We at Sip & Savor were pleased to see this well thought-out opinion-editorial by Rob Raffety of the Mercatus Center that outlines the failed logic behind taxing soft drinks in yesterday's Daily Caller. The Daily Caller is an online publication geared toward the folks that live and work in D.C., but the author's common-sense analysis of the soda tax rings true in cities and states across the country.
Some highlights from the piece:
"…the very thing that makes sin taxes, or the soda tax, so successful at generating revenue is that they rarely achieve the desired health effects for which they are ostensibly adopted. This is because the degree to which people change their behavior in response to a tax varies widely depending on how high the tax is and how sensitive consumers are to the change in price. Consider Arkansas and West Virginia - both states levy taxes on soda: both rank very poorly in obesity, 10th and 3rd respectively. Are the residents of these states measurably better off-any less obese-because they pay higher prices for pop?
While the range of soda taxes varies from state to state, it’s safe to say that whatever rate the politicians come up with, it will never be high enough to stop everybody from buying soda. After all, if the tax worked, people would stop drinking soda and it wouldn’t raise any money at all. In other words, the notion that the true purpose of the soda tax is to make people healthier is all wet."
Couldn't have said it better ourselves.