All California Will Get With Higher Cigarette Taxes is More Crime

    Rumors are once again rumbling in the cash-starved, big spenders in California’s legislature to raise tobacco taxes. But does this work? History says that not only does the tax hike rarely bring in more money to the state the hike also causes more crime as criminals move in with black market good s at cheaper prices. Once again the denizens of Sacramento are looking to | Read More »

    The Smugglers of Old New York.

    So I hear (as did our own Dan McLaughlin, last week) that New York is the place to go for an exciting and remunerative career in the cigarette-smuggling trade: Last week, The Mackinac Center for Public Policy released a report chronicling the rate of cigarette smuggling in the United States, revealing what retailers in New York have long known: state-to-state smuggling has become a big | Read More »

    The Sins Of The Sin Tax

    Economist Paul Samuelson was once asked to explain how sin taxes worked. He offered up the following commentary.

    “Sin Taxes” are so called because they are levied on those commodities, such as tobacco and alcohol, which are the objects of widespread disapproval. “Such taxes,” Paul Samuelson says, “are often tolerated because most people–including many cigarette smokers and moderate drinkers–feel that there is something vaguely immoral about tobacco and alcohol. They think these ”sin taxes“ stun two birds with one stone: the state gets revenue, and vice is made more expensive.”

    (HT: Acton Institute)

    This is absolutely what has not happened in New York since Mein Obama and Gropenfurher Bloomberg have decided they would levy exorbitant sin taxes on tobacco products in New York City. Newsday.com describes the destructively regressive nature of the sin taxes on tobacco below.

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    Maybe We Really Do Need a Third Party

    “The problem for the GOP is that it is in danger of fracturing, not because it has moved so far right, but because it refuses to actually practice what it preaches.” Senator Max Baucus of Montana receives campaign donations from the parent company of Phillip Morris. Senator Baucus then puts a provision in the highway transportation bill banning roll your own cigarette operations, a business | Read More »

    Maybe We Really Do Need a Third Party

    “The problem for the GOP is that it is in danger of fracturing, not because it has moved so far right, but because it refuses to actually practice what it preaches.” Senator Max Baucus of Montana receives campaign donations from the parent company of Phillip Morris. Senator Baucus then puts a provision in the highway transportation bill banning roll your own cigarette operations, a business | Read More »

    Ungrateful Ingrates

    Our “moral superiors” in Congress, almost all Democrats and some Republicans, passed the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act last year; in the House, 70 Republicans joined all but 8 Democrats to vote for this drek (Senator-elect John Boozman, as the congressman of Arkansas’ 3rd district, voted against it, as did the soon-to-be Speaker John Boehner; good for them); in the Senate, the only | Read More »

    The National Butt Party

    You know, enough is enough. In what he casts as an attack on litterbugs and nicotine addiction alike, Mayor Gavin Newsom wants to impose a fee on an age-old inhabitant of city streets: the cigarette butt. The proposal, to be introduced next month to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, would add 33 cents to the cost of a pack of cigarettes, to offset the | Read More »

    But they said they weren’t going to raise cigarette taxes

    This is getting ridiculous. Just about a month ago, I reminded Florida legislators that cigarette taxes used to balance the budget don’t work. To be clear here, if you want to get rid of cigarette smoking, raise taxes to the point people can’t afford it. That’s fine. But don’t say you are going to balance the budget with a cigarette tax increase because all the | Read More »

    Why is it that when the economy tanks, politicians forget all about basic economics?

    Let’s review: As prices on a product go up, demand for a product decreases. As prices for a product go down, demand for a product increases. It’s basic economics. Florida is just the latest place where that’s happening. To close a gap in the state budget, the legislature is considering raising the cigarette tax. Being no fan of smoking, I’ve got zero problem with that. | Read More »