The ‘unintended consequences’ of Philadelphia’s soda tax

American Thinker: In 2017, Philadelphia levied a 1.5-cent-per-ounce tax on “sweetened” drinks.  The city wanted to raise additional money to fund a universal pre-K program and reduce obesity.  What they got was entirely predictable to anyone with a basic understanding of economics.  Unfortunately, city fathers must have fallen asleep in economics class when the teacher explained the cause and effect of raising taxes on anything.

To economic ignoramuses, it’s a seductive idea.  Sweetened drinks are wildly popular but lead to obesity, according to some studies.  Political leaders in the city began to salivate at the thought of all that cash pouring into their coffers from citizens who can’t live without their Coca-Cola.  Besides, even if they drink less soda, that’s a good thing.  They will switch to healthier alternatives like water.  They will lose weight.  And pre-kindergarten kids will get an early start on education.

And if you believe all that, I’ve got a bridge over the Chicago River I’d like to sell you.  read more

18 Comments on The ‘unintended consequences’ of Philadelphia’s soda tax

  1. Unfortunately, city fathers must have fallen asleep in economics class

    I thought “economics” was what future professional “dancers” just signed up for, because you didn’t have to “be” there.

  2. @PJ – I think they’re idiots savants. You know, people who have one spectacular talent but can’t tie their shoes. What they’re good at is getting elected. What they suck at is everything else.

  3. Make your grandiose plans for education dependent upon an activity you punish people for participating in and want to see diminished.

    This makes sense to Progressives.

  4. People working in governmentaL groups, individuals ang group IQ drops markedly for every year in that enviorment.

  5. “Yup. Why is it that the village idiots so often find their way into local government?…”

    Because average people have something better to do. We’re learning this is a very serious mistake on our part, and we have to sacrifice our time to get involved, or we’ll lose our country.

  6. Every pizza or sub shop in the greater Philadelphia area would give you a free 2liter bottle of soda with your take out dinner.

    With that wrong-headed tax, the soda cost sent up so much it wrecked the deal. Nationwide, the 2liter bottle of carbonated drinks market went to hell. Ask your local pop distributors what they think of Philadelphia’s ‘leadership’ in this.

  7. The politicians failed to recognize people living within city limits are just as strongly addicted to sugar as they are addicted to taking other people’s money.

  8. @Uncle Al (at 10:14 pm): You’re showing your age a bit by using the term “idiots savants”. While perfectly valid, that description has become extremely politically incorrect of late, since the “idiots” part could be very hurtful to the idiots savants and their loved ones.

    This has led to the laughable practice of persons in the media referring to such individuals as simply “savants”, which (as you know) is the complete opposite of what the original term means.


  9. “… it affects low income households more severely …”

    Po’fokes pa’in taxes t’hep da po’fokes?
    Dat ain’t rite!

    Hmmm … Demonrat-controlled since 1952 … and the morons expected something different?

    izlamo delenda est …

  10. I’m 60+ and drink Diet Coke.
    So how the hell does a soda tax help me health wise?
    It is just another money grabbing tax so the politicians have money to pass around to their donors.

    Here in Augusta Ga we have a RAIN TAX.
    It is used to cover the $81M that the city stole for the Water Sewage maintenance funds to keep from going bankrupt. They needed to pass City/County consolidated Gov. due to years of mismanagement. Hiding the fact the city was bankrupt was needed to get the votes.

    Now my paved driveway is taxed because water runs off of it into a dirt ditch 15 miles from nowhere.

  11. But what else can the elected dirtbags do? All they know how to do is tax and spend (and they love doing both with equal fervor)!

  12. I have yet to find a doctor who would endorse soda pop. But on the flip side, I saw my cardiologist, a man in his 60’s drinking a can of Diet Dr. Pepper. Another doctor, decades ago said if man was intended to drink carbonated beverages, their urine would be carbonated! I kid you not.

  13. A RAIN tax?
    A fukkin RAIN tax?
    Maryland passed one of those and then rescinded it because of public outrage.
    CA will pass that “breathing tax” and CA’ians will just eat shit and like it.\

    “If you drive a car, I’ll tax the street
    If you try to sit, I’ll tax your seat
    If you get too cold I’ll tax the heat
    If you take a walk, I’ll tax your feet”

    Add: “If it RAINS, I’ll tax your driveway.”

    izlamo delenda est …


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