While I don't really believe that these so-called "sin taxes" will actually work towards making the situation better, it should be done. If someone insists on doing things that are unhealthy and bad for society, then let them pay the extra price. I don't think we should outlaw these things, because that simply wouldn't work. But making them pay extra for it may cause some people to think twice about these bad addictive behaviors. Perhaps in the end, it will save the lives of some.
People who smoke know what they are doing to their bodies and that their bodies will suffer in the long run, as do people who drink to excess. Yes, they are addictions, but they can be overcome with help and determination. Since the health care system is subsidized by taxes and by health care insurance, we all pay the excess.
Drinking and smoking are not sins, but if the effects of using them in excess have caused other Americans to pay more for medical care, I think we should impose higher taxes on them as to discourage their use. In moderation, tobacco and alcohol have few ill effects, but when overused they hurt more people than just the user.
Research has shown the harmful effects that tobacco and liquor abuse have on a person. These effects can be easily connected with rising health care costs across the nation. If citizens refuse to give up these unhealthy habits, then "sin taxes", which go right back into the health care system, are the only real option to combat the rising costs of health care. Additionally, by raising the prices on liquor and tobacco, hopefully the consumer will feel the hit to their wallet and decide to control their consumption, or stop it all together. Either way, the country will ultimately benefit.
Using tobacco raises the instances of many cancers and contributes to heart disease as well as other health problems. "Second hand" smoke also places people at far greater health risks. As long as it is used, tobacco should be taxed heavily. Alcohol use, misuse and abuse contribute to health risks for users, but the highest risks are to those who suffer accidents and other mishaps caused by the drinker. Domestic and other violence is also linked to alcohol consumption. Even the effort to stop drinking can be tremendously expensive; a woman I know has been through acute alcohol withdrawal in the hospital twice in the past three months, and 90 days of in-patient treatment. The costs are astronomical and taxes on alcohol should pay for them.
People who smoke are at a higher risk for lung cancer and cardiovascular diseases. People who consume alcohol are at a higher risk for liver, kidney, and cardiovascular diseases. Because these diseases are big contributors to the rising costs of health care, it is fair to tax the people who engage in the behaviors that cause the diseases, in order to pay for the treatment of the diseases. It would be unfair to ask people who do not engage in these activities to pay higher taxes to care for people who voluntarily put themselves at risk.
The social costs of tobacco and alcohol are spread among the entire population. People who don't use the products still pay for the ill effects through taxes spent to deal with the problems such as sicker people and alcohol related mayhem such as accidents and interpersonal problems. Sin taxes have the double benefit of reducing consumption and helping fund the costs of dealing with illness and other problems caused by tobacco and alcohol.
People aren't stopping from purchasing these vices. There has to be a way to stop it, or reduce such habits. Smoking affects directly and indirectly. So the person smoking basically affects the people around. So why not make them pay for the harm to the community? As for alcohol same thing except that it affects the consumer, and in certain cases when drunk driving occurs. Which taking the victim to the hospital costs, as well as years down the road when the consumers body is seriously affected by the alcohol.
People who smoke or drink alcohol KNOW that they're causing themselves harm. They make the healthcare costs higher knowingly. It's not fair that people who don't drink or smoke should have to pay for the problems of people who put themselves in harm's way purposely. They have to pay for their own problems. The smokers and drinkers must pay for their own medicare if they're going to kill themselves like that. To those people who are saying that smokers and drinkers die earlier so people won't have to pay their medical costs for as long, that is stupid. That still means that other people are paying for your problems that you bring upon yourself. Instead of arguing for your beloved habits, just get the courage and determination to buy yourself a nice little nicotine chewing gum or something to help yourself.
Then they should pay extra for the future health care they will need.
If I were to buy a pack of cigarettes, then I should also be aware that I'm harming myself by inhaling the tobacco smoke. If there were little to no taxes on "Sin" products and I were buying any and everything I can to harm myself because I have "Medicare" and I'm insured to be covered through the government, then how the hell do they expect to be able to cover me without falling into debt. "Sin Taxes" help provide the money for the after effect care that I will need. But if our government is in a $16 Trillion dollar debt, and we have only a small tax on "Sin" products, then we continue to devour all the money that comes out of our annual tax. If we are to raise the taxes on alcohol and tobacco alone, then two factors would happen due to our current recession.
One, people would continue to consume these products but for a higher coast, earning 2- 3 times more money than what has been originally earned. BAM! More income for the same distribution price.
Two, as the taxes are raised, less and less people will purchase these products, under the condition they started a habit that pulls them into their own personal debt. I know if I'm unable to purchase a product because I cant afford it, (even if I have the money burning deep holes in my pockets) ill refuse to purchase it. But I'm only speaking for myself and my own will power.
This is supposed to be a free country but now you stupid people want to punish people for wanting to smoke or drink a little bit here and there. Why? Why don't we get all the illegal Mexicans and illegal people out of our country and take our jobs back or raise taxes on them they get everything for free and we have to pay and every Mexican I know have at least 5 kids I even know one that has 7 and she gets food stamps and Medicaid when a regular family that struggles to make ends meet don't get crap. My husband works and we have 2 kids and I go to collage and because I go to collage my food stamps got cut how am I supposed to feed 2 kids a husband and me on $500 when formula for my son is $23 dollars, can you tell me how it's fair to punish a person that smokes or drinks on occasions it's not!!
If the government raised sin taxes wouldn't they just loose the revenue from the products? Also, would people have to start using their living expenses? Just a few things to consider since I'm arguing about tax increases over spending cuts this month. Could someone clear this up for me? Thank you!
It is THEIR greed that has caused medical costs to rise 700%! It is not smokers. The obese, or drinkers. It is the medical "industrial complex", that is getting away with the fraud of creating a smokescreen to hide the cost increases. Blame the people and hide the scam! The fire of freedom is putting put out by the liars in pharma and in Washington.
The concept of the sin tax is counter to the philosophy of a free society. It is basically economic force applied to a person or group to elicit their compliance to a belief or activity which is counter to those they would normally hold with. If it is truly an unacceptable belief or activity it should be outlawed. If the population doesn't concur with the feeling that the belief or activity should be illegal, then it should be allowed to be practiced as the free individual desires. If there is an economic impact the individual should be fully accountable for their actions and beliefs.
As an aside, using sin taxes to garner a tax increase without disclosing it to the public is dishonest. A sin tax is simply a tax hike removing funds from the commercial financial cycle and should be discussed as such.
Not only would it be unfair to those who smoke or drink to raise taxes on a product they can not stop themselves from buying, it would also make the health care system too dependent on its continued success. If tobacco and liquor are viewed as sinful products, why should their success be vital to the health care system working? Linking the profitability of tobacco to health care is as dumb as the stop smoking campaign being funded by tobacco companies. It would be hard to tell people to stop smoking to improve their health, if their health care system relied on the taxes from their smoking.
If all of the monies collected today are directed to medical care and it's not enough. Then it makes sense to raise the taxes. I would also suggest that monies be directed to counseling for addictions to alcohol and tobacco.
If the taxes are merely collected because they are 'sins' doesn't that mix church and state? If it doesn't. Who is to judge what 'sins' are worthy of taxation?
If your trying to tell me that the leading cause of heart disease and cancer are caused only by tobacco, then you need to do some research. EATING fast food clogging artery's is a problem. Sitting around being lazy causes heart disease. What about taxing the heck out of junk food and making fast food taxes higher. What about the lazy people sitting at home collecting unemployment and letting there health fail, what about charging them in a higher medical coverage. The sin tax needs to be spread out if your going to only blame tobacco and alcohol for health problems.
What people forget is that people who smoke and/or drink a lot die younger, and this SAVES money on health care costs they would've otherwise had to deal with if they had lived longer.
That needs to be properly subtracted from any increases and compared. If it is about even or even saves money there should be no tax. If it does add a significant amount to the costs then it should be taxed.
I don't think that the sin tax should be increased on tobacco and liquor because everyone has their vices. Their vices might not be "politically correct" but what would they say if we started raising taxes on their vices? They would be all up in arms and would not want it either. I think that cigarettes are high enough as it is.
I don't think it is right that people should be charged more sin taxes on tobacco and liquor for a product that they know could affect their health. It is a personal choice, and people should only have to pay taxes that are equal to what they charge for food or services. Tobacco and liquor are just another set of consumer goods. If anyone should be paying the taxes, it should be the producer of the product.