Thursday, June 14, 2012

Another Federal Power Grab, and Subsequent Loss of Liberty...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Liberty -vs- Tyranny



It is all to clear. The slow steady march by the regulatory Leviathan we know as the United States government.

I was at one time, a huge premium cigar aficionado. Spending more time and money on the quite pleasurable pastime than I now care to admit. Visiting smoke shops and cigar lounges was an almost daily occurrence.

Aside from the relaxing atmosphere my visits to the Phoenix provided as I smoked a superbly crafted cigar and sipped on a fine cognac, the camaraderie and friendships developed made it all worthwhile.

I decided to give it up on my terms for my own personal reasons. Just as I decided to take up smoking of cigars when I did. And that is the point I suppose.

National Review - By proposing a ban on large sodas in New York City, Mayor Bloomberg made himself a competitive candidate for Chairman of the Anti-Fun Committee. But the FDA just might have him beat: They’ve moved to regulate cigars as they already do cigarettes.

Representative Bill Posey (R., Fla.) has introduced legislation, currently before the House Energy and Commerce Committee, to block the FDA’s effort. So far, his bill has 203 co-sponsors in the House and nine in the Senate, including Bill Nelson (D., Fla.), who has introduced a version in the upper chamber.

“It certainly appears to many Americans and to Mr. Posey that the FDA is intent on taking over anything that is bad for you and regulating it,” George Cecala, a spokesman for Posey, tells me.

Lawmakers worry that the new rules could hurt small businesses and interfere with cigar smokers’ enjoyment of their hobby. Though the agency has yet to lay out its new regulations in detail, industry insiders speculate that it could ban flavored cigars, require ugly warning labels or graphic pictures on cigar boxes, bar customers from entering store humidors, or require that cigars be kept out of the reach of potential buyers, who typically handle and examine them before choosing which ones to buy.

“Banning that experience would be crippling,” says Gary Pesh, the owner of Old Virginia Tobacco in Richmond, Virginia, and executive officer of Cigar Rights of America. “Making a customer pick their brand of cigars from a black-and-white catalog — that destroys the way we’ve done business.”

Pesh says some speculate that the FDA would also bar shops from letting their products be visible to anyone outside the store.“That means I’d have to put blacked-out windows on my storefront,” he explains. “Like a porn shop or something.” {Read More}

The feds just don't see it from a liberty point of view. Oh no. They see it as just another opportunity to control every aspects of business as well as a persons ability to make choices for themselves. First step... Make it as difficult as possible, and expensive. Second step... Ban an activity outright through anti liberty legislation.

It's coming... sooner than you think.

Via: Memorandum

12 comments:

  1. I make an effort to limit my Cigar enjoyment to one per day but on weekends I may cheat. I am an outdoor smoker because the aroma stays in my clothes forever if I enjoy indoors.

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  2. Our government is now dedicated to destroying economic activity and personal liberty.

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  3. You apparently don't understand what this is really about.

    As taxes on cigarettes went up and up (pretty commensurate with the toll on the community, when you think about it), tobacco companies discovered a way to produce a cigarette that could be marketed as a "cigar." By doing so, they avoided the cigarette taxes, as millions of smokers moved over to cheap, discount "filtered cigars," that are really the same as cigarettes, like Clippers and 305's, as cheap as 99 cents a pack.

    This isn't about personal liberty or economic activity. This is about keeping poor people addicted to dangerous products that wreck havoc on the economy and their lives.

    I see no problem with "sin taxes" as long as the sin involved can be regulated and taxed in a realistic way, with the proceeds going to reducing the impact of the "sin" itself.

    Bloomberg's drink size idea is just silly. I don't know why he thought that was a good idea. It is unrealistic and will not deal with the impact of obesity on the economy and the people's health.

    JMJ

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    Replies
    1. No. apparently YOU don't understand JMJ. End of your fantasy land my statist minded friend..

      Delete
  4. I was looking for your article about cigarette taxes and how unfair it is for a minority (smokers) to be taxed higher simply because they use a product.
    When a party won't be honest with people about more income to pay the debt, sign "No New Tax" pledges, they use other tactics (sin taxes) to get the income they are cowards to tell the people they must pay.
    Gov. Pawlenty raised taxes on a pack of cigarettes, one dollar. He called it a fee, not a tax, so he could claim he never raised taxes. That money went to the general fund, not some fund to help pay for medical costs of the bad habit.
    Republicans have majority in the House; why don't they start a committee to strike laws, that are to intrusive into peoples lives? Instead they make new laws and regulations to govern peoples private lives. Like trying to make abortions impossible to get, even though they are illegal, by putting all sorts of regulations on the process.

    ReplyDelete
  5. "YOU don't understand JMJ"

    I don't understand what? I was simply pointing out the rationale for the tax increase. You can disagree with it, but you with all your "classical liberalism" have to admit that sin taxes have been around forever.

    For example: Think of the need for more police when you have people drinking a lot. Shouldn't the drinkers, who are causing most of the mayhem, pay for their mayhem? Isn't that personal responsibility? Isn't that classical liberalism in action?

    Smokers have all sorts of health problems, and so WE THE PEOPLE decided years ago we have a moral, ethical, personal, social, economic, and rational obligation to mitigate the broader problems their bad habit brings the nation, WE THE PEOPLE.

    Of course, you can argue about whether the sin tax revenue is dispersed correctly...

    "Gov. Pawlenty raised taxes on a pack of cigarettes, one dollar. He called it a fee, not a tax, so he could claim he never raised taxes. That money went to the general fund, not some fund to help pay for medical costs of the bad habit."

    And, anon, that is typical Republican tax raising in action. You should see what Romney did with "fees" when he was a governor?

    "Republicans have majority in the House; why don't they start a committee to strike laws, that are to intrusive into peoples lives? Instead they make new laws and regulations to govern peoples private lives."

    Because the police state is vital to the power of Republicans and conservatives. Libertarians and conservatives (and sometimes Objectivists, like here) fuss over nonsense, while the police state runs amok; and the military, and the conflicted private contracting, and the obviously corrupt election systems, and so on. They fuss over nonsense, like a sin tax, while very deleterious situations go unattended.

    "Like trying to make abortions impossible to get, even though they are illegal, by putting all sorts of regulations on the process."

    Actually that is the only consistent "classical liberal" action. If you want to curb abortion, make it difficult. If you believe, as most conservatives and Republicans do, that abortion is abhorrent, but a slim majority of the people believe it should be legal to some extent, then you regulate the extent as much as possible. And let's face it, for the most part, they get away with it because the people are generally happy with it. I'm not, maybe you're not, but a greater majority of people do want abortion to be only a last resort and not some convenient way to enjoy promiscuous lifestyles.

    But remember, our good host here at Rational Nation USA, is not a conservative or a Republican. He is an Objectivist. Very different thinking.

    JMJ

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. One mans "nonsense" is another mans liberty. Think about it JMJ.

      You are right about Romney and fees. He found a bunch of fees to increase to raise money without raising "taxes." Guess he thought people were stupid then. He still thinks so today.

      As to Pawlenty, never liked him. Dishonest, like a bunch of others loyal to "the fold."

      "Republicans have majority in the House; why don't they start a committee to strike laws, that are to intrusive into peoples lives? Instead they make new laws and regulations to govern peoples private lives."

      The above is true JMJ, and I would whole heartily support this!

      And JMJ, in case you haven't notice I "fuss over" what you call nonsense as well as what you occasionally consider important. Hm... What's up with that in your mind I might ask.

      Delete
    2. Well, I did say "sometimes," Les. Most of your posts regard pretty heavy political philosophy.

      JMJ

      Delete
  6. When you get a chance, please publish my comment, Les. I think it's substantive.

    JMJ

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  7. Wow JMJ you are a little impatient but I guess Les should be always ready to post your well thought out remarks.

    Taxes on tobacco is discriminating against the poor and, much as you would like to blame the republicans, One of the first things The Leader did was raise taxes on tobacco when he moved into "MY White House" after his predecessor moved out of The Peoples White House . The majority of smokers are lower income therefore it affects them more than others. We need to protect people from themselves and should raise taxes on ladders, lawn chemicals and of course the sun because all can cause health problems that We the People have to pay for.

    Our paid for politician's only job is to spend money and try to get more. A sin tax is just another word for tax increase and goes into the general fund so it can be wasted.

    JMJ, the House is controlled by the republicans, the senate by the democrats and it takes both of these corrupt bodies to enact laws. You can bet if there is a bill that will line the pockets of both republicans and democrats, it will pass because they are equally corrupt.

    ReplyDelete

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