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You are here: MacNN Forums > Community > MacNN Lounge > Political/War Lounge > $2-per-pack cigarette tax increase - Good idea?

$2-per-pack cigarette tax increase - Good idea? (Page 2)
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daimoni
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Feb 4, 2004, 03:53 PM
 
Originally posted by Twilly Spree:
"Second hand smoking" does not cause cancer.
You are so ridiculous, I don't know where to begin to ridicule you.
     
Shaddim
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Feb 4, 2004, 03:56 PM
 
I'd just switch to a pipe (I often smoke one anyway) or roll my own. Loose tobacco is fairly cheap and a good pipe is only $20-30... `course you could go all out with a $700 Dunhill 85. Sweet.
"Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it."
- Thomas Paine
     
swrate
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Feb 4, 2004, 04:02 PM
 
Originally posted by Saddam H.:
What's with all the incoherent dweebs around here lately?

Everytime I turn around it's like I'm reading another 'swrate' post.
I must of traumatized you Saddam, am I the been laden of English writing? I expected to read about smoking …… Saddam, have no fear, I will not blow a bomb up if you ask me what-I-meant-exactly, nor if you correct me without being too rude.

I think new posters should be welcomed no matter their mother tongue, no matter their clonage rank. It’s a gratification to have people from all over share their ideas.
And how other way of improving language skills then to practice?
"Those people so uptight, they sure know how to make a mess"
     
osiris
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Feb 4, 2004, 04:21 PM
 
Originally posted by Saddam H.:
There's already a danger tax on autos. It's called liability insurance, and this 'tax' just keeps going up.

additionally, you can eat mcdonald's and drink moderately with no impact on your health (AS LONG AS one exercises and is healthy to begin with). However, smoking itself is a cancer. If you quit your lungs still stand a good chance of healing themselves. But if you keep it up, no amount of Atkins or exercise is going to keep you from developing some type of taxpayer-funded health problem.
BS. Smoking itself is not a cancer, it does lead to cancer with a combination of many other factors, namely a poor diet. My family has smoked its brains out for four generations and there is not one incident of cancer. Maybe it's just luck, but I believe that diets have more to do with cancer than any other single factor.
     
swrate
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Feb 4, 2004, 04:29 PM
 
Originally posted by osiris:
BS. Smoking itself is not a cancer, it does lead to cancer with a combination of many other factors, namely a poor diet. My family has smoked its brains out for four generations and there is not one incident of cancer. Maybe it's just luck, but I believe that diets have more to do with cancer than any other single factor.
Ok, smoking,

Most of the great brands come from US, then there was the suing trend, which btw didn’t happen in other countries.

Then, there is the cancer risk, ok, but how many other chemicals provoke cancer? Did we determine all of them yet? According to analyses, over-frying potatoes, (chips) also causes cancer,
we are unaware of the amount of deaths, because no stats available yet...

Here too (switz) they are plans on heightening prizes and to transfer some of the extra-taxes to the health department. If it stops young kids from smoking, why not, I am not sure it willhave that effect .
The “prizes of tobacco going up” approach seems general to me, ( Cigarettes prizes in Europe keep rising, UK cigs are very expensive)
I don’t smoke enough to completely stop, I feel the 2-3 cigs a day I smoke do not deteriorate my health as much as burn out, stress, weather, or inhaling gazes I am not aware of.

Health costs related to smoking, eating, breathing, what next…sure, krusty, maybe the day will come when Internet users are taxed, because it reduces productivity.
"Those people so uptight, they sure know how to make a mess"
     
BRussell
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Feb 4, 2004, 04:41 PM
 
Hey folks (osiris and swrate), don't try to diminish the health effects of smoking. In the US smoking is the largest cause of death. It's getting close to half a million people per year. I'd guess it's also the largest cause of death in Europe because more people smoke and because obesity isn't the problem in Europe as it is in the US. To argue that smoking isn't a big deal because "other chemicals cause cancer too" is just silly.
     
itai195
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Feb 4, 2004, 05:11 PM
 
Originally posted by BRussell:
Hey folks (osiris and swrate), don't try to diminish the health effects of smoking.
The voice of reason!

I'm increasingly getting the feeling that some folks just want to be contrarian regardless of the topic at hand.
( Last edited by itai195; Feb 4, 2004 at 05:16 PM. )
     
spacefreak
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Feb 4, 2004, 06:50 PM
 
Originally posted by Lerkfish:
I'd argue with that. My dad smoked 4 packs a day, even while I ate my cheerios. I do not smoke. I got cancer.

Of course, its not the simple, there are a variety of risk factors.....but neither is it so simple as to say second hand smoking does not cause cancer.
I think in cases like your childhood, where there is consistently a haze of smoke around, second-hand smoke definitely contributes to adverse health conditions. However, the poster you were replying to was likely citing some studies that have concluded that (in general), passive or second hand smoke is relatively harmless.

1998: Passive smoking doesn't cause cancer
THE world's leading health organisation has withheld from publication a study which shows that not only might there be no link between passive smoking and lung cancer but that it could even have a protective effect.

The astounding results are set to throw wide open the debate on passive smoking health risks. The World Health Organisation, which commissioned the 12-centre, seven-country European study has failed to make the findings public, and has instead produced only a summary of the results in an internal report.

The findings are certain to be an embarrassment to the WHO, which has spent years and vast sums on anti-smoking and anti-tobacco campaigns. The study is one of the largest ever to look at the link between passive smoking - or environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) - and lung cancer, and had been eagerly awaited by medical experts and campaigning groups.

Yet the scientists have found that there was no statistical evidence that passive smoking caused lung cancer. The research compared 650 lung cancer patients with 1,542 healthy people. It looked at people who were married to smokers, worked with smokers, both worked and were married to smokers, and those who grew up with smokers.
2003: Second-hand smoke study sparks controversy
A study about to be published in this week's British Medical Journal indicates that second-hand smoke doesn't increase the risk of heart disease or lung cancer, but the publication and the study's authors have come under attack by anti-smoking groups.
Two American researchers analyzed data from an American Cancer Society survey that followed more than 118,000 Californians from 1960 until 1998.

James E. Enstrom, of the University of California at Los Angeles and Geoffrey C. Kabat of the State University of New York at Stony Brook concluded that "the results do not support a causal relation between environmental tobacco smoke (second-hand smoke) and tobacco related mortality, although they do not rule out a small effect."

"The association between exposure to environmental tobacco smoke and coronary heart disease and lung cancer may be considerably weaker than generally believed," the researchers wrote.
     
spacefreak
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Feb 4, 2004, 07:02 PM
 
While I was locating articles on those studies, I came across this one. It looks into how states are spending their tobacco settlement money. I'd be willing to bet that an examination of how states spend their cigarette tax revenues would show similar spending trends (ie - spending most of the cash on programs unrelated to health care or smoking education).

As for you smokers out there - you can be proud that you contribute more money than your non-smoking counterpart to your state's educational, environmental, and technological initiatives and programs.

Tobacco Settlements: Most states spend funds on social projects instead of health care.
Tobacco companies, under court order to reimburse states for the expense of treating smoking-related illness, have paid out
more than $21 billion so far. But less than half of it has gone to fund health care. And only 5% has been used to help Americans
kick the cigarette habit.

Instead, lawmakers in state after cash-strapped state have tapped the money for needs deemed more pressing: college scholarships in Michigan, new schools in Ohio, flood-control projects in North Dakota. Illinois used part of its money to give a tax rebate last year. Tennessee is spending every penny of its bounty to plug a budget gap.

The trend alarms health care experts who say most states should be spending three to four times as much on anti-smoking campaigns if they hope to bring future tobacco-related medical costs under control. And it depresses those who fought a legal battle for years to get the settlement, only to see the funds, in their eyes, squandered.

"Spend the money on what the fight was about," pleads Mississippi Atty. Gen. Mike Moore, who was the first to file suit. "Only five or six states are doing that. The rest are acting like this money fell out of heaven, and they're spending it on whatever pet projects they have. It's crazy. It saddens me. It leaves a hollow place in my belly." <snip>

Because the pot is so large, most states are dividing their money among several different programs. Some, such as California, have tucked away significant chunks in a rainy-day fund. Others have spent on idiosyncratic pet projects: Upgrading public television stations with DVD technology in Nevada, for instance. Or building boot camps for juvenile delinquents in Alabama. A few have lavished nearly all their money on a single cause: In Michigan, it's college scholarships. In New Hampshire, public
education. <snip>

Wisconsin had to plug its budget shortfall with tobacco money. The state was one of five to sell off its rights to some future tobacco payments in exchange for a lump sum upfront. About $450 million of the take will be used for "a onetime injection into the general fund," said Frank Hoadley, state capital finance director. In other words, it will be used to cover such routine costs
as keeping prisons open and social workers paid.
     
Twilly Spree
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Feb 4, 2004, 07:26 PM
 
BRussell and Daimoni: You are wrong. Second hand smoke is not carcinogenic. This has been supported by a WHO study. A pretty darn good one.

It smells bad I'll give you that but use your brain.
     
zigzag
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Feb 4, 2004, 07:27 PM
 
Originally posted by spacefreak:
While I was locating articles on those studies, I came across this one. It looks into how states are spending their tobacco settlement money. I'd be willing to bet that an examination of how states spend their cigarette tax revenues would show similar spending trends (ie - spending most of the cash on programs unrelated to health care or smoking education).

As for you smokers out there - you can be proud that you contribute more money than your non-smoking counterpart to your state's educational, environmental, and technological initiatives and programs.
IMO the tobacco settlement was perhaps the biggest fraud ever perpetrated upon the American public. Truly, it did little more than protect the market for the tobacco companies, line the pockets of trial lawyers and politicians, and soak lower-income smokers. It would've been more efficient to just tax the smokers and impose a few advertising restrictions.
     
daimoni
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Feb 4, 2004, 07:59 PM
 
Originally posted by Twilly Spree:
BRussell and Daimoni: You are wrong. Second hand smoke is not carcinogenic.
... and then after the Space People probed you, they said it wouldn't give you cancer... and you believed them?

What gives? First you discredit the scientific community. Then you refer to the WHO study when it suits your agenda (which doesn't exactly prove you right). Interesting. Very interesting.
     
ghost_flash
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Feb 4, 2004, 08:10 PM
 
Hey! Second Hand smoke doesn't cause cancer?

I'm safe! I only smoke, second hand smoke.

...
     
Krusty
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Feb 4, 2004, 09:10 PM
 
Originally posted by BRussell:
In the US smoking is the largest cause of death. It's getting close to half a million people per year. .
Actually obesity related illnesses have surpassed smoking related illnesses as the leading preventable cause of death in the US .. and its still on a sharp rise while smoking related illnesses have tapered off.

As far as second hand smoke. If you are in an enclosed space for extended periods with second hand smoke on a daily basis (such as if you are a bartender .. or in Lerk's example of being constantly subject to it) it would make sense that your risk would be increased similarly to smokers.

Otherwise, I think you'd be hard pressed to show that the casual, once-in-a-while-catching-a-whiff sort of second hand smoke would cause any measurable increase. The amount of air/smoke mix you might breath in on a street corner would be heavily diluted compared to having your lips sealed around a cigarette and mainlining smoke to your lungs. And you would only be exposed to that for a tiny fraction of the amount of time that a smoker spends puffing in a given day. Though it does smell bad and may make you cough, I can't see how spending 5 minutes around second-hand smoke would be particularly more carcinogenic than spending 5 minutes in a traffic jam with car exhaust spewing around you.
     
OldManMac
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Feb 4, 2004, 11:20 PM
 
Originally posted by Spheric Harlot:
No, but regular stimulation reduces the risk of prostate cancer by about 80%.

-s*
That's good news!

As a former heavy smoker (now I'm just heavy), constantly increasing taxes is not the answer. Somehow, people have to get the message that they are worth something. If they see no future, some of the ways they blunt or counter that is with alcohol, drugs, and smoking, all of which can shorten life drastically.

We were told that the huge tobacco settlements to the states were going to be used for smoking cessation and education programs, and, with the states being cash strapped, that didn't happen either, so taxing those who can least afford it is not the way.
Why is there always money for war, but none for education?
     
FeLiZeCaT
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Feb 4, 2004, 11:32 PM
 
You can all argue as much as you want, but all researches lean on the probabilities of getting cancer through exposure.

There are facts that are obvious. Most of the stuff we find in tobacco before we light it up is dangerous. The fire creates an opportunity for chemical reactions and I doubt that these, although they may make you feel good, are necessarily going to be good for your health.

It will depend of your health level and capacity to recover from the ongoing poisoning. At low level, it will probably never have consequences. At higher level, the risk is higher (but never a certainty).

Of course there are so many factors! But in very industrialized areas, cancer are bouund to be more prominent than other areas (or areas with a lower emission of potentially dangerous chemical==>key word again: potentially).

Arsenic cannot kill; let's be specific; an atom of arsenic is not very likely to kill you. a spoonful is a certain contract with death.

Sports cannot kill: let's be specific again. Some physical activity on a daily basis is excellent for your health. But doing it non stop (no sleep, no rest) may kill you.

Circumstances and multivarate factors are to be accounted in Public Health studies. Marketing Studies, not so much different, look for a very specific thread of ideas to rationalize the need.

The addiction (and attributed benefits) will assist the rationalizations so people can justify their need of tobacco. Actually, saving face play an important part, which is why tough guys are supposed to be smokers (look at the Marlboro man). That modern achetype of manhood was so strong that it is easy to carry it on today, even after his death to cancer.

He, if I remember the story, did not care for other people's opinion. He did it because he wanted it. Picture it. A solitary cow-boy (conquest of the West, great spaces with huge number of cows to bring to the city). This strong picture of independance in industrialized countries, where individualism is encouraged ("succeed on your own or your a failure" type of thinking) is a good substrate for any paraphernalia of accomplishment and independance. One might think of guns in that realm of tools to access male maturity, on the same level to cigarettes.

Obviously, these tools are channels for money. And only a few are winning.

That the government is actually taxing a good source of income says a lot: the tobacco makers keep their income and the government add to his.

People with addictions (which are difficult to get rid of) will still pay their share. Most of them. And as frustrations arise in life, the coolness of the others can become tempting. Peer pressure is not necessarily bullying.

A perverse effect of taxing by government can be seen with the example of the management of casinos by governements, towns, or Nations. Rare are the populations that are really benefiting from the benefits of the cashflow coming back "to them". Some of the money will go fro treatment programs, but the bulk of it will go elsewhere. Many dependants of those structure (population) will use the addictive substances (for self-medication) but the programs to "cure them" are only minimally efficient.

And you have this perverse rationale that says: "As long as i spend money in the source of my addiction, I invest in my future treatment".

Like people rushing to get a cigarette so they can relax...

But then, why would you stop a fountain if the water is so good and the surroundings so nice?

As long as there will be a buck to make, the people will be made totally responsible for their addictions (guilt and shame is another trigger to addiction behavior) through depressive feelings and treatments will be partially flawed, therefore less successful.

Cigarette is actually seen (by smokers) as a perfect quick fix of contentment, providing a feeling of coolness, (illusory) relaxation; a perfect response to all sources of anxiety.

Then why quit?

I was a smoker until 15 years ago. 2 packs a day, strong French cigarettes, no filter, the pipe, and I would roll a couple by hand once in a while.

I really felt I looked cool and I was thinking clearly.

I feel cooler (with a lot of pride mind you) and I do think very clearly.

And I have nobody calling me "stink" anymore. A definite plus!

;o)

just my 2 cents.
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BRussell
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Feb 4, 2004, 11:33 PM
 
Originally posted by Krusty:
Actually obesity related illnesses have surpassed smoking related illnesses as the leading preventable cause of death in the US .. and its still on a sharp rise while smoking related illnesses have tapered off.
You may be right, but last I knew, which was up to date about 6 months ago, obesity still hadn't caught up to smoking. If you have a link that shows more current data, I'd be interested in seeing it.
As far as second hand smoke. If you are in an enclosed space for extended periods with second hand smoke on a daily basis (such as if you are a bartender .. or in Lerk's example of being constantly subject to it) it would make sense that your risk would be increased similarly to smokers.

Otherwise, I think you'd be hard pressed to show that the casual, once-in-a-while-catching-a-whiff sort of second hand smoke would cause any measurable increase.
Well of course there's a dose-response relationship. You could say the same thing about smoking - taking a puff now and then won't kill you, but smoking 3 packs a days will.
     
FeLiZeCaT
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Feb 4, 2004, 11:44 PM
 
FYI:

Obesity does not come for the lack of nicotine. It comes from the conditioning of having to put something in your mouth in association with a feeling of satisfaction.

What the sucking of a cigarette provided (nicotine) cannot be provided until the feeling of fullness of the stomach occurs.

A good tactic is to have carrot or celery sticks available. Pop corn (no salt, no fat, cooked by a popcorn machine using hot air) is also very good.

AVOID JUNK FOOD.

But the best is water, that you take time to chew before swallowing slowly, followed by a deep breath.

Then, with good thinking and motivation (see a specialist about that last part), you may very well avoid the obesity following cessation.

Another 2 cents.

Maybe I should start to charge more...

;o))

Edit: other advantages are: less taxes to the government, and more quality healthy food in groceries. Imagine: carrot sticks on sale at the cashier instead of cigarettes... And kids can have them too!
( Last edited by FeLiZeCaT; Feb 5, 2004 at 09:37 AM. )
You live more in 5 minutes on a bike like this, going flat-out, than some people in their lifetime

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Krusty
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Feb 5, 2004, 12:22 AM
 
Originally posted by BRussell:
If you have a link that shows more current data, I'd be interested in seeing it.
Here's one link from 2002
In terms of dollar amounts, the study found that obesity raised healthcare costs by an average of $395 a year, while smoking increased costs by $230 and heavy drinking is associated with a $150 annual increase
Another from WebMD in 2003 shows the costs as "comparable" -- based on data collected in 1998.

Basically, if you just do a google search on combinations of obesity, smoking, costs ...etc. you will see a slew of articles discussing the issue. But it appears that researchers were calling obesity "comparable" in the late 90's, "surpassing" in the early 00's and clearly more expensive in the last year or two. A larger percentage of Americans are obese or overweight (~60%) than smoke (~24%) so it would make sense that the cumulative cost of smoking to the economy/healthcare costs would be less.

This is all off topic really though ... I think the biggest issues with a $2 tax on cigarettes is not how its cost compares to obesity. The main drawbacks, IMHO are:
If it causes more people to quit (due to cost), then it you increasingly erode your tax base the more "successful" you are at causing people to quit. I just don't think "sin" or "lifestyle" taxes are good things to hinge a governmental budget on ... if people's behavior changes more rapidly or unpredictably than you expect, it could really screw with whatever revenue projections you're trying to make. Once the high tax has caused a lot more people to quit ... then what other "sin" will be taxed to make up the shortfall ??

Personally, I think slightly higher gas taxes would be a better idea ... costs would be distributed across a larger swatch of the population and its usage (and the tax revenue) would be a lot more predictable and sustainable.
     
vmpaul  (op)
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Feb 5, 2004, 07:30 AM
 
Originally posted by Krusty:

If it causes more people to quit (due to cost), then it you increasingly erode your tax base the more "successful" you are at causing people to quit. I just don't think "sin" or "lifestyle" taxes are good things to hinge a governmental budget on ... if people's behavior changes more rapidly or unpredictably than you expect, it could really screw with whatever revenue projections you're trying to make. Once the high tax has caused a lot more people to quit ... then what other "sin" will be taxed to make up the shortfall ??
That's a good point. It wouldn't be a problem if the funds were targeted to education and medical programs to deal with addiction. Then the need for those programs would decrease as the tax base shrunk. Unfortunately, that's not how it works. Those funds invariably end up in the General Fund and support other programs. Once the initial tax base shrinks the Gov looks to other ways to raise revenue to support the new entitlements programs it's created.

The real problem isn't only tobacco addiction, it's the government's addiction to siphon off money from the populous.
The only thing that I am reasonably sure of is that anybody who's got an ideology has stopped thinking. - Arthur Miller
     
Lerkfish
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Feb 5, 2004, 10:16 AM
 
Originally posted by vmpaul:
it's the government's addiction to siphon off money from the populous.
apparently, there's no cure for that addiction.
     
Fanatic
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Feb 5, 2004, 10:26 AM
 
Originally posted by Lerkfish:
apparently, there's no cure for that addiction.
LOL... everyone seems to have the cure while they are running for office.... it conveniently "escapes" them once they've been elected...
iMac 15" FP G4 800Mhz 512mb Ram Superdrive
     
Lerkfish
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Feb 5, 2004, 10:57 AM
 
Originally posted by Fanatic:
LOL... everyone seems to have the cure while they are running for office.... it conveniently "escapes" them once they've been elected...
They become assimilated into the BORG.
resistance is futile.
     
zigzag
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Feb 5, 2004, 11:40 AM
 
Originally posted by vmpaul:
That's a good point. It wouldn't be a problem if the funds were targeted to education and medical programs to deal with addiction. Then the need for those programs would decrease as the tax base shrunk. Unfortunately, that's not how it works. Those funds invariably end up in the General Fund and support other programs. Once the initial tax base shrinks the Gov looks to other ways to raise revenue to support the new entitlements programs it's created.

The real problem isn't only tobacco addiction, it's the government's addiction to siphon off money from the populous.
I agree - that's why I'm extremely ambivalent about sin taxes, on top of the fact that I don't think it's normally the government's business. The only reason I can support them is because the health costs of cigarette smoking are increasingly being borne by everyone else.
     
BRussell
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Feb 5, 2004, 01:15 PM
 
Originally posted by Krusty:
Basically, if you just do a google search on combinations of obesity, smoking, costs ...etc. you will see a slew of articles discussing the issue. But it appears that researchers were calling obesity "comparable" in the late 90's, "surpassing" in the early 00's and clearly more expensive in the last year or two.
Yeah, I know how to use google, thanks.

I just wasn't aware of any evidence for your claim that obesity had surpassed smoking as the leading cause of death. Costs are a different issue.
     
thunderous_funker
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Feb 5, 2004, 01:19 PM
 
Bring on the Fat Tax!!!

"There he goes. One of God's own prototypes. Some kind of high powered mutant never even considered for mass production. Too weird to live, and too rare to die." -- Hunter S. Thompson
     
BRussell
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Feb 5, 2004, 01:21 PM
 
Originally posted by FeLiZeCaT:
FYI:

Obesity does not come for the lack of nicotine. It comes from the conditioning of having to put something in your mouth in association with a feeling of satisfaction.
Although I agree that weight gain is at least partially behavioral, it also may be due to the fact that cigarettes are an appetite suppressant. As has been said elsewhere in this thread, nicotine is a stimulant, and stimulants are appetite suppressants. In addition, smoking probably reduces flavor, which could act as an appetite suppressant.
     
swrate
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Feb 5, 2004, 05:04 PM
 
This is all about addictions





egassemmessage ~ ~ ~~

Nicotine and all the rest of the Amphetamines type substances stimulating the nerves without having to feed them food, including the endomorphines produced by ones own body ...

I think i said earlier that if increasing the prize stops some younsters from smoking, I am for it.
I dont know what the trend is in the US, but here, most kids try smoking without becoming addicts. Will the prize affect the habits of the people? Not sure.

Smoking is bad for the health.
We take responsibility for our health as far as addictions are concerned. (accidents and viruses it’s another story)

I apply the “do not practice what preaches”, I stop smoking for days even weeks in a row depending on where I am, and consider myself non-addict. Wrongly? My relation to coffee is worse, its harder for me to stop. The problem is: I enjoy both.
I don’t smoke in front of children, prone sports and good nutrition, (surprises you?) and few people know I smoke.

I am happy they are some restrictions in that area, because people who do not smoke should not suffer continuously from the presence of poisons in the air. Prickly eyes, dry air, suffocation...
It has been measured here that spending an evening in a smoked out disco , a non-smoker inhales many cigarettes.
Air-conditioning is a killer in hotel rooms where heavy smokers have stayed.

Smoking, eating, drinking, gambling, surfing soon? .... costs society a fortune.

In Europe cigarette companies relocated a lot, ads are forbidden, and are now replaced by the opposite ads, anti-tobacco, SGA says it’s the same market, as tobacco companies sponsor lots of medical research.

I would think that cancers cost less right now to the citizens then influenza’s, flues, SARS, HIV, bacterias, epidemics, and maybe accidents (work, sports, etc..)


I was thinking of addictions,,,, my bad
Lighting the match, setting the tobacco on fire….
Fire. Maybe if I could light fires I wouldn’t feel the desire to smoke. I love burning wood, tribal instinct survival. Burning wood in the winter. Fires are part of celebrations.
It’s a nervous thing, a bad habit, so maybe- maybe, raising the prices will stop youngsters from starting to smoke. We have so many habits (generally speaking again) we think they help us release the tension….
As an adult, I chose to not stop.
My motivations belong to me.
(I should buy myself a collection of pipes)


I believe in moderation in all fields. Being “hooked” on anything, whether food, medicine, speed, tobacco, booze, TV, games, $$, sex and so on can become problematic. I believe addiction brings pain, intolerance, lack of freedom.
And yes, education should spend money on informing people about addictions, all of them, including violence.
Prevention. Many businesses would then lose lots of money, is that why the priority is other?
makes me wonder.

Yet I admit in being addict; I have series of addictions, some good, some bad. Its harder to get rid of the bad ones.
Like:
right now, I fear becoming addicted to the net. Stucture Maat (hawk
ZEN

French popular song in my mind, “un garcon part en vadrouille au bord d’un étang....
change disk
sw
"Those people so uptight, they sure know how to make a mess"
     
nredman
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Feb 5, 2004, 06:11 PM
 
since i don't smoke, sure tax the hell out of them.

"I'm for anything that gets you through the night, be it prayer, tranquilizers, or a bottle of Jack Daniel's."
     
Clone two
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Feb 5, 2004, 07:16 PM
 
[QUOTE]Originally posted by BRussell:
... which could act as an appetite suppressant...


Yes...
;-)
( Last edited by Clone two; Feb 8, 2004 at 02:27 PM. )
     
FeLiZeCaT
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Feb 5, 2004, 08:42 PM
 
BRussell, I kind of agree with you.

But in my experience, people whom reverted from the junk food and used the suggestions I presented barely showed any weight increase.

And I refer to heavy smokers (40+ cigs a day).

That does not deny any other aspects you mentioned though.
You live more in 5 minutes on a bike like this, going flat-out, than some people in their lifetime

- Burt
     
Sherwin
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Feb 5, 2004, 10:09 PM
 
Someone here came out with (what I thought was) a good solution to smoking.

Raise the legal age each year. This year it's 16, next year it's 17, etc..

This way, those who choose to smoke and like it aren't going to be denied their pleasure yet at the same time the upcoming generation is protected.

For the record, I'm a smoker. Tax on smokes is no good - if a poor smoker has to choose between food and smokes, the smokes win every time.
     
daimoni
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Feb 6, 2004, 02:43 AM
 
Originally posted by Sherwin:
Someone here came out with (what I thought was) a good solution to smoking.

Raise the legal age each year. This year it's 16, next year it's 17, etc..

This way, those who choose to smoke and like it aren't going to be denied their pleasure yet at the same time the upcoming generation is protected.

For the record, I'm a smoker. Tax on smokes is no good - if a poor smoker has to choose between food and smokes, the smokes win every time.
I was chain smoking Camel non filters years before it was legal to do so.

The flip-side of your idea would be to keep the legal age the same, yet make them so ****ing expensive that the average youth couldn't afford to get hooked and so spends their disposable income elsewhere.

Yes. This kind of taxation hurts the poorest people the worst. But they are ones who can least afford treating their addiction. And the ones the rest of the populace is most likely to have to support through taxes anyway.
     
Twilly Spree
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Feb 6, 2004, 05:04 AM
 
The poor and sick will die before they quit smoking.
     
Sherwin
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Feb 6, 2004, 11:35 AM
 
Originally posted by daimoni:
The flip-side of your idea would be to keep the legal age the same, yet make them so ****ing expensive that the average youth couldn't afford to get hooked and so spends their disposable income elsewhere.

Yes. This kind of taxation hurts the poorest people the worst. But they are ones who can least afford treating their addiction. And the ones the rest of the populace is most likely to have to support through taxes anyway.
This doesn't work. Smokes are currently $8.25 (US) per pack of twenty here. People don't smoke less - the crime rate simply goes up and the black market expands.
     
Krusty
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Mar 9, 2004, 08:39 PM
 
Originally posted by BRussell:
Yeah, I know how to use google, thanks.

I just wasn't aware of any evidence for your claim that obesity had surpassed smoking as the leading cause of death. Costs are a different issue.
Sorry to dredge this topic up again. But I just wanted to correct myself for the statement I made about obesity surpassing smoking as the leading cause of preventable death. It is not -- yet, but is expected to surpass it soon (if it hasn't already .. latest data is from 2000 and obesity was nipping at the heels of smoking then). My apologies to BRussell. Link
     
Spliffdaddy
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Mar 9, 2004, 09:03 PM
 
I read an article on CNN last year about Canadian cigarette taxes.

After a hockey game, all the empty cigarette packs were checked for the proper tax stamp. Two-thirds were found to be 'black market' sourced - no Canadian taxes were paid.


Where I live, in North Carolina, cigarettes are about $20 carton (10 packs). Likely the cheapest prices in the country, seeing as how most of the major cigarette manufacturers are located in this state. So anyhow, I mail cigarettes to my friend in New Jersey who would otherwise pay $38/carton locally.

She appreciates the fact that it saves her $70 everytime I ship 4 cartons.

My little S-10 pickup could haul several hundred cartons of cigarettes at a time. New Jersey is only 8 hours away. Do you see the potential for profit?

Yeah, it's illegal - but there's more money to be made bootlegging cigarettes than selling crack.

High cigarette taxes only work up to a point....the point at which the profit margin for bootlegging overrides the potential risk.


I'm for high taxes on hospital bills. If your lifestyle or bad luck is unhealthy - you'll end up at the hospital. This is called taxing the source of the inefficiency - not the potential source.

That way, I won't give a crap what you do with yourself...since you'll be the one paying for your choices in the long run.
( Last edited by Spliffdaddy; Mar 9, 2004 at 09:19 PM. )
     
NYCFarmboy
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Mar 9, 2004, 09:57 PM
 
yes..its a very good idea.

Anything that makes cigarette smoking more difficult is ok with me.

Smoking is a bad thing, with very high social costs.

Raising the price in NYC has reduced smoking.

I know this for a fact as I don't smoke as much anymore.

I'm an "occasional" smoker.... meaning I smoke maybe 2 cigarettes a month, if that.
I do enjoy smoking, but its bad for me and I'm glad I don't smoke as much anymore.

also in NYC they have banned smoking in almost all bars and restaurants, so its just not something people do as much.... occasional social smokers are just about a thing of the past here in NYC anyhow.

I believe cigarettes are about 7 dollars a pack now in NYC. Which for me is enough of a price increase to not buy them anymore as I'm not going to spend 7 bucks to smoke one cigarette.

Is it big government deciding what I should do?.. yes..partly...but my lungs are much healthier as a result.
     
ghost_flash
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Mar 9, 2004, 10:12 PM
 
Originally posted by NYCFarmboy:
yes..its a very good idea.

Anything that makes cigarette smoking more difficult is ok with me.
Smoking is a bad thing, with very high social costs.
Raising the price in NYC has reduced smoking.
I know this for a fact as I don't smoke as much anymore.
I'm an "occasional" smoker.... meaning I smoke maybe 2 cigarettes a month, if that.
I do enjoy smoking, but its bad for me and I'm glad I don't smoke as much anymore.
also in NYC they have banned smoking in almost all bars and restaurants, so its just not something people do as much.... occasional social smokers are just about a thing of the past here in NYC anyhow.
I believe cigarettes are about 7 dollars a pack now in NYC. Which for me is enough of a price increase to not buy them anymore as I'm not going to spend 7 bucks to smoke one cigarette.
Is it big government deciding what I should do?.. yes..partly...but my lungs are much healthier as a result.
Let's raise the price of:

Fatty foods, they cause obesity and heart problems.
Bullets, they kill people.
Alcohol, drunk drivers kill.
Gasoline, cars are dangerous, people should use public transportation.
Televisions, too many kids are watching this stupid box
Video games and music, too many kids are imitating this crap.
(Charge for)email, because somebody is losing money by not doing it.

Make everyone put a breathing mechanism in their cars so they have to pay $1,000 to prevent drunk driving in every state.... Don't laugh. New Mexico Governer Richardson wants this Bill passed.

http://www.krqe.com/crime/expanded4....dlines%5D=3247

Remember Richardson? (Clue: Bill Clinton....)
     
NYCFarmboy
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Mar 9, 2004, 10:43 PM
 
Originally posted by ghost_flash:
Let's raise the price of:

Fatty foods, they cause obesity and heart problems.
Bullets, they kill people.
Alcohol, drunk drivers kill.
Gasoline, cars are dangerous, people should use public transportation.
Televisions, too many kids are watching this stupid box
Video games and music, too many kids are imitating this crap.
(Charge for)email, because somebody is losing money by not doing it.

Make everyone put a breathing mechanism in their cars so they have to pay $1,000 to prevent drunk driving in every state.... Don't laugh. New Mexico Governer Richardson wants this Bill passed.

http://www.krqe.com/crime/expanded4....dlines%5D=3247

Remember Richardson? (Clue: Bill Clinton....)
ok

     
spacefreak
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Mar 9, 2004, 11:41 PM
 
Originally posted by NYCFarmboy:
Is it big government deciding what I should do?.. yes..partly...but my lungs are much healthier as a result.
So you're glad the government made you healthier? Was the government previously tying you down and making you inhale cigarettes? Were they delivering cartons of smokes to your door will videos showing how to smoke properly? Grab a friggin sack and make your own decisions.

Realize that there are other people who live in your world who prefer to make their own choices. If they want a chocolate bar, a bag of chips, a beer, or a cigarette, who the hell cares what you think they should have?

I don't think you should live in that exhaust-filled city. It's bad for your lungs and skin. Therefore, you have to either move out or pay double whatever your living expenses are. How's that?
     
ghost_flash
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Mar 10, 2004, 12:09 AM
 
Originally posted by spacefreak:
So you're glad the government made you healthier? Was the government previously tying you down and making you inhale cigarettes? Were they delivering cartons of smokes to your door will videos showing how to smoke properly? Grab a friggin sack and make your own decisions.

Realize that there are other people who live in your world who prefer to make their own choices. If they want a chocolate bar, a bag of chips, a beer, or a cigarette, who the hell cares what you think they should have?

I don't think you should live in that exhaust-filled city. It's bad for your lungs and skin. Therefore, you have to either move out or pay double whatever your living expenses are. How's that?
I'm going to say it: *SMACKDOWN*

That was awesome.
     
IceBreaker
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Mar 10, 2004, 12:43 AM
 
Originally posted by ghost_flash:
I'm going to say it: *SMACKDOWN*

That was awesome.


yeah right


smoking is cool NOT
     
Zimphire
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Mar 10, 2004, 12:57 AM
 
Originally posted by IceBreaker:


yeah right


smoking is cool NOT
Well it's a good thing space never said smoking was cool.
     
voodoo
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Mar 10, 2004, 06:03 AM
 
Originally posted by spacefreak:
So you're glad the government made you healthier? Was the government previously tying you down and making you inhale cigarettes? Were they delivering cartons of smokes to your door will videos showing how to smoke properly? Grab a friggin sack and make your own decisions.

Realize that there are other people who live in your world who prefer to make their own choices. If they want a chocolate bar, a bag of chips, a beer, or a cigarette, who the hell cares what you think they should have?

I don't think you should live in that exhaust-filled city. It's bad for your lungs and skin. Therefore, you have to either move out or pay double whatever your living expenses are. How's that?
Good post spacefreak!

*SMACKDOWN*
I could take Sean Connery in a fight... I could definitely take him.
     
voyageur
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Mar 10, 2004, 08:47 AM
 
Originally posted by spacefreak:
If they want a chocolate bar, a bag of chips, a beer, or a cigarette, who the hell cares what you think they should have?
I'm sure you realize that their bad choices affect health care costs for all of us.
     
voodoo
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Mar 10, 2004, 08:56 AM
 
Originally posted by voyageur:
I'm sure you realize that their bad choices affect health care costs for all of us.
Right but why single out cigarettes and tobacco?

That is appeasement if I ever saw one.
I could take Sean Connery in a fight... I could definitely take him.
     
Kodachrome
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Mar 10, 2004, 09:12 AM
 
They should raise cigarette taxes at least 2 dollars per pack.

Cigarettes should cost over 10 dollars a pack or more to discourage smoking.

A ban on smoking would be preferable, but in the meantime to reduce smoking among children the taxes should be raised MUCH higher than they are now.
     
fizzlemynizzle
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Mar 10, 2004, 09:22 AM
 
Originally posted by Kodachrome:
They should raise cigarette taxes at least 2 dollars per pack.

Cigarettes should cost over 10 dollars a pack or more to discourage smoking.

A ban on smoking would be preferable, but in the meantime to reduce smoking among children the taxes should be raised MUCH higher than they are now.
We should start with a ban on safety Nazis and busybodies. And maybe parents should actually pay attention to what their kids are doing rather than expecting the government to play parent for them.
     
Kodachrome
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Mar 10, 2004, 09:33 AM
 
Originally posted by fizzlemynizzle:
We should start with a ban on safety Nazis and busybodies. And maybe parents should actually pay attention to what their kids are doing rather than expecting the government to play parent for them.
Then don't expect government and taxpayers to pay for your filthy habit via increased health costs for everyone.
     
 
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