Sunday, April 30, 2006

Cigarettes? Is a buck extra tax gonna help?

I want to 'pipe' in on the proposed $1.00 increase per pack on Texas cigarettes that is on Governor Perry’s desk as I write this and I do not mean to step on anyone's toes or opinions. I do however want to ask folks to think about a few things.

Years ago when I was a kid, folks smoked like chimneys in this country and sure, it caused a lot of health problems. I smoked for years also, as my parents did. If you wanted to grow your own tobacco and sit down on your own front porch and burn a bowl, it was your business and in my opinion it still is.

Nowadays, if you were to do that and the smoke floated across the yard and the guy down the street smelled it, he suddenly wants the city council to pass a law forbidding you to continue to pollute his airspace (this is next).

I agree tobacco users should respect the right of other people in public places and I think most users understand and agree.

Finding ways to tax the average citizen to help the average citizen is ridiculous and just because I don’t smoke anymore, but own a home is not a good enough reason for me to go along with this. Our government has to find ways to reduce stupid spending, even if it means (gawdddd ferbidddd!) cutting back on their personal perks.

Pork barrel spending… When our State government votes to raise a luxury or vice tax to penalize one group of citizens to supposedly benefit another group of our citizens, the whole State ought to throw a good old-fashioned hissey-fit.

Those of us that thinking super-taxing tobacco is a good thing will scream like a banshee when the government attacks their lifestyle choices. Think about it. The super $1.00 per pack tax will not change one thing, all it will do is make it harder on the folks that choose to use tobacco products and open up a black market that shouldn’t exist in the first place. This stupid idea of over-taxing tobacco pits citizen against citizen and takes the heat off State government that will not reduce careless and irresponsible spending of existing resources.

Now its tobacco, what is next? The list is endless.

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