When my mother told me about the NYS Obesity Tax proposed by Gov. Paterson, I actually didn’t believe it; but as it turns out, it’s true. This is a horrible, horrible idea for several reasons.
First of all, I like how NY is becoming a nanny state. “We know what’s best for you, and we will impose laws to follow that mantra.” Earlier this year restaurants in NYC were banned from using trans-fats in foods. Now, higher taxes for supposedly less healthy beverages. Last time I checked, people we more or less free to do what they want. That means if they aren’t hurting anyone, they can make themselves as fat as they damn well please. Of course other groups are happy because this may reduce child obesity, but that should be for the parents to decide. Oh, and it’s not going to reduce child obesity. You know what will? Exercise.
Second, it seems reasonable that at a time where there is less money to go around, people are trying to spend less, and save more, that a tax hike is in order. Why not raise costs for the folks, which will likely hinder business for soda companies. Brilliant!
But this is because the state has a deficit! So what will we do with that new found money? Raise welfare payments 30% and make it easier to get medicaid (source). Perfect. Expand government programs that we know are abused by people. Does the governor really think this tax will get us out of the deficit and help expand these programs? Because the way I see it, this will do nothing but hurt the economy. Maybe Gov. Paterson should stop complaining about SNL and focus on what really matters. If he wants to get us out of a deficit, he should cut spending, and not introduce ridiculous taxes that will hurt New Yorkers and NY based businesses.
Update: So apparently he wants to tax everything AND cut spending for schools. At least with Spitzer, he was only screwing a prostitute.