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The Case Against a Sugar Tax

I keep seeing the sugar tax come up on the news and I find that the argued sides are missing the point with respect to an individual and their life. The World Health Organization (WHO) wants to see a 20% tax on all sugary goods and drinks. The Global News here in Calgary claims that doctors want 30%. The Canadian Taxpayer Federation (CTF) is saying that it is nothing more than a tax grab and they don't see how this will result in people making better choices.

Who is standing up for the freedom of an individual to make their own judgment call and choose to consume something?

The CTF certainly isn't standing up for the individual. They are correct in their assessment that this is just another tax revenue for the government to impose at the expense of everyday consumers, but they surrender the moral ground. They accept the premise that there is a role of government in the personal choices of individuals.

The WHO and Canadian doctors aren't standing up for the individual. They're standing up for the collective idea of 'society'. Their value is to extract a drop in obesity and other related problems like diabetes and heart disease. They are totally unconcerned with your life other than the use of it as a collective goal.

As a free individual I think and act on my judgments for the values I seek for my life. I'm the one that lives my life everyday and my values, goals, ambitions and desires are mine. I can choose to be as destructive or protective of my health as I so choose to my overall aim of my life. One can have a sex, drugs and rock & roll lifestyle that shortens their lifespan and you, me and everyone can choose a different path. This is the same for sugar. It's not your call on whether I consume Double Big Gulps or whey protein isolate. You don't have a say over my life and I don't have a say over yours.

I don't view sugar as a good, if the end is health. I'm not a big consumer of a sugar, but when it comes to government we are talking about imposing something by force. An end consumer may not be the recipient of the force as the job is placed on businesses, but if one were to not comply they'd find themselves with a gun forcing them to act.

Here's how it would work in a society of free individuals: Sugar is bad for my health and I value my health, so I don't consume sugar. End. That's it. It ends with you.


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