The 2014 '30 Under 30'

Congrats to this year's 30 -- check out the full list here!

Soda regulations and scare tactics still not effective in scaring people thin

A common proposal to encourage healthy eating involves raising the price of unhealthy food. For example, the logic assumes that if soda prices were to skyrocket, then people would find a healthier drink to include in their diet, and that would solve part of the obesity problem in America.

Not so fast. Taxing sodas in an effort to reduce obesity has proven ineffective time after time.

A 2011 study found that people find substitutes for those calories. A popular alternative was beer. Those people, on average, would consume 2,000 more calories per month of the libation.

“This raises the question of switching one public policy problem to another,” said Tax Foundation economist Scott Drenkard, a panelist at Wednesday night’s even at The Fund for American Studies titled, “Scared to Death: How Government Nannies Are Creating A Culture of Alarmism.”

One of those problems includes the negative economic effect of increasing soda taxes on lower income individuals. They will buy the same amount, which results in spending a greater percentage of their income on soda instead of ceasing to purchase the product.

In 2011, 23 states considered a penny-per-ounce soda tax. The main motive was to reduce obesity. The $1.28 per gallon was the average tax for most of those states. Comparatively, most states have beer excise tax rates of 20 or 30 cents per gallon. Tennessee ranked highest at $1.17 per gallon.

“We’ve gone far from whatever economical rationale there might be for having a tax on food,” Drenkard said.

The tax code has proven to be a horrible alternative time and again as a failed method to combat obesity. This problem will only be solved when individuals make the decision to live a healthier lifestyle and employ good old fashioned personal responsibility.

 

Comments

Comments

  1. Roger Mitchell says:

    I’ve said this for yrs the only difference between America and the average communist country is in this country we spend / waste billion now trillions of dollars in a political process that we know the outcome already that will lean left to socialism and in a communist country they just do not waste the time or money they just up nd say this is how it will be shut up set down and get back to being good party members and go to work for the good of all our people , Obama and the new democratic party are the new face’s of communism Comrades

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