The Perfect President
Posted Nov 8, '12 at 7:21pm
He's not forcing people to do anything. I personally like the idea. It's a different persuasive technique to attempt to get people to take better care of their health and maybe even better; Increase life expectancy.
If people want to pay a few extra bucks for the things that deteriorate their body, then so be it. Those who really do want it will pay the extra taxes.
You say he's forcing his condescending ideas? Well quit forcing your opinion down his throat. There's a better way to argue with someone's opinion without using offensive analogies such as "I don't go to your house and force you to stop smoking."
Posted Nov 8, '12 at 7:46pm
One: My original quote was, "If you want to help them, talk to them." Clearly you don't understand what this means. Let me rephrase, "if you want to help them, talk to them without using any means of coercion."
Taxation is a form of communication in the same sense holding a gun up to a clerk's head and demanding his money is a form of negotiation.
Two: You're talking about using taxes to "persuade" people to act a certain way. Taxation should NEVER be used to persuade people to act. This creates the idea that there is a "proper" way to live. This suggests that people who live healthier lives deserve to be rewarded by spending less money whereas people who make unhealthy decisions deserve to be punished for their actions. I'm sorry, but that isn't something you, or the government, should be able to decide.
The type of coercion you suggest is through means of forcing people to pay more. You're not suggesting police raids, but you are suggesting that people are FORCED to pay more money for particular goods simply because you look down on their actions.
Taxation is LITERALLY a form of coercion.
You know what? There are stupid people out there who are going to make bad decisions and harm themselves. That doesn't give me authority to make them stop.
We're talking about adults, not children. If an adult is incapable of taking care of themselves in the most efficient manner possible (they choose to eat junk food instead of healthier food), then you need to try and convince them without using fore. If they refuse to change, then that's THEIR decision.
You're "helping" people against their will.
Here's another way of putting it: You aren't everyone's parent.
My way of thinking is, "people own their own bodies, NOT YOU."
If I want to develop unhealthy habits, then that's MY choice. It might kill me, but who's to blame? My own self! I know you want to prevent death and unhealthy life styles, but people CHOOSE their actions. You're suggesting that I put freedom ahead of safety and foolishness, which is partially true. People should be protected from non-consensual actions and results.
"Life's not fair" isn't a valid argument, because it can literally be used to justify any unwanted action. Should I ban all video games because people spend too much time inside playing them? Life's not fair. Your daughter was beat up and *****? Well, what can I say? Life's not fair. Someone slashed the tires of your car?! LOL, didn't you hear? Life's not fair!
For one, It's not fair to tax everyone because a few people make bad decisions. It would be more fair to let said people suffer the consequences of their own actions.
Two, even the people who abuse something shouldn't be taxed. I know plenty of people who smoke. It's a disgusting habit. They shouldn't be taxed more because of it though. It's their body, and I'm not their master, and they aren't my slave. I don't own them, therefore I should not make decisions against their will for them.
Oh, mob rule?
Just because a majority of people want something doesn't make it right. That's why America is a Democratic Republic. America defends certain rights, even when it is just a minority being protected.
But, honestly, that's not here nor there. I'm talking about why it's wrong for people to support sin tax, majority or not.
This argument is moot. It doesn't matter if a leader is allowed to apply sin tax or not, it doesn't necisarily make it right.
Oh, the Christian nation argument... seriously?
This means the government can't ban "gluttony" just because it's in the bible. (also, eating unhealthy foods isn't necisarily gluttony - eating too much food, healthy or otherwise, is gluttony).
As Freakenstein pointed out, there are other means of obtaining taxes.
A healthier population? Pardon me, but the ends don't justify the means. We can obtain a safer population if we covered everything in foam, banned everything that's bad, and hire a large number of police to enforce these rules.
A nation that's healthy due to coercive measures is pathetic. Healthy living should be CONSENSUAL, NOT FORCED.
It's better to be unhealthy and free than healthy and coerced.
The ends don't justify the means.
Then you go on to suggest that we'd rather do nothing. Well, yes, doing nothing would be better than resorting to force. HOWEVER, you can help people without using force.
In the end, some people just won't accept help. And you know what? That's perfectly fine, they can live unhealthy if they wish. It's their ****ing body.
Oh, if that's the case, we don't need a sin tax!
If people have to pay more money for "luxury" foods, then they have LESS money for everything else. If someone is working for min. wage, then the sin tax on the cigarettes they buy DOES make a pretty big difference!
You can not argue that sin tax will persuade people to make healthier decisions, then turn around and argue that sin tax isn't expensive enough to do financial harm to people. If sin tax is as minor as you make it out to be, then it's not doing it's job at dissuading people from buying said objects.
Not sure if it was necisarily a red-herring or not, but he made a great point. Sin tax can go towards things the government provides. However, if the government needs more taxes, then they should raise taxes on ALL goods, not just "sinful" goods.
The argument that sin tax can go towards anything is moot, because alternative forms of taxation will do the same.
Why tax "sinful" products? Why not just raise taxes in general?
Again, your point is moot.
The reason you want certain products to be taxed heavily is because you want to discourage people from using said products. It's immoral and impractical.
Posted Nov 8, '12 at 8:42pm
In the most literal sense possible, it is force.
People who REALLY want to eat unhealthy food SHOULD NOT HAVE TO PAY EXTRA because people like YOU want to tell them what they can and can't do with their own bodies!
Let's put a tax on healthy foods, people who want to be healthy bad enough will pay more.
I'm not forcing my "opinion" down his throat, he doesn't have to accept it. However, what he's proposing is something that would FORCE others to pay more money.
If I was FORCING my views onto him, I would have banned him for not agreeing with me.
Excuse me, but taxation, or raising the tax burden on people who buy "unhealthy goods" is just that! What I'm saying sounds radical, but it's really not all that different than what's really happening.
People like you want to raise taxes on things such as soda. You believe people who buy soda shouldn't be drinking it, so you're going to raise their tax burden as a way of "discouraging" them from making unhealthy decisions that isn't even your business in the first place.
If you think people should stop drinking soda, then tell them why they should stop and let THEM make their own decision as to whether they stop or not. Don't "persuade" them by forcing them to pay more money. That's literally along the lines of me stealing money out of your pocket because you decided not to heed my warning when I told you to stop buying soda.
Posted Nov 8, '12 at 11:42pm
I know what this means. It means exactly what it says. "Talk to them if you want to help them". Taxation is a form of speech. Plain and simple. If you meant "don't talk to them using coercion" the onus is on you to clearly identify and say what you mean. Not say what you mean in easily misconstrued riddles :D
Now let's find the definition of coercion:
I really don't think that any of these things means or were meant to mean "to make a sin tax," as you're implying sin taxes are coercive.
I'm sure that victims of armed robbery would disagree that a sin tax is even remotely similar to a hostage situation. I'm also sure they would be offended that you would have the audacity to suggest that. Buying poopy foods for a few extra nickles or dimes isn't quite the same as forced compliance with a gun. Paying taxes for foods that deteriorate your insides is optional, and scarcely is forcing or taking away ones freedoms to choose to scoff food.
Indeed I am, and taxation should certainly be used to persuade people not to destroy their bodies and themselves.
There is another reason for this taxation as well. Usually when parents choose an unhealthy life style they force their life styles on their children (by telling them what to eat) or negatively influence their children in such a self-destructive way that government's intervention is required (even if it is via taxes).
That's another good reason for these taxes to be passed in my opinion.
There most certainly is a proper way to live. I don't mean this to be patronizing or make it seem as though that I think I'm superior to everyone else, but the Criminal Code of Canada (or America) and The Highway Traffic Act testifies to this. By making all the acts in both of these entities (I do consider a Traffic and Criminal code an entity) illegal and telling us what to do implies and tells us there is a proper way to live and an improper way that'll get us locked away.
It doesn't only suggest it, it tells people that. When I say that I mean that healthier lives do deserve to be rewarded by spending less money, whereas self-destructive ones get the exact opposite.
It is kind of like the same thing with driving insurance. If you behave and act well your insurance goes down (spend less) and if you act poorly on the road and cause accidents your insurance goes up (spend more money). This is a concept I agree with. Behave properly get rewarded, do the opposite and the opposite happens.
As a resident of my country determining what I want done to my country, this is exactly for me to decide, but most importantly it is up to our government appointed officials to decide.
You're simply incorrect about that statement.
1. It is not coercion in the typical sense, instead it is coercion in a sense that the word was twisted and redefined to mean what you want it to mean.
2. I prefer people not to pay for this junk, just altogether avoid it.
I'm not forcing anyone to buy these foods/beverages, but I suppose if you want to be so obtuse about this I guess I am forcing people to pay a bit more money for particular goods, if they so desperately want them, I do this to simply help them and create a better country and a better future generation. Not because I look down on their actions.
For aforementioned reasons it isn't literally coercion, instead it is a mutated form of coercion.
Perhaps I'm not their parents, but have you ever heard of the Good Samaritan Law?
I consider this a good example of The Good Samaritan Law. By introducing a sin tax you're successfully obligating your duty as a good Samaritan and saving people from peril (in this case body deterioration).
Yes it's your body, your choice to harm it, but it is also my legal obligation to attempt to stop you from doing so.
As for the bold section, that's a given.
Actually it does... The above law may not actually say "stop people from committing sloth", but as a responsible and good citizen, I shall attempt it anyways (even if it is only via taxation).
Would you like to hear the major difference between what you just said and what I suggest?
I'm glad you asked, the difference is: all of the above examples of "justification" you used for committing any act was illegal. Sin tax isn't illegal.
Oh? Over one hundred million Americans being obese is now a few people? I think you should inform the dictionary guys to change the definition of "a few".
Another thing is that you aren't only letting the obese people suffer, you're allowing these obese adults to negatively influence their children to the point where it may kill or cause serious health problems for the kids.
This is wrong on sooooo many levels (the extra o's are for emphasis). Morally, fundamentally, for the good of the people, being a good citizen/person etc...
I disagree that the abusers of harmful substances shouldn't be taxed for the above reasons.
You should definitely make decisions to go against smokers. It's a nasty habit as you said and I quote Clancy here:
Smoking gives you yellow teeth, yellow fingers and you smell horrible. If a smoker is near you all you want to do is get away.
Smoking is a leading cause of lung, bladder, kidney, pancreatic, throat, mouth, skin, stomach and esophageal cancer.
Finally, The health effects from cigarette smoking account for 20% of all deaths in the United States alone.
As you yourself said if other people are not consensual about smokers being around them then the said smokers should be stopped because the smoking is non-consensually causing others real harm.
Not quite... It's called democracy. I would ask if you've heard of it and know what it is (because you consider the above "mob rule" when it really isn't), but then I would seem rude, and now that would be a poor choice for me. Being rude to a mod :)
Obviously America is a Democratic Republic, which is the reason this law would be passed. What I mean is that the leader was voted in to office with the choice to pass the law. Which is in essence the meaning of Democratic Republic (voted into office with power to create laws, this power coming from the citizens). You make it sound like passing this law would be "unamerican" (whatever that subjective word means) when it would actually be very "American" or even Canadian. There are no rights you would need to defend if this law is ever passed. If it is passed you're successfully adding money to our streets, and paying cops and firefighters salaries, defending children from undue negative influence, and making your country a healthier and fitter nation.
I agree, what you said (just above this sentence) was irrelevant and off topic.
The argument is not moot, you just think it is. I disagree, if the law and the constitution define this as legal and the public votes in a leader who would want this tax law passed, then it definitely does make it right.
Well I should've said Catholic nation, because Jewish people and and Jehovah Witnesses are Christians, but the great nation of Canada and America was not built off Jewish/Jehovah views I think.
And why ever not the Christian nation argument, I may not be Christian, but my great nation is. Seeing as how I'm patriotic I follow its laws and do my best to do what is best for the nation however Christian it is.
The reason for the banning of gluttony and sloth wouldn't be one that is for or against a religious establishment, nor would its intent be to have anything to do with religion. Instead it has to do with the good of the country and it's residents.
This isn't all about gaining money, it's more so about the safety and health of our respective countries inhabitants.
That is impractical, unlawful, and unconstitutional and restricts the residents of the said countries freedom by far to much. The difference between what I said and this is that what I said was practical, lawful, constitutional, reasonable and is NOT banning anything. just implementing a new tax. What you say seems to often be taken to far out of proportion and is simply ludicrous. For example this is like when you said "sin taxes and holding a gun to someone's head is very alike." Simply ridiculous (I reiterate to make a point).
This is only coercive by the loosest most mutilated definition of the word.
This would be consensual and not forced because the said leader was voted into power. This means the citizens of the said nation supports his or her ideals. A Prime Minister has to do what is for the best of the country, even if the minority of people disapprove of his ideals and stances.
This should say "it's better to be healthy and taxed, than unhealthy and untaxed."
They most certainly do.
My proposal to help people isn't through force. No one would be forcing anyone to buy the unnecessary junk food. So, since this is scarcely forcing, doing nothing would certainly not be better. Saying that nothing is better is truly quite sick if I may say so myself...
Let me rephrase this in a way you may understand and agree with:
I was also saying that meanwhile people do not have junk foods for breakfast, lunch and supper they do have a seriously excessive amount for desserts, and in-between meal snacks.
I don't understand how you can actually think that what I'm proposing is just about the money. I'm saying the money aspect that would be redirected into our country is a pro for this proposal, meanwhile the main reason for implementing this law would be for the safety and well being of the citizens.
Did you seriously not know that's what I meant?
Here is a little F.Y.I. insulting arguments and being condescending is detrimental to your own argument. You appear as silly and childish. Thus your points are taken less seriously. "Your argument is moot," is a good example of what not to say... Maybe you should say: "I do not believe you have a valid point," instead, it's more polite...
Ha... look at me telling a mod to be polite :) Ironic
As for the food for thought thing, I'll watch it later, probably tomorrow, I'm getting tired right now.
In one of the most unliteral, and loose sense of the words you have a very small point.
I'm not physically stopping people from being healthy or physically making them be active. The word force is not literally meant to mean "if there are sin taxes implemented this is force."
Read just about anything I've written above to see how incorrect this is in my point of view.
In a loose sense of the word force... I suppose I am.
The means are justified and the ends are great. This makes the sin tax righteous and just.
I can't say so for sure, but I think I would either be unbanned, or permitted to make another account if you did so, plus you would likely be stripped of being a moderator and get banned in return for abusing your powers.
Can you explain more in depth what's really happening here? Two reasonable and logical people discussing a legitimate tax proposal?
You shouldn't say that, it comes off as rude, offensive, patronizing and condescending =.=
I believe people should drink soda in a reasonable amount and not drink it in excess.
Oh contraire. This is certainly my business as a good person, good citizen, and a patriotic citizen. You may not want to help and aid people, but I most certainly do, thus this is my business.
My preferred president would make a statement as to why he made this law and as to why self-destruction is a poor choice. Persuasion along the line of taxes is perfectly right in my eyes and a good start to rectifying this obesity issue. If you have a better proposal other than to do nothing and recommend they stop abusing themselves and negatively influencing their children I would love to hear it.
P.S. Taxation is not along the lines of theft. One is legal the other is not.
Posted Nov 9, '12 at 12:01am
Sounds to me that what Heisonnberg is proposing is that we put a tax on all foods considered unhealthy, so he can punish everyone who scrapes money together to buy their kids a treat, or buy themselves a treat. Because of the so called obesity epidemic which is based on a flawed system (BMI), says that all those who live in America are fat, no matter what their genetics or mind previously determined.
Why would you say Catholic nation, don't you know your history, and how most areas were fiercely protestant and against the Catholic Church Source
I am with NoName, you have no right to add extra penalties for those who make their own choices about what to do about THEIR body.
Also, your car insurance analogy is hogwash, as being accident free is more than just protecting your self (like eating healthy), but if you are an unsafe driver you could easily injure or kill other people.
(If you tax people who CHOOSE to eat junk food, you should also tax those who eat healthy.)
Posted Nov 9, '12 at 12:15am
It sounds like that because you haven't been paying close enough attention to what I said. I propose to implement this new tax to (if you so badly want to phrase it this way) "punish" the obese people and help this (as you put it) "epidemic" be rectified.
You make it sound as though a vast majority of Americans aren't overweight and everyone is at the right wieght and that obesity is non-issue in America. Is this what you truly think?
Not knowing the history of every state (like Maryland) doesn't really bother me all that much. If I asked you the history of a random province like Nova Scotia about something totally random would you know it without using google?
I say Catholic because there are simply a lot of Catholics in England and the English settled America, so it stands to reason that America was raised with English ideologies and religious standings. That was my logic anyways.
I'll get to the rest of what you said late, getting tired.
Posted Nov 9, '12 at 12:54am
You make it sound as if America is the only country with such an issue. Any modern and industrialized modern nation has such problems. Why? Because of the work that most of its citizens perform. Work that entails driving there, sitting there for eight or more hours, driving back and sleeping for at least hour more hours. Just to repeat that at least five days a week.
Posted Nov 9, '12 at 4:13am
That's taxation right there! YOU WILL LITERALLY BE FINED AND POSSIBLY GO TO PRISON IF YOU DO NOT PAY TAXES.
Taxation is COERCION. That's a FACT. Taxes are NOT optional.
I'm offended that you want to FORCE (TO MAKE PEOPLE SPEND MORE MONEY) because they want to do something YOU don't agree with, even though it has NOTHING TO DO WITH YOU.
Taxation is force. To say it isn't a form of coercion is FACTUALLY WRONG.
Taxation is to communication as armed robbery is to negotiation. What does this mean, because obviously you are intentionally missing the point so you can misconstrue my point.
When someone holds a gun to another person's face and demands money, that's a form of FORCE. That's a form of COERCION. When someone says, "you must pay us taxes or we'll arrest you and throw you in a cage", THAT'S ALSO a form of coercion.
Why is it WRONG for regular citizens to force other people to make certain decisions, yet it's magically acceptable when it's the government? Why is it wrong to forcefully take money as a human being, yet it's okay when the government does it?
Again, other people's health isn't of YOUR concern, it isn't of the government's concern. If you want to make them stop, then it must be CONSENSUAL.
There are rules when it comes to driving so people can remain safe from harming EACH OTHER.
That's sickening! Again, why are you so obsessed with telling other people what to do with THEIR OWN BODIES? You aren't my master.
You want other people to live a certain way because you're a resident? You're lucky I'm a moderator and I have a certain image to keep.
It's LITERALLY coercion through textbook definition! Holy Mother of God! It's IS coercion. You are LITERALLY forced to pay taxes. Taxation is not a suggestion, it is something you do to stay out of PRISON.
As for preferring people make healthier decisions, IT'S NONE YOUR BUSINESS WHAT PEOPLE DO TO THEIR OWN BODIES.
I'm glad you're so concerned, but again, people should be FREE to make their OWN ****ING DECISIONS. It's this idea that we must control actions for the benefit of society that's infuriating, because people should not be forced to live according to your own personal agenda. We need to protect people from coercion. We need to keep people safe from OTHERS, like you. We need to let people live how they see fit.
Sometimes, we do need to make rules. But when we make rules, we do so because other people are being harmed. It should never be, because someone is harming themselves.
I've made my argument, so here's this.
Good Samaritan Laws are in place so that people can help others when there is no time to talk to things out. When someone is about to get hit by a train, you can tackle them out of the way. But when someone is smoking, and you tell them it's bad for them and they still refuse to stop, then they have rejected your help.
I thought about this earlier, actually. I had a feeling you would make such an argument. However, forcing people to pay a fine (or to pay extra taxes - same concept) when they buy certain goods, the alternative to which is imprisonment, is NEVER acceptable and would NEVER be considered under Good Samaritan Law.
If you want to help people, and there's plenty of time to talk to them about whatever dangers are ahead, then you can't forcefully help them.
If you were to say such a thing while holding the authority to create such a law, it wouldn't be out of lines for me to tell you to piss off. It isn't your legal obligation any more than it's my legal obligation to limit the amount of time you're on the internet.
If that's the case, then you don't need government to get involved. You can enforce these rules YOURSELF. Go for it! You believe it falls under Good Samaritan Law to help protect others from their own sloth, then go around and demand they stop buying unhealthy products. If they refuse, demand they pay more for said products and threaten to throw them in a prison cell if they disobey.
We're talking morality, not legality.
Honestly, being a little over wieght isn't necisarily a problem, especially since a lot of people gain weight pretty **** easily due to their genes. It's not nearly as serious an issue as health nuts would have you believe.
Not your body - not your business.
This is the ONLY argument that makes any real sense. However, it is COMPLETELY inconsistent with sin tax. If smoking causes harm to others, then how does sin tax help the other people? Sure, it might reduce the number of smokers (in reality it doesn't, so we're pretending), but it still allows people to actually do so. If smoking around other people is an issue you would like to address, sin tax is NOT the proper solution.
First of all, don't worry about me being a moderator.
Second, it is mob rule. Democracy is just a "sweet" and "gentle" term for it. Sometimes mob rule is okay. When you have something that isn't necisarily infringing on people's freedoms, mob rule is the best way to get things done.
The constitution exists to limit the powers of government. It doesn't state that everything the government does otherwise is "right".
What is right and what is legal are completely different.
You said the government was a Christian nation, and that gluttony is a sin. You used this to support sin tax. Sounds like what I said was perfectly relevant!
Anyway, to keep myself sane and the post wall somewhat shorter, I'm just going to stop here.
Posted Nov 9, '12 at 6:12am
Now, I shouldn't jump into this yet I will. For two reason, really. One being that Nemo happens to share a lot of the same ideas as myself (but I tend to be the less easy going of the two of us) and the other being that I can not stand seeing people incessantly waggle their tongues whilst sophistry pours forth and dribbles down their chins.
Let me grab a canned, carbonated (as possibly alcoholic) beverage right after I smoke a bone.
No, not it is not. You have no legal jurisdiction nor obligation to tell me nor anyone else what to do and what not to do, even more so when put in terms of the current discussion. You speak of and use this law for your defense, yet you fail to grasp even the most baseline intention of said law.
Not only does it not say those actual words, it does not even imply anything close to that. I already touched on why your statements are mere suppositions whimsy.
Everything the government decides for its citizens must be right, yeah? And it totally has to do with only what the voters want. Nothing to do with the lobbyist groups that throw insane amounts of money towards whichever laws further their cause (which is typically the fattening of their wallets.)
Baa a bit louder, little sheep. Brandish your ill-conceived notion of patriotism as a shield, and your best intentions as a weapon. Use the assumed all-encompassing umbrella of religion for an entire country for what you see fit. Whatever ignorant and ill-believed hogwash makes you feel better at night when you lay down to rest.
The ways of defining someone as obese or overweight are draconian and insane at best. They base it off of the BMI scale. It simply just takes the height of weight of a person and spits out a number. 30 is considered obese, with the other categories falling under that. The glaring problem with such a system is that it does not take into consideration the build of the person. When it comes to categorizing someone in such terms, this just does not work, seeing as the build of each person is different.
Posted Nov 9, '12 at 7:57am
I'm not American, so I don't hold nearly as strong views on this topic as either of the moderators before me. I'm also not going to write a two-thousand word post nor am I going to interrupt the current exchange, so much as provide a summation of the salient points:
Taxation is a form of coercion insofar as your liberties will be restricted if you fail to comply. I'm not sure how relevant this line of argumentation is to the broader point of contention, however, which seems to focus on whether it is right or not to consider whether or not a person is entitled to act in ways other than their best interests, and what limitations to impose upon them. It's important to consider the relationship and distinction from laws preventing people from behaviours that restrict or infringe other peoples' freedoms. In short, is all coercion necessarily bad, and if not, what kinds are acceptable, and how can one then reach a consensus on restriction of self-liberties?
But is that REALLY the best question to ask anyway? Let's put it this way. I don't currently trust people to act in their own best interests nor would I necessarily expect them to. Besides, "in one's best interests" is nebulous and difficult to define, and what I consider in my best interests may not be what law defines as in my best interests, despite the fact that I consider myself more educated than those who would decide how I should behave if I were behaving in my best interests, and frankly that doesn't make sense. Restrictive laws may dictate but they also engender resistive culture, and that's what really needs addressing: education, dissemination, proliferation and assimilation are the steps needed to adopt lasting change. Not some law that unreasonable people will ignore and reasonable people think they're being unfairly targeted because of alleged unreasonable people.
As a side note:
I'm not sure if all data is solely based off the BMI scale any more, or a combination of BMI and waist circumference, which has much improved sensitivity over BMI alone for the reason 'voidy points out. There's also been attempts to adopt BMI tailored to race, but that scale would make me overweight (with my sub 10% adiposity) so I know just how useful that's going to be :P