New York Bill Would Add Fat Tax to Video Games, DVDs, Junk Food

A bill currently before the New York Assembly would add a one-quarter of one percent tax to the sale or rental of video games and video game hardware.

The measure, A02455, was proposed by Assemblyman Felix Ortiz (D, at left) of Brooklyn. The bill would also tax the sale and rental of movies, admissions to movie theaters and the sale of snack foods and sweet drinks. In addition, corporations would be barred from taking a New York tax deduction for expenses incurred in advertising any of the affected items, including video games and systems.

The proposal is currently before the Assembly’s Ways and Means Committee, where it seems likely to remain. This is Ortiz’s fourth attempt at similiar legislation since 2003; none have made it out of committee.

Ortiz’s proposal is motivated by his desire to address the current obesity epidemic. In the justification for A02455 he writes:

Almost all experts agree that the primary reasons [for the obesity epidemic] are increased consumption of larger quantities of high calorie foods, snacks and sugar sweetened beverages… and lack of physical activity as vigorous play is replaced by sedentary activities such as watching more television, movies and videos and playing video games.

This bill would raise revenues from modest surcharges on the very food products and sedentary activities that are linked to the lifestyle changes involved in the explosion of childhood obesity in the last 20-30 years.

Ortiz estimates that his bill would raise $50 million in revenue which would in turn be used to fund programs designed to counter childhood obesity. Conservative magazine The American Spectator refers to Ortiz as "perhaps the nation’s most prolific author of vice taxes:"

[Ortiz] has a litany of bills before the New York state legislature imposing a $10 tax on visitors to strip clubs, a 25¢-cent tax on bottles of beer and wine, and a fatso tax on soda, sweets, and video games.

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  1. alphn says:

    okay I will give ya credit so I went to my local walmart

    8 hot dogs $.88

    8 buns $ .99

    cheapest chips they had in a bag sized for family $ 1.99

    total $3.86

    one bag of regular oranges $3.99

    (guess that poor family can have a bag of oranges for dinner tonight)

    low sodium canned greenbeans .79 (14.5 oz can)

    fresh greenbeans 2.49 a pound ( 16oz)


    fatty ground beef $2.69/pound

    boneless skinnless chicken breasts $5.39/pound


    no way in the world eatting healty fresh fruits, veggies and lean cut meats are cheaper for a low income family!!!!!!!!!!!

    I’m not talking about the people who can afford stock plies of chips and dip and sodas to have on hand to "snack" on I’m talking real hard facts about trying to make a meal to feed a family of 4 ya know the 37 million people who live below the poverty level in america (there are alot more now -that number is based on the 2004 US Census)

     not that I side with the bill at all, but dont jsut blame it on games, movies, and whatnot

    kid goes to school sits for 8 hours, they take PE out now if the child is having trouble in a class (they call it credit recovery) they eat chicken nuggets, french fries, and canned corn for lunch, come home and have meatloaf and canned greenbeans for dinner no snack no nothing and do homework and chores, parents force them to go outside and "play" for the final hour of daylight (yea get a teenager to do this) no video games, no watching tv or movies no talking on the phone half the night——-they are gonna get fat!!!!!!!!!! 


    so whos fault is it their parents???? for being poor

    the school for taking out PE????

    the community for not having parks in all neighborhoods?????

    how about a mix of everything!!!!!!!!!!!!

    playing games, watching movies, reading a book are not the only reasons people get fat!!!!!

    but add that to poor eatting habits (whatever the reason) and no activity does

    make fresh foods and lean cuts cost less than processed foods

    make movies, games, cigarettes, beer and junk foods cost more

    and we will see a decrease in the obese rate in america

    btw the percentage for obese people is higher in low income homes than in middle income homes


  2. Ebonheart says:

    Can’t tell if your being serious or not. So Im gonna disect your post.

    "Fat people are fat because they want to be and if they had to pay more for it maybe they would eat less of it." I already pulled information up about the three body type. A decent percentage of "fat people" are called endomorphes, their body type has a slower metabolism. Slow metabolism makes it harder to break down fats and other parts of food.


    "Once you lose 10 pounds you now need 100 calories less food a day." Agian not true, I’m 5’11 weight 105 I eat about 7500 calories a day. They only thing that has ever helped me gain weight was a supplment prescribed to me to decrease my metabolism rate of nearly 4x the normal. Problem is those suppliments have very risky side effects (In my case was Niacin a very high concentration of vitamin B) Side effects include: Acute liver failure, Niacin flush, Elevated blood sugar, Cardiac arrhythmia. So bad idea to be on them for long. Long story summed up here everyone’s metabolism rate is diffrent.


    Oh and the "Health food" in a can you mentioned. Not many "health buffs" agree that canned anything is good for you. Evryone’s body type is diffrent what keeps you healthly may kill one of the people who come to this board.

  3. gornicksn says:

    I think it is a GREAT IDEA!!!!!  That is what I have been thinking forever! 

    Someone said that healthy foods cost more = soooo not true.  Canned foods are actually better for you than fresh because vitamins and minerals are locked in and the low sodium called veggies are the SAME price I get mine for 33 cents a can at walmart.  Oatmeal for breakfast ends up being 8 cents a cup come on now!!!!  Oranges 33 cents cheaper than a candy bar. 

    Fat people are fat because they want to be and if they had to pay more for it maybe they would eat less of it.  Even just eating less of unhealthy foods will combat obesity. 

    Once you lose 10 pounds you now need 100 calories less food a day.  Fat people need more food than thin people to maintain their fat status if this caused them to eat less or eat healthier then they would need less food – hence saving even more money.  We have an obesity epidemic because everyone is lazy and eating unhealthy this would be the front of a health epidemic where it would be cost effective and tempting to do the right thing go outside and play instead of watch that DVD and eat oranges versus candy bar.

    GREAT IDEA should be for the entire america!

  4. alphn says:

    The one thing I haven’t seen addressed is that most people who are obese are of a lower level income

    when a pack of hotdogs, their buns, and chips costs less than a bag of oranges

    fatty hamburger meat costs less by the pound than boneless skinless chicken

    and processed canned goods high in salt cost a fraction of fresh veggies

    what can we expect to happen to the ones who can only afford the high procesed fatty unhealthy food to feed their family for dinners

    why not tax all the processed foods that are "bad for u"  then they will eat less and have even more health problems for their medicaid to pay for  aka the taxpayer

    we all pay in the end peroid


  5. Ebonheart says:

    I call bullshit on "fat taxes" Here’s a funny thing about the BMI or Body Mass Index was invented by Adolphe Quetelet a Belgian mathematician and sociologist. He did this as a way to compare a person’s height with their weight. This technique was originally meant to aid in social science education, and wasn’t intended to determine obesity levels. BMI was not meant for medical diagnosis. So how can we use it to see if people are obese? If we’re analyzing a specific individual, we can’t! Thats right boys and girls we can’t.

    But the "healthy weight" was derived from this the "Healthy" or "Average weight" is based on literally the average weight and height of the people who was measure in the BMI.

    The BMI was meant to COMPARE HEIGHT AND WEIGHT! Yes Thats right, it was never meant to tell if someone is obese or not. But rather to tell if there was a coralation between  someone’s height and weight, and the thruth is, there was no correlation.

    So let’s compare muscle and fat, muscle weighs nearly 4 times more that fat, so a BMI label for someone with no fat but a lot of muscle will be obese. There are three body types you can have the luck of the draw and have a Mesomorph body type (person easily builds muscle) The Ectomorph (Tall and skinny) and the Endomorph (the ‘pudgy" person)

    Suddenly when the world has this weight fasination we’re all suddenly "Fat" or "skinny" or "perfect." Marilyn Monreo wore a size 14 dres size and she is STILL to this day considered a sex symbol according to the BMI she is a very obese woman.

    Remember boys and girls weight itself is not an indaction of health.


    Sources For the body type names. for the origins on the BMI

  6. JustChris says:

    There are several types of liberals, the far-left ones, that are the most pro-socialist, the Progressive liberals (which I identify with mostly) and the Centrists which do not follow socialist ideas strongly. We cannot pigeonhole every liberal as being pro-socialist, just like we can’t pigeonhole every conservative as being a Fox news-Koolaid guzzling censor freak.

  7. njreader101 says:

    I find it ironic that liberals bristle so much when they are described as "socialists." They laugh and claim either not to be socialists(while at the same time they call for the government to run private industry and to "spread out the wealth," which is socialism) or they imply that the Cold War was just a bunch of American propaganda, even though over 100 million people died in communist countries as the governments worked toward "the common good," which included purging the population of those who refused to become marxist communist socialists.

    When Bush was in office, liberals could not stop saying the word, "fascist," even though they did not know what it meant(it means a strong central government that takes control of every area of society, usually using nationalistic or racist rhetoric to justify it’s agenda).

    If Bush and conservatives can be called "fascists," then Obama and liberals can be called "socialists;" it is up to both sides to furnish evidence for the charges. In the case of Obama, taking over 19 banks, three auto manufacturers, taking over the health care system, and suggesting to raise a "domestic security force" of 250,000 (and hiding it in the Americorps program), the evidence is abundant to charge him with socialism. Obama even bragged in his autobiography that his friends in college were marxists and that he liked to read Franz Fanon, a marxist author.

    American liberals are socialists; why are they ashamed of that word? If one wants to take what someone has worked for by force and give it to someone else, that is socialism. Liberals do not want to create more private sector jobs, as they believe that those jobs will destroy the environment, create too much wealth for the poor and enable them to function without government "assistance"(really, control), and put power in the hands of individuals to exercise individual liberty that liberals believe is reserved for the state alone. That is socialism.

  8. Wolvenmoon says:

    In new york times:

    "Video game publishers have withdrawn all product offerings from new york brick and mortar shops. When asked why, the publishers responded: ‘Our profit margins are already higher when we sell games online. Why should we even bother paying for space on store shelves?’

    Gamers were relieved to find that without obnoxious local taxes, all media prices have dropped by 15%."

    Soda I can understand. Starches too. However, giving Best Buy and other brick and mortar electronic media retailers the shaft is not best practice if you want to bring in tax revenue.


    I will not buy securom games. and

  9. Shadow D. Darkman says:

    It does not look like you understand the terminology. To "Godwin" an argument is simply to fulfill what Godwin’s Law states by adding in a comparison to Hitler and/or the Nazis.

    BTW, we’re not among those dumbasses who think that Godwin’ing an argument ends the argument right there with the one who Godwin’ed the argument as the loser. We know that Godwin’s Law does not state that he/she who compares something to Hilter and/or the Nazis automatically loses the argument, but rather that such a comparison becomes more likely as the argument progresses.

    Then again, if you did understand the terminology, then all I have to say is that you need to make it more obvious.


    "The sun will always rise tomorrow. We can only live for today, and hope more days will come." -Unknown

  10. sortableturnip says:

    How about a skinny tax on gyms and health food stores?

    How about a waste tax on public restrooms?

    How about an air tax for everyone or everything that breathes?

  11. londinio says:

    I guess the realistic solution would be force students to take cooking classes ( No more of those because the department of education had its funding sliced), and forcing businesses to use less oils in the foods they cook.

  12. londinio says:

    This is about money. Not curbing America’s obesity problem.


    Let’s tax weapons manufacturers. Our military is so huge that most Americans just sit on their lazy butts while the army does all the dirty work. The army is making America fat. If we just add a 25 cent tax to weapons manufacturers and force them to give 10% of every quarter taxed to programs that combat obesity we can reduce the size of our military and our guts at the same time.



  13. ZAR says:

    Dude, irony and satire do not require smileys, signs and tags for *most* people to work.

    But, obviously, you are not among them.

    And using "Godwin" all by itself as some sort of an "argument" means clearly, who the ignorant actually is.

    I bet you couldn’t even name the TITLE of any book by that man – including the fact that you haven’t actually read anything from him.



  14. mogbert says:

    So to sum up

    Lazy-Boy recliner = Not taxed

    DDR Pad = Taxed

    Yeah… this makes sense.

  15. SS says:

    this is a stupid idea, how about we have a tax on being obese unless you can prove a true disorder.

    If you are fat, 99 percent chance its your own fault.  if kids are fat its probably their parents fault. 

    Making everybody pay for some people’s lifestyle choices is stupid.  the best solution would be to forcefully stick obese kids in their schools cross country team.

  16. SeanB says:

    my bad, see kevz reply. I had my provinces confused. Been a few years since i was in retail (and i dont live in either ont or que)

  17. ZippyDSMlee says:

    Insurance and healthcare should be non profit, make money off advances and being frist not nickleing and diming the sick and poor.


    I am a criminal because I purchase media,I am a criminal because I use media, I am a criminal because I chose to own media..We shall remain criminals until Corporate stay’s outside our bedrooms..

  18. Craig R. says:

    Anybody else see the irony of adding a ‘fat’ tax to, say, buying a copy of Wii Fit?

  19. GrimCW says:

    this sorta thing props up and then the politicians wonder why the militia’s are all on high alert and ammo is being sold by the crate, guns by the dozen, and yet so few targets are being sold off at the same time.


    NY is in for one hell of an awakening pretty soon if these guys and gals keep this up, and worse so if patterson actually approves any of it.


  20. Aurontsubaki says:

    I have seen Demolition Man, if it is about the bill for everytime you spitted out obscenities, I see where you’re getting at.

    What we got here is failure to communicate!

  21. rdeegvainl says:

    "Almost all experts agree that the primary reasons [for the obesity epidemic] are personal choices"

    There, fixed that for you.

  22. RavenMitah says:

    Heck, even the fruits and veggies they serve kids in schools aren’t the best.  Many of the fruit cups or chunks that are served in schools come from cans and have been sitting in syrups and sugars to help preserve them.  Iceberg lettuce is still the most prolific used in schools (and restaraunts), and compared to other lettuces, it’s not the best for you.  10 calories stemming mostly from sugars for each serving of iceberg compared to the more common 1-3 calories found in the servings of romane, green leaf, and red leaf lettuce.

  23. Saxy says:

    I think there should be a tax for being a politician. They don’t do anything, it’s one of the leading causes of obesity.

    I would say they use their brains for work, but now, that theory is in question…

  24. Wormdundee says:

     Good lord man, if you want people to take you seriously you can’t go and Godwin your argument.

    Your first 2 sentences by themselves were sufficiently ignorant and hyperbolic to make you look like a raving lunatic but you really pushed it over the edge with that one.

  25. PHOENIXZERO says:

    Come on, you know they’ll raise it, it might start at .25% but it won’t be long until they’ll decide it needs to be raise another quarter percent and then another and another. Just like what has been done with alcohol and cigarette taxes since they’ve been implemented.

  26. ZAR says:

    Looks like a serious case of "Taliban" to me!

    Next will be a special tax on blondes, people with glasses, people with too much hair on their body, left-handed people, short people and – of course – women.

    It’s called "discrimination" by the way – especially if it’s supposed to be "for your own good". And especially if it’s only used to invent another tax for the quick buck.

    Oh, and the last state that wanted to force its people to be "perfect specimen", who don’t drink, smoke, in perfect physical condition and healthy – no matter the cost – was called "Nazi Germany".



  27. Good Lord says:

    Taxes =/= socialism. Taxes used to fund education programs =/= socialism.

    It’s hilarious how everyone’s latching onto this word lately. It’s got that great Cold War vibe to it. Anything to make the ignorant masses a little more scared!

  28. PHX Corp says:

    This tax idea could drive people to oppose it period

    NOTE: while I was typing this Fox news came out opposed to all Fat taxes

    Watching JT on GP is just like watching an episode of Jerry springer only as funny as the fights

  29. Zerodash says:

    I think everyone who thinks this bill is a good idea (or nanny-states in general) need to see the movie Demolition Man.

  30. Zerodash says:

    Don’t know who you are talking to, but this bill exudes a very big part of the Socialist paradigm- the government protecting the people from themselves and taking charge.  Welcome to the future.

  31. Stealthguy says:

    I don’t really see this as a deterrent. All I see is them adding a tax to profit off of, what they believe to be, other peoples ‘bad habits’. Ridiculous, give me a tax on breathing next, remember to breath with your stomach, more efficient that way, cause they’ll be charging you for each breath no matter how much oxygen gets to your brain.

  32. Parallax Abstraction says:

    Umm, no it isn’t.  I run a small business and am in charge of managing the accounting and the processing and remittance of provincial task and that statement is 100% false.  The PST is charged on the subtotal of your invoice before the GST, not after.  You’re either reading your receipt wrong or the store that’s doing that is crooked.  I’m not saying there’s no "tax on tax" situation in Canada because there is in places but not at the cash register level in Ontario.

    Parallax Abstraction
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

  33. Parallax Abstraction says:

    Laws like this are completely asinine and just another attempt at a tax grab.  If you are overweight, it is not because of video games, movies or whatever.  It is because you choose to eat crap and not exercise, period.  You can have never touched a game or looked at a TV in your entire life and still eat badly and not work out.  No one forces you to eat the bad food, you choose to and taxing these things will not stop those who enjoy them from consuming them, nor will it encourage them to live their lives differently.  Western society has completely eliminated the notion of personal choice and personal responsibility.  Every problem we have has to be someone or something else’s fault.  People as a whole need to grow up and manage their own lives, not expect government to do it and then whine when they don’t like the results.

    I am about 50lbs overweight because for years, I chose to live a sedintary lifestyle.  However, I recently decided to take charge of the situation and am now eating better and going for 45 minute walks every night.  I’m starting to lose weight.  But I still play a lot of games, watch a lot of movies and sometimes still eat pizza or MacDonald’s.  But under this law, I would still be significantly taxed on these things that are supposedly "making me fat", even though I’m takin steps to not be so.  How is that fair?

    Parallax Abstraction
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

  34. Monte says:

    Wait, people still read books? 

    ya like we really need people in this country to become even more illiterate

  35. Outrun1986 says:

    The last time I checked we are still feeding, low quality, highly processed foods to our children en masse in the schools for lunch and we tell them candy is bad?  Most foods labeled as "healthy" are still loaded with the very things you should not be eating.  As I have learned labeling a food as healthy or low fat does not always mean it is genuinely healthy.  We will not get anywhere with curbing obesity unless a complete overhaul to the system is done.  You cannot tell children candy is bad and then serve them grilled cheese and fries for lunch, because that is extremely hypocritial.  We tell children to eat their fruits and vegetables but then they are served fried chicken nuggets and french fries at school. Taxing people on these items is not the solution, people will still buy whatever they want to they will just be paying more for it, and they will pay.  A new tax on these things won’t curb demand for them.

    NY doesn’t even have that high of a percentage of overweight people compared to other states, and there are a large amount of perfectly normal people who still enjoy seeing a movie or playing a video game.  It is unfair to tax these people on an activity they enjoy doing occasionally.  Playing a game or seeing a movie are not activities that only super-morbidly-obese people do and most people do not play games and watch movies 24/7 either.  If you tax electronic media you must tax books as well since sitting down and reading a book is the same as sitting and playing a video game or sitting and watching a movie or TV.  How about taxing a company that makes workers sit behind a desk for 9-12 hours a day for contributing to obesity?

  36. SeanB says:

    ontario in canada does that. There’s a federal tax, and a provincial tax. the provincial tax is a tax on the whole of the purchase, plus the federal tax.

  37. SeanB says:

    Why not add the tax to books too, people are pretty lazy when theyr’e reading those things too.

  38. Monte says:

     "significantly taxed"

    a .25% tax… snack foods will be literally only pennies more expensive and the increase in video games could be measured in nickels… that doesn’t sound very significant to me

  39. Zerodash says:

    The funny thing is how many Conservatives and (especially) Liberals seem to hate Libertarians!

  40. insanejedi says:

    I totally agree. The only true liberals and conservatives are libertarians. I distain the idea that liberals tell us what to do, while still taking the world "liberal", and Christian conservatives telling us what is morally right and wrong. False liberals tax everything and take away our rights, while false conservatives push us back from the rights we should have. Libertarians are the only side I can find myself agreing with.

  41. Velkrin says:

    Ah yes.  The old hammer/toilet seat argument.

    The hamers were made from a spefic non-sparking metal (Beryllium IIRC) due to the fact they were to be used in munitions or EOD, something along those lines.  Using a standard hardware store hammer would likely have resulted in a unwanted explosion.

    The toilet seat cost was including the design and creation of a mold to replace the seats on anti-submarine planes.,9171,960748,00.html?iid=chix-sphere

  42. ZippyDSMlee says:

    One of the reasons for that is the good old boy system when everyone is allowed to strach each others back so no one can do thier job.


    I am a criminal because I purchase media,I am a criminal because I use media, I am a criminal because I chose to own media..We shall remain criminals until Corporate stay’s outside our bedrooms..

  43. Good Lord says:

    Yes, taxes to fund health education programs are the very cornerstone of socialism. Next thing you know, we’ll have the hammer and sickle on the flag.

    I see a lot of folks bandying that word about these days, and most of you haven’t got a clue what it means.

  44. insanejedi says:

    Your talking about the Pentagon. You know? The Department of Defense? Those 800$ were not for hammers I can tell you that much.

  45. Defenestrator says:

    The government has never (and I repeat:  NEVER) saved money on anything by buying in bulk.  I don’t know how old you might be, but I remember when they were going through the Pentagon’s budget and seeing that they were paying $800 for hammers, $32 (each) for screws (purchasable at a hardwares store for 10 cents each), and thousands of dollars for toilet seats.

    Our government is far too incompetent, far too wasteful, far too bloated, and not nearly vigilant enough to keep any costs down.

    If a politician talks about a plan that will "save money in the long term," you can bet that he’s 100% wrong.

  46. insanejedi says:

    That’s why I encourage a Public-Privatized hybrid health care system. With public health care, it runs more efficiently because shipment orders of supplies are ordered in bulk towards the whole nation, and standardization of practice makes it cheaper. But public health care also has a tendency to "water-down" the system for most middle class beings. Wait times, lower quality standards, and even not being able to get the medical supplies even if you can simply pay for them yourself.

    With a public-privatized hybrid, you can accept the efficiency of a public health care system without incurring most of the problems that come with it. The government simply becomes a logistics middle man where your hospital sends out orders of medical supplies and the government buys them in bulk saving money, or sends out surplus supplies from other facilities. However for the patients in medical care, basic care is given to all citizens of conditions that are not in most part the patients fault. For example a car accident, assault, inherent medical conditions by genetics such as diabetes, or more embarrassingly bed wetting would be covered by basic medicare. However conditions that are inherently because of the patient would NOT be. So type 2 diabetes which was caused by lifestyle choices, or lung cancer with a history of smoking, and obesity would not be covered and must be paid out of the patients own wallet. This encourages PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY of your own health, and with a public-privitized system, you can pump in money by your own choice to be bumped up the waiting list or to pay for higher quality medical supplies. It’s also beneficial to the people who are receiving free care because the hospital now has more money to place in equipment to those sectors.

    Thats why I encurage a Public-Privitized hybrid health care system. With public health care, it runs more efficently because shipment orders of supplies are ordered in bulk towards the whole nation, and standardization of practice makes it cheaper. But public health care also has a tendency to "water-down" the system for most middle class beings. Wait times, lower quality standards, and even not being able to get the medical supplies even if you can simply pay for them yourself.

    With a public-privitized hybrid, you can accept the efficency of a public health care system without incurring most of the problems that come with it. The government simply becomes a logicstics middle man where your hospital sends out orders of medical supplies and the government buys them in bulk saving money, or sends out surplus supplies from other facilities. However for the patients in medical care, basic care is given to all citizens of conditions that are not in most part the patients fault. For example a car accdent, assault, inherent medical conditions by genetics such as diabeties, or more embarssingly bed wetting would be covered by basic medicare. However conditions that are inherently because of the patient would NOT be. So type 2 diabeties which was caused by lifestyle choices, or lung cancer with a history of smoking, and obesity would not be covered and must be paid out of the patients own wallet. This encurages PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY of your own health, and with a public-privitized health care system, you can pump money into the hospital to get yourself bumped up the waiting list, or pay for increased quality supplies and care. This also helps those who get free health care because now the hospital has more money to pay for better equipment in use for those areas. Win-win

  47. Mad_Scientist says:

    Hey, California gets a lot of flack, but I don’t think it’s nearly as bad as people say it is.

  48. Good Lord says:

    "…plus its one of the most freedom-restricting states in the USA."

    Hahah, right. Whatever you say.

  49. Austin_Lewis says:

    Well, I just kind of act off the assumption that California is the worst state in the union.  One of the highest crime rates, highest illegal immigrant rate, the list goes on and on, plus its one of the most freedom-restricting states in the USA. 

    I hate Cali so much, I won’t be attending next year’s American Criminal Justice Institue annual meeting, even though I had been offerred a free 5 day stay in the hotel.  I just cannot stand that state.  Also, Berkley is full of smug elitist pricks.

  50. Mad_Scientist says:

    You don’t get taxes on reading books, no, instead books get credited for making kids safer by reducing injuries that can come from accidents during more physical activities.

    I’m serious. I remember reading a while back an article about the Harry Potter series supposedly leading to a reduction of injuries among kids. The idea was that it increased reading among children, and by doing so reduced the amount of time they spent outside doing physical activities that could lead to accidental injuries.

    I love reading, and I think it’s good when kids read. I think the Harry Potter series is a good series too. But the double standard does become a little blatent at times.

  51. Monte says:

     Reading books promotes good literacy which is probably another thing people these days could use more of.

  52. NovaBlack says:

    ”lack of physical activity as vigorous play is replaced by sedentary activities such as watching more television, movies and videos and playing video games.”



    where is the tax on reading books?

    War and peace is an epic length book. the larger the book, the greater the tax should be.

  53. Wormdundee says:

     Are you quite aware as to how taxes work? If I buy a game and the area I’m in has, say, a 7% sales tax, they don’t just randomly up that percent to 10% for laughs. Your reasoning for not just paying 3 cents more is laughable.

    From what I can tell, you seem to think that when someone sells something it must come out to some kind of nice round number. Guess what, this tax will have absolutely no effect on the base price at all. It’s just another tax that gets added on at the end. So when you buy that 10$ movie ticket, instead of paying $10.73 or whatever it would be, you’ll pay $10.76.

    I can’t believe I had to explain this to you. You are pretty damn paranoid.

  54. Weatherlight says:

    Do you think that the movie company would leave their prices the same and eat the additional cost of the tax? Its going to cost the consumer anywhere from 5 to 100 times more then just the cost of the tax. because you are not going to pay $10.03, you are going to pay $10.25 or $10.50 at least.

    To me this is the worst kind of tax, because it is a "Gateway Tax". The thought is "If people are willing to pay the extra 5 cents, then why don’t we make it 10 cents", then you will start measuring in dollars. Its just an all around bad idea that will cost people lots of money.


  55. NovaBlack says:

    Playing brain training + professor layton improves my logic, puzzle solving, and math skills. Is that not as important as literacy?

  56. Zerodash says:

    Both Liberals and Conservatives have unsolvable contradictions in their ethos. 

    Liberals are the first to say "question authority" and distrust "the man" and yet want to live under a system where the government tells you what job to have, how much you can earn, how many hours you can work, what health care you can get, etc.

    Conservatives claim to be against government intrusion into everyone’s lives, and yet try to push their (flawed) morality on everyone through legislation that is anti-gay, anti-abortion, anti-porn, etc.

    Welcome to the sad world of political "sides".

  57. insanejedi says:

    Stop telling us what to eat and what to do with our free time. Not everyone is equal unlike you communist false liberals. Real liberals let people make decisions on their own, not let people who have no idea who I am tell me what to drink and what to play.

    What if i’m highly active? Your taxing "candy bars" that might be energy sports bars for me that provide high calorie content in a compact package. What about Gaterade or stuff like that? I need something with more sodium content then plain water.

    Maybe this bill will pass because Obama’s public health care system puts the responsibility of your health in the hands of government, so they can use that as an excuse to tax the Americian citizens out of things they deem "unhealthy" because it costs them money. One of the many reasons why I prefer a privitized health care system over a public one, because it no longer becomes a back door for governments to get their grubby little hands over you.

  58. Monte says:

     Nothing odd about it… if they succeed then that means obesity will be less of a problem, which means there will be less need for those programs and thus they do not need as much funding. 

  59. Austin_Lewis says:

    I don’t know.  Why should I be ‘forced’ into paying for other people’s health insurance?  That’s not very fair to me, after I spend all the time I do working so I can pay my family’s health insurance.

    I’ll tell you what it boils down to: socialism.  The government in New York is stepping in and A) doing its best to tell people what they can eat, drink, and do and then B)they’re making everyone foot the cost for the extremes.  So some fatass got pericarditis, big deal.  When you weigh 400 pounds, can you honestly tell me you didn’t see that coming? 

  60. djnforce9 says:

    So in order to "counter" obesity, they are going to use the funds raised by the very things that supposidely causes it the first place. Then if they manage to succeed, then their source of funding will be decreased because less people will take part in these activities. Does anyone else besides me find this idea rather odd (and full of flawed logic)?


    Not only that but why should consumers be "forced" to pay for fighting child obesitiy? That’s not very fair either especially those who DO keep in good shape but like to watch a movie or eat an unhealthy snack time and time again.

  61. SeanB says:

    a .25% tax on a $50 video game would see the price go up 12.5 cents. This tax is not intended as a deterant.

  62. SeanB says:

    a one quarter of a percent tax on a 10 dollar movie ticket would raise the cost 2.5 cents, but that’s not the point.

  63. Weatherlight says:

    As if movies are not expensive enough. I mean whats another $1 or $2 to a movie ticket that costs $10, or another $1 or $2 to the cost of a $20 DVD. Matter of fact why don’t I just give them all my money and they can tell me how much I should have and how I can spend it.

    There is a reason why half the movies in my collection are bought 2nd hand from the local movie rental place, and I take dates to the budget movie theater if I think I can get away with it. Its because I have tons of money to pay the already heavy price on these things.

    Thank God I dont live in NY.


  64. Bigman-K says:

    Equal Protection doesn’t deal with material goods just people. A restrictioon based on race, gender, age, sexual orintation, religious beliefs, disabilities would apply under the 14th’s equal protection clause not material products.

    "No law means no law" – Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black on the First Amendment

  65. dan888 says:

    I would assume that this would violate equal protection, since it does not apply to all media or all food, just specific ones.

  66. Vake Xeacons says:

    California ain’t much better. And we don’t have any of the excuses you just mentioned.

    God, I wish the Jefferson State had worked. That’s what I tell people: I’m not from NorCal, I’m Jefferson.

  67. Austin_Lewis says:

    New York just overall sucks.  It’s the same state that brought H.R. 2159 to committee, so this isn’t a surprise.  By the way, H.R. 2159 allows people to be denied their right to purchase a firearm if they’re one of the groups listed by Homeland Security as potential terrorists. 
    New York: Because being next to New Jersey and filled with guidos isn’t enough suck. 

  68. Xiao says:

    Man have I been sick of these people moderating our lives because, apparently, no one should be trusted to make good decisions. 

    They’ve already removed everything besides health bars and flavored water from our schools, and now they need to force people to pay extra money for products that are assigned with bad habits.  It’s so frustrating that I can’t have a good snack in my high school because people must eat Twinkies if they see them.  There are ONLY flavored waters and health foods in the vending machines, students are not allowed to sell candy for fundraisers, it’s crazy.

    It’s important to make sure that healthy choices are available but to FORCE people to choose low calorie products is absurd.  I can’t believe that everyone is so helplessly irresponsible that the government needs to force people to eat healthy foods.  If people have problems, they need to take the responsibility to fix them.  We aren’t helpless children, and we certainly don’t all share in these health issues.  Parents need to teach their kids to be healthy NOT THE GOVERNMENT.  We live in a world where children have role-models that are too lazy to raise their kids right.  They believe the government should ban shows they don’t want kids watching, ban games they don’t want kids playing, and ban snacks they don’t want kids eating.

    So now, because everyone is convincing the government that they are pathetic slobs who can’t control themselves, I’ll have a tax to pay, on some of my favorite things.  The best part is that DDR will most likely be taxed too 😉

  69. Austin_Lewis says:

    Also, New York recently upped their tax on liquor of any sort by 110%.  So adding another 25 cents per bottle isn’t going to be a big deal, save to people who buy cases of 12 or 24 at a time (how big a bitch is that, though, paying an extra 4 dollars for a case of beer?).

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