Monday, October 10, 2016
Sometimes governments create their own crime.
Since George Washington first taxed whisky Americans have been making their own. Moonshining actually goes that far back. Moonshine in reality is nothing more or less than untaxed liquor. It actually comes in many grades ranging from total rotgut to poison to some really first class hootch that can easily compete with the best that legal distilleries can produce.
Right now Pennsylvania created its own new and upcoming crime wave and they did it to themselves by taxing smokes another buck a pack.
The tax started today and already I have heard an interesting comment in the local convenience store.
Someone said, "I live 2 miles from the Ohio border. You KNOW what I'm going to do."
His coworker replied, "I guess I know who is buying my smokes for me."
So on the first day the smuggling starts. I suppose the crackdown on smugglers starts tomorrow morning when the people in Harrisburg figure things out.
They will likely have to set up a whole new group to enforce the smuggling because it isn't too likely that the local and state police are going to be interested in enforcing this. They are not going to go through people's pockets to check for a tax stamp on the bottom of a pack of cigarettes.They have better things to do. If they smoke they likely are doing the same thing.
The cost of enforcement will likely match or best the amount of revenue taken in by the new tax.
I live about an hour north of Morgantown, WV and I would be surprised to find out that there isn't already a pipeline of illegal smokes running up US 19 and I-79. The market is there and there is money to be made.
Of course the games will be played like they were in Massachusetts over beer on Sunday. For decades the residents of Massachusetts used to drive to New Hampshire to buy beer on Sunday. They also bought a lot of liquor there and also fireworks.
The Massachusetts State Police would post unmarked cars in liquor store parking lots from time to time and radio units in MA the number and description of the purchasers for the units across the border to pull over.
Needless to say, the car that picked up the liquor would drive out of sight of the cop and transfer it to his pal's car who would bring it back to the party. The other car would be pulled over and the State cops would find nothing but an empty trunk. Generally after the car was pulled over the driver would see his pal drive by carrying the goods.
Anyone that has seen Smokey and the Bandit has a pretty good idea of the system.
Smuggling has gone on to avoid taxation since long before we became a country and likely will go on after the Republic has fallen.
All of us have done it to some extent or another. Not too many people have not bought something out of state and brought it back with them to avoid taxes.
People in Philly run down to Claymont, DE all the time to avoid the State and Philly sales tax. The tax savings on a $200 item makes it well worth it. In cigarettes now a single carton will net more then enough to pay the trip
The truth of the matter is that government creates a lot of its own crime.
Someone in the convenience store commented that the government should just spend the money they already get from us a lot more carefully. I agree with him.
To find out why the blog is pink just cut and paste this: http://piccoloshash.blogspot.com/2009/12/my-feminine-side-blog-stays-pink.html NO ANIMALS WERE HARMED IN THE WRITING OF TODAY'S ESSAY