Posted by: 4pack | December 23, 2008

“OBESITY TAX” PROPOSED BY GOV. PATERSON HAS NOW DEFINED THE “BATTLE OF THE BULGE” AND THE APOLOGISTS WILL SHOW THEMSELVES AND ACCOUNT FOR THEMSELVES

THE MOST IMPORTANT THING GOV. PATERSON HAS DONE FOR THE OBESITY BATTLE IS ENGAGE THE APOLOGISTS AND LAY OUT THE DEBATE…YES, QUITE FRANKLY, YOU CAN SINGLE OUT A SINGLE FOOD ITEM AND/OR GROUP TO INITIATE AN “OBESITY TAX”…AND YES, HIGH SUGAR SODA IS THE MOST OBVIOUS…READ BELOW:

Such an approach — singling out one product — imposes unfairly on the beverage industry for products that are not inherently dangerous if used in moderation.

The cost of a two-liter bottle of Coke would increase from $1.65 to $1.90 without sales tax, the Syracuse Post-Standard reported. A similar bottle of Diet Coke is priced at about $1.69 without sales tax.

http://www.watertowndailytimes.com/article/20081221/OPINION01/312219971/Obesity+tax

New York Gov. David A. Paterson should rethink his so-called “obesity tax,” which for now targets non-diet soda.

The governor would impose an 18 percent tax on one class of soft drinks — those which contain a comparably high calorie content.

Such an approach — singling out one product — imposes unfairly on the beverage industry for products that are not inherently dangerous if used in moderation.

Such a tax would add an estimated $404 million annually to state coffers, but it would exact a price from those who manufacture, distribute and sell such products.

The cost of a two-liter bottle of Coke would increase from $1.65 to $1.90 without sales tax, the Syracuse Post-Standard reported. A similar bottle of Diet Coke is priced at about $1.69 without sales tax.

The governor, of course, is looking at various ways to bring revenue to New York. But reason and fairness must be part of the process.

Why, for instance, should one product bear the brunt of an obesity tax? There are many other foods and beverages that add pounds on willing consumers. Taxing one category of fattening foods creates a competitive disadvantage in the marketplace.

Perhaps the governor and those who favor an obesity tax will argue that full-calorie soft drinks contribute to health problems. But abstaining from soda will not necessarily improve one’s health and reduce one’s weight unless a multitude of other products are eliminated as well.

Even in tight economic times, the state should be wary of trying to change behavior through taxation, particularly of products that are not a health risk if used in moderation.

What’s next? Will New York impose a tax on those who do not exercise regularly? That could fall under an obesity tax as well.

 

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