Feb 232017

I mean, other than anybody…

Soda companies, supermarkets report 30-50 pct. sales drop from soda tax

Short from: Philadelphia institutes a high tax on sugary drinks. The end result is that people have stopped buying them… or at least, stopped buying them in city limits. And the end result of *that* is:

One of the city’s largest distributors says it will cut 20 percent of its workforce in March, and an owner of six ShopRite stores in Philadelphia says he expects to shed 300 workers this spring.

Good job.

The funniest part of the story is this panicky email from the Mayor:

I didn’t think it was possible for the soda industry to be any greedier … They are so committed to stopping this tax from spreading to other cities, that they are not only passing the tax they should be paying onto their customer, they are actually willing to threaten working men and women’s jobs rather than marginally reduce their seven figure bonuses.

Huh. You raise a tax on a product, and the people selling the product don’t cut the price of the product so that the customer pays the same? How scandalous!

The real question in situations like this is: are the people who push for this sort of thing, then act surprised when the inevitable happens, stupid, deluded or just lying? When you tax something, you get less of it. When you subsidize something, you get more of it. This not only just makes sense, it’s also historically supported.

Extra betterness: the city is relying on the soda tax to fund its schools. They had planned on $7.6 million per month in tax revenues for that purpose, but only drew in $2.3 million the first month. So, once again good job: linking childhood education to a tax scheme that you had to know would be a disastrous failure.

Even more betterocity: the results of this have meant that far less soda is sold in town, which means far less soda needs to be moved into town via truck, which means there’s less work for truckers, which means members of the Teamsters Union are seeing up to 70% pay cuts. Good job, Democrats who supported this: you’re ticking off the Teamsters.

For some fun reading, take a look at the Wikipedia page of Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney. Right after the section on the sugary drink tax he pushed is a section on his opposition to Donald Trump… with extra emphasis on how he’s going to maintain Philadelphia’s status as a crime-enabling “sanctuary city.” Yeah. I’m sure that’ll work out greeeeeaaaat.

 Posted by at 3:32 am
  • Herp McDerp

    The real question in situations like this is: are the people who push
    for this sort of thing, then act surprised when the inevitable happens,
    stupid, deluded, or just lying?

    Embrace the power of “and”!

  • xvdougl

    Those who know what’s best for us must rise and save us from ourselves. – Neil Peart

  • sferrin

    Wow, the Mayor calling the soda industry greedy. That’s chutzpah right there.

  • se jones

    >push for this sort of thing, then act surprised

    Which illuminates the great irony of left wing economic thought: when it comes to “sin taxes” they *absolutely* believe taxes will influence people’s behaviour, yet they somehow are cock-sure that taxes levied on businesses and “the rich” do not influence behaviour one iota.

    • publiusr

      That and soda just doesn’t have quite the grip tobaccy has on souls 😉

  • John Nowak

    I’m just surprised that cutting soda sales would have such a large impact on local stores.

    But yeah, the utter cluelessness of the social crusader is a thing to behold. I recall a sad story about some deluded parent who insisted on giving his sick kid some sort of quack therapy. Doctors and lawyers intervened, forcing the use of actual medicine. Kid died anyway, and said doctors and lawyers had the nerve to be surprised when the parents accused them of killing the kid.

    I asked one of them what they thought was going to happen. Never got an answer.