn't stand up to scrutiny.
PL: Gahh taxes make me so angry the government is so stupid!
Statist: Taxes can be used to fund good things.
PL: Gahh but sometimes the government is stupid and that makes me even angrier
Statist: But reform the bad stuff so we only have good government

Why do I suspect that? You say you're against the sin tax too, so give me your arguments against the sin tax. We'll see how much they differ from mine.
Trolololol. How interested are you really? Is this actual interest or just a "mines bigger than yours" competition. I don't want to waste time on a detailed answer.
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PARADIGM_L0ST
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2/1/2011 2:27:05 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
They don't have the right. But it isn't a stupid means to their (nominally good) ends.:

Nominally good for? The government, not the citizen.

what's the difference if the state is just mimicking the market?:

You have a choice in the market. I can decide who gets my business, but I can't decide when FICA or Income Tax is taken under the threat of prison. I think taxing consumables is fine insomuch as it is taxed appropriately and evenly. This is a hidden tax on top of a sales tax under the pretense of helping people.

All terrible programs are under the pretense of helping people -- every last one of them.

So? They can also just raise taxes cus they feel like it.. maybe say something about balancing the debt or providing better services. The fundamental problem is that the state is judge in its own case, not "sin taxes".:

Yes, but this one more nail in the coffin. Surely you agree.

If Pepsi and Coke are really in danger of losing market share, they can just lay off employees and sell capital so that other industries can use them. Just because you have to downsize doesn't mean you lose your rate-of-return.:

But why should they have to just because the government wants to extort more money? There's obviously a cause and effect here. The taxes go up only on things the government deems as bad (just not bad enough to ban), this means people purchase less of it. The company is forced to then lower its profits, but in order to do that it needs to lay off employees. Now there's that many more people unemployed. All for what? So the government can feel sanctimonious for helping fat people, and so it can pay for more useless programs.

So who does it all go back to? The government.

"Oh yeah I'm a little statist and any problems with the state should be reformed. The federal reserve should have 6 oversight committees with accountability rings elected democratically with checks and balances"

So you can see why its futile to rip on specific mistakes the government makes.:

It's a straw man. And all one has to do is show the correlation between something like the FED and draw a line straight to the economic recession. But this is going well beyond the scope of the OP at this point.

Stealing from people just because they exist? I agree its immoral. But you were saying "If it was such a problem they'd simply outlaw it altogether.", which is demonstrably false. Sin Taxes are in principle a very intelligent and efficient route for the state to go.:

So are seat belt laws. So is the drug war. So is the war on terror. One could always use justification that the pretense is good, but the ultimate disposition is the true measuring stick.

Then it's a shame that your 3rd grade statist arguments didn't stand up to scrutiny.
PL: Gahh taxes make me so angry the government is so stupid!
Statist: Taxes can be used to fund good things.
PL: Gahh but sometimes the government is stupid and that makes me even angrier
Statist: But reform the bad stuff so we only have good government:

A moot point because that's not the argument, let alone an oversimplification of it.

Why do I suspect that? You say you're against the sin tax too, so give me your arguments against the sin tax. We'll see how much they differ from mine.
Trolololol. How interested are you really? Is this actual interest or just a "mines bigger than yours" competition. I don't want to waste time on a detailed answer.:

I'm turning it in to that??? What the F*CK?!?! You have a condescending answer for everything, Sieben. You don't agree with the sin tax, you just disagree with my method of delivery. So, if you have something else to offer, by all means offer it.

Short of that, what's there to talk about?
"Have you ever considered suicide? If not, please do." -- Mouthwash (to Inferno)
Sieben
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2/1/2011 2:48:29 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 2/1/2011 2:27:05 PM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:
They don't have the right. But it isn't a stupid means to their (nominally good) ends.:

Nominally good for? The government, not the citizen.
Why can't it be good for the citizen? Which would you rather live under - a broke government or an "oppressive" but functional government? Don't answer. All that matters is that SOME people would prefer one or the other.

what's the difference if the state is just mimicking the market?:

You have a choice in the market.
No you don't. All insurance companies will charge you more for smoking. Your medical bills will be higher because smoking will cause you more physical problems. A sin tax directly mirrors this.

The ONLY involuntarism of the sin tax is the same involuntarism of all state programs - the state has aggressively claimed you its customer. There is nothing intrinsically wrong with charging people more money based on their behavior.

All terrible programs are under the pretense of helping people -- every last one of them.
But not all programs under the pretense of helping people are terrible.

Yes, but this one more nail in the coffin. Surely you agree.
Nope. In principle, sin taxes don't particularly stand out as bad. They might even be preferable if we're constrained to government health care.

But why should they have to just because the government wants to extort more money?
It depends what they're going to spend the money on doesn't it?

There's obviously a cause and effect here. The taxes go up only on things the government deems as bad (just not bad enough to ban), this means people purchase less of it. The company is forced to then lower its profits, but in order to do that it needs to lay off employees. Now there's that many more people unemployed. All for what? So the government can feel sanctimonious for helping fat people, and so it can pay for more useless programs.
Err, if people purchase less soda, they have more money to spend elsewhere. If pepsi sells its factories, there are more factories available for other industries to use. If coke lays off its employees, they go work in other sectors of the economy. Where is the economic contraction (particularly if you can forecast it)?

It's a straw man. And all one has to do is show the correlation between something like the FED and draw a line straight to the economic recession.

No. A failed government program can always be reformed to "do what its supposed to". There is NO POINT ripping on specific government programs.

So are seat belt laws. So is the drug war. So is the war on terror. One could always use justification that the pretense is good, but the ultimate disposition is the true measuring stick.

That would be much better than criticizing policies in and of themselves.

PL: Gahh taxes make me so angry the government is so stupid!
Statist: Taxes can be used to fund good things.
PL: Gahh but sometimes the government is stupid and that makes me even angrier
Statist: But reform the bad stuff so we only have good government:

A moot point because that's not the argument, let alone an oversimplification of it.
Its not moot because that's what statists will say to you. What do you say back? As far as I can see, you've got nothing but attitude.

I'm turning it in to that??? What the F*CK?!?! You have a condescending answer for everything, Sieben. You don't agree with the sin tax, you just disagree with my method of delivery.
I disagree with some of your reasons for opposing the sin tax. If you give bad arguments no one will believe you even if you reach some good conclusions.

So, if you have something else to offer, by all means offer it.
Again, are you really interested or are you just pissed off that your ideas are being scrutinized while mine aren't?
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