Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Tax on sugary sodas?

According to the Wall Street Journal, lawmakers are considering a tax on "soda and other sugary drinks". The purpose of the tax is to help pay for the overhaul of the nation's health-care system.

Do you think this is a good thing? Why or why not?

Apparently the bill would put an excise tax (tax the manufacturer, who will then pass the cost on to consumers) on "soda, certain fruit drinks, energy drinks, sports drinks and ready-to-drink teas", but would not tax diet sodas (and presumably "fruit drinks" that are sweetened with artificial sweeteners!).

And why not diet sodas too? Recent research seems to indicate that diet sodas are just as "bad" and contribute to weight gains as much as the sugar containing ones do!

As a low carber, I never drink sugar-containing sodas and only rarely drink non-sugar sodas. I also never drink fruits drinks, whether they have had sugar added or not. I prefer to eat my calories! This tax, then, would have little or no effect on me!

As a consumer, I hate to see a measure like this pass because I'm afraid it will open the door to taxing other foods and drinks that are considered "unhealthy" or "bad" for us! What's next? Foods that contain trans-fats? Would that be ones that contain more than "0 grams per serving" or foods that have ANY trans-fat? What about snacks? High salt snacks? High fat snacks? Snacks that are essentially little more than sugar? How about fat content? Should I pay more for my 70/30 hamburg because the higher fat content is "bad" for me? Would they tax butter but not margarine? Coconut oil but not soy or corn oil?

So....what is your opinion? Do you support a tax on sugar containing sodas and other drinks?

(AP Photo/Lisa Poole)


Jim Purdy said...

Everything has to be paid for somehow, sometime.

Do you want extremely expensive end of life medical care? Then are you going to cut back on prenatal and early childhood health care?

D you not want to pay taxes for repairing crumbling highways? Then are you prepared for lots more toll roads and toll bridges?

Do you vote against taxes for schools? Then do you want your grandkids to go to overcrowded deteriorating schools?

Do you want more cancer research? Then don't gripe about higher taxes on cigarettes.

But if you don't want to pay taxes on junk drinks, that's easy. Just don't buy the crappy drinks. Drink water.

Maureen said...

I agree. I am afraid they would start taxing high fat items. One way to equalize things would be to stop subsidizing the production of corn. If corn were not so cheap, the price of sugary items would naturally go up.
PS Just found your blog and am enjoying it.
Maureen- Raleigh