T Nation

Tax Breaks For Who Now?

I realize this topic has likely been beaten to death here but I’m gonna toss it out there anyways. Up here in Canada the idea of tax-breaks for enviro-friendly decisions/products is gaining some serious steam, not sure what the opinion is down in America land…but how does it not follow that people aren’t screaming for tax-relief or differential taxation for the severely obese or smokers??

I am admitedly ignorant of much of the processes but who do we have to punch in the face to get some attention around this issue.

By making these jackanapes pay for their own self-inflicted pain/suffering we could save the rest of us a ton of cash in Health care costs per year.

Stupid, common sense ideas that punish the needlessly foolish…why oh why must they control so much of the vote??

C

[quote]Creidem wrote:
I realize this topic has likely been beaten to death here but I’m gonna toss it out there anyways. Up here in Canada the idea of tax-breaks for enviro-friendly decisions/products is gaining some serious steam, not sure what the opinion is down in America land…but how does it not follow that people aren’t screaming for tax-relief or differential taxation for the severely obese or smokers??[/quote]

Smokers are already heavily taxed on every pack they buy.

Severely obese persons aren’t that numerous. A lot of people are fat, without being obese, much less “severely” or “morbidly.”

Taxing behaviors doesn’t sound like a good idea to me. Once you start, where do you stop? Do you tax skiers because they might hit a tree and require treatment? Cyclists? You could miss a rack while squatting and end up with a back injury, should we tax gym membership or have differential taxation for weightlifter?

The other issue is verification. While your salary and other financials are relatively easy to verify for the government tax people; checking whether or not someone is a smoker or obese requires door-to-door verification. A lot of people could simply lie on their declaration to avoid paying the tax. The added cost of insuring sufficient compliance would probably offset any gain from the added tax.

You could write your representative. Punching people in the face is seldom used in modern society, unless one wishes to experience for himself the local police services and jail facilities. Just so you know.

Instead of trying to solve every problem with taxes, why not lobby for better education? I’m sure kids would probably fare better with a few less art classes and a few more lessons on nutrition, exercise, how to balance a budget, etc. Or keep the art classes and add a few hours of school per week.

As cigarettes show, even with heavy taxes, some people will still choose to indulge in the frowned upon behavior. The best bet is to make sure they make that decision with all the facts available to them.

Democracy’s a bitch. I hear Cuba might be more to your liking.

[quote]pookie wrote:

Democracy’s a bitch. I hear Cuba might be more to your liking.
[/quote]

Tsk, tsk, tsk…

Monaco or Liechtenstein are also not democracies, but those are REALLY free countries…

They respect property rights like you would not believe…

Now compare that to democracies that allmost inevitably devolve into soft communism and the tyranny of the majority …

I thought this thread would be about Pelosi exempting her company from taxation, now that she exempted it from the new minimum wage law.

I haven’t followed it that closely though; maybe she was hounded into changing the law to cover her company?

Thats one of the main reasons I hate public healthcare- it gives the government a legitimate reason/argument to ban private personal activities they have no business being involved in such as smoking/drugs/steroids ect…

[quote]tmay11 wrote:
Thats one of the main reasons I hate public healthcare- it gives the government a legitimate reason/argument to ban private personal activities they have no business being involved in such as smoking/drugs/steroids ect…[/quote]

Many countries without public health care also ban a lot of these substances.

[quote]pookie wrote:

Many countries without public health care also ban a lot of these substances.
[/quote]

Obviously, but I’m saying it just makes it that much easier. What sounds like a better argument? - “We are protecting you from yourself” or “By engaging in this activity you are putting yourself at risk and this will result in a drain on the taxpayers dollars in turn effecting everyone.” This is a very common argument I hear all the time “the gov wants to implement this because they think it could save millions in health care costs”

And it’s not just banning these substances that makes me mad, it’s the fact that Joe fat-ass drinking and smoking all day has and effect on me. I have absolutely no problem with people putting whatever they want in their bodies - it’s their right to do so, I just don’t want it effecting me.

[quote]tmay11 wrote:
And it’s not just banning these substances that makes me mad, it’s the fact that Joe fat-ass drinking and smoking all day has and effect on me. I have absolutely no problem with people putting whatever they want in their bodies - it’s their right to do so, I just don’t want it effecting me.[/quote]

Buy a desert island and move there.

As long as we live in societies, our actions will impact others. If you drive a car, you could accidentally hit a pedestrian. If you play your music loud, you might bother someone. No matter at what time you mow your lawn, someone would prefer quiet time.

As for your argument, smokers are already heavily taxed and public smoking has all but disappeared. Smoking is not affecting you in any meaningful way, except for giving you something to bitch about.

Even the morbidly obese are not having that much of an effect on your taxes: the fattest ones tend to die fairly young (by modern standards) and probably cost you less in the long run than the health nut who takes 15 years to die from Alzheimer’s.

Maybe we should just have mandatory euthanasia for anyone you don’t like?

[quote]pookie wrote:
Maybe we should just have mandatory euthanasia for anyone you don’t like?[/quote]

Where do I send my list?

[quote]Headhunter wrote:
I thought this thread would be about Pelosi exempting her company from taxation, now that she exempted it from the new minimum wage law.

I haven’t followed it that closely though; maybe she was hounded into changing the law to cover her company?[/quote]

My god, is there anything this man can’t turn into propaganda?