Taxing Junk Food

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by garybUK, Nov 16, 2010.

  1. garybUK Guest

    garybUK

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    #1
    Did anyone else see the panorama programme last night on BBC 1 (UK) about taxing fast/junk food?

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/panorama/hi/front_page/newsid_9184000/9184659.stm

    I know it's kind of been discussed here before but from an American spin, and some states in the USA are considering it.

    Denmark has introduced taxes on junk food and I think it's about time UK did so too.

    People are obviously taken in by the marketing / psychology of it all, price it higher so it removes the 'impulse' buy and remove advertisements and targeting at kids.

    The woman from Coca-Cola actually made me sick and I actually feel that company is evil in the fact they know they have a bad unhealthy product but she actually had the nerve to say it's 'safe and brings happiness', personally i'll be voting with my wallet and not buying anything from Coca-Cola corp.
     
  2. roadbloc macrumors G3

    roadbloc

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    #2
    As if we haven't got enough taxes. I get paid and then haemorrhage my wage to the government. I'm sorry, but it's people's choice what they eat. If they cannot moderate their diet, it's their own problem.
     
  3. garybUK thread starter Guest

    garybUK

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    People have a choice about cigarettes as well, fact is when taxes went up and advertising stopped for those the number of smokers + smoking related diseases went down.

    Like it or not we have a tax funded NHS system, people clearly can't make a educated choice so why not impose taxes to relieve the burden these people put on NHS?

    Just because someone can't be bothered cooking and eats McDonnalds every day, should that impact my need to use the NHS? no.....
     
  4. Killyp macrumors 68040

    Killyp

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    Absolutely agreed. Often, people don't know what's best for them.

    But it's not just their own problem - it's mine as well. I'm paying for the health service, and I'm also paying people to clean up the street outside my house every night which is absolutely literred with Burger King and McDonalds packaging, almost exclusively.
     
  5. dscuber9000 macrumors 6502a

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    #5
    I remember about a year ago there was this really cheesy political ad that had some lady pretending to be a single mother unloading groceries from her car and complaining about the "new taxes that so-and-so wants on junk food." Apparently that made it hard for her to "feed her family" as she literally handed a 2liter of Coke to her kids. :D

    Yeah... Americans really need to get off the junk food.
     
  6. Desertrat macrumors newbie

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    #6
    Absent fraudulent advertising, whether or not any food is "junk" is not government's business. Taxing any food of whatever sort is just plain evil and badnasty, anyhow. Doesn't matter if it's grocery store you-prepare-it food or any already-prepared food. Food should not be taxed.

    At the rate these fascists are going, it won't be long before breathing is considered a taxable privilege, not a biological necessity. Despicable creatures.
     
  7. CorvusCamenarum macrumors 65816

    CorvusCamenarum

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    #7
    Don't know if I said this in another thread or not, but instead of going the tax-happy route, I'd move the government subsidy from corn, which is found in damn-near everything these days, to healthier vegetables and fruits.

    It's completely asinine that one vegetable in the supermarket costs nearly as much as a burger from the value menu off the fast food restaurant of your choice, and in some cases more.
     
  8. it5five macrumors 65816

    it5five

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    #8
    I agree.

    How do farm subsidies work in the UK? Are there huge subsidies for corn in the EU like we have in the US?
     
  9. garybUK thread starter Guest

    garybUK

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    Farm subsidies are set by the EU (which is why France kicked off because they are used to more).

    I think the difference is that in USA don't you have a lot of GM Crops (i.e. Corn) that makes it cheap? where as GM crops are, at the moment, banned in the EU as are most American meats & dairy products --- though they still find the way in certain imported products.
     
  10. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #10
    Hey- I'd been saying it for years when they decided to tax the hell out of alcohol and cigarettes- junk food is next. No one believed me. Well, here it comes. Enjoy. ;)
     
  11. Ugg macrumors 68000

    Ugg

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    #11
    Good to hear that Denmark has instituted a tax and that the UK is looking into it. I like the idea of taxing junk food, but think as CC stated, the best route is to remove the corn subsidy. It's the main factor in cheap American beef and corn also sucks up phenomenal amount of water and fertilizer.
     
  12. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #12
    Not to mention high fructose corn syrup, which is disgusting.
     
  13. fivepoint macrumors 65816

    fivepoint

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    Hahaha, I love it! It's a gigantic conspiracy by the food companies! Humans never had the desire to eat foods heavy in salt, fat, sugar before those companies came along! ;)

    The obvious truth here is that marketing doesn't create demand, it expands it. It makes consumers aware of an option. People have always wanted these foods, the companies simply meet demand by making it accessible and affordable. If people demanded carrots, there'd be a million ads about carrots and they'd be available in 100 different packages and varieties. People don't demand carrots, the demand candy bars and potato chips.

    "Those poor ignorant consumers can't figure out they're being had! They're being fattened without even knowing it. They don't have a choice, the psychology of it all!" Get over yourselves.

    BTW, corn subsidies are yet another example of government intervention and market manipulation. Corn and corn syrup are GREAT products and incredibly efficient, (anyone who demonizes corn syrup doesn't know what they're talking about) but the government artificially creates demand for these products through subsidies which destroys the chance for competitors to displace these products in the market place.
     
  14. garybUK thread starter Guest

    garybUK

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    Get over yourself, if you were right, why is the Ad business so big? why do pretty much every retailer layout their stores to consumer behaviour and patterns? Absolutely the companies are partly to blame, not all of it is their fault, but they pray on the weak minded and poor, they should be taxed to help pay our health.

    By the way, your an American with private health plans, we have a national health service, the less burden of bad foods the more it benefits society as a whole.
     
  15. fivepoint macrumors 65816

    fivepoint

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    EXXXXXXAACCTLY! And thank you for pointing that out! Universal/National Healthcare will inevitably be used an excuse to control what you eat, drink, America! When we're all sharing the cost, we all have an interest in controlling what you put into your body. It's not your body any more, it's all of ours, and we will do what's necessary to protect it from you! ;) Food Fascism at it's finest.
     
  16. dscuber9000 macrumors 6502a

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    #16
    I still don't think you know what Fascism is.
     
  17. .Andy macrumors 68030

    .Andy

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    Ironically fivepoint is a perfect example of media machine manipulation. His posting is rife with regurgitated talking points that get fed through media channels. Even his Libertarian ideology is cut and paste wholesale from political campaigns. The influence of the media feeding his thoughts and opinions is evident to all - beautifully illustrated by his recent plagiarizing an opinion piece from a media outlet.

    I absolutely agree that companies are partly to blame. Their motivations are after all are short term profits - not the health of the community. As I posted in the previous thread there are some great examples of dishonest advertising lately by the likes of nestle selling what amounts to junk food under the guise of a healthy drink to kids. What i don't agree with is that companies prey on the week-minded. Like it or not companies prey on us all. And it is successful irrespective of how critical one is.
     
  18. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #18
    Guess what, fivepoint? Insurance companies already do that here in America. I guess you missed that. They must be fascists.
     
  19. MacNut macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    #19
    The government doesn't care about keeping people healthy, they just want another excuse to tax something and make a quick buck.
     
  20. fivepoint macrumors 65816

    fivepoint

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    I agree, their motivations are not the health of the community, and thank God for that! Their motivations are short-term and long-term revenue/profit/success. Which translates into increased jobs, and increased prosperity for all. The best way to do this is to make products that people like, that people demand, and want naturally. What you're really suggesting is that stupid poor people demand the 'wrong kind of things' and that you in your elitist white tower know whats better for the people than they do, and that it should be your decision what they eat and what they don't. You aim to control what they eat by attacking the source of the food. Food fascism, straight up.



    The big difference Lee, is that you can shop around for different insurance companies, and insurance is an optional service which you don't have to own. Well, it was.
     
  21. MyDesktopBroke macrumors 6502

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    Doesn't an over abundance of junk food in American's diet increase health care costs for the rest of us?

    Isn't the logic behind taxing things like ciggies and alcohol based on the fact that they lead to a greater proportion of the population requiring expensive medical treatment (insurance/treatment prices go up).

    It's nice to talk about personal responsibility, but when your unhealthy choices increase my medical insurance rate, the consequences of your choices are felt by many others.
     
  22. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    Exactly- fivepoint acts as if that doesn't already happen here, and that it's simply a result of UHC in the UK. That's completely ignorant.
     
  23. .Andy macrumors 68030

    .Andy

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    You can't read a paragraph.
     
  24. eawmp1 macrumors 601

    eawmp1

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    #24
    No, as the system stands now it's also your problem. Unless 100% of an individual's health costs are paid for by said individual, bad choices will result in increased disease burden and increased costs we all share. One who eats healthily, exercises, and does not smoke may get more favorable insurance rates, but they are still subsidizing the costs of those with disease.

    Our ancestors evolved with taste buds that favor high energy/calorie foods. It was a survival advantage to crave those foods. Industry IS feeding that "sweet spot" of our palates. While I do believe in personal responsibility, the food industry, like the tobacco industry, does not have YOUR best interests at heart.

    2+ on ending farm subsidies from the dust bowl/depression era.
     
  25. garybUK thread starter Guest

    garybUK

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    #25
    But in our UHC system the healthier the population the less we pay, so it's the benefit of all to be healthier. Insurance companies are tied to drug companies, restricting what procedures and drugs you can have.

    I can't think of anything worse than a private company deciding if i should live or die depending on how much it will cost them.
     

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