Kevin's Blog

Proof That Tobacco Tax Increases Do Not Work

New York City is such a vibrant, culture-rich city with so much to offer, that it is a shame that it’s government is one of the worst offenders of personal freedoms and lifestyle choices. Politicians and policy makers think they can force people to change their behavior, but they are proven wrong time and time again. They might actually change their behavior, but not usually to what they policy makers intend. A perfect example is a story in today’s New York Times which illustrates how the increased taxes on cigarettes have not stopped people from smoking, and have actually increased the level of illegal cigarette sales.

A Cigarette for 75 Cents, 2 for $1: The Brisk, Shady Sale of ‘Loosies’

The article tells how cigarettes are purchased in other states that have lower taxes, then smuggled into NY and sold in great part as "loosies" 1 or 2 cigarettes at a time on the street.

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is one of the largest foes of personal choice, individual rights and freedoms, and luxury tobacco.

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Last year, all flavored tobacco, (including cigars, and pipe tobacco) was banned in New York City, taxes on tobacco have been raised to 75% from 46%, and this year outdoor smoking was banned. Outdoor smoking people! Hello!

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New York City Bans ALL Flavored Tobacco
An Interview with Joel Sherman of Nat Sherman
Apple Pie & Hot Dogs Are Now Against The Law

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    krgulick
  • April 5, 2011
What are these idiots thinking. Have the tax at a reasonable rate and you will have a decent amount coming in. (DUH!!!) No wonder people are going elsewhere for their tobacco products.
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    gwpegasus
  • April 5, 2011
I've always found it interesting . . . and REALLY aggravating . . . when other people think they know what's best for me and try to jam their personal philosophies, of how to live life, down my throat. Brings back (bad) memories of all the horror stories of repressive governments and cultures of ages past.
Heck - let's take a current example. Let's see - radical Islam dictates that certain things are allowed, certain things aren't allowed, and certain liberties exist for only certain people. And, as I recall, even the most liberal of our politicians get riled up about this cultural dictatorship. Guess they don't recognize the similarity.
Only hope that our freedom and liberty loving population wake up and stop 'drinking the kool-aid' of "government knows best".
Think clearly. Act wisely. (GWPegasus)
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    colorduke
  • April 5, 2011
When are these politicans gonna get it?they work for us WE THE PEOPLE.If they want to be in office and play god then we should have our say,I recommend at all govt levels minimum wage for starters and no more then 2 terms in office then maybe we might be left alone so they can work on the real world problems.
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    RomeoWood
  • April 5, 2011
Illegal smokes have been BIG business in NYC for several years, and only getting bigger. Mail-order cigs from Switzerland and the Ukraine, mafia (yes, it still exists) cigs that fall off the backbacks of trucks, imports from other states and our own Indian reservations;' all of these avenues only get bigger in response to NYC / NY's draconian temperament. I have a mailbox in New Jersey for all of my online tobacco deliveries; I spend around $300 a month on tins to cellar, and refuse to support an administration that will attempt to ban public smoking "in the interest of public health", though it does not ban sugar, corn starch, automobile exhaust, or provide healthcare to its populace, for example. I'm not condoning any sort of illegal behavior, mind you, but I cannot respect the lawmakers who are so far removed from the mindset of their constituency.
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    group7
  • April 5, 2011
Sure sounds like it's time for another tea-party. I read recently that the use of salt in restaurant food is comming under fire. Hopefully after all the politicians that have repeatedly shot themselves in the foot stand up a the opening of the Senate or Congress and all tip over, they might learn something!!!!!
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    oldtom
  • April 5, 2011
And more people keep leaving the Big Apple.
Soon it may be the shriveled little apple.
With all the idiocy of the politico's it's already getting wormy.
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    cortezattic
  • April 5, 2011
I'm opposed to all forms of taxation.
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    assaad
  • April 6, 2011
It is common knowledge among economists that unreasonable taxes (as well as too low of prices in some instances) increase the demand in the parallel market, I think each politician should be gifted a pipe, a nice tobacco, and 3 or 4 good books, OFTEN. Although a reputable author in Canada sent our prime minister a book once a month or so for a while, and he is reported to have never read one.
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