Obesity
Nov 6 2009, 11:26 pm
By: Centreri
Pages: < 1 4 5 6 7 89 >
 

Jan 3 2010, 3:33 am Centreri Post #101

Relatively ancient and inactive

Quote from LoveLess
In regards to how you talk about all these people eating healthier foods. You know there are actually a lot of people who eat a majority of healthy food, just a lot of it? Take fat vegetarians for example. I knew quite a few.
I know of no fat vegetarians. Those that are probably aren't vegans, but rather those that eat animal-derived products such as eggs and ice cream, just not the meat themselves. These also fit into the 'unhealthy' category. Keep in mind that drinking too many juices and such is bad as well; there's a lot of calories there from sugary sweetening. Not all plant-derived products are good for you, so it's a possibility for even vegans to grow fat (and these bad plant products would also be covered under my plan).

Anyway, I'm not trying to solve all the problems here, just help it along. So my solution doesn't solve ALL of the obesity in the US. What of it?

Post has been edited 2 time(s), last time on Jan 5 2010, 12:06 am by Vrael. Reason: removed response to deleted post



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Jan 3 2010, 4:35 am BeDazed Post #102



Quote from Centreri
Anyway, I'm not trying to solve all the problems here, just help it along. So my solution doesn't solve ALL of the obesity in the US. What of it?
Hear me out.
If the solution affects all of America, but the problem isn't solved for all of America, wouldn't that be cost to efficiency ineffective?
Not only that, what you propose could potentially damage America by driving out large food conglomerates, such as Coca Cola, McDonalds, Kraft Foods (dairy products), Pepsico, Burger King, Wendys, Papa Johns, Pizza Hut, Dominos, etcetc. They are all global 'fatty' food chains and companies, and if you tax them too much- don't expect too much. They always have the option of changing nationalities to escape tax, and not having to drop any old products and not having to have to make new products that are healthier.

So what I am saying is, taking too drastic measures will result in 'bad things' for other problems we have not considered. So the alternative is that even if it costs the people more, it would be better if the government took the taxes of the people to get the people in a better shape, by generalizing P.E., and having the companies mandate exercise and health care for its workers, for the better of work efficiency.

I think, obesity is no reason to tax those foods. The real problem lies in automobiles, couches, TVs, and computer. People don't move as much as they did years before, but they consume just as much. Having a low metabolism and eating much, resulting in 'fat'.
The effects are similar to people with no thyroid, because people without thyroids have to take medication to maintain metabolism rates, and because of that- people who do not have thyroids are generally very fat, because they have a very low metabolism. Similarly, if one does not exercise, metabolism generally declines- and no matter how much you do not eat, eating will go straight to fat.



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Jan 3 2010, 2:51 pm Centreri Post #103

Relatively ancient and inactive

It'd be nice if you read over the entire thread. My plan can be implemented at no cost, since the only cost of it is food subsidies, and both taxes can help pay for it. Division by zero. If food conglomerates get driven out, the other brands start up and take their place. Free market mechanisms, all that. As for your third paragraph, what does that have to do with it? Yes, there are other ways to regulate weight. Mine is easiest to implement.



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Jan 3 2010, 4:00 pm BeDazed Post #104



You do realize that your 'plan' is a cost in itself. By driving out those conglomerates, you also drive out America's stock markets (excluding GDP). Free market isn't just made up of buyers and sellers, it is also made of international investors. They pull those out, then America is bankrupt beyond reparable amounts.

Quote from Centreri
Mine is easiest to implement.
Easiest is not always the best, and I can only conclude that your plan can only result in irreparable international damage, not only is it inefficient, but also in a literal sense, nationally 'emo'.



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Jan 6 2010, 10:59 pm Vrael Post #105



Quote from Centreri
It'd be nice if you read over the entire thread. My plan can be implemented at no cost, since the only cost of it is food subsidies, and both taxes can help pay for it. Division by zero. If food conglomerates get driven out, the other brands start up and take their place. Free market mechanisms, all that. As for your third paragraph, what does that have to do with it? Yes, there are other ways to regulate weight. Mine is easiest to implement.
The classical model of economics is what's generalized as a "long-run" model. "In the long run," meaning after a sufficient amount of time has passed for equilibrium to be realized, free market mechanisms will allow other brands to start up and take there place, this is very likely. However, the "short run" consequences may be more dire then you expect. If the tax is passed on thursday, "Eco-Green-Healthy-Foods Inc." will not be operational by monday of next week. I understand that what I have to say is criticism and not helpful as an alternative to solving the problem of obesity, but if we were in a position to be implementing some solution it would be helpful in preventing unnecessary loss. Essentially, the detriment of implementing such a tax could outweigh the benefits. Short-term economics is still an unstable area of research (I know because I almost had a research position with an economics professor doing a study on short term effects of changes across a multiple-country model, and while I didn't recieve the position I learned enough to say what I've just said), and its unlikely that our predictions will be entirely accurate. I refer back to my previous post about the effects of the removal of a company like Pepsico on the U.S. GDP. If the tax is sufficient to deter people from buying products from a company like Pepsico, it is also likely that it will drive companies like Pepsico away, which in turn reduces the taxes that they pay, which in turn reduces the government income. So if our total tax income is less than it was before the fat tax, I fail to realize where you're going to get the tax money to subsidize healthy foods. Without these early subsidies, it will take much longer for these new brands to start up and revitalize our GDP and tax income. In the long run, I'm sure they will, but immediately following the implementation of such a tax there will be a plethora of difficulties that I don't think you have forseen.

If I am right about these effects, the new question would become "will the long-term benefits outweigh our short-term problems?" Unfortunately humans live in a short-term lifespan, with about a 100-year maximum. For the fat tax, the "long run" might be 25 years, or it could be 10, or 50, or 5, who knows for certain? The point being, there might be other programs we could institute with less detriment to ourselves. However, if there isn't, or this is the program with the least loss to ourselves, it should be implemented anyway, so that we can get the problem solved and start to reap the benefits of the long-run as soon as possible.



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Jan 7 2010, 12:19 am BeDazed Post #106



People who care about health have already begun eating healthier foods, and even without taxing them- the trend still continues toward 'healthiness' and 'well-being' and so and so like that. And promoting it with nationally supported education and health care would do the job, with some propaganda. It will get better as time goes on without taking those 'easy and drastic' measures which only backfire. If there was an easy solution to every problems like these, America wouldn't have any problems. That's unfortunate to say that it's far from the truth.

Quote from Vrael
The classical model of economics is what's generalized as a "long-run" model. "In the long run," meaning after a sufficient amount of time has passed for equilibrium to be realized, free market mechanisms will allow other brands to start up and take there place, this is very likely.
It's not important whether or not other brands will start up, but take their place? I think that would be highly unlikely, because most of that model only views the market 'inside' of America- meaning there won't be any competitors. But that's far from the truth, as America isn't the only market- rather the world is. The companies America drove out will still dominate most of America's markets, selling sugar-free drinks without additional taxing, and sugary products with cheaper ingredients?
And if the already devastated America doesn't support another food chain to gain competitiveness against these large 'conglomerates' would be unlikely.

You guys should remember that taxing too much in America got really ugly for Britain. Why shouldn't we say the same for America and it's corporate buddies?



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Jan 7 2010, 1:25 am Vrael Post #107



It certainly is important whether or not other brands will start up. New companies provide jobs, create products, help "boost the economy" in general, and a number of other small things. It is possible that a brand like Pepsico would start selling other products in the U.S. though to avoid the tax, but I suppose I was assuming Centreri's tax would be smart enough to get around simple substitutes which still contain ingredients which contribute to the weight problem. At that point it may be more profitable for companies like Pepsico to avoid the U.S. altogether and focus on the rest of the word, like China, for example, where there are a billion people.

Also BeDazed, your quip about taxation in America is completely irrelevant. The underlying problems were things like lack of representation, unfair treatment, unfair courts, and other forms of general oppression. "No Taxation Without Representation!" does not describe the entire scenario.



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Jan 7 2010, 2:53 am Centreri Post #108

Relatively ancient and inactive

Quote from BeDazed
Easiest is not always the best, and I can only conclude that your plan can only result in irreparable international damage, not only is it inefficient, but also in a literal sense, nationally 'emo'.
I wrote NO U last time. I got fined two severity. This time, I'll just tell you to explain what the fuck you're talking about. What international damage, what inefficiency, what emo, etc.

Quote from BeDazed
You do realize that your 'plan' is a cost in itself. By driving out those conglomerates, you also drive out America's stock markets (excluding GDP). Free market isn't just made up of buyers and sellers, it is also made of international investors. They pull those out, then America is bankrupt beyond reparable amounts.
Yeah. Taxing bad food will start a new Great Depression. Just let Vrael argue this point for you, he does it more realistically and with better English.

Quote from Vrael
The classical model of economics is what's generalized as a "long-run" model. "In the long run," meaning after a sufficient amount of time has passed for equilibrium to be realized, free market mechanisms will allow other brands to start up and take there place, this is very likely. However, the "short run" consequences may be more dire then you expect. If the tax is passed on thursday, "Eco-Green-Healthy-Foods Inc." will not be operational by monday of next week. I understand that what I have to say is criticism and not helpful as an alternative to solving the problem of obesity, but if we were in a position to be implementing some solution it would be helpful in preventing unnecessary loss. Essentially, the detriment of implementing such a tax could outweigh the benefits. Short-term economics is still an unstable area of research (I know because I almost had a research position with an economics professor doing a study on short term effects of changes across a multiple-country model, and while I didn't recieve the position I learned enough to say what I've just said), and its unlikely that our predictions will be entirely accurate. I refer back to my previous post about the effects of the removal of a company like Pepsico on the U.S. GDP. If the tax is sufficient to deter people from buying products from a company like Pepsico, it is also likely that it will drive companies like Pepsico away, which in turn reduces the taxes that they pay, which in turn reduces the government income. So if our total tax income is less than it was before the fat tax, I fail to realize where you're going to get the tax money to subsidize healthy foods. Without these early subsidies, it will take much longer for these new brands to start up and revitalize our GDP and tax income. In the long run, I'm sure they will, but immediately following the implementation of such a tax there will be a plethora of difficulties that I don't think you have forseen.

If I am right about these effects, the new question would become "will the long-term benefits outweigh our short-term problems?" Unfortunately humans live in a short-term lifespan, with about a 100-year maximum. For the fat tax, the "long run" might be 25 years, or it could be 10, or 50, or 5, who knows for certain? The point being, there might be other programs we could institute with less detriment to ourselves. However, if there isn't, or this is the program with the least loss to ourselves, it should be implemented anyway, so that we can get the problem solved and start to reap the benefits of the long-run as soon as possible.
Economics is a zero-sum game. If Pepsico loses, other competitors win. Pepsico tax decreases, other companies' taxes increase. In the short term. You can't talk about the loss of Pepsico without talking about others direct gain. Maybe it won't make up for 100% of the loss of the program, but it should make up a significant part.

So we lose some income from Pepsico and MacDonalds, and maybe only 80% of it is brought in by competitors (mind, even money spent instead in other sectors, not just food, will eventually be taxed and reach the treasury). We lose a few billion dollars off our budget (much less, probably). Thank god. Get the government to balance the damn budget. Feel free to tell me what unforeseen catastrophes will happen. Do you really think that Obama would cut education funds instead of military if that happens? Would we start losing in Afghanistan? Again, if there will be unforeseen difficulties, tell me of them. Your Pepsico one is very minor. Definitely not worth stopping a good program for reversing one of America's saddest phenomena.

Quote from Vrael
It certainly is important whether or not other brands will start up. New companies provide jobs, create products, help "boost the economy" in general, and a number of other small things. It is possible that a brand like Pepsico would start selling other products in the U.S. though to avoid the tax, but I suppose I was assuming Centreri's tax would be smart enough to get around simple substitutes which still contain ingredients which contribute to the weight problem. At that point it may be more profitable for companies like Pepsico to avoid the U.S. altogether and focus on the rest of the word, like China, for example, where there are a billion people.

Also BeDazed, your quip about taxation in America is completely irrelevant. The underlying problems were things like lack of representation, unfair treatment, unfair courts, and other forms of general oppression. "No Taxation Without Representation!" does not describe the entire scenario.
I'm assuming that the government would be capable of executing this. I can't draw up a list of every ingredient with the corresponding tax all by myself.
Quote from BeDazed
People who care about health have already begun eating healthier foods, and even without taxing them- the trend still continues toward 'healthiness' and 'well-being' and so and so like that. And promoting it with nationally supported education and health care would do the job, with some propaganda. It will get better as time goes on without taking those 'easy and drastic' measures which only backfire. If there was an easy solution to every problems like these, America wouldn't have any problems. That's unfortunate to say that it's far from the truth.
You're being incredibly vague about any problems or solutions, and are starting off with the wrong evidence regarding the 'trend' towards 'healthiness' and 'well-being'. http://www.cdc.gov/obesity/data/trends.html . Any trend toward thinness at this point would be people going from being able to afford burgers to not being able to afford them. And since I posted this in the first post, I supposed you saying this proves that you didn't read the entire topic?
Quote from BeDazed
It's not important whether or not other brands will start up, but take their place? I think that would be highly unlikely, because most of that model only views the market 'inside' of America- meaning there won't be any competitors. But that's far from the truth, as America isn't the only market- rather the world is. The companies America drove out will still dominate most of America's markets, selling sugar-free drinks without additional taxing, and sugary products with cheaper ingredients?
And if the already devastated America doesn't support another food chain to gain competitiveness against these large 'conglomerates' would be unlikely.
What model, how would it lead to no competitiveness, and how does America lose if other companies turn to other countries?
Quote from BeDazed
You guys should remember that taxing too much in America got really ugly for Britain. Why shouldn't we say the same for America and it's corporate buddies?
Related how?



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Jan 7 2010, 4:55 am Vrael Post #109



Quote from Centreri
Economics is a zero-sum game. If Pepsico loses, other competitors win. Pepsico tax decreases, other companies' taxes increase. In the short term. You can't talk about the loss of Pepsico without talking about others direct gain. Maybe it won't make up for 100% of the loss of the program, but it should make up a significant part.
I can't accurately respond to anything you've said until I understand it. What does this mean? Why do other companies automatically benefit from Pepsico having losses? What in economics is zero sum? Can you explain or illustrate what you mean better?



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Jan 7 2010, 8:33 pm Centreri Post #110

Relatively ancient and inactive

Quote from Vrael
I can't accurately respond to anything you've said until I understand it. What does this mean? Why do other companies automatically benefit from Pepsico having losses? What in economics is zero sum? Can you explain or illustrate what you mean better?
When Pepsico and other soft drink creators lose profits, its because people aren't buying the products. Which means that they're buying other products and saving with the money that they get. When they buy other products, the tax from that goes to the government instead of the tax on the Pepsi. So if they buy other products, the government is still getting the same tax revenue. I assume that only 20% of the money is saved, because I think that in many cases people would simply buy other, healthier, lighter-taxed drinks, and in many other cases they'd use that money to buy a new iPhone that they're surprised they could afford now that they're not buying a daily Pepsi. Again, the tax on the iPhone would go to the government. Same way with food; they're definitely going to buy SOME food, and it'll be taxed. And if it isn't taxed, than the revenue loss is compensated by the higher tax on Pepsi which some people are still paying for (and which returns, what, 1000% more revenue per than before? It should still be significant, people still love Pepsi), as well as the fat tax.

In fact, I believe that the higher taxes on Pepsi and such would by themselves compensate for any loss in revenue. Again, assuming a 10% current tax, and a raise to 200%, we're getting 2000% the revenue per bottle, at only 200% the extra cost to consumers. Pepsi is so ingrained into America that I think that until it's completely gone (ie, short-term) we'd be making more money from Pepsi. And in the long term, taxes on alternative, healthier brands would make up for it. Additionally, the reduction in obesity may boost tax revenues from sports products, not to mention the productivity increase from having a healthier workforce.

Post has been edited 1 time(s), last time on Jan 7 2010, 10:54 pm by Vrael. Reason: removed response to deleted post



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Jan 8 2010, 12:29 am Vrael Post #111



Ok thanks for clearing that up.

The first thing I have to say, is that no company is ever going to sell a product with a 200% tax on it. A 200% tax would mean they lose at minimum 100% of the products price. If they sell a bottle of pepsi for $1 and have to pay $2 to the government, they have just lost $1 by selling their product, so they simply won't do it. Additionally, production costs may make them lose another 30 cents or something, so they're negative $1.30 with a tax that high. No company will ever sell a product if the tax is close to or exceeds 100%, so that 2000% revenue increase you mentioned is quite literally impossible.

Secondly, most food products are not taxable, since they are not luxuries (meat, cheese, water, even some candies and pastries and stuff. Some food products are considered luxuries, like having a meal at a restaurant, and are therefore taxable). Some foods like Pepsi are already taxed, but I'm almost certain that healthy foods that would replace foods like pepsi would not be taxed.

Thirdly, in addition to providing tax dollars to the government through their profits, companies like Pepsi contribute tax dollars through the income tax on their workers. If Pepsico leaves the U.S. we will lose this revenue also.

There is still certainly the case to consider where the fat tax isn't high enough to drive these companies away, in which case the higher tax will be able to pay for some of the loss in revenue, but if the fat tax doesn't decrease consumption it will not be effective at its intended purpose: decreasing consumption! Maybe a 50% tax would be enough to decrease consumption, but maybe not. If 100 people buy a $1.06 pepsi now (6% sales tax), that means the government makes $6. If we raise the tax to 50%, we need at least 12 people to still buy the soda $.50*12 = 6. So, a 44% rise in tax needs to yield at most an 88% decline in consumption. If it yields a 90% decrease in consumption, the government loses sales tax dollars, if it yields less of a decrease, it will gain tax dollars. Maybe with other products this would work, but I don't think the government can tax a product like pepsi heavily enough to reduce consumption. If there's an increase from 6% to 80%, at least 7.5 people need to still buy a pepsi, but chances are (I think) even if Pepsi costs $3 a pop most likely somewhere in the neighborhood of 80-90% of people will still buy it. They'll yap and complain and yell at cashiers all across the nation, but they'll buy it, AND the people that we want to target (the fat people) will almost definitely still buy it, which doesn't help things at all (except for the fact that the government will have some extra tax dollars in this case). I know you think I'm just trying to be argumentative, but this really doesn't seem like a good solution to me. I think the government has a better chance of solving this problem perhaps by funding/subsidizing gym's across the nation rather than taxing fatty foods. Maybe if there were a gym on every streetcorner people would go there and burn all that fat off. That would probably be more expensive, but it would also result in an increase in jobs, easier availability to physical fitness, an increase in infrastructure, and maybe it would help with the obesity problem.

Post has been edited 2 time(s), last time on Jan 10 2010, 8:32 pm by Vrael. Reason: incorrect information striked out



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Jan 10 2010, 3:58 am rayNimagi Post #112



Quote from BeDazed
it would be better if the government took the taxes of the people to get the people in a better shape, by generalizing P.E., and having the companies mandate exercise and health care for its workers, for the better of work efficiency.
Good luck with convincing the fat senators to do something about their own office jobs.

Quote from BeDazed
The real problem lies in automobiles, couches, TVs, and computer. People don't move as much as they did years before, but they consume just as much. Having a low metabolism and eating much, resulting in 'fat'.
The effects are similar to people with no thyroid, because people without thyroids have to take medication to maintain metabolism rates, and because of that- people who do not have thyroids are generally very fat, because they have a very low metabolism. Similarly, if one does not exercise, metabolism generally declines- and no matter how much you do not eat, eating will go straight to fat.

It's true that a person can eat as much as they want as long as they can burn the calories off. Unfortunately, the American attitude is set on "the less effort the better."

Quote from Vrael
The first thing I have to say, is that no company is ever going to sell a product with a 200% tax on it. A 200% tax would mean they lose at minimum 100% of the products price. If they sell a bottle of pepsi for $1 and have to pay $2 to the government, they have just lost $1 by selling their product, so they simply won't do it. Additionally, production costs may make them lose another 30 cents or something, so they're negative $1.30 with a tax that high. No company will ever sell a product if the tax is close to or exceeds 100%, so that 2000% revenue increase you mentioned is quite literally impossible.

Actually, some products (such as gasoline and alcoholic beverages) are highly taxed in other countries and are still bought. I think you may have misinterpreted the tax model: If there's a 200% tax on a $1 item, the consumer pays $3 and $2 goes to the government. As long as the number of products sold remains constant, Pepsi's and the vendor's revenues won't go down. I've seen sodas going for $5 at sports stadiums. Don't tell me people won't but them even if they cost triple the original value.

Quote from Vrael
Maybe if there were a gym on every streetcorner people would go there and burn all that fat off. That would probably be more expensive, but it would also result in an increase in jobs, easier availability to physical fitness, an increase in infrastructure, and maybe it would help with the obesity problem.

This goes back to my point earlier: It's not that people don't have the option of exercising. Anyone can take a jog down the street or go swimming at the community pool. It's the fact that people don't WANT to exercise. Americans WANT to eat unhealthy food because it tastes good. If a man has a choice between drinking a glass of water and drinking a can of soda, a lot of people would choose the soda. A smaller percentage of Americans would take the water, even though it is obviously the healthier choice in the long run. If people just didn't WANT to drink Pepsi, Coca-Cola, and Dr. Pepper (and generally eat less "high calorie but very delicious" foods), the whole obesity problem would be solved altogether. Perhaps a massive propaganda campaign would be helpful in this situation.



Win by luck, lose by skill.

Jan 10 2010, 6:18 am Vrael Post #113



Quote from rayNimagi
It's the fact that people don't WANT to exercise. Americans WANT to eat unhealthy food because it tastes good.
I agree generally. However, if the availability of gyms was increased we might see a decrease in obesity. While people don't necessarily want to excersize, they do want to be sexy, for example, so they might join a gym if it was nearby and easy to get to. People might not jog outside in the winter because its cold, or drive 20 minutes to a gym, but if there was a gym down the street they might run on a treadmill. Government subsidized gyms may not be the best solution to the problem, I really don't know, but it does have its merits.

Quote from rayNimagi
I think you may have misinterpreted the tax model: If there's a 200% tax on a $1 item, the consumer pays $3 and $2 goes to the government. As long as the number of products sold remains constant, Pepsi's and the vendor's revenues won't go down.
You are wrong about this however. That would be a 66% tax, since the item costs $3, not $1. It simply doesn't work in reverse. The government applies the tax after the product is sold, based on the cost of the item. This is not a contestable fact. For example, in delaware people don't pay taxes until the end of the year based on sales receipts. A 99 cent candy bar actually costs 99 cents in delaware, and later in the year you'll end up paying that extra nickel to the government or whatever. In most states you pay the tax at the time of the sale, then the company sends that sales tax to the government, which is probably where your misunderstanding occured.

However, the government may be able to impose a minimum price, then tax it, though that's unlikely to ever happen because of the UTTER HELL it would produce in court. Though come to think of it, any fat tax is going to create utter hell in our court system, so why not impose a minimum price? Or, set up a scale of taxes. For example, if they sell it for $1 the tax will be 95%, $2 will be a 90% tax, $3 will be a 85% tax, and so on to provide incentive to raise the price. But, as you said, many people will still pay for these things, like the $5 sodas at ballparks.

Post has been edited 1 time(s), last time on Jan 10 2010, 8:33 pm by Vrael. Reason: it was really my misunderstanding



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Jan 10 2010, 8:08 pm rayNimagi Post #114



Quote from Vrael
Quote from rayNimagi
I think you may have misinterpreted the tax model: If there's a 200% tax on a $1 item, the consumer pays $3 and $2 goes to the government. As long as the number of products sold remains constant, Pepsi's and the vendor's revenues won't go down.
You are wrong about this however. That would be a 66% tax, since the item costs $3, not $1. It simply doesn't work in reverse. The government applies the tax after the product is sold, based on the cost of the item. This is not a contestable fact. For example, in delaware people don't pay taxes until the end of the year based on sales receipts. A 99 cent candy bar actually costs 99 cents in delaware, and later in the year you'll end up paying that extra nickel to the government or whatever. In most states you pay the tax at the time of the sale, then the company sends that sales tax to the government, which is probably where your misunderstanding occured.

Yes, in Texas it's different. The vendors tag the original price of the item (for example, "$1.00") and then add the sales tax percentage at the register. This brings the total of a $1.00 item to (with the 8.25% sales tax) to $1.08, which the customer pays at the register. The tax then gets forwarded to the government. I'm now confused about how raising the tax will make the product unprofitable as long as the volume sold remains the same.



Win by luck, lose by skill.

Jan 10 2010, 8:31 pm Vrael Post #115



Quote from rayNimagi
Yes, in Texas it's different. The vendors tag the original price of the item (for example, "$1.00") and then add the sales tax percentage at the register.
Thats the way it works in most states, and where I live too. I can see why you're confused, because I was for a minute too there. So if a vendor sells something for $1 with a 100% tax, the consumer pays that tax and gives the vendor $2, and the vendor then sends $1 to the government, leaving $1 for themselves.

Oops. I was dead wrong. No idea what I was thinking, you're absolutely right. For some reason I must have thought the burden of sales tax is on the company, since they are the ones giving the money to the government, but they really just shift that burden to the consumer, so yeah I was completely wrong about that, my mistake. In which case a 200% tax would be possible like you said, they just make the consumer pay the $3 instead of the $1 that the item actually costs.



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Jan 10 2010, 9:01 pm Centreri Post #116

Relatively ancient and inactive

Like I said*

Ray, the product will become less profitable because as taxes go up and triple the cost, the company will retain the same income per bottle, and the number of bottles sold will decrease. It'll still be profitable, because they're still getting more per product than they're putting in. The government gets more money from it, and the people get thinner because less of the product is sold. Thus, really, even the concerns that the company might move overseas are rather bad, since they're still making a profit in the American market. Their main markets may move to other countries, but that's unlikely because Coke is only a cultural phenomenon on a large scale in the US, and the US contains the largest number of well-to-do people in the world.

Post has been edited 1 time(s), last time on Jan 10 2010, 9:06 pm by Centreri.



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Mar 2 2010, 5:58 am Vrael Post #117



Now that my mistakes about taxes are cleared up, the real question remains on whether the tax would be effective or not, and whether its legally reasonable to implement.

For example, would foods like whole milk be taxed? Based on this: http://www.nutritiondata.com/facts/dairy-and-egg-products/69/2 milk has a very high saturated fat content, but from my experiences it's hardly likely that whole milk is responsible for the obesity in America. If the taxation is based on some "fat content" percentage, it will completely miss foods like soda: http://www.nutritiondata.com/facts/foods-from-mcdonalds/6298/2 which have 0 calories from fat, but which we know are unhealthy just from personal experience. It's really the people who go to McDonalds and get the Supersize Everything (coke/pepsi, burgers, ect) all the time that are the problem folks in my experience, so would only McDonalds/Burger King be taxed? Oreos? Chocolate Chip Cookies? Sugar itself? At this point in the conversation I can hardly think we can just say "oh a government committee will take care of all these details." After all, we could someday be on that government committee... Really the root of the problem seems to be the people that just can't put down the twinkies (/mcdonalds/burger king/candy bars/oreos ect) which leads me to question the effectiveness of this scheme again. At first glance it seems simple: tax the fatty/sugary foods and watch the waistlines shrink, but is it really feasible to tax any food which could contribute to the problem? Maybe, but at this point it almost seems easier to take a leaf out of japan's book and institute a mandatory waistline limit, and anyone who goes over pays a fine. Or not even a waistline limit, but some mandatory "healthiness" test, maybe you run a mile, get weighed, do X pushups, ect and if you meet 90% of the tests you're declared "healthy" or something. If you don't meet the limits, the government takes over your life until you do. Typically I don't advocate totalitarian positions, but as a solution it may have its merits.

Of course, as I've already mentioned, this would produce HELL in the courts to implement. I doubt any session of congress ever will have the balls it takes to pass legislation of this sort, it would hurt everyone's constituants (and hence their reelection votes), the republicans would cry and whine about civil rights and the democrats can't get their heads far enough out of their asses to write up a half decent bill -- but assuming we had a bunch of competent electors one year, there would be some serious issues concerning the "equal protection" clause in the 14th amendment at least, though the 16th does grant the congress the right to tax "without regard to any census or enumeration"



None.

Mar 2 2010, 6:19 am rockz Post #118

ᴄʜᴇᴇsᴇ ɪᴛ!

It would be a good thing if whole milk cost more than 2%, which cost more than 1%, which cost more than skim. Sodas are awfully cheap too, and a similar tax on non-diet sodas could work, but I'm doubtful.

It would be easier to just kill the fat people rather than take over their life. It's better to let it be, as any sort of legislation on it will just add to the CF that is government.

The root of the problem isn't just what we eat, it's how little we do. We drive everywhere. We go to our job/school and sit for eight hours. We come home, lay back and watch tv. Even though we eat unhealthy foods, there are many people who eat the same foods, and are perfectly healthy. That's usually because they are active.

Exercise doesn't work for me (I wish it did, though), since I don't enjoy it and I'm lazy.



"Parliamentary inquiry, Mr. Chairman - do we have to call the Gentleman a gentleman if he's not one?"

Mar 2 2010, 8:48 am phlemhacker Post #119



I heard an opinion on T.V. that piqued my curiosity. Basically he said we should get after fat people the same way we get after people about smoking. I agree, if we weren't so sensitive and actually let people know they were not a healthy weight, they might get on it instead letting them think they aren't. That said, I do think cheap junk food is part of the problem. I know I've experienced it in the form of the "freshman fifteen". Weight loss is quite simply using more calories than you ingest which is why exercising and eating right are ultimately the best things you can do.



None.

Mar 5 2010, 3:40 am rayNimagi Post #120



Vrael, I agree with you completely. Earlier in the thread I stated that the government would be unable to effectively implement a fat tax because of a) incompetence or b) the government nutritionists would tax the wrong foods or leave loopholes. So you've nailed the solution:

Quote from Vrael
Really the root of the problem seems to be the people that just can't put down the twinkies

My solution is to implement a national advertising campaign for health. Perhaps if the government spent just a fraction of its trillions of dollars that it keeps pouring out to kill middle easterners, it could prevent American obesity from killing ourselves.



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