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Old 03-07-2011, 04:57 PM
 
3,808 posts, read 5,480,766 times
Reputation: 1861

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To take it from .34 cents a pack to .68.

Personally I would like to see it increase north of $4.00 a pack and get rid of some of the other taxes such as the vehicle tax, corporate income tax, and some other.

The extra money left over should then be used to pay down all debts on the books then used for schools...

What's everybody's feeling on this.
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Old 03-08-2011, 02:15 AM
 
Location: Acworth
1,352 posts, read 3,973,027 times
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Do you honestly even dream in your deepest sleep that any tax will be abolished or reduced? ever?

if you buy that, i have an ancient treasure for sale.
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Old 03-08-2011, 02:24 AM
 
Location: Chicago
38,696 posts, read 91,819,407 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bellhead View Post
To take it from .34 cents a pack to .68.

Personally I would like to see it increase north of $4.00 a pack and get rid of some of the other taxes such as the vehicle tax, corporate income tax, and some other.

The extra money left over should then be used to pay down all debts on the books then used for schools...

What's everybody's feeling on this.
My feeling is that leveraging an addiction that causes wanton suffering and death to build revenue streams is cruel, grotesque, deeply immoral and profoundly offensive. No government entity should ever count on revenue from cigarettes. Ever. Tax them for public policy reasons perhaps, but not for revenue purposes.
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Old 03-08-2011, 06:24 AM
 
Location: Marietta, GA
7,862 posts, read 15,318,728 times
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I'm NOT opposed to taxing cigarettes or raising it to what's proposed. I am opposed though to trying to balance the budget on the backs of people whose behavior the gov't doesn't like. Cigarettes now, soda or cheeseburgers later?

What happens when there folks get tired of paying exorbitant taxes and they quit? Great for their health, but where do we make up the taxes the gov't has gotten used to getting?

BTW...I don't smoke.
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Old 03-08-2011, 09:08 AM
 
3,808 posts, read 5,480,766 times
Reputation: 1861
Neil0311,

I think you are getting a little carried away with the soda nad cheeseburgers. Alcohol and tobacco have always been taxed, don't drink so much Sean Hannity cool aid.

If folks do quit smoking because of the taxes then our overall health costs will go down.
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Old 03-08-2011, 11:11 AM
 
Location: Mableton, GA USA (NW Atlanta suburb, 4 miles OTP)
11,319 posts, read 23,188,205 times
Reputation: 3896
Quote:
Originally Posted by cityrover View Post
Do you honestly even dream in your deepest sleep that any tax will be abolished or reduced? ever?

if you buy that, i have an ancient treasure for sale.
Federal income tax is at its lowest level in decades.
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Old 03-08-2011, 11:56 AM
 
Location: West Cobb County, GA (Atlanta metro)
9,188 posts, read 30,947,647 times
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People LOVE to rally against anything with "tax" in it, but folks do need to consider that a few decades ago, we paid up to twice (or more) income tax than we do today (depending on your income bracket). Taxes were MUCH higher than most of the people who are rallying today have ever even come close to seeing in their lifetimes.

Yet, today, everyone wants far more and better services than those people who paid more than us had back then. We want great police and fire protection, roads in excellent condition, bridges that aren't in danger of falling down, ambulances on call when we need them, utility companies to come out and fix broken water/gas pipes when they burst, etc etc. Yet - these folks say we're "overtaxed" and want the money that goes towards the services they want to be lowered, and more of their paychecks in their pockets. Then when special opt-in taxes are brought up as a way to bolster what is lost, they rally against those as well. Add taxes to gasoline? Liquor? Other products? Oh, no, that will "bankrupt" the average household.

How exactly do we continue to exist then, and still get the service we demand? Privatize everything? Hmmmmmm... so, if you home catches on fire, you will then receive a bill for $5,000 for having saved your home from the local privatized fire department. Need the police? $1000 per call, please. Water pipe burst on your street? You and your neighbors can share a $500 per household bill then, to get it fixed.

Has the light bulb gone off, yet?

Yes, we need to tax cigarettes more (lots more). Liquor, too. Tax porn as well since it's a multi-billion dollar "hush hush" business in America. But we also need to pay our base taxes and splost taxes and yes, we need toll roads as well... otherwise something is going to "give", and soon. And you won't have all of those great services you've become accustomed to for so long. And a final yes... yes, we need to hold lawmakers MUCH more accountable for where those needed tax collections go, with checked and double checked break-downs on where every dollar is spent, too.

Sin taxes (or other taxes) aren't evil - they're needed. They just need to be better accounted for.
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Old 03-08-2011, 12:06 PM
 
Location: Chicago
38,696 posts, read 91,819,407 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by atlantagreg30127 View Post
People LOVE to rally against anything with "tax" in it, but folks do need to consider that a few decades ago, we paid up to twice (or more) income tax than we do today (depending on your income bracket). Taxes were MUCH higher than most of the people who are rallying today have ever even come close to seeing in their lifetimes.
There were also a lot more loopholes, dodges, shelters, and ways to avoid paying anywhere near the actual rate. The wealthy are paying more income taxes today as a percentage income tax revenues and as a percentage of their actual income than they were when the highest bracket was theoretically 70 or 90%.

But none of this really answers the specific question asked in the original post. I stand by my original statement, which has more to do with the manifest immorality of depending on tobacco as a revenue source than just a reflexive "anti-tax" position.
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Old 03-08-2011, 09:09 PM
 
Location: Marietta, GA
7,862 posts, read 15,318,728 times
Reputation: 3576
Quote:
Originally Posted by bellhead View Post
Neil0311,

I think you are getting a little carried away with the soda nad cheeseburgers. Alcohol and tobacco have always been taxed, don't drink so much Sean Hannity cool aid.

If folks do quit smoking because of the taxes then our overall health costs will go down.
How am I getting carried away? It's already been proposed. I wish I was making it up. There is a group of people who assumes to be able to use the tax code for modifying behavior to what they want.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/41862018 (broken link)

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/08/ny...soda.html?_r=1

http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/...8?feedType=RSS

Last edited by neil0311; 03-08-2011 at 09:29 PM..
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Old 03-08-2011, 09:22 PM
 
Location: Marietta, GA
7,862 posts, read 15,318,728 times
Reputation: 3576
Quote:
Originally Posted by atlantagreg30127 View Post
People LOVE to rally against anything with "tax" in it, but folks do need to consider that a few decades ago, we paid up to twice (or more) income tax than we do today (depending on your income bracket). Taxes were MUCH higher than most of the people who are rallying today have ever even come close to seeing in their lifetimes.

Yet, today, everyone wants far more and better services than those people who paid more than us had back then. We want great police and fire protection, roads in excellent condition, bridges that aren't in danger of falling down, ambulances on call when we need them, utility companies to come out and fix broken water/gas pipes when they burst, etc etc. Yet - these folks say we're "overtaxed" and want the money that goes towards the services they want to be lowered, and more of their paychecks in their pockets. Then when special opt-in taxes are brought up as a way to bolster what is lost, they rally against those as well. Add taxes to gasoline? Liquor? Other products? Oh, no, that will "bankrupt" the average household.

How exactly do we continue to exist then, and still get the service we demand? Privatize everything? Hmmmmmm... so, if you home catches on fire, you will then receive a bill for $5,000 for having saved your home from the local privatized fire department. Need the police? $1000 per call, please. Water pipe burst on your street? You and your neighbors can share a $500 per household bill then, to get it fixed.

Has the light bulb gone off, yet?

Yes, we need to tax cigarettes more (lots more). Liquor, too. Tax porn as well since it's a multi-billion dollar "hush hush" business in America. But we also need to pay our base taxes and splost taxes and yes, we need toll roads as well... otherwise something is going to "give", and soon. And you won't have all of those great services you've become accustomed to for so long. And a final yes... yes, we need to hold lawmakers MUCH more accountable for where those needed tax collections go, with checked and double checked break-downs on where every dollar is spent, too.

Sin taxes (or other taxes) aren't evil - they're needed. They just need to be better accounted for.
Greg, your argument seems to be (if I'm getting it) that because we were overtaxed for years, that makes it OK? Did you also bother to review what we used to spend and the % of GDP at the federal level that goes to public spending today versus 30 years ago? If you did, you'd notice that it's gone way up to levels not seen since WWII. The problem isn't under-taxation, but overspending on a massive scale.

You should also look into who pays taxes today versus 30 years ago. Today, a majority pays no federal income tax. Similar stats for many state income taxes. Sales taxes are likewise paid by those making the most purchases, but at least individuals can control what they buy, where they buy, and from whom. In theory, people could buy cigarettes in other states, but the reality is less the case, so we feel it's fine to gouge them.

Also, please stop with the red herring arguments. No one is saying to privatize the fire dept or any nonsense like that. Gov't should be providing police, fire, ambulance, roads, and all the primary responsibilities of gov't. My point is that today it's OK to soak the smokers...fine. What happens when everyone stops smoking? Who do you soak then? Taxes should not be used to extort money from a group least able to do anything about it or the group that has the worst public relations image. Smokers are a minority so it's OK to extort as much from them as we can. We should tax them, but fairly.

Last edited by neil0311; 03-08-2011 at 09:33 PM..
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