Monday, June 8, 2009

Dumb Letters: I'm Not Paying for That Either

From today's NYTimes, a response to an editorial concerning a potential tax on soda and other sugar-based empty-calorie drinks.

What happened to personal responsibility? What happened to parental responsibility? When did taxation become the best solution to any problem? Is the federal government the only entity in our country that can raise children now?

This is just another idea on how to raise money for state-sponsored health care with a fig leaf of a reason to do so. Let’s try removing soda machines from our schools, providing healthier school lunches and ensuring that our gym classes are financed. There are plenty of commonsense things that can be done to achieve healthier progeny, alas not many that simultaneously finance health care.

Hmm. Looks like this isn't a person who really cares much about this issue. It's just a knee-jerk anti-tax response.

Let's begin with the opening statement. We've got four rhetorical questions. Questions 1, 2 and 4 are the standard libertarian mantra that we're all responsible for our own lives and government should just butt the heck out, cultural forces be damned. But these are a bit of a smoke screen for Question 3, which is basically "stop taxing me". For anything. Ever.

How do we know this is the real issue? Let's go to paragraph 2, wherein the writer gives us some other "ideas" on how to reduce obesity in children. (I should point out that, contrary to the suggestion by the writer that these are original ideas, almost all of them are suggested in the editorial about which this letter was written.) So, if government doesn't have solutions to our problems, why are you suggesting them? Who's going to kick the soda machine vendors out? And how do we make up the lost revenue when they do? And how, pray tell, do we propose to finance those gym classes? Surely not taxes. Taxes are bad, in case you haven't heard.

The writer probably has a 12-Coke-a-day habit and isn't interested in having to shell out a few more bucks to feed his habit. The fig leaf is on this writer, who is so against "socialized" health care that any tax on anything that may be used to provide it in any form must be seen as bad.

1 comment:

Mrs. Chili said...

I have to admit that I've taken a break from political dumbassery. Once I heard the anti-choice people murdered a doctor, and then the idiots came out of the woodwork around here after we passed gay marriage ("they're going to start teaching it in schools!!!"), I just can't bring myself to listen for a while.

I'm glad I have you being the gatekeeper.