Cook County Passes High Tax Increase On Sugary Drinks

110px-Big_gulp6480250px-municipal_flag_of_chicagosvgMichael Bloomberg is back with his Big Gulp obsession. Years ago, I wrote a series of columns contesting the legality and the logic of his ban on sugary drinks, which were later struck down by the courts. Now he has successfully targeted my home city of Chicago with a $1 million contribution to pass a heavy tax on sugary beverages in Cook County and it appears that it may pass. While I agree with the sentiment (and we try to keep sugary drinks away from our kids except on rare occasions), I view these laws as ineffective, regressive, and paternalistic. The tax passed yesterday by a close vote.

The law combines two problematic trends in Chicago: ever rising taxes on every aspect of life and paternalistic regulations dictating proper living.

Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle proposed the tax which will bring in more needed money. The entire state is still struggling with ruinous pension deals cut by politicians with unions, particularly the teachers’ union. Those deals got them endorsements but gutted the state. Despite those deals (and horrendous give aways like the infamous parking meter deal), those politicians were simply reelected and no one has faced any repercussions for the poor (and at times corrupt) decision making. I have family and friends who complain that every aspect of life (even putting words on your business windows) are taxed or subject to permit fees.

Preckwinkle cast the deciding vote after a tie on the tax. The tax go into effect July 1. The county’s 5.2 million residents will see the tax on all sugar and artificially sweetened drinks, including pop, sports drinks, lemonade and iced tea. They will see a staggering increase of 72 cents on the cost of a six-pack of soda or 68 cents for a 2-liter bottle. That is not a lot to my family but it is a lot to many families struggling to survive in this economy. It will also add 32 cents to fountain drinks at a penny an ounce so a 7-Eleven Gulp would go up 32 cents and on a Double Gulp to 50 cents.

What do you think?

68 thoughts on “Cook County Passes High Tax Increase On Sugary Drinks

  1. Independent Bob, Ditto. I quit in 1989. Had smoked for 15 years. Quit cold turkey. That was my first attempt and sure as hell didn’t want to do it again. I don’t get how these people “quit” 20-30 times.

  2. It seems that the crux of this argument is government intrusion on our lives. Regardless of how it is formatted, government intrudes on our lives. Twice in recent history Republican governments have intruded under the guise of not intruding and made a disaster of our economy and retarded American society severely. First with Reagan and then with Bush. In both instances there was an exchange of interests between the House and the Executive. There was in the case of Reagan ‘The Evil Empire’. In the case of Bush there was and remain the Islamic Terrorist Thuggery. Now after a seven year stabilization there is a trumped up fear mongering, the likes never seen before when there is, in reality, no ‘Evil Empire’ and the Thugs are being slowly beaten. We have the quintessential huckster, creating the illusion of a need for himself, and the chickens handing over the keys to this, their worst enemy.

    However, unlike the previous Republican disasters where blame could be fired at the Democrats in Congress or the Senate, to excuse the genius of Reagan and Bush, there are no obstacles for this present huckster. Trump has absolutely everything he needs to either succeed or fail. We will all profit if he succeeds and we will all suffer if he fails. If he succeeds and we all profit, I will be first in line to admit and applaud. But the fact of the matter is that if and when things go South, it will all be those who got suckered into this circus that will be to blame. When our economy is in tatters the only thing worse will be having to read the blame placed on Obama or the Clintons, or whomever else. It took less than two years for the idiot Bush supporters to start blaming Obama and the Democrats for eight tragic years of shame and disaster. Let’s see how long it will take for Republicans to jump the Trump ship and start looking for others to blame. He is your monster.

    • I still don’t understand how all you self righteous government folk choose not to recognize or see through your own biases. Obama-Clinton have been killing Muslim peoples by the boat load, continue to destroy their lands and their means, but we are supposed to be “nice” to who’s left as they leave their ravaged lands behind. Geeeeeeez. Obama towed the line and Clinton was planning to put it on steriods. Jury is out on Trump, but watching.

      We were (are) hardly in a win situation. We just killed a pile more last weekend. I was not a W supporter, but at least I am objective enough not to live a bias.

    • “Trump has absolutely every thing he needs to succeed or fail”.
      Whoever won this election was looking at a c. $20 Trillion deficit, continuing upheaval in much of the Mideast, a divided, polarized
      American public, etc.
      Had Hillary been elected, Isaac would likely have mentioned these difficulties, in addition to her being saddled with all of the mistakes of Bush, Reagan, Coolidge, and Lincoln.
      But Trump has “everything he needs”.

  3. Lake Michigan has some pretty good water. After a little processing, it’s a great drink. It has no calories and doesn’t stain clothing or teeth, and won’t get you all sticky or chubby. Save a few centavos and try some.
    Save your money for the taxes on food and damn near everything else you’re nicked for, including your vehicle sticker in addition to your license tags.
    I like Chicago, visit often to see the grandkids. I hate your traffic, which isn’t so bad at 5AM on the way home.

  4. Cigarette smoking is dangerous– a hazard to your health. Does that mean anything to you Bloomberg? Then legalize marijuana. Hoo, Hoo Hoo. Right here in NYC. Hoo, hoo, hoo.
    We got no more illegal… human creations.. No more dsrespect for… the United Nations.

    • Lee Harvey Oswald – I have been told by others on the blog that states that border legalized marijuana states have their highway patrol stop their cars more often. Revenue is revenue. Arizona has medical marijuana, however we did not legalize it like the other four states. California did. Could be a money maker.

  5. This is yet another example of the fascism of the modern Progressive movement. Here we have Progressives demanding that Big Government control what we put into our mouths through the punishment of taxes.

    It is our responsibility what we consume.

    It has been conclusively proven that sin taxes do not decrease behavior. Rather, it creates a minority, strips it of worth, in order for others to approve taxes on them. We do this with the rich – being rich, they are morally inferior to us and therefor we freely vote for higher taxes on “the other guy.” Here, people who drink sodas are obviously unhealthy, in need of us controlling their nutrition, and inferior, hence we are morally superior in taxing them in order to help them.

    What the SJW Progressive does not understand is that the poor tend to have an unhealthier diet. These kinds of sin taxes disproportionately affect the homeless and the poor, who rather than simply stop consuming these products, just fork over more of their limited resources to get them.

    Paternalism, Big Government, and controlling of intimate behaviors of the population through force and government are the hallmarks of the fascism of Progressivism.

    I wish they would have a cathartic moment, and return to the more laudable classic liberalism. They seem in an awfully big hurry to get a dictator into power.

  6. Another libtard money grab. There’s no concern about sugary drinks. They’re just low hanging fruit when considered under the liberal mantra of “let no crisis go unattended”.

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