What Do You Think About the Proposed Soda Tax?

| 5/21/2009 2:58:29 PM

Tags: Soda tax, taxes, health care, Obama, question to readers, overweight, obesity, sugar and health,


Soda can 

Will consumers make healthier beverage
choices if the cost of soda increases?


A new federal tax on soda and other sugary beverages has been suggested recently as a way to pay for part of the major overhaul of the U.S. health-care system proposed by the Obama administration.

According to the Wall Street Journal, "The Center for Science in the Public Interest, a Washington-based watchdog group that pressures food companies to make healthier products, plans to propose a federal excise tax on soda, certain fruit drinks, energy drinks, sports drinks and ready-to-drink teas. It would not include most diet beverages."

Supporters argue that the tax would have multiple benefits. In addition to partially funding health-care reform, supporters argue that a tax on sugary beverages would likely discourage their consumption, potentially relieving some of the burden on taxpayers covering the medical costs incurred because of overweight and obesity.

Addressing these issues, a recent article from the New England Journal of Medicine reports, "For each extra can or glass of sugared beverage consumed per day, the likelihood of a child’s becoming obese increases by 60 percent," and that "a review conducted by Yale University’s Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity suggested that for every 10 percent increase in price, consumption decreases by 7.8 percent."

Finally, the article states that "The contribution of unhealthful diets to health care costs is already high and is increasing — an estimated $79 billion is spent annually for overweight and obesity alone — and approximately half of these costs are paid by Medicare and Medicaid, at taxpayers’ expense. Diet-related diseases also cost society in terms of decreased work productivity, increased absenteeism, poorer school performance, and reduced fitness on the part of military recruits, among other negative effects."

7/16/2010 12:25:48 PM

I am offended that the government would even propose such a measure. I don't agree with it in any case, but if it were to pass it should be applied to diet beverages as well. I don't consume artificial sweeteners because they are unnatural and give me migraines. When I drink soda I try to choose natural sugar sodas as much as possible, a choice which is limited primarily by availability. If the government needs additional sources of revenue to fund the healthcare system, why not impose the tax on the profits of the manufacturers? Or perhaps close some of the tax loopholes they are allowed? While parents should be more diligent in what they allow their children to consume, the manufacturers are the real culprits when it comes to the content of the foods we consume. They should accept their responsibility alongside the parents.

mel in wa_2
7/16/2010 9:41:56 AM

Tax em! Soda isn't a God given right and if people are going to abuse it they should pay for their extra expenses. I think cigarettes have shown that for every increase in tax there is a decrease in consumption. The only problem is that we would be paying that tax when people used their food-stamp cards to pay for the unhealthy food. We need to look at the real cost of our food choices and end subsidies to corn, soy and wheat which constitute most of this 'junk food' and nasty feed lots and instead incentivise intensive grazing.

4/8/2010 8:41:36 PM

I think this tax is crazy. What's next...tax on a can of beer? It is really no ones business if I chose to drink a soda. We have too many taxes now as it is. Soon our country will be run soley by the government. They will control everything, including what we chose to drink or eat.

3/21/2010 11:59:46 AM

First of all parents should be regulating there children's consumption of food. I did for all four of mine. I also served healthy food. Once they become adults they make up there own minds. Since we have no say where these taxes would go I am against them. I do drink soda once in a while and the majority of the time I will mix seltzer water with juice no added sugar. I also drink a lot of tea. I don't use artificial sweetners as I don't believe in them and I also get migraines from them as does one of my daughters. I set my children on a healthy path and enforced it while they were growing up. We must teach our children when they live with us and set an example.It is such a pity that schools have put restrictions on everything. When mine were small I made all there birthday treats to take to school and share(lower in sugars, nothing artificial and made the night before). Now they aren't allowed because of possible food poisoning. My son tells me he didn't realize it until he went to a high school friend's house that spagetti sauce could come in a jar. I brought up four children and worked full time and made food from scratch and utilized a freezer to hold the left overs and extra portions to make my fast meals. I also baked every week so that they could be indulged but I could use whole grains and control the sugars,salt, fats, etc.

3/19/2010 3:15:35 AM

Please people stop telling me how to live and die.

3/18/2010 7:58:51 PM

I am a fallower of Glenn Beck on the FOX news channel and do belive what he is telling us is true but hope he is wrong. This is just another power grabing move by our goverment. They what to dictate what are rights are and distroy america from the inside out under the petence of they know what is best for us dumby dumb-dumbs and they have been doing it in baby steps for the last 80 years or sence Roseavelt. The bill of rights and the constution are being distroyed. Faith,Hope and Charity

3/16/2010 2:19:06 PM

Why in the world should the gov't be in charge of what we put into our bodies - legally? $$$, it is always the answer! Some say tax the manufacturer, great idea, except the manufacturer simply increases the cost to the consumer. It seems to me that if taxing an item will terminate its existence, the tobacco industry in the US would be dead. It is not! The gov't tried prohibition - it didn't work. There are more alcholics now than ever. There are only two things government can do successfully,(generally) prosecute a war and increase itself. And it is FAR better at the latter because we, the citizenry, allow it.

3/16/2010 11:59:54 AM

Let's take the subsidies away from the growers that produce the corn in the first place. That will put ALL the junk food at it's proper price. Besides, the water is going to run out anyway. Who are those agri businesses that get the subsidies? Not the small farmer who's just trying to make it, he lost his farm 10-15 years ago, and the big guys picked up at that land at rock bottom prices. The small guys who are still struggling to make it can't afford to drive their wells any deeper, not that there is any water there anyway. Corn is not a viable commodity. Growing corn anywhere is a risky business and lacks the nutrient value we need in our food to boot. Ask any back yard farmer how much water it takes to grow an ear of corn. Most won't grow corn for that one reason. I live in California, water is already at a premium here, I don't spend my hard earned money growing corn, and I love a good fresh ear of corn on the BBQ in the summer, but that's enough for me. Educating our children to what is sustainable in our food and our environment is something we should all be concerned with. If we raise good food, and everyone has the ability to do that, even if it is in a pot on a balcony or a scrap piece of dirt in the neighborhood, then we should all eat better and our health improve, thus less need for major health issues as we get older. For me, our government should pay for all health care for everyone. Educate everyone about eating right and work for sustainability.

danny grantham
3/16/2010 12:09:20 AM

Enough tax...I do not support the idea of this tax.

3/15/2010 10:50:31 PM

Let's tax churches at the same rate we are. Why should someone who thinks there is a divine spirit not pay their way. How many people are killed in accidents going to church? How many children are abused by being dragged to church against their will? Why are so many woman willing to be degraded by their church? Woman can not be priests, some religons won't allow them to be ministers. Woman must obey their husbands. Tax em all take all the money then there won't be anyone having to keep up with the Jones's they won't have anything to keep up with............

3/15/2010 10:04:58 PM

OH MY GOD, A TAX ON UNHEALTHY SODA? WHAT'S NEXT? TAXES ON CIGARETTES THAT CAUSE CANCER? Please people (for those who were negative to the tax), tax the junk food and include those trashy "diet" drinks with the fake sweeteners as well. Make fast food move to healthy (real healthy, not faked healthy) foods. (Getting prepared for a lynching) And while we are at it tax the hell out of ALCOHOL as well! Talk about a trouble causing product! Deaths and mayhem in your choice of a bottle or a can! LOL!!!!

3/15/2010 9:38:20 PM

It's way beyond time for this to pass. The government pays for health care in many ways. Lets tax the people who put a strain on the system. But why exempt diet drinks? They are just as harmful.

fran tracy
3/15/2010 8:29:24 PM

I think the soda tax is outrageous. There is no reeason the government should be trying to control behavior with taxes. We need to cut taxes notcome up with new ones. WHAT WILL BE NEXT? YOU WILL BE SAYING EVERYTHING NEEDS TO BE TAXED TO CONTROL PEOPLE'S BEHAVIOR AND SOON WE WON'T BE ABLE TO AFFORD OUR REALESTATE TAXES AND THEN THE GOVERNMENT WILL OWN ALL THE LAND & HOMES. Fran

jeanette redmond_1
3/15/2010 8:06:51 PM

Educate, educate, educate! Read 'The Omnivore's Dilemma',and if people still want to sabotage their health ,let them.

darrell hartin_2
3/15/2010 5:47:41 PM

Yet another example of a too big government out of control. At a time when many want a more affordable government and more accountability from our elected representatives, we are going in the opposite direction. Memo to Washington-If I want your help I'll ask for it.

3/15/2010 5:46:41 PM

This is just the start of the government's daily control over you. Soda tax, laws in NY making it illegal to cook with salt. If they take over healthcare they will feel they have the right to tell you what to eat and drink, to control your behavior. Next they will tell you what drugs to take, whether they are healthy for you or not! Thats when the big corruption will start as the big pharms bribe government employees to push their drugs! It's ashame the American people don't realize what's about to happen to our freedoms with this Communist/Progressive administration that has lied and conned their way into power!

john mayer_2
3/15/2010 5:30:25 PM

Corn in all it's many uses is just that, .... corn. In our disdain for things so unnatural it is so easy to forget. High Fructose Corn Syrup is just a simple sugar syrup taken almost to the point of over saturation. It is so sweet that it takes about 1/10th the actual amount of sugar to sweeten something to the point of what we are used to. It's amazing but Diabetes has become almost a pandemic because of HFCS. Why HFCS? It is all in simple ecomomics. Less sugar used, more money made.....by whom you ask? The Companies who make the stuff. Don't tax the consumner!! Tax the Manufacturers !! It will happen anyway. It is just a way to give them more for using less. You want to tax the consumer for something they can not control unless they stop consuming it in the first place. You want it out stop using it, sugar has become our favorite drug of choice. We use it to control the unruly child when the word NO is more than sufficient. We are the propagators of our own demise. Best thing is to go sugarless, period. Diet sweetners just feed the need for the addiction we begat in childhood. Obesity and diabetes runs hand in hand. You can't have one without eventually the other becoming the by -product. Go sugarless!! Drink your tea with no sugar or just a pinch of what youonce used your body will thank you for it.

teddy mead_1
3/15/2010 4:47:32 PM

Are we forgetting who the government is? It's us, the people. When are we going to start telling those who represent us what we want, instead of those representing us telling us what is good for us. Whose pockets are we filling this time? NO MORE TAXES. Ted

janell reyenga_2
3/15/2010 3:44:40 PM

This gov't will stop at nothing to take complete control of our lives. If we don't stop them we'll wake up and our country will no longer be the "land of the FREE".... How's that Hope and Change working for everyone out there?

laura _1
3/15/2010 3:39:01 PM

I think it should have a tax and a warning label. High Fructose Corn syrup is poison, not food. Tax other products that contain HFCS as a major ingredient also, to be realistic though. Then let the public tell the food industry to stop putting that nasty stuff in our foods. Use that tax money for public health care. I also want them to dump the subsidies on corn. Phase it out so the farmers can prepare, but it needs to go.

thomas schildman_1
3/15/2010 3:23:16 PM

I have a better idea. Take the free life time health care benefits away from the congress man / senators and make them buy their own. And while we are at it, reduce and freeze their salaries at 1995 standards. Also remove their special retirement benefits, make them the same as other Americans, social security and what ever they manage to put in to an IRA fund. I could go on but no one out there really cares anyway. TCS, Illinois

paul h_2
3/15/2010 3:13:50 PM

While the revenue source is a good choice it goes the same direction as taxes ib cigaretes. the the taxes that are "meant" to decrease it to make us healthy. The reduction in users of a given vice that is taxed decreases the tax base. It's counter productive to tax something to reduce its use. I don't drink sugared soda so I say go for it, but the slippery slope is that when this channel for revenue is reduced a new one, perhaps on fat in products will need to replace it in order to "make us healthy". The real problem is at what point does Washington start taxing the air we breathe. Our output when we exhale is a green house gas. When channels of revenue dry up it is only a matter of time before we pay for air. I only hope if we are taxed for air they at least improve the quality.

3/15/2010 2:32:18 PM

IMHO. This has nothing to do with health, this has to do with an additional way to get money from consumers. If it truly had to do with health, they would tax hormone filled meat, or cake, or cookies, or maybe even ice cream, that would take care of the hormones from the cows plus the sugar content. If it was an honest tax for honest purposes maybe it would be taken easier. Unfortunately, this is just more of the double talk junk that seems to go along with "getting out of your campagn promises". If our government representatives remembered that they are only supposed to represent the people of the United States of America and not the others involved in lining the pockets and making their own lives easier then all of this would just go away. It is always so amazing to me just how naive they really believe we, as citizens and voting public are.

roland green
3/15/2010 2:14:31 PM

Good ideal and relatively painless and for a good cause - people's health and well being. As an American who has lived nearly all my life in the British Isles, it never ceases to amaze me the awful lather you lot get into and the vicious language used about something that we take for granted and have no problems about whatsoever and in England, especially, get frightfully upset about if we feel the NHS, National Health Service, is under threat, not properly funded or not doing it's job. Most European countries have some form of free public health service, Sweden, France, Germany, England especially, while others like Ireland have free health care (medical cards are sought after like gold dust) for unemployed and pensioners, though for the latter this is now means tested and you will lose you health entitlements if you have too much money. In the UK and Ireland you can subscribe to private health insurance and most people working in Ireland do, though the main one, the VHI, is actually a State health insurance scheme. In England if you subscribe to private health, such as BUPA, you still retain your right to care under the NHS. The funding for the state medical services comes out of your taxes, simple and I would advise anyone interested to trawl around the internet looking up the various State health services in Europe. State run health services for all aren't that bad if you've had experience of them.

b miller
3/15/2010 2:06:23 PM

Ok, they are taxes us for eating and drinking, surely there will be a tax for breathing next.

3/15/2010 1:57:06 PM

I don't drink soft drinks. I don't drink alcoholic beverages. I don't smoke or use other tobacco products. Therefore, so-called sin-taxes on these products don't affect me directly. Nevertheless, I am opposed to any tax (or tax relief) that is focused on a particular segment of the population. Anyone who supports these so-called sin-taxes will ultimately be subjected to a tax on what someone, somewhere perceives to be an egregious sin. We all must fairly share the burden of taxation and we all must vigorously share the burden in fighting excessive taxation, excessive regulation, and excessive government in general.

william strother_2
3/15/2010 1:13:13 PM

yes. We as a country are killing ourselves with sugger. a tax will save us on helth cost as yoe will be helther by using less sugger.

3/15/2010 12:40:22 PM

People do not realize that those on food stamps do not pay tax on food items. They buy more sodas than the average family does. That leaves the rest of us to carry the burden of the extra taxes. I for one am against it, even though I seldom drink them.

3/15/2010 12:01:53 PM

But how could this be? Did not our great President pledge to not raise taxes on Americans who make less than $250,000/yr? Certainly those Americans drink soft drinks. Oh that's right, he has already canned that pledge when he signed the tax increase on tobacco, proving himself a liar.

3/15/2010 11:26:14 AM

I can't believe this! The taxpayer gets totalled shafted! "Sugary beverages" are made completely from corn, including High Fructose Corn Syrup, caramel color, and all the preservatives. The reason why corn is so cheap is that it gets HUGE SUBSIDIES from the government, allowing corn to be grown below the cost of production. That's our taxpayer money! And now since the Federal Government has created a sugary monster, they want to tax us for consuming it?!? Taxed at both ends! Give me a fvcking break! If they cut the subsidies, the cost of corn would go up, increasing the cost of soda. The end result is the same as a tax, the price of soda increases. This is a better option than a revolving door of money to corn agribusiness.

bryon d
3/15/2010 11:22:08 AM

The Govt. has no right to tell us how to live, or what or what not to drink, certainly not taxing us for drinking what we choose to drink, the govt has gone too far, they have taxed us to all extreme's and are now attempting to find ways to tax us more, based on health issues, well bullcrap... the candy tax, soda tax, food tax, whats next ??? taxing us using our bathrooms more than once a day ????... tell Government to stay out of our lives..why dont we start taxing congress and political figures double...see if they like it... the United States lost representation without taxatation a long time ago.. we are not represented, we are forced to accept things we do not want... including this new health care issues.. if its so good, like everyone get it.. including Congress and other Govt. officials.. l'm tired of this crap.

susanne d'arcangelo
3/15/2010 11:11:12 AM

Surely I am not the only one who thinks this ridiculous soda/pop tax is worthless to the people it is supposed to help.When Kids, adults, and teens make better choices in their beverage selections the weight ,disease etc. will drop like a bloated soda pop belly. Smart people make dumb choices every day,thats why you see someone drinking a "diet" pop with a calorie laden cheeseburger and fries........... (taking an elevator up one or two floors when the stairs are right there,or whatever !!! Fast Food is just that and its not healthy eating or drinking. Plus stores push that crap to the hilt with advertising, plus tv, radio,magazine ads etc. Small convenience stores in most cities or "poor" areas only usually sell those items and dont care about your waistline only their bottom line............ Wake up people!!! Water or skim milk etc. will be better choices and other liquids in moderation. Remember Cigarette tax(s)didn't stop alot of people from smoking and lung cancer etc is very much ALIVE!!!!!!!!!!!!

laura cone
3/15/2010 10:31:29 AM

Soda, along with many other items found in our grocery stores, is not really food. It only fulfills our pleasure center and most often still leaves us wanting. Aside from the lack of nutrition common among such items are the health care concerns they cause. Perhaps taxing sodas may help to relieve so much of the cost of health care, especially among those reliant on the government to pay such costs.

carol _6
3/15/2010 10:18:59 AM

money spent on "food" (and i use that term loosely!) that is damaging to health is wasted money. gov't subsidies to large, corporate agri-businesses need to cease. revise the public assistance programs to eliminate sugar-ridden foods and/or return to commodities only. the american tax-payers are supporting the commercial poisoners and then doling out more $ to the non-tax payers to buy the poison in the form of "public assistance" and then we have to pay more $ to cure the poisoned non-tax payers because they don't have jobs to pay for health insurance. when is this ever going to be seen for what it really is? GREED! luxury tax on hotels and entertainment; taxes on tobacco and alcohol; taxes on hfcs (et al) poisons--where do those taxes go? to provide more subsidies, more public assistance, more free health care . . . it never ends.

3/15/2010 10:11:45 AM

I can live without soda.....and all junk foods. So tax away, and it will reinforce my decision not to buy this stuff. Those who are addicted to sodas will continue to buy them, no matter how high the tax goes. Same for cigarettes, as you have seen. Now gasoline we have to have, so please dont increase taxes on this commodity, as the cost per gal is already high enuf.

3/15/2010 9:50:06 AM

We can not permit taxes such as this to pass. I'm not a smoker or drinker and I think that those taxes should be repealed also. The government does not have the constitutional rights to tax us into health. It goes against everything the founding fathers tried to setup. Anyone who thinks that these types of taxes are good have apparently never found themselves in the minority on any issues that are unconstitutional. Just because the majority wants it doesn't make it right. Our founding fathers saw this and that's why we live in a democratic-republic (where law can overrule the majority - simplified version)and not a democracy (where the majority always wins).

3/15/2010 9:48:01 AM

For a magazine that boasts self-sufficiency I'm surprised that so many are for this. Part of self-sufficiency is self-responsibility. This country was founded on these principles but somehow America has forgotten. We want our government to take care of us from birth until death. And if we have to fork over half(or more) of our paychecks so be it. I for one want to live my life the way I see fit, not the government. When I was growing up I couldn't wait to get out of my parents house so I could do what I wanted, and yet now my gov't wants to tell me what I can eat, drink, and drive! Well I should get down off this soapbox before I really get mad.

sarah kemper
3/15/2010 9:41:46 AM

Instead of first subsidizing corn crops and thereby providing a surplus of HFCS, which allows for the cheap production of soda, and then taxing the final product... couldn't we simplify the whole system by not subsidizing the production of HFCS in the first place? If the prices for 'junk' food weren't being artificially lowered by government subsidies, 'health' food would have a much better chance of competing in the free market.

jennifer _7
3/15/2010 9:35:16 AM

Putting a tax on items that are purely a luxery is a good idea. I feel that some people are exagerating when they say that a tax on air is next. Tax items that are non essential, that would hopefully encourage people to buy actual food and god forbid drink some water. We are such a spoiled rotten species and it is very depressing that humans take for granted everything we have.

3/15/2010 9:29:13 AM

First the smokers, then the drinkers. OK fat people, it is your turn according to Congress. Now maybe a few more Americans will wake to the reality that more government regulation is a bad thing. Taxes Taxes Taxes If we do not stop them now and vote them all out soon the liberals will even start taxing live births to pay for abortions. There are far more items than soft drinks that contain sugar so where will this ridiculous idea stop. The voting booth this November is the best way to put an end to the expansion of government into our everyday lives by the Democrats.

3/15/2010 9:20:29 AM

Is this the Nanny States of America? You cannot tax your way to a healthy - or healthier- way of life! What is next - some Congressman is proposing a ban on the use of any and all salt in all restaurant cooking because sodium can cause hypertension. Michelle Obama's push for fitness and health should have at the top of the list a huge effort to eliminate processed food from our diets-or as Michael Pollan calls them - edible food-like substances. But that will never happen because Congress and the White House are in bed with those conglomerates that push more of that garbage on us!!!!! Should we tax rock climbing because you can fall and break a bone or breathing air because it might be polluted or drinking water because you might contract a disease - Come on - Get real. Get out of my life!!!!!!!

3/15/2010 9:13:45 AM

Is this the Nanny States of America? You cannot tax your way to a healthy - or healthier- way of life! What is next - some Congressman is proposing a ban on the use of any and all salt in all restaurant cooking because sodium can cause hypertension. Michelle Obama's push for fitness and health should have at the top of the list a huge effort to eliminate processed food from our diets-or as Michael Pollan calls them - edible food-like substances. But that will never happen because Congress and the White House are in bed with those conglomerates that push more of that garbage on us!!!!! Should we tax rock climbing because you can fall and break a bone or breathing air because it might be polluted or drinking water because you might contract a disease - Come on - Get real. Get out of my life!!!!!!!

christie morris
3/15/2010 8:51:16 AM

Has raising the price and taxing cigarettes decreased the consumption of cigarettes? I can see people cutting healthy things from their budget and diet in order to buy sodas. It is not the government's responsibility to monitor our consumption. This is not a solution, this will create more problems.

3/15/2010 8:07:14 AM

NO MORE TAXES...... Let's go back to bottles for everything that is canned or jarred and restore the deposit on bottles. Yeah, it adds to your daily workload, however, why would you want a bearucrat to misuse more tax money.

11/2/2009 10:11:40 PM

I think taxing soda and other sugary beverages is a wonderfull idea. People should pay for their bad habits. I am generally in favor of taxing consumption as consumption should be discouraged. This particular product is completely useless and desctructive and should be taxed much like tabacco. see: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/09/10/opinion/10pollan.html?_r=1&scp=1&sq=&st=nyt

carol casey
8/10/2009 5:03:46 PM

When is parents going to be responesable for what their children do drink or eat. I think it is absurd that obesity be blamed on food or soda companies or sugary drinks. Parents should take responesability for what there children are doing. I cant believe Obama is doing this. So you think you are solving one problem by taxing sugary drinks but you are also going to be putting people out of work because companies are not going to be able to pay workers if they have to pay all these taxes. So the cuts to afford it have to come from somewhere. So Obama will be maybe getting people health care and causing people to lose there job. VERY POOR POOR SOLUTION> I am ASHAMED that these people get in office and do nothing but cause more problems.

8/3/2009 6:10:35 PM

So this is how Obama fulfills his promise that “you will not see any of your taxes increase one single dime” and that 95% of Americans will see a tax cut if he was elected. The attempts to soak the rich are proven meaningless by this proposal and the one that will increase taxes on cigarettes. This is the kind of tax that will hit the poor most of all. You are a fool if you fell for this administration's promises to lower our deficit by raising taxes on the people that are already footing the bill for this country. Oh and Bonnie, its naive not nieve. If you are going to make rants like yours you should at least do it with some intelligence. Wean yourself off of moveon.org and the Huffington Post and you may actually learn something instead of mouthing the same old hate filled junk that you can't even support with any logic or intelligence. Marilyn, there is a reward system for not smoking. Its called lower insurance rates. There is a reward for lower cholesterol and blood pressure. Its called lower insurance rates. Once again this is not something the government should even be concerned with.....unless of course you believe the government should be in the health care industry. Then you can bet they will definitely be telling you how you should be running your life. You will be owned by the government because if you smoke, then they may decide that they wont even cover you. Welcome to the US military. Dena, my wife is a teacher at a school that is mostly low income blacks with some hispanics. A majority of the children are on the free lunch and breakfast program. They are so poor they get free food from the government (which they usually waste) and yet the kids are wearing expensive sneakers, NBA/NFL branded jackets and their parents drive SUVs. Your tax dollars at work. Don't be fooled by the "poor me" cries because your response is not compassion. Making people dependent on the government is not compassionate. For those of you that are po

7/22/2009 7:05:43 PM


7/4/2009 4:56:06 PM

It's ludicrous to continue taxing specific products. What next? Butter? Whole milk? Chese, Beef? Whatever happened to learning about responsible consumtion? There is enough information as to what constitutes a healthy diet. Taxing ec=verything IS NOT the answer. Another example of "BIG BROTHER" taxing individuals. What happened to our vote? Yet ANOTHER example of TAXATION WITHOUT REPRESENTATION. REVOLUTION!!!!!!!

joy shepard_2
7/2/2009 8:36:17 PM

The government will eventually tax everything including the air we breath and sex if we, the people, as a united unit stand up and say no. I think it is interesting that those people who "just eat healthy" or are "health-consious" think that it is okay for this tax to go through. Why? is it because you don't like that someone else is drinking or eating something that you would like to eat or drink. I think that it is childish for the American people to take sides ONLY because it is health vs. "unhealthy". Why aren't we being adult about this and standing up to say, "NO" we won't take another tax just because, we as adults know it will just lead to another tax after this one. Healthy eating people, here is a question just for you. Would you be upset if a tax was made on soybeans and soybean products? Ask yourself that. If the answer is YES, then do something about the taxes before it goes that far.

6/20/2009 11:25:44 AM

What's next, a tax on the air we suck in. I thought we were all gonna get a tax break. Obama 4 years and you're gonna be gone. I think its time to go back to the 60's and start protesting again. How about a day where no one buys anything. Remember we have the power if we want it.

6/16/2009 10:53:33 PM

TAX *THIS*: http://community.whptv.com/forums/4183573/ShowThread.aspx#4183573

6/16/2009 2:43:27 PM

I think all junk food should be taxed to hopefully get kids hooked on healthy alternatives.

6/16/2009 7:12:35 AM

Another tax, yeah it can happen. The problem isn't the tax, it is who is behind the control of our judicial and political system. In the present, if you could divide the wealth between five people; one person would own 85% of everything (that would include the corporations that generate income), the next three people would own 15%, the last person wouldn't own anything. It is the super rich people, that control corporations, some of which have more money than some of the countries of the world, manipulate our political system, like dictation to an administrative assistant. Just trying to give you some perspective to the soda pop tax. Don't buy soda and they will tax something else. If you get another deduction or credit, another tax will be generated to compensate for it.

6/10/2009 11:02:27 PM

First they taxed the smokers, then they taxed the beer drinkers, then they taxed the soda drinkers, then the potato chip eaters, and then they came for me, and started regulating food AWAY from the local, organic growers and family farmers/ranchers to giant govt subsidized corporate farms with genetically modified seeds, etc. Once you start, it does not stop

6/5/2009 12:44:39 AM

Yes, let them tax everything and be done with it. That is what is going to happen anyway. We don't get to vote on this! They make all sorts of excuses to get more money out of us. What happens with all that money? My guess exactly. Their own pocket and it will never be enough. Health care: The problem with this is the cost. If they would put a stop to the ridiculous high cost and unneeded test that these doctors take, the cost wouldn't be so high. But of course that will never happen. Just like the oil prices. You can see who has stock in that. And look, we all make excuses and blame this person this, this person that... I say grow up. Who cares what this person is doing or that person is doing. Take care of yourself and stop worry about what what other people are doing. This is suppose to be a free country isn't it?!! We should have our right to do with our body what we want to do with it!!!!!

kathie landmann
6/3/2009 12:06:12 PM

Oh yes, anytime the government can regulate people is a good time! Not only should the government tax sodas, but people who own knives should also be taxed. Think of all the people who have been killed or maimed by knives! What about people who don't clean their homes regularly? Tax them! They are contributing to the bug population and are a threat to society. Besides, that headcold they have is probably bacterial, so they are also a threat to our healthcare system. Before long we could reverse our financial woes!

sr davis
6/2/2009 8:46:49 PM

We gave up sodas a long time ago - we now make our own at home with real fruit juice! If we are going to have a national health care program it has to be paid for. I hate taxes just like everyone else but I would rather consumption taxes than anything else!

6/2/2009 3:49:43 PM

I'm a libertarian and opposed to almost all taxes, however, I prefer consumption taxes over income taxes. I guess it's better that crappy food is taxed higher than good food, however, I think we should do our parts to educate people on health and nutrition so it's not poor people who bear the brunt of the cost not just of the tax, but the cost to their health.

6/2/2009 10:20:05 AM

The sad thing is, the government is blowing smoke again and a lot of people are buying into it. So many people have said they don't drink soda so let the tax come through so that people will have to pay for their own stupidity. I have read the article and still disagree with the tax. I live in a state where everything is taxed as I'm sure many readers do. We all live on processed foods. How many gave up eating eggs because the government said they were bad? A tax on soda will not change the problems with the health-care industry. A change in most people's behavior's won't change the industry. I know too many people that get their healthcare for free simply because they are poor or not U.S. Citizens. We ALL pay for that. How many unwed mother's give birth every day at the expense of every one of us that pays taxes? How many people do you know that are on Medicaid or some other state funded program? How many of you know the people that run to the emergency room with a fever because the emergency rooms cannot refuse treatment? We ALL pay for that. An extra tax on soda is ridiculous. I agree that taxes would put things more in line with good things because for some stupid reason, in the U.S., anything that is good for you costs so much more than that which is not. Even something as simple as a bag of carrots... healthy, right? Why is the commercially grown, chemically enhanced bag less than $2.00 but the organic, supposedly healthy bag is more than $3.00 for a lesser size. I don't know about many of you out there. But I do know many, many people that are struggling to make ends meet without government assistance. Which do you think they can afford? Wake up people. Smell the coffee (fair trade, of course). The roller coaster has begun to run full force and we are all in it's way.

6/1/2009 3:59:02 AM

It is common knowledge that the Western World have a major problem with obesity. Sweet fizzy drinks will definitely be a contributing factor. So, wake up and smell the coffee. Let those who choose to poison their bodies with copious amounts of "soda" pay for their sins, rather than letting health-conscious folk subsidise them.

john adams_3
5/31/2009 12:13:24 AM

So, how is this NOT the gov't telling me what to eat? Besides, what happens when we all stop drinking soda? Will the tax just vanish? It will probably go somewhere else. A Meat tax, sugar tax, fried food tax... whaddaya got? As far as addressing the real problem...A TAX? Saying a tax on soda will make people healthy is like saying a "passion" tax will keep us from having sex. You can't fix things by taxing it.

5/30/2009 5:33:33 PM

What's next,a "bacon tax"?

5/29/2009 9:09:17 AM

I agree the government is getting too far into the public's business. They are trying to take over and make us conform to their beliefs and ideas. I think it is crazy to tax every single thing. So, more people stop drinking sodas. So, how are the companies going to pay their employees? More lay offs. More people on unemployment. So many people cannot afford things now, when they see coke prices go up they will quit buying and when a million people stop or at least slow down we are in another situation. People do need to educate themselves and eat more healthy. I do not drink sodas very often and my kids are not allowed more than one or two a week. But, it is not just cokes it is all sweets. It does not even have to be sweets....NO MATTER WHAT YOU EAT, unless you are eating vegetables all day, TOO MUCH OF ANYTHING CAN MAKE YOU FAT AND OBESE! People have the right to abortions, so why not have the right to drink and eat what you want w/out excess taxes. Hard working tax payers pay for abortions everyday, why not for overweight people who have heart attacks too. "IT IS OUR BODY". To those who think we are trying to dodge taxes you are mistaken. I am sick of paying for the governments stupid agendas on my tax dollars. What are we going to do if this carbon tax is approved. How are people going to even support their own household? I believe we are going toward a Communist state. People are too blind to see that our new government is just pushing there way in to own the banks, own the car companies, own all they can. They are pushing taxes until people will not be able to support themselves. If we just give in and allow the government to take over then it is our own fault. We have rights and we cannot allow them to be taken from us.

john brandes
5/28/2009 3:35:47 PM

Personally I really don't care if the government wants to tax Soda's and other Sugary drinks. I RARELY drink them. I think it would be smarter for the government to stop subsidizing the corn crops that are producing the HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP in the first place. That should cause the price of the soda, and EVERYTHING else that uses HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP to increase. In addition they could take the money they would have used to subsidize the corn and use it to subsidize healthier foods, thereby making them less expensive and hopefully increasing the good food(s) people eat. As for the FAT problem in this country, it is DIRECTLY related to our changing life styles. Kids used to go outside and play when they got home from school, NOW, they go and sit in front of a computer and play some worthless game.

mary granade
5/28/2009 6:45:08 AM

We need to educate people to prepare and use whole foods. Our culture is resturants and prepared foods. Sodas are not the worst offender. There is high fuuctose corn syrup in almost every prepared produt you buy. That is the real enemy. Also if there is a tax on sodas, why not diet sodas also. The artifical sweetners are very harmful to the human body. Maybe the government should subsidize real studies into the effects of the chemicals in the food chain instead of believing the trumped up studies done by the large companies that profit from food additives.

shirley in nc_2
5/27/2009 10:31:59 PM

I place on my rose colored glasses and think back 30 years.... I remeber seeing my 1st ever drink machine out side of a store, It was the Wilco in Elkin, NC. We stood there and stared at it; begging my mother for two dimes... I could have walked into the store and got a bottle of soda for 12 cents, but the machine was a new toy. So we kids pooled our money and shared the soda. Just because we wanted to be able to say we did that... Taxes do stop me from shopping in area markets like Winston-Salem. Why pay their special WS sales taxes?? Drive once a month in anyother direction for all your major purchases and avoid that special tax... Or grow and/or make your own product and don't pay the high % taxes - Government is just shotting itself in the foot, I live to close to VA, WV and SC with family coming and going we set up a network of buyers.

shirley in nc_2
5/27/2009 10:06:22 PM


5/27/2009 6:37:33 PM

I believe a better alternative is to educate. However, we have cut our school budgets so drastically that programs such as physical education and nutrition classes have been sent to the chopping block. But where can we get the money to increase our school budgets to include these programs? Perhaps the tax should be implemented and go not only towards healthcare, which will do nothing to end the cycle of obese, unhealthy adults raising a new generation of obese, unhealthy kids, rather devote a significant portion to funding education so we can break the cycle and perhaps later on we can end the tax. As far as the tax forcing people out of the market for unhealthy foods, I doubt that will work. As proof the cigarette tax has only had a minimal effect on the smoking rates, rather I believe reduction in smoking has occured due to smoke-free marketing, labeling as well as people can just see that getting cancer sucks. Eventually people will wake up and see that eating crap makes you sick too and many will stop, but many won't care just as many keep on smoking despite the risks. The price increase will help push people with less income out of the market for junk food, these are the people who have less access to education and information and as a result will be less likely to make good decisions on thier own. This is a positive point for the tax. Also I believe in addition to the tax, we should make junk food ineligible to be purchased with government assisted food cards/stamps. Again no one is telling people they can't eat this food, only they will have to pay for it with something other than taxpayer provided food assistance. It doesn't make sense to use taxpayer dollars to fuel a habit that taxpayers have to pay for the bad health issues that result.

5/27/2009 5:51:20 PM

When a behavior negatively affects a society as a whole, it IS the government's business. If a person is not taking care of themselves (as many Americans are not) and ends up costing the health system a good deal of money (which inevitably they do) because of it, that's coming out of my pocket and yours. I'm not interested in paying for someone else's bad habits. I have no problem at all with federal and state taxes on any food or food-like item that is self-destructive and non-essential. Taxing an item is not outlawing it; it's merely accounting for the fact that consuming that item is a drain on social resources.

5/27/2009 1:32:15 AM

Oh, and I forgot to mention that the corn subsidies make soda and other corn-based products cheap. If consumers had to pay the true cost of these products, sales would go down.

5/27/2009 1:28:22 AM

We already pay a tax on soda and other products that contain high fructose corn syrup via the Federal subsidies to the corn industry. Why don't we just cut out the subsidies to the mono-crop agribusinesses to save money for health care? These subsidies hurt family and organic farmers and promote the invention of new (unhealthy) uses for corn by giving corn farmers an unfair advantage.

5/27/2009 12:21:03 AM

Most states charge sales taxes. The federal government doesn't. The real question here is, should the federal government begin taxing sales as most states do? Then the question goes to whether or not some food items should be taxed. Some states don't tax any food items, some tax all food, and some only tax certain foods, such as prepared foods. My perspective is that sales tax is the states' territory, not the federal government's. Let the people of each state determine for themselves what items to tax. In about a dozen states, including California, we're already paying state sales tax on soda or other snack foods. As far as I'm concerned, as long as residents of our state voted and approved it, it's fine with me to pay a bit of tax on dessert and other non-essential food items. We shouldn't pay taxes on foods that we eat for sustenance, and we should for extras that we eat because we're treating ourselves. I agree that the government shouldn't tell people what foods they should or shouldn't eat, or how often. But I think that idea is a lot different than a government taxing non-essential foods.

5/26/2009 9:04:08 PM

Too many TAXES, STOP THE COMMUNISM!!!!!!!!!!!!, NEXT THING YOU KNOW WE WILL BE UNDER SHARI(RATICAL MUSLIM LAWS) MAYBE THE OVER WIEGHT PROBLEM AND CANCER PROBLEM IS DUE TO HORMONES, GROWTH HORMONES, MORE HORMONES AND HORMONES. CANCER: A CELL THAT IS STUCK IN GROWTH MODE ( CELL GROWTH ON STERIODS) i dont think this has anything to do with soda pop. just another way to take over an industry, lets see, the government has the cars, the trains, the planes, the trucks, the farmers, the animals (NAID) now lets see what else they need: greed: all the industry and business. the government thinks that us lowly peasants cannot think on our own say thye make all people feel as victims that need saved and told what to do. GOD SAVE us all the commys are here and strong. no more taxes, governemnt guidance. i hope you all realize that clinton was the one who told the banks to make those mafia style house loans, just like payday loans, this was the set up for the failure so they can tell us all how to be, dont be hiper and think out loud, you get hdd or ADD meds, if you get a physical chemcial imbalance they drugs for you too. lock up everyone and and everything, look at all the new prisons being built, i guess thats for when you cant pay your health insurance ($1000 in the great state of MASS.) there will be room at the local jail for you. please everyone see the communism taking place. wake up planet, i have hope in Americans that they can have a soda without Overdosing, fat tax and soda tax and global waring are just ways of control. why pay more for what you already have. tax yourself to death, mile taxes, hotel taxes, car taxes, food taxes, luxury taxes, ect ect ect, too much government destroys, and its working good here.

5/26/2009 8:45:34 PM

Wow! Just another attack on our fundamental freedoms! We MUST stop this carousel. I am not my neighbors police nor do I want to be. Our wonderful country was not set up as a caretaker for me nor anyone else. We are to each take care of our own. I do not understand this extravagant idea that we must depend on our government. Where is MY right to VOTE on issues such as this? This totally smacks of being UNconstitutional. It's nice that we have the freedom to speak our minds here on this forum but the people we need to be talking with are our Senators and Legislators. Speak your mind where it count! May your life be blessed and I pray you will be able to continue to make choices...whether it be a soda or which house you choose to live in.

5/26/2009 5:28:38 PM

why stop at sugary drinks? why not everything that's unhealthy for us? that way organic crops and meats would be competitive in price? I am all for a fat tax, tax people on their body fat percentage. if you're fat, you have a higher tax, that would give us all incentive to get our butts off the couch and move around, eat healthier and such. why should there not be one? an obese person costs tax-payers (and employers) more money than those in shape, so fat people should pay more of the costs. I'd think twice about stopping at McD's and getting the great taste that those chemicals give those burgers and fries.

5/26/2009 4:14:33 PM

Oh you people make me laugh. As if I am truly afraid of the government taking over my life. You are so afraid of the government taking over your life by adding on a small tax on something that does nothing for people but destroy them for just a few gulps of satisfaction. The choice will still be there for you to make whether to buy it or not. And you're also afraid of the government profiting off of people's choices? I am not afraid of that. Frankly, I am glad we're actually starting to get our head out of the sand and admit that if we want something out of the government, we must pay for it. Yes, I support taxes. I especially support taxes such as this which point society in the right direction, and it won't affect me anyway since I do not buy the stuff. Hopefully this tax will make other, better drinks more competitive against soda. I hope this is only the beginning of consumption taxes. Bring on plastic bag, gas, and other oil product taxes. I'd rather have that than more income tax.

5/26/2009 3:47:52 PM

I do not think that soda should be taxed. I enjoy a soda now and then, just not as part of my regular daily diet. I think a smarter choice would be to eliminate this item and fast food items from goverment food aid. I was at a fast food resturant and some lady with 4 kids spend $36 with her goverment card. She could have shopped at a grocery store and got several fine quality meals for that money. Why should everyone have to pay for other peoples bad choices!!

tiarr watkins_2
5/26/2009 3:23:44 PM

We are already over taxed on gasoline and other needed goods. Where will it stop?

5/26/2009 12:26:02 PM

I like beer, wine, soda, fruit juice, milk and lots of other foods and beverages. What I consume is my business alone. The government needs to back off or be made to back off. Those of you who think this tax is a good idea, I must ask, who made you the boss of me? It's none of your business what I eat or don't eat. It's not your business to make me healthier.

m mcwilliams
5/26/2009 12:17:50 PM

When is it going to stop? They are meddling too much now. If they get away with this...what is next? That you can ONLY eat organic foods? That you can't eat meat? We need LESS government in our lives. We need to take responsibility to ourselves...if we don't then tough. In my opinion most of what is wrong these days is lack of responsibility, common courtesy, lack of a sense of humor and civility. Until we quit depending on others to take care of us and make decisions for us...we are lost. Be self sufficient, stay away from government dependencies, take responsibility for your own life and that of your family and we will all be much better off.

laura cone
5/26/2009 11:36:20 AM

It is unfortunate people cannot treat their bodies better all by themselves. It is horrible people only remotely take care of themselves after a health scare. Soda is not a necessity. I don't feel it is a grocery item. Most other things purchased for self gratification or enjoyment are taxed - why not soda. It is sad that the closer to the poverty level you are, the more health concerns you have, especially obesity. Perhaps if you cannot buy soda with food stamps, you won't drink so much of it. I am on have food stamps. We do buy soda on ocassion and only as a treat. We try to buy raw and organic foods as much as possible. Unfortunately, many people who are on government assistance do not know how easy it can be to make your own meals and that cooking and freezing meals can be closer to that 5 star restaurant than some frozen chicken nuggets and french fries.

5/26/2009 11:08:02 AM

You cannot legislate diet! That is not what our government is for! Did everyone quit smoking and drinking because of taxes on tobacco and alcohol? NO!! The smokers and drinkers I know just complain and keep diong it. The government "sticks it's nose" into too much of our business as it is. Tax! Tax! Tax! Then spend it on those who won't do for themselves.

5/26/2009 10:46:08 AM

What a wonderful idea, tax all the vises that get humanity in trouble, food, drink, smoke, drugs. Only the wealthy could afford them and they can afford the consequences.

5/26/2009 10:27:50 AM

The way I see it we (the society as a whole) will end up paying with a tax or without. The high cost of our health care can be seen as a form of taxation. It is a reflection of our unhealthy life choices, so the more sugar we eat the higher our health care costs will be. A more proactive way to address the issue is to tax the products directly so that those of us that don't consume garbage aren't paying for others bad ideas. This would be the outcome of the current soda tax. This brings the issue into people's minds when they make the purchases and hopefully it will modify their behaviors in a more favorable direction. In the long run it will be cheaper for everyone if people never get sick in the first place, so it seems to me that addressing obesity at the point of consumption, rather than later when sickness and disease set in, is a more intelligent way to fix things. Just wishing the problem away by ignoring our neighbors and cursing the government wont work. The sooner we realize that the decisions we make affect everyone else, the sooner we can begin dealing with the problems in an intelligent, logical, and constructive way. Alternative methods of modifying behavior could be looked at as well. What would happen if we created sub-pools of insured people who didn't smoke, drink excessively, or consume processed foods. Statistically this group would have a much lower health care cost to the system so allowing them to group together and opt out in a way would have two effects. One being that the people who make unhealthy choices would be left to pay for their own mistakes. This would induce a monetary incentive for them to change their behavior. The second effect reinforces the first since the healthy group of people would have lower insurance rates, thus supporting their life choices. Just a thought. There are many ways to modify behavior other than taxing.

5/26/2009 10:15:15 AM

I agree whole-heartedly that most of us have a weight problem. However, it is wrong to put blame on just soda. If they put a tax on everything that is bad for us, there would be nothing left. Anything with sugar would be taxed... because processed sugars are bad and we have a tendency to indulge. Processed flours are bad... all the chemicals in the foods, etc.... The problem lies in the fact that we are all working so hard, we don't have time to worry about what we are putting into our bodies. We are programmed for "convenience". There is already a "sin tax" on alcohol and tabacco.... If it goes on soda, then it should be on donuts, sugar, flour, cookies, cakes, etc.... Where will it end?

amanda sawatka
5/26/2009 8:54:44 AM

I personally don't have a problem with anything unhealthy being taxed! Alcohol, cigarettes, soda, little debbie snacks, you name it! And put a little sticker by those things to announced that it is a taxed item. I guarantee you that people would cut back on buying and feeding their family crap. It doesn't bother me, since my family hardly ever buys the processed crap that is passed for food at our grocery stores. Obviously, a LOT of people in our country are too lazy or stupid to feed themselves properly, which affects not only health insurance premiums, but GENERATIONS. I often wonder why it is more expensive to eat unaltered, natural foods straight from the earth to the store than it is to buy stuff that has ingredients from 20 diffrent suppliers and is half chemicals. Isn't it expensive to process and package food? If they want to make a crap food tax, I'm all for it. At least then it would give eating right and being healthy a positive affect on the thing most Americans are most concerned about - the almighty dollar.

5/26/2009 8:29:48 AM

Aspartame is much worse than sugar. Even if sodas are taxed, people will still eat fast food, chips, and cookies. Eventually all the extra taxes will make it less rewarding for those with lower incomes to even hold down a job. Then more people will end up on welfare. But what the government really needs to do is quit spending money that it doesn't have,stop the earmarks and the wasting. And maybe some of our government officials could take a pay cut like the rest of us, at least those of us who still have jobs.

5/26/2009 8:01:22 AM

Boy the nanny state brigades are out in force. If you think more taxes are the answer then you pay them for me. Come on, put YOUR money where your fat mouth is. I despise your kind. Lets change the whole way of taxing. Every one must register for a political party at age !8. You can change every censes year, but you have to still pay for what you use unless it's repealed. If your party wants nanny state health care and votes for it you get it and YOU pay for it. Those who don't want in don't have to pay for your wants from the nanny state. Feel free to give all you have to the government so that bureaucrat can run your life for you. Lets see the tone of your tune when YOU have to pay for it and I don't. Wait, I can already hear it. "thats not fair!' Whine, whine, whine. Ken

alan jones_1
5/26/2009 7:42:32 AM

A tax on the containers I can see, the food in them? No. If people are stupid enough not to take care of themselves - they can eat themselves into oblivion. And Ron Paul was right. If you want to rely on the fine people in Government to legistlate health for you fine - I'll pass. Lets do away with income tax and rely on a consumption tax.

5/26/2009 7:33:03 AM

Not just the "sugary" sodas. It should include all of the sodas and alcoholic beverages. We should add to the gas tax to slow the waste of petrolium and to press for more economic vehicles and alternate energy vehicles. For thos that don't believe in taxes, let's keep a few things in mind. Since the advent of income taxes, we are paying the least that was ever levied. We demand more services be provided by our government. My suggestion for cutting spending, for those that want no taxes,is to eliminate the military, the police and fire protection agencys. Let's add highways to drive on, including bridges, to that list. Let's not forget that social security, medicare/medicaid and unemployment insurance are taxes. Let's force people to work until they die and if you're out of work, too bad. That's real compassion.

cliff avant
5/26/2009 7:19:54 AM

Unconstitutional!!! Any such tax imposed by the Federal Government is not permitted by the U.S. constitution. I agree that it would be a good source of revenue - just like other 'sin' taxes on alcohol and cigarettes. There lies the problem - billions of dollars for the government means that they really don't want you to quit because if you did quit the revenue would go away. Maybay a tax tax on each pound that you are over the average wieght for your age would encourage people not to destroy thier bodies with sugar, corn syrup,etc. Oh, but that is unconstitutional too! The government needs to stay out of our lives completely! I say that and I am not a libertarian! Just a teacher who has actually read the constitution!

5/26/2009 6:44:27 AM

No more TAXES!!! The "government" was not instituted to make dietary decisions for us. BTW, who can trust them? These are the same people who approved Vioxx! They are in bed with big pharma. Interesting that they don't want to tax the chemical soup also known as diet soda... If they were really concerned about obesity in America, HFCS would be banned and stevia would be used as a sweetener--real stevia, not the fake manufactured stuff. Ron Paul was right.

5/26/2009 6:34:16 AM

My father used to tell me there were two things that ruled the world. Fear and Greed. I guess he forgot about Stupidity. Maybe while we are all out for taxing those who are a drain on the medical system we should look at taxing those people who are in hospitals or nursing homes. People who require physical therapy, speech therapy, occupational therapy - these people are abusing the system. Constantly going back for the same thing again and again. Maybe if my friends daughter had chose not to get into the car that ended up in an accident from being hit by a drunk driver then she would not have ended up in the hospital for 4 months, followed by 6 months of physical therapy. If she had made a different choice then she would not be such a drain on our medical system. We should raise taxes on cars and maybe people would think twice about getting into one. Maybe impose a "Dangerous Usage Tax" on all private transportation. Lets not stop there. We could impose a Lack of Fitness Tax on those people who don't have a gym membership. After all if they were going to the gym then they wouldn't be overweight and then they wouldn't be in need of medical care either. An Non-Nutritional Tax on foods high in sodium, fat, carbs, and calories. After all they really don't need to eat these items. And if they cut them out then they wouldn't have medical problems either. And what about our military personal? They should have to pay a "Job Choice Tax". I mean, how dare they. Putting themselves in situations where they know they are possibly going to get hurt. Those military people. Geez. They are the biggest drain on our medical system. Missing arms and legs, losing their hearing or sight because they "chose" to fight for freedom. How ridiculous. They should have to pay the highest taxes of all of us. And both me and my hubs are prior military. So those who are retired, or who are not on active se

maryann myers
5/26/2009 6:23:42 AM

I think if soda is going to be taxed, then all sugary products should be taxed as well. Thus said, I think taxing sodas would be a good start, and a warning to manufacturers of unhealthy sugar-laden foods to clean up their act by a designated date, or else. The manufacturers of these unhealthy sodas will not stop using the processed sugars in such high levels on their own, or they would have done it by now. Same with all the other products targeted toward children and sugar-addicted adults. It is sad commentary for the way we, as a whole, eat in this country. Sugar and caffiene, we can't seem to do without them.

5/26/2009 6:20:15 AM

My father used to tell me there were two things that ruled the world. Fear and Greed. I guess he forgot about Stupidity. Maybe while we are all out for taxing those who are a drain on the medical system we should look at taxing those people who are in hospitals or nursing homes. People who require physical therapy, speech therapy, occupational therapy - these people are abusing the system. Constantly going back for the same thing again and again. Maybe if my friends daughter had chose not to get into the car that ended up in an accident from being hit by a drunk driver then she would not have ended up in the hospital for 4 months, followed by 6 months of physical therapy. If she had made a different choice then she would not be such a drain on our medical system. We should raise taxes on cars and maybe people would think twice about getting into one. Maybe impose a "Dangerous Usage Tax" on all private transportation. Lets not stop there. We could impose a Lack of Fitness Tax on those people who don't have a gym membership. After all if they were going to the gym then they wouldn't be overweight and then they wouldn't be in need of medical care either. An Non-Nutritional Tax on foods high in sodium, fat, carbs, and calories. After all they really don't need to eat these items. And if they cut them out then they wouldn't have medical problems either. And what about our military personal? They should have to pay a "Job Choice Tax". I mean, how dare they. Putting themselves in situations where they know they are possibly going to get hurt. Those military people. Geez. They are the biggest drain on our medical system. Missing arms and legs, losing their hearing or sight because they "chose" to fight for freedom. How ridiculous. They should have to pay the highest taxes of all of us. And both me and my hubs are prior military. So those who are retired, or who are not on active se

5/26/2009 5:23:24 AM

I think taxing soda's is a lot of garbage. Parents need to stop buying them for obese children. I don't drink that many soda's but I enjoy one ever so often. I think this taxing business has to stop and parents need to be aware of what their child is drinking. Soon they will find aspertane is not good for you either. what will they do then, tax it? So my vote is no taxes on soda's. If you can't smack your own hand away from something you don't need then you have a major problem.

5/26/2009 12:26:45 AM

I hope it does pass. The tax increase on cigarettes helped me quite smoking, so maybe a tax increase on soda would help me kick the habit of carbonated bev.

bonnie duke_2
5/25/2009 7:22:46 PM

You bet I would and I'm a soda drinker. We can't continue to borrow from Peter to pay Paul. Our "new" health care system needs to be funded and if sodas are one of the items causing problems (obesity, diabetes and more), then it's fair to charge us extra to drink them.

jim pecenka_2
5/25/2009 6:09:59 PM

The Federal Government has no authority to spend money on health care. Read the US Constitution for this info, Article 1 Section 8. Since they have no authority to spend they also have none to lay taxes for such spending. Im allergic to artificial sweeteners. Do you suppose Id get any relief under the Americans with Disabilities Act?

5/25/2009 5:10:58 PM

most taxes are illegal. no more taxes! obama plans to tax the hell out of us for everything. and as for diet soda.. it causes more obesity than sugar sodas, thanks to the likes of evil monsanto, who also makes aspartame, which i believe was a failed experiment for roundup weed killer. and corn syrup is genetically modified and about half of it contains mercury. how? who knows? i believe the best thing we can do is to simply not comply. peaceful noncompliance, no matter what new laws they try to saddle us with. and don't give your money to monsanto! buy heirloom seeds and grow real food. that's the only way you can know what you're eating, thanks to all the new lying labels they use now. don't give an evil government any of your money to use against us. noncompliance!

megan coleman
5/25/2009 4:45:12 PM

There are so many things wrong with so many things. Gee, talk about waste. Let's stop using post-its and start using reusable paper clips and pieces of scratch paper! Throw away this, disposable that. What ever happened to a toilet bowl brush you use over and over and cloth rags you can wash again and again? It makes me sick! All gov't officials should take huge salary cuts that should go directly to the deficit. Hmmm....bankers make too much money too; let's cut their salaries and start helping people keep the houses they have put their heart and soul in. Lawyers too...set up a fund to feed the homeless. Taxing sugary drinks and foods should go directly to stem cell research to end diabetes. That would quickly pay for itself! If people can't afford to pay for the taxes on sugary drinks, cigarettes and alchohol, then maybe they should stop consuming those items. LOL, it's not like they would die if they had to stop!!!! I have diabetes and I don't have health insurance. I don't cost the country any thing for my disease; it goes on untreated. Therefore, would it be fair for me to have to pay taxes towards helping other people suck the system dry? Why not? Just as ironical as any other subject we could bring up. Basically, we need to stop wasting, buy American made products and help the needy as much as we possibly can.

becka schexnayder
5/25/2009 3:40:25 PM

Why can't the American people create their own voting system and vote on or against how the government should be set up or laws? Why do we have to wait until they allow us to vote. Why do we have to wait until the end of four years? Can't we vote someone out if they are not doing a good job? We should have that right.

becka schexnayder
5/25/2009 3:36:57 PM

There were 8.5 million Amerians out of work 2 months ago. The numbers had growen since then. American having job had taken cuts in their salaries or their jobs got cut in hours. This means the fed and state, along with social security and medicare will be getting less taxes from the American people. So why does our state and federal want to tax us on soft dranks and 5 cent tax on plastic bags? And why are we taking salarie cuts when our senators took a raise this year? The U.S.House members took an automatic pay raise of 2.5 million. The people that still have jobs will be paying their taxes along with extra tax on all creative taxes that state and federal can dream up. For those out of work...God bless them expertly if they have children. They will be paying double tax, creative tax on every item they buy. Look at property tax. We put a down payment on home and land and pay every month to pay it off for say 30 years. Why are we paying a property tax to the state we live in??? Many of us had called out senators and told them to vote "No" when Bush wanted to bill out Wall Street and the banks. Our senators voted no the first time but yes the second. And we still let them stay in office...by the way..next year is a voting year. And each bank CEO walk away with 10,000.00 per say. The fuel tax, the cigarette tax, the plastic bag tax, and now the soft drank tax is only a drop in the bucket of what's coming. Question on the stimulating funds to the states. Have anyone seen any road work or bridge repair done in their state?? Big question: How to we get the control back on our government???????? I don't believe we should let the senators stay in office for life. They should do only two terms and each term is three years. Also why do we allow a continue salary/payment to past presidents?? Why can't the American people create their own voting system and vote on or against how the government should be set up or laws? Why do we have to wait unti

brad jackson_2
5/25/2009 3:18:50 PM

I think this is a decent idea but there should be a much heavier tax on alcohol and tobacco. Alcohol and tobacco has a massive cost in health care but it also effect non users from second hand smoke, traffic accidents, broken homes from alcoholism and more than I can think of. The only problem I see with this idea is where do they stop next some genius will suggest a tax on red meat or white bread. I certainly don't want anyone telling me what I can and can't eat or taxing to to the point I can no longer afford to consume it. We have lost to many freedoms in this country already. Our country is becoming far to socialist. We are getting away from our founding beliefs and throwing away our freedom.

5/25/2009 2:54:13 PM

Get rid of the soda pop and the issue is done. We need to overhaul the foods that we eat in this country and then there would not be so many health issues. The manufactures of processed foods are getting rich on everyone's health at the expense of the healthcare system.

tom moore_2
5/25/2009 2:12:23 PM

Don't kid yourselves America! This is nothing more than an attempt at double taxation. I see a Boston Cola party in America's future. All to fast, we forget our past and, like a dog returns to it's vomit, we too return to what our fathers fought and died to get away from. And all of this because people are too lazy to take responsibility for themselves, and feel it better to have our Government take responsibility for them. Wake up! They're not interested in taking responsibility for you, they want to take your MONEY.

5/25/2009 2:06:20 PM

Alas, Jewel. You make an important point, but our system is full of double taxation. The most serious is the so-called proposed "cap and trade". Cap-n-trade is a tax, plain and simple. Because of this devilish plan, the price of our electricity will skyrocket (I think that's the word BO used.) But wait! We pay all kinds of taxes on electricity. Look at your bill. If the bill goes up, so do the taxes. That's a double tax. Cap and trade tax will raise our bill and then we'll pay tax on the tax! Others, long is existence: The tax on dividends is a double tax. A corporation pays taxes on its earnings. Then when it pays out the leftover earnings to its shareholders, each shareholder must pay tax again on those same earnings. (Enter the S corporation. Signed into law by Eisenhower.) The death tax (estate tax) is a double tax. Wealth is accumulated over a lifetime by individual saving and investing after-tax income. At death, it's taxed again. Of course, not everyone pays the death tax, so that's thought to be a good thing. I don't think so and I certainly won't have to pay it.

george works
5/25/2009 2:04:08 PM

I think this is a dandy idea. I'm all for optional taxes that I can avoid by living as I should be doing anyway. I live on a Caribbean island where people drink a lot of sugary drinks. Two out of three of them are overweight and one out of three is clinically obese. Diabetes is the major health problem here. My health insurance costs reflect my neighbors' habits.

5/25/2009 1:54:13 PM

"Sugary" is a problem. But, that horrid High Fructose Corn Syrup is the real problem. It is as unnatural as it can be... it alters metabolism, being the main source of obesity and diabetes. Sugary drinks have existed for a long, long time. The incidence of obesity and diabetes have only increased to epidemic proportions along side the increased use of high fructose corn syrup- in drinks, breads, cereals, cookies, snacks,etc- because it is a cheap* filler and sweetener. (*read: more profit for the manufacturer who uses it). Consumers really shouldn't be taxed for buying sugary drinks. Manufacturers should be taxed for using HFCS in their products! If manufacturers went back to using 'real' ingredients so that Americans could all go back to eating 'real' food, everyone would be healthier!

5/25/2009 1:35:57 PM

This soda tax would mean that in a lot of states we would be double taxed -- one soda tax (beverage tax) by the state and another federal tax --- Is this not against what America was built on? No double tax.

5/25/2009 1:26:14 PM

Cooperation between and amongst individuals who acknowledge the Ultimate Source of any and all abundance (including health) is sufficient to satisfy all desires congruent with a virtuous life. For an adult, Government is the last resort and should be grudgingly empowered to do only those few things that absolutely require that kind of blunt force. What is this "we" or "society". These things exist only because Government (i.e. politicians) insinuates itself amongst us and usurps our personal power. Thanks, but no thanks. Government is a first resort only for the lazy and mislead. And there are always sufficient numbers of glib, charlatan smilers in a hurry to accumulate the wasted power too easily ceded to them by such gullible children. As my grandma used to say, "Too much sugar for a nickle." If we just pay this tax, then everything will be all right - until the next crisis. Any gov't powerful and willing to tax soda can implement a vitamin tax, herbal tax, tea tax, coffee tax, internet tax, TV tax, radio tax. Black car tax, bicycle tax, overtime tax (OT is illegal in France.) You can see in England windows still blocked up from the 16th century window tax.

5/25/2009 1:15:23 PM

If the government is so concerned about our health, then they would make it against the law to make sodas. It is just another way to make money off us.

5/25/2009 1:11:19 PM

Interesting,, the government wants to tax a product, that Unhealthy as it maybe, that contains a relatively natural product, but does not want to touch “diet” drinks which are full of pure poison,, this besides the interest in the government once again poking their nose in our lives, should be a great concern. And really how much of any tax to “help” the peasants has really been put back in our pocket or truly been used as promised,,, wake up people!!

kamia at heart's haven
5/25/2009 12:39:54 PM

There's nothing different on a tax such as this than a tax on Nicotine products. The entire society is bearing the burden, with Medicare and School-based (taxpayer supported) programs aimed at trying to combat obesity and treating the results of consuming products that shouldn't be produced in the first place. If we really want to talk about taking responsibility for ourselves, then we should do away with state-funded welfare, disability insurance, social security, Medicare and Medicaid, and the like - which of course we don't want to do. So why not take steps to lower the costs of providing these services - before they don't exist any more?

stephanie schneider_1
5/25/2009 12:25:08 PM

So while we give up this right to choose as americans what we do with our own selves.... what Next....Health Food Stores? Vitamin Taxes because in Their Opinion they are not needed? This is only the beginning!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

lucille martin_2
5/25/2009 12:13:20 PM

When are we going to take responsibiliity for ourselves? We don't need any more government interventions. Use our brains and take care of ourselves. I very seldom drink sweet drinks, but if I wanted to, it is my decision and I don't think the government should tax people because they are obese. They have elected to be that way.

5/25/2009 10:59:12 AM

Good to hear. I hope it passes! About time.

5/25/2009 10:48:43 AM

I"m all for better health and environmental protection, but that's going to far. Telling people to make healthier choices or else they'll pay more is morally wrong and the government is way out of it's league with that one. Personally, I'm not a soda drinker except for once in a while. And when those times come, I do not want to pay more because someone has decided that I shouldn't be drinking soda. Taxing smoking is one thing. But when it comes to food and beverages, it's going to far. Government needs to stay out of those areas. Soda is not the only thing people consume that is harmful to the environment.

david shanley-dillman_1
5/25/2009 10:34:38 AM

I think that taxing soda is the way to go. As with any source of CO2 (carbonated soda), taxing soda in the form of Carbon Credits would help alleviate the amount of CO2 put into the atmosphere. Not only should we tax soda, we should tax cows for the amount of methane that they put into the atmosphere. Methane is a much more powerful greenhouse gas. A better idea would be to tax volcanoes for all the ash, CO2 and sulfur that they expel into the atmosphere. In reality, taxing doesn’t change people’s behavior. Education does. Smokers still buy cigarettes; even with incredible taxation. And folks will still buy soda. The money that comes from the taxes would probably never go to the right cause anyway. Educate people about affordable, healthier choices. Try drinking water; that’s what my grandparents told me when I wanted a soda.

5/25/2009 9:15:03 AM

Definitely no to taxation of sodas. As one comment said, the federal government has no business in controlling personal behavior. I don't smoke, but was opposed to targeting tobacco. I don't drive an suv, but, am opposed to targeting the type vehicle people choose to drive. I drive very little and am very interested in clean air, but am opposed to targeting oil or coal companies. It is amazing to me the only one true area of personal choice the president emphasizes is in regards to abortion. We are endowed with certain inalienable rights by our Creator for life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. We are out of the frying pan and now in the fire. So much for change, it's the same old same old.

the brays
5/23/2009 12:14:35 PM

The soda tax is just another drop in the bucket. What we should really be looking at is what they are putting in our food and drink. Compare the ingredients in a can of cola from the US to a can of cola from New Zealand or Australia or a country in Europe. The contents are usually different. We are getting too many chemically manufactured ingredients put into our food. If you look closely, you'll see less preservatices and a lot less food with MSGs in them. Its not the taxes we should be concerned about, its the contents of our foods.

5/23/2009 12:33:33 AM

John, Reread my comment. We are in agreement. My point was that the idea of taxing sodas is a bad idea and accomplishes nothing. I don't want more government in my life....I want as little as possible. To the person who says one cannot afford healthy foods....you needn't buy "organic" foods and specialty foods to eat healthy. Some of the healthiest foods are the least expensive.

5/22/2009 5:55:35 PM

I think the government is just trying to make a money grab. The tax might have the benefit of reducing the consumption of soft drinks (and jobs, perhaps?), but any taxes raised aren't likely to be spent on anything to do with reducing or paying for health care. Call me a pessimist or a realist as you like, but politics is politics. We have straight across the board democrat power, and they're busy having a power fight. Goodbye to Hope and Change on that issue. Increasing the deficit tremendously doesn't help. Why should I trust the Fed. Gov't to do what they say they will?

5/22/2009 10:40:54 AM

Dena, A single mother of two also frequently gets significant amounts of public assistance that she can use to purchase plenty of healthy food for her and her kids. The problem is, and I've seen this first hand, is that many people prefer to use food stamps/cards on chips, cookies, soda and other unnecessary luxuries. They're unable to afford quality food only because they waste assistance on tasty but nutritionally useless foods. It is not hard to buy healthy foods on a budget. It merely requires commitment and dedication by the buyer.

5/22/2009 9:00:11 AM

We can educate ourselves into the grave but it is not going to change the fundamental problem. It is cheaper to buy soda, white bread, white flour and things with HFCS in them than it is to buy whole grain, organic foods. Lower income people have to look at the bottom line. Wal Mart's sandwich sliced bread is $1.19 in my area this week. A loaf of Arnold's whole grain sandwich sliced without HFCS is $2.93. The single mama working 2 jobs to pay for her kids cannot afford the Arnold's bread and if she is working 2 jobs, she is not going to take the time to bake bread, even if she could find whole wheat, organic flour at a price she can afford. We have got to stop giving tax breaks to these corporations that are heavily invested in the things that are making Americans obese so that the farmers can get back into the business of putting healthy food into our mouths.

sandy west_2
5/22/2009 8:52:51 AM

I for one am sick and tired of the government using the health issue to raise taxes, when it got to the point where both parents had to work to survive that's when our kids started getting obese and with the cost of food most people buy what they can afford and unfortunately it is all the fattening stuff. We do not need the government telling us what we can and cannot eat, what! we can not get old now because we get illnesses with age and it cost the medical system, or maybe they will put a tax on age too!

5/22/2009 8:51:20 AM

Marilyn, The government has no business or right to single out foods and beverages for special taxes, under the guise of attempting to modify dietary behavior. Unless you're comfortable with the government one day arbitarily taxing the vegetables you grow in your own garden, don't be so quick to advocate taxation of foods or beverages that you personally deem undesirable, unhealthy, etc. Government's job is to maintain the public peace and safety, not to modify personal behavior. I would think that readers of Mother Earth News would likely agree that less government involvement in our private lives is probably for the best.

5/22/2009 8:48:43 AM

I don't drink soda. Does that make me a tax dodger?

5/21/2009 11:56:47 PM

Putting a tax on "certain sodas, fruit juices, etc." and not on Twinkies and everything else that is pure empty calories would be like putting a tax on regular cigarettes and not "lights." It doesn't attack the real problem, which is a lack of personal respect for one's body and health. Education and some form of reward system for those who try to improve their habits would have more far reaching effect. Our culture has a general lack of respect and gratitude for the good foods we have available to us. Until a personal sense of respect for the body can be fostered, the above tactic will only send people to the junk foods in another aisle!

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