Most Americans pay between $8 and $12 for a case of soda, depending on where you are and how much tax is levied upon the purchase. But not if you live in Seattle.
Thanks to the left-wing city’s new soda tax, residents of The Emerald City are now paying almost $20 a case for their soda fix.
Who do you think this hurts the most?
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Right. The poor and middle classes.
The new tax went into effect on January 1 and the new cost is so outrageous that most stores are going to the expense of creating signs and posters to inform customers about why the prices of their sugared drinks have soared.
— Suzanne Phan (@SuzannePhan) January 5, 2018
Not surprisingly, many regular shoppers in the city have already started making plans to either drive outside the city to get their sugared drinks, or to start giving it up altogether.
“We’ll just go ahead and make the trip outside the city when we want to buy some,” Seattle citizen Dennis Peterson told KOMO News.
So, what is the deal with this foolish tax? Naturally, the city’s politicians think that the tax will bring in millions in new revenue. Time to pop the champaign corks because the gravy train is getting its steam on… if I can mix metaphors.
“The City of Seattle said the new tax is expected to generate about $15 million in the first year, which will help promote access to healthy food and address education funding shortfalls,” KOMO noted.
“We can now reinvest in programs like the Farm to Table program which increases food stipends and nutritional education programs,” Seattle City Council member Teresa Mosqueda smugly announced. “The Fresh Bucks Bag-To-Go Program makes sure kids have bags of food when they are not in school.”
Oh, and Seattle’s socialist politicians have a whole range of liberal programs that they claim the proceeds of the tax will benefit.
— Suzanne Phan (@SuzannePhan) January 6, 2018
But is it that easy? Can you just throw some confiscatory tax rate on something and raise some nice spending cash with no other consequences involved?
Well, we don’t actually have to guess. We have but to look a few thousand miles eastward to the City of Chicago to get our answer and it isn’t a good one. In fact, the Windy City already tried this trick on its people and not only did if fail — raising only a tiny portion of the money the politicians claimed it would — but, even in left-wing Chicago, the people rose up and forced the politicians to rescind the tax.
Months ago the Cook County Board, the county that boasts Chicago as its hub, levied a one cent per ounce tax on soda pop and sugared drinks. The tax was never popular. Even when it was passing the people were in the process of rising up against it and eventually the pressure got so bad that the board capitulated and announced that December 1 would mark the end of the tax.
The tax was set at a penny per ounce, so that was a hike of 20 cents per bottle of pop in a store cooler, 50 cents on a Double Gulp at 7-Eleven, and $2.88 on a case of pop at any store in the county.
Oh, but the results were supposed to be sweet, indeed. The tax was supposed to raise hundreds of millions of dollars for the county budget over the next few years. As the tax was being sold it was revealed that the county expected $18 million in new tax revenue in the first month of the tax. But all officials really got was $300,000 because people either bought their pop in another county or stopped buying pop altogether. So, when ever you hear a government entity proclaim how much they will make in taxes with a new tax, know this is always a lie.
In fact, I, myself, was proud to be a tax scofflaw. I live at the edge of Cook County and I didn’t once buy pop in my county during the time the tax was active. I purposefully drove a few miles out of my way to buy pop in a neighboring county. I was damned if I was going to give them my pop tax money! I was far from alone. I spoke to several store owners in the area and they all said they lost more than half their soda sakes during the tax.
So, Chicago proves the case. Taxes kill commerce and NEVER raise the amount lying politicians project they will.
All Seattle will find is a trickle of new revenue that won’t come anywhere near funding all the goodies they think they are ready to fund, a lot of poor people losing even more of the precious dollars they can’t afford to lose, and a million upset citizens.