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SCHIP: Care Enough to Smoke? by Eric Novack

Given Matthew’s
crazy schedule as he builds his Health 2.0 empire, a brief note on the
resounding defeat of the Oregon initiative with tobacco tax money. What this means for the debate in Washington is uncertain. Pundits on the left and right seem to think that it will have little effect on the SCHIP debate—few, if any, democrats or republicans will likely
change course. But you cannot argue with this — from youtube:

Livongo’s Post Ad Banner 728*90

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AlexRickMike HoogerlandPeterjd Recent comment authors
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Alex
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Alex

“Eric and Mike, not to mention the makers of this video, need lessons in how to win friends and influence people.”
No, they don’t. They won.

Rick
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Rick

Taxing behaviors you want to reduce, and reducing taxes on behaviors you want to increase is a proven method to change behavior through policy. To suggest otherwise is dishonest. To suggest most Americans don’t grasp the concept of diminishing returns on such policies infantilizes your audience.
Eric and Mike, not to mention the makers of this video, need lessons in how to win friends and influence people.

Peter
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Peter

Mike, I think the proposal to tax smoking and not look to more broad based funding shows more political spinelessness than irony. It’s more of, “lets don’t tax you and don’t tax me, lets tax that man behind that tree”. As I’ve said before, Americans really do like taxes, they just like other peoples taxes. I have no problem taxing smokers, but using smoking to fund SCHIP may mean, if successful, the funding source will be a diminishing one. Maybe we should tax bullets to fund SCHIP, that way the funding is an escalating one with no end in site.… Read more »

Mike Hoogerland
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Mike Hoogerland

I have to point out the beautiful irony of government pushing for people to stop smoking and then suggesting that the way to fund what may be a critical health care component is to tax smoking. This ad, regardless the bias of the producer, makes a spot on point.

Peter
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Peter

Wow Eric, aligning yourself with the Tobacco Industry to get out the truth – now that’s credible. We all know how honest and ethical big tobacco is and how concerned they are with truth and the health of Americans.
So Eric, how would you fund SCHIP? But wait, didn’t you say you’re not in favor of SCHIP no matter how it is funded.
So were Oregonians voting for cheap cigarettes, a broader funding of SCHIP or no to SCHIP?
Read this on SCHIP and see who’s distorting (at best) the facts:
http://freep.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20071018/OPINION01/710180413/1068/OPINION

jd
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jd

Oh, I can argue with it. The function of a sin tax is not to have more sin, but less, and to use as a mechanism something which is a net gain rather than a net drain on state government. If this ad were right, you could just as well say that a liquor tax means that the state needs people to drink more. That’s nonsense. If the tax is successful in bringing down drinking, the state can turn to another source of funding to make up any difference needed. Here’s another way of seeing how silly this ad is:… Read more »