Why are cigarettes so expensive now days? With the cost of gas prices going up to $3.75 per gallon and the shipping cost for postages on the rise, this explains a part in prices going up. However Marlboro is one of the companies that are producing a same quality of cigarette.
Marlboro blacks seem to be very popular in the area I live. Cost is about $1.50 cheaper and taste just the same. I recommend buying these as an alternative. Try them out and leave your feedback.
As a former smoker I can tell you that prices aren't high to protect the health of the smoker, they are high to protect the health of the non-smoker. It is hoped that high prices will create fewer smokers and thus improve the health of the public at large. I for one could care less how much cigarettes cost because for many years many smokers were so unbelievably rude and dirty about their habit that it really upset me. Try being in a lady's room stuck in a stall and have the person next to you light up. Sit at a traffic light and watch a smoker empty his ashtray onto the street then drive off. Try to enjoy a meal at a restaurant with somebody else's smoke wafting in your face or being blown in your face. Sorry, I have no mercy on this one. When Florida went smoke free it was one of the happiest days of my life.
Good for you! Perhaps we should use the same method on those who are obese. Tax the heck out of their food just as they do cigarettes, after all, their bad habits of overeating is putting a strain on medical care even more than cigarettes. And try sitting in a restroom stall next to one of them if you think it is any less pleasant. Or watching them eat, for that matter
And this includes children who are way overweight today. Let's just tax everything which isn't good for us.
+1 Tax all the disgusting habits (that I don't participate in) to the max. Those that I personally like, of course, must be left alone.
Tax the SUV at 300% of actual value, like cigarettes. I hate cell phones; set a tax of $50 per month on each one. I don't watch movies much; tax DVD's at $60 per movie and get the kids away from the TV. Video games the same way; $100 per game as they are turning our kids into couch potatoes.
@Tim- That's actually not that bad. I live in Southern California and marlboro cigarettes are almost hitting $6 a pack, gas is up to $5 a gallon. So I think you have it pretty good
If you want them cheaper go to Marlboro site and you can fill out there form and get coupons in the mail off your packs or cartons. They even send you free hats, shirts, water bottles, etc. I do this because my boyfriend smokes and it's costly, so I get any discount I can find plus free stuff!
*But you should try to quit, you're live longer to enjoy life!
what I can say here is after working for Philip Morris for 15 years, then laid off because they built the identical factory in Germany and shut down the us Factory? I am not sure why? They say it is because of advertising, Taxation and non-smoker health protection, but I do not believe that?
some facts to consider.
One Cigaret Making Complex on a Factory floor produces 12,000 Cigarets a min.
The first two hours of a Factory Day produce enough product to pay all, I mean all, expenses for that Factory for the next 24 hours! So 22 hours of continuious production is free profit.
Cigartes have no return product expense, they are totaly usable and destructable, thus totaly consumable
One pack of Cigarets costs aprox...18cents to produce and pack.
All product is paid for before it is shipped, including Tax to the Goverment, which is passed on to the distributor.
and all Ports of shipment overseas are in North Carolina- Wilmington and Virginia- Delaware, and those states have Tariff free agreements with Philip Morris and RJ Reynolds. IE-Tax free shipping from those Ports and States!
there is no legislation to inspect or protect the manufacture of Cigarets.
Companies are regulated by Tobbacco, Alchol and Fire Arms, "NOT" the FDA as is mis understood. They only inspect for the Tax stamp on the pack, nothing else. The reels of Tax stamps are guarded like gold inside the factories.
Nothing in the product is wasted. Stems, bugs, rat parts, anything that gets into the fully automated process is used up, they are not checked!
The profit margins are in the billions!
Machine Operators @ Phillip Morris make 18:56 an hour top out wage at 5 years
Maintenance Workers are Journey Men level and union @ 23.56 an Hour!
I helped to build the Factory in Concord NC and worked it for 15 years, and Folks...
you have no idea!!!
As I said previously, the most we were ever paid for tobacco was $2.05 per lb. Less than half of that was profit. Not only the consumers, but the producers also are robbed by the government and big business as usual. What else is new?
Are you sure of your figures? I'm not sure what you mean by a cigarette making complex on the factory floor (the times I've visited a cigarette factory there were many machines all producing cigarettes) but:
Assume the company can sell the cigarettes, FOB factory, for just $.50 per pack (I would suspect it is considerably more) and run that machine for 24 hours per day for 360 days per year. All costs except the $.18 per pack production cost are paid for by the first two hours.
The result is a net profit of $92,000,000 per year per machine. Or, if I misunderstand your meaning of what a complex is, per factory. From a factory that can't cost (judging from what I visited) anywhere near a billion dollars. An ROI of 9,000% in just one year.
12,000(cig per min) /20(cig per pack) *$.32(net profit) *60(min per hour) *22(hours/day) *360(days per year) = $91,238,400 net profit per year from one complex.
There would be no doubt whatsoever that a cigarette making complex is a far, far better income producer than anything else in the world. By a factor of many thousands.
very sure my friend, very, and yes there are many assembled complexes, they are in rows. In one bay, there were 4 rows, 8 complex's in each row.
the slower Machines, older one's, made 10,000 a min. Newer ones ran 12,000. They were dangerious, because they were so fast it would lul an operator to sleep. looks like the cigarets are stationary going through the drums, like it is frozen still. On a long shift they get tired
Several Operators got hurt by reacihng under a cover trying to remove a loose paper or such. they forget about the speed, and wham, it happens. Especialy on a long shift it can happen.
one row made Marlboro, one made Merrit, one made Merrit lights, one made Marlboro lights. there were 2 huge bays for cigaret making machinery, and two bays of filter making equipment.. many machines, producing many many cigarets. 24-7, with 2 weeks shut down for maintenance every 6 months, each year @ christmass and 4th of July.
They do not run on Sundays, shut down Sat. early AM @ 3:00am, re-start Sunday Night 11:00pm, 3 shifts 7-3, 3-11, 11-7.
they never shut down, even during Hurricane Hugo, We ran all night long, only the Machines up near the big windows shut down, the rest kept running.
I lived this for 15 years and am very sure. The pack price included paper wrapings, pack wrap, tax stamp and all filter and paper, all wages, supplies machine costs- all of it total. It was from a paper the Management sent around to all of us about company info. I am sure it was actualy cheeper than that.
They kept trimming it down year after year, buying in bulk. They made millions. I assure you. Big Money. It was a massive operation. Concord North carolina, located just above the Charlotte Race track, going towards Concord away from Charlotte on 129. Factory is shut down now, they moved it all to Germany.
The New Govenor did not re-new the Tarrif free status from Port of Wilmington, so they closed it. Put 2400 folks on the street!
I have no doubt you are right, Dutchman! Isn't it strange how we have LIVED the information we've disclosed here, and people still think we are exaggerating our experiences. I've spent literally most of my life growing the leaf and working in the tobacco business. I can tell you it is a criminal operation if ever there was one.
My father grew the best tobacco in this part of the country. He learned the art from his father who came down here from North Carolina in 1908 and started growing the leaf before there was a market in Georgia. He learned from his father and so on. The "auction" was a joke and everyone knew it. The buyers would only pay enough for the best tobacco to keep the government from getting it with the support price.
A farmer could only produce a set amount of tobacco poundage per acre and also only a set amount of acreage. We finally decided to quit the business when clean, top quality tobacco only brought a few cents more than dirty, trashy, low quality leaf. My father could not abide this so we stopped growing the leaf and ended a family business which had spanned many generations.
People are so ignorant sometimes, and it isn't always because they are stupid either!
And I think you're at least in the ballpark and probably much closer than that. I can't read my own numbers even as I type them, thinking that 92 million was 92 Billion.
92 million makes a lot more sense, although still very high. But then, it's a high profit business, too.
I go to my nearby Indian Reservation and there I can buy a bag of 200 kingsized for $15.00 per bag. you can't beat that for a price and the quality is just as good as store bought.
Cigarette companies make $0.22 of pure profit from every $1 in sales.
One of the highest profit margins of any industry in the US.
So why not let them pay the taxes? They can afford it, can't they?
Average cost of a pack of cigarettes is $4.80 with tax.
Average excise tax is $1.50.
So $3.30 before tax, 22% is $0.72 profit per pack, so no they can't afford to pay it.
But there you have it, the cig companies are charging you 72 cents in profit, and the government is charging you more than double that in taxes.
Cigarette prices are so high primarily because of massive taxation.
Smokers are a politically powerless group, and can't effectively fight the extra taxes they are forced to pay. Other people have found that they can get money from smokers to pay for lots and lots of things they want but don't want to pay for, and smokers can't do much about it except quit smoking.
So we pay for all kinds of projects the @#$%$#% politicians (and people) want, but are too cheap to pay for.
I've always wondered what the government would do if everyone quit smoking. What would they do for the tax money lost?
I guess cigarettes are increasingly more expensive due to the associated burden on health care created by smokers.
I got up to smoking 40 a day, while I watched the man I loved kill himself with alcohol. On the day he died, I returned home from the hospital and saw one cigarette on the table. I smoked it and since then (June 3rd 2010) I have not smoked. The difference I have noted in breathing capacity and overall wellbeing is amazing.
Sometimes I feel like a smoke. Looking at current prices of cigarettes in the supermarket is more than enough to stop me giving in to temptation.
No, it is not due to the "burden" on health care.
Idaho finished a remodel of their statehouse a while back to the tune of millions of $$. $100 million sticks in my mind, but I could be wrong there.
The point is, it was 100% paid for from cigarette taxes. And it had nothing to do with health care - it was just an easy way to grab money from a select few that don't have the political pull to complain.
As knoly says, the do-gooders are often the driving force behind these enormous taxes, in an effort to "help" the poor smoker (that knows exactly what they are doing). Then the rest, seeing "free" money, pile on the bandwagon.
Nor are smokers alone here - the next time you rent a car or get a motel room, take a good look at how much tax you're paying for it. These are paid for by visitors to the city. visitors that won't (can't) benefit one iota from the tax they're paying, but it's that free money again - ding someone else, someone that can't complain, for the goodies we want but refuse to pay for.
Sorry - I'm ranting. This whole "tax someone else for my toys" thing gets under my skin.
The do-gooders like to exploit the smokers for their pet do-gooder projects, usually health related, for the smokers own good, since they shouldn't be smoking anyway, and makes the do-gooders feel oh so good.
They take your money and tell you you shouldn't smoke.
We grew tobacco on our farm for almost 50 years until it just wasn't worth it anymore. Almost everyone around here grew some as it was one of the few crops one could make a living on.
The highest price we ever received at auction--not an auction at all as the buyers were in collusion--was around $2.00 a lb. I think now it isn't much more than that with fertilizer, herbicides, insecticides, diesel and labor being higher than ever. I only know of a few big acreage farmers still producing the leaf now.
An ounce of tobacco may make several packs of cigarettes with all of the filler used to mix with the pure tobacco. Up to 50 packs of cigarettes may be produced from one lb. of tobacco, and perhaps more depending on the blend. The farmer may make $1.00 a lb. profit at the very most, but usually it is much less. You do the math and decide who profits the most from cigarettes.
Randy Goodwin: The habits and problems of fat people do not affect my health. Smoking does...in fact, it has been proven that second hand smoke is actually more damaging than original smoke. Your comparison makes no sense whatsoever. If people want to kill themselves with cigarettes, that's their business. When their habit starts killing me, that becomes my business. The health care costs associated with smoking are enormous, and they affect everybody's pocketbook. They are much more devastating than those from obesity. Ask any doctor.
It's always interesting to see someone claim that smoke that has been filtered through a set of human lungs, removing a good deal of the tar, nicotine and other chemicals is more damaging than smoke that has not been so filtered.
I think a reality check is in order.
HA! If you believe the current rise in obesity related illnesses are non-existent, then you are asking the wrong doctor. Here is a link showing obesity has overtaken smoking as costing more for medical treatment. And it is getting worse as we speak. Are you perhaps a bit heavy yourself?
http://www.rand.org/pubs/research_brief … ndex1.html
About 8ish years ago Washington State passed a law banning people from smoking indoors. This meant bars and pool halls.
All the smokers revolted. I said "Why should I, as a non-smoker be forced to shorten my lifespan with all that secondhand so *you* can smoke?"
Their only reply? "You don't have to go to the bar!"
So, in order to protect your right to smoke indoors, I should abstain from doing something I enjoy. That makes all sorts of sense. How hard is it, really, to just take it outside? Yes. They were that selfish.
Cigarettes do nothing for us except shorten lifespans, pollute the air, and make stuff smell like ass.
Yes, cigarettes do put a strain on the healthcare system. Every single person out there on medicaid, getting 6 prescriptions a month, 3 of which could have been prevented by refraining from smoking...are being paid for by *my* taxes. So..I really don't want to hear people complaining about them paying taxes for something they *choose* to do.
I know plenty of smokers who cringe at the cost of the cigarettes, but completely agree with the taxes. Many of them use that as motivation to quit. So your complaint is not universal.
I don't pity you, nor will I ever. Go cry yourself to the Nicorette case.
Don't like the taxes? Don't smoke. My children will live in a better world because of it.
Another funny story. When a certain bar was deemed by a certain state--one of the oldest, if not the oldest, bar in the particular state--to be barred from allowing smoking in it, the bar owner asked for it to be a smokers only bar. But no, the non-smokers didn't like it, even though smoking had been allowed there for much more than a century.
And how hard is it to go to a bar where smoking isn't allowed? And if cigarettes smell like ass to you, then you've got a bigger problem than you think. Farts must really confuse the heck out of you!
I think it is rather funny when someone complains about the cost of something they kill themselves with - don't you?
They do it with food, cars, prescription drugs, tobacco, etc. Almost everything causes death for someone. Would you rather have someone else choose your vices for you, or do it yourself? Or are you completely vice free?
I don't care what the vices are and I've never heard of anyone NOT choosing their own vices, but if you complain that it is getting too expensive to kill yourself with cigs, then, you're probably either a) a redneck b) a few somethingorothers short of a full deck c) being overly confident and therefore arrogant (see other current thread) or d) just being a dickwad - or all of the above. Because it is expensive in so many ways to smoke, drink, go to prostitutes, and all the other great stuff humans seem fond of doing at their own peril. And I'm not saying I haven't been just as weird and wild - but now making cupcakes all afternoon is as wicked as I get! (and potato salad) It has always been expensive, by the way, I remember when my daddy used to scrounge for cigs sometimes when they were only a quarter a pack!
First off, the price of cigarettes will only affect those who can't afford them. It makes no difference they are just as addicted as those to whom the price makes no difference either way. So why not raise the price of food to obese people? If one weighs too much then force them to step on the scales at the buffet and adjust the price accordingly. Let's legislate THEIR morals.
And yes I am a redneck, proud of it too! Farmers are called that all of the time by those ignorant enough to criticize the people who provide the ingredients for their cupcakes and potato salad recipes. Be sure and step on the scales before eating our products. "Next please"!
I think you're off the track - The cig companies are not charging so much because it is HARMFUL to smoke - no! they charge so much because it is a perceived VICE that is somewhat forbidden in modern times, and yet very legal and very addictive - so people will smoke anyway, for now. Maybe their sales have gone down because people are smoking less - maybe. I don't know the statistics.
Especially for us who are of certain brain waves that are susceptible to the thought that the VICE quality of a substance or behavior makes it more desirable and we are slaves to our addictions so, therefore, we will pay $5, $6, up to $10 a pack just to have our cigs and feel goood about being baaaad. I had to be really counseled about all this and do several different behavior modification programs before I could even come close to WANTING to quit. Now, I can only not smoke because I tell myself if I really want one I can have one. I sometimes do have one, but as we all know, it tastes like the first one and the first cig is not enjoyable - for most, and I so I don't continue, can't even finish one.
But the tobacco companies aren't going to care at all if we are killing ourselves, as long as they're making those huge profits. They are somewhat like the big oil companies who are charging more, just BECAUSE THEY CAN! and because they are feeling that the future is coming where new generations will not depend on oil, cigarettes, and a lot less of them will be addicted to all the current addiction choices. They have to make their profits while they can. Who knows what future addictions will be? when all cars are electric, and people are better educated about their human natures and the effects of those old addictions. (yes, I'm implying that we are addicted to oil - addicted to our personal cars - in the future we will compete as nations to provide the best rapid transit services and when we use cars we even if electric, we'll travel in groups)
Nevertheless, people will make all kinds of justifications for smoking - and I find it all fascinating - human behavior is so very strange and our brains are so delightfully arbitrary. We try to fool ourselves every day in lots of ways and when you start looking for those ways we are fooling ourselves and how we are usually not present in the real world, it is fabulously strange. Maybe first step is not to point fingers at each other and be accepting of our human frailties, while doing our best to overcome them. Or maybe just eat the damn cupcakes.
When you compare overeating to smoking addictions you are right on, but it only points up the weirdness of anybody presuming to tell anyone else what they can and cannot do based on it being unhealthy. What I have learned is that it isn't just the behavior itself that is expensive, but the end result of health costs we inflict on ourselves and society. We can feel righteous for not smoking, but there will be something else we do in order to get that gooooood baaaaaaad feeling, no?
Anyhow, what I mean to say is this thread started out as a discussion of how it is so expensive to buy cigarettes. Does anyone really think they should be cheap? Back in the day, they used to give away free cigarettes especially to teenagers - On my first plane ride when I was seventeen the stewardess passed out free samples of Kools, and other passengers gave me the ones they didn't want - Koooool!
I am not trying to justify the habit of smoking, nor eating, gambling, drinking. etc. What I'm trying to point out is if one vice can be used to extort money out of common citizens because they are addicted to a once government supported product then where does it end? Just try raising alcohol prices to the extent it causes drinkers to quit drinking so much, or food to the same extent. Like Wilderness said in his tongue-in-cheek remark, "yes, tax the hell of their vice, but leave mine alone"! All or nothing and you'll see what I mean! Pure extortion!
Randy Goodwin: Actually, no. I've been thin all of my life...but I think your not so subtle slam at the obese is tasteless. I won't argue that obesity strains the healthcare budget, and I might even agree that the costs from it have overtaken the costs from smoking (although I'm not sure about that), but that really doesn't matter. What does matter is that people who smoke endanger me and other nonsmokers. This is a filthy, addictive habit that they choose to partake in. If they do this, then they should be willing to pay for it without complaining about the cost.
Then you should agree taxing the obese is okay then. Obesity is a filthy disgusting habit to some people, just as smoking is to you. Whenever I see very young children, who are obviously obese for their age, sitting with their equally--and usually much more--obese parents at any restaurant, it destroys my appetite merely watching them eat.
And what about air travel? Ever had to sit next to a person who really needs two seat but squeezes into one instead? Or even between two of them, where huge arms are intruding into what little space you have? And what about the extra weight the plane is carrying for the same cost you paid for being normal size?
Our medical system will be overwhelmed very soon with all of these people and I may have to wait in line at the hospital while tubby and tubbette get their second or third by-pass so they can go hit the buffet more efficiently. Yes, I say this tongue-in-cheek, but not very much of either in this case.
No, taxing one's vices is not the answer to curing bad habits.
wilderness: I think you're the one who needs a reality check. I wasn't just randomly making a statement, the facts about the dangers of second hand smoke have been supported by scientific research. In fact, some agencies are considering smoking around children a form of child abuse.
Oh yes - I know very well there is "scientific" research that shows lung-filtered cigarette smoke is more dangerous than non lung-filtered.
I've just never seen anything indicating exactly what filtering it through a set of lungs changes in that smoke to make it more dangerous. Just that it is, and that makes me a wee bit skeptical of the veracity of the "researchers".
"in second-hand smoke many components are more concentrated than in first-hand smoke [2,3]. For example, nicotine, tar, nitric oxide, and carbon monoxide levels are at least two times more abundant in second-hand smoke, and aromatic amines, such as the carcinogens o-toluidine, 2-naphthylamine, and 4-aminobiphenyl, are preferentially formed in second-hand smoke [2,3]. Therefore, it is possible that the increased risk for people's health when exposed to second-hand smoke lies in the fact that the toxic substances are highly concentrated in this type of smoke"
From Effects of "second-hand" smoke on structure and function of fibroblasts, cells that are critical for tissue repair and remodeling
Lina S Wong, Harry M Green, Jo E Feugate, Madhav Yadav, Eugene A Nothnagel and Manuela Martins-Green
BMC Cell Biology 2004, 5:13
Complete article can be read at http://www.biomedcentral.com/1471-2121/5/13
So if everyone would simply smoke a cigarette when others were smoking, they would be safer because they would be inhaling filtered smoke instead of second-hand smoke, right! That makes perfect sense to me.
Come on now, WriteAngled! For the concentration of tar to double it means either the lungs produced tar and inserted it into the exhaled breath OR the same amount of tar goes out as goes in while the amount of air decreases.
The same holds true for nicotine, CO or any of the other "nasties" in cigarette smoke.
If the air containing cigarette smoke contains 1 gram of tar per liter of air (I have no idea what the actual figure is) when it enters the lungs, some remains in the lungs and the same amount of air is exhaled, then the concentration of tar in that air goes down. This is elementary chemistry and to say otherwise is a scare tactic using "facts" that are totally bogus.
It's like claiming you can fill a 1 liter can with water and take 2 liters out of it. Or else you can add a liter to that same can, take out 1/2 liter and repeat indefinitely without ever filling the can. Either way, it doesn't work.
Wow, there are some great comments here. I will never get used to the cost of cigarettes which I only (1) reason I should quit. The other being health of course.
My doctor believes that major tobacco companies should lower the price so I may purchase even more. He feels that the additional care I will need is a good investment in his future!
This is the same spammer I've reported so many times it seems. Why in heck doesn't HP make sure the new members are actually writers? Sigh!
Well, what an interesting thread, lol. You all made me laugh quite extensively! My solution that has worked for myself and my wife is switching to little cigars...same size as cigs, just no papers, the smokes have a tobacco wrapper versus the paper. You all have seen them... The first ones from years back were Winchester I do believe. Now there are numerous brands, filtered, lights, ultra-lights, menthol and various other flavors. The biggest thing is cigars are not taxed! I pay 1.50 a pack or 15.00 a carton at the local smoke shop. I have bought them online cheaper at times from the Seneca reservation in the state of New York, however the shipping started making them more expensive than buying them locally.
Very true Dale, which makes the whole "tax cigarettes enough and people will quit" mantra exposed for the idiocy it is! Drink 100 cups of coffee a day and it will kill you--tax hell out of it! Eat too much and you'll get diabetes--tax hell out of the food and solve that problem! And so on and so on......!
Who says that people will quit their addictions if it gets expensive enough? I've never heard anybody say that! I've seen in the threads that people, if they are not smokers, have no problem with cigs costing even more. People who do smoke think they shouldn't have to pay huge taxes. The reason I have heard for the huge luxury taxes is that these things, tobacco and alcohol cause expenses to our society with the increased medical needs down the road. The taxes are there to help pay for education and the medical needs that smokers and drinkers are going to need. (I'm not really sure that is where the luxury tax revenue goes, though) It is obvious to me that people who smoke and drink in excess use more medical services - especially as they age. Of course, people who do anything in excess, including eating, use more medical services, the thing is that even people who don't abuse food have to buy it - FOOD is not a LUXURY - The real solution might be on the other end of things - people with health problems caused by their own poor choices and refusal to get help to overcome those poor choices should be made to pay for more of their medical services themselves. Would that make you happy? You do see why you can't tax food the way luxuries are taxed, don't you? You seem pretty angry about stuff you're actually making up. like I say, who, exactly, is telling you that "people will quit if you tax them enough"???
Can you avow all smokers who quit did so because they wanted to? Or those who are trying to slow down or quit are doing it without the cost being considered? And why is overeating a necessity? Sure, we have to have nourishment, but to the extent we damage our bodies, and perhaps those of our children too? Are you that naive about obesity, Mega?
Did you read the link I provided at the first of this thread which stated obesity problems now outnumber that of smokers? It was the first one i looked at but there are plenty more in case you doubt my word. Who pays for the medical obesity problems? Everyone does, so how is it we aren't taxing them like we do smokers? No, if we're going to punish one group's vices, or tax them to pay for any medical cost they may incur by having them, then let's tax all harmful vices the same way.
If we wanted to talk about obesity then there would be a thread about that. We're discussing the COST of smoking - there are other costs besides the price of the cigs - and the taxes on them. You cannot deny that medical costs of smoking are huge. Obesity - that's your pet peeve? I made a suggestion, but I guess you don't read the responses you get - you just want to make specious claims and not really respond. I wrote that I believe all addictions need to be addressed and suggested that when and if medical costs are incurred for any of these things that the person needs to pay for those that are attributed to their addiction themselves. I wouldn't call luxury taxes PUNISHMENT - as I say, I think your arguments are specious and you just want a conflict, not really a discussion. So long, snakey.
Perhaps we both have a problem understanding each others responses. I didn't just mention obesity, Mega. I also addressed alcohol as being taxed but at a much lower rate than cigarettes.
The thread is cigarette prices, and I assumed--perhaps wrongly--the OP desired to have a discussion about why they were so high compared to other vices which also contribute to health problems for the consumer. But you seem to want to put limits on the OP's discussion. Okay!
Randy, what are you trying to say? I hear your points, and I agree with them, I just don't see how FOOD can have a LUXURY tax? what about just paying for your own medical problems when they are caused by your own weak, addicted, impulses? you cannot tax FOOD as a LUXURY, man, don't you get it?
Isn't there already a tax in the US on sugary sodas? The problem with placing the taxes on "junk food" is that practically everyone would be charged. After all, even thin folks eat candy, fries, cakes, chips, etc. For example, it's nothing for my husband to down a few beers with a pound of M & Ms, and he's not fat! lol
Sure, there are taxes there - and rightfully so. Even if you don't have weight problems from too much sugar, you are bound to have other problems, maybe not so noticeable - but over time you'll find out. My brother had muscular problems and died because of them - he downed two to three six packs of Pepsi and Mountain Dew every single day of his adult life and ate candy like crazy. When he was a kid he used to spoon sugar straight into his mouth! No one ever suggested to him that he could control these desires he had. He died at 44. He also had anger problems (huge adrenaline problems, caused the muscle cramping etc. and it is well known that sugar junkies often have anger issues) Refined sugar attacks the brain - the connectors that keep our bodies going in the brain are destroyed by it. People around him also paid the price for his mood swings and his debilitating and finally terminal diseases caused by over consuming sugar. So I am well aware whereof I speak. As adults who have the right tools of information and behavior self-modification, we can do something about our cravings instead of giving into them - and that's what we need to think about instead of whining about how expensive it is to destroy ourselves! Why should these things be cheaper? I don't see it.
Just to wade in here: I have to pay higher insurance premiums for smoking, but not for being overweight. I'll also admit that my weight has caused me more health problems than my cigarettes have. I had high blood presure, high cholesterol, high triglycerides, and high blood sugar at the end of December. Since then, I've lost 43 pounds, and I just went to the doc and had blood tests last week. My triglycerides and bad cholesterol have dropped dramatically, my good cholesterol went up, and my blood glucose is now normal. My blood pressure is lower than it's been since I was 17 years old! Plus, my resting heart rate has lowered.
I know smoking is bad for me, but it does sometimes seem like smokers are singled out and treated like second class citizens. Perhaps that's because smoking affects those around us, while obesity doesn't? I'd love to quit smoking - not only is it unhealthy, it's VERY expensive. I don't know - I'm just trying to see this objectively.
Great for you Habee - see, that's what I mean, people who do something about their problems are living well. I bet you feel so much better now. The thing with smoking is it is just obnoxious to inhale someone's smoke when you're not a smoker. Everyone pretty much agrees about that now. When people give smokers dirty looks I think they are disgusted with the habit, more than with the person. But obese people get dirty looks too. I think smokers personalities are usually more prone to a persecution complex, always seeing themselves as victims. Its one of the reasons they do self-destructive things like smoking. And a majority of the smokers I have known are not very aware of the impact they have on others - they make messes and smell up the place, their clothes stink and they have rank breath and their health problems are really ugly. I've been there and done that, I feel a lot better now. But I never complained that my habits were expensive - that just came with the territory.
I still agree with luxury taxes, because they are the way to pay for the education and health programs that smoking and drinking require. Can you find a better way for smokers and drinkers to pay for those things. As for food, we are attacking that with education in the schools and the new programs our First Lady is doing to bring attention to acquiring good habits. Randy thinks we should somehow tax food like we do tobacco and alcohol - but that is just not possible or even thinkable since food is not a luxury.
One of the ways societies deal with behavior problems that are destructive to others is to frown upon those who do them - and speak out against the behaviors. That is what happens in a free society and people who are destroying themselves and sometimes others close to them with cigarettes and alcohol are going to be frowned upon and shunned even. That's the way it is. The attitudes toward fatness are changing and we will find more and more that obesity is shunned and frowned on too. I've already seen this happening. I can't complain about that either because I cherish my freedom to express my displeasure with rank and disgusting behaviors. If it helps us to clean up our act, then right on, I say.
I'm not in favor of taxing anyone's vices, Mega! And I agree smoking is very unpleasant to those who don't smoke. I would never smoke around those who object to it, nor does it bother me there are no-smoking restaurants and bars. I also do not care if people like to eat lots of food, I like it pretty well myself.
I don't really know how to characterize the act of consuming much more than one needs to sustain and nourish one's body. Not exactly a luxury, but still something some seem to be addicted to and definitely bad for one's health. Who decides which vice is the worse or should be curtailed by making it too expensive? You? I'm merely saying, "What's fair for the goose......"
You conveniently ignore what everyone is telling you, Randy - people overeating doesn't endanger other people! Food is not a luxury. Nobody's trying to decide which vice is worse. What you do when you smoke and where you smoke has nothing to do with why cigarettes are taxed as a luxury - because they are a luxury and a dangerous one - for all of society, not just for you, the smoker. I don't know why you think there is an argument with me! The taxes on cigs have been there for a long time - if you don't like that, complain to the right people, your congressmen, they and the people who study this stuff are the ones who make these decisions, not me. All in all, most people will agree that education at an early age is doing the most good. It is very moot for us to be debating the issue really. But I hope you got your other addiction, to the adrenaline rushes of a good caustic exchange in the forums, satisfied for now! I am realizing now that I'm being used this way. Oh well. you might want to check out the dangers of too much adrenaline and the way you are using it in the forums, there are sites online here to enlighten you and its a real eye-opener when you realize that pointless arguments are just another way to self-medicate - I'm not making this up - search "adrenaline junky" and see what I mean. It certainly is cheaper than a cigarette - but there are also health dangers not to be ignored.
It wouldn't hurt if you would just take a self-test here to see what I'm talking about http://stress.about.com/library/adrenal … f_test.htm
LOL! If you believe I get an adrenaline rush from discussing this issue with you, then perhaps you need to take some sort of test yourself! Why would I? If you really knew me you would realize this is one of the tamest competitions I ever involve myself in, if indeed you think it is such.
I'm not advocating for anyone to smoke and for everyone to quit if they can. Just like other vices mentioned here, there are always those who cannot quit them as easy as others can. Otherwise, we would all be slim and trim, non-drinkers, non-smokers, and all agree on everything.
I sincerely hope smoking is soon a non-issue in society, as well as obesity and the other vices causing so much harm to both young and old. But if you refuse to see the harm being done to the youth of our country by them becoming addicted to overeating, then you are not looking at it in the correct manner.
You and others feel it is okay to make smokers pay for the results of their vice, but don't feel the same about those who are now encouraging their children, and themselves, to overload our medical system to a much greater extent--especially in the near future--than the smokers ever did.
Where does one draw the line? Where do you see the vehemence in my posts? You in your 2nd post accused me of being one of several different things, none of them meant to be pleasant. (A)Redneck, (B) A few somethingorothers--your spelling-- short of a full deck, (C)being overconfident and therefore arrogant,(D)just being a dickwad-or all of the above. Please feel free to quote the particular aspersions I've directed towards you if you dare.
Oops - should have been "pressure." My fingers no work too good sometimes.
In short...It is just a way to get more of out tax dollars. Your congressman will tell you is to pay for the cost of medical but they need all of our money they can get.
It seems the people writing about this issue will never come to an agreement. However, I hold by my original posts...obesity does not kill other people. Smoking does. If you insist on smoking even though you know how dangerous it is, don't start whining about the costs. And don't try to compare it to something that bears no resemblance to it. I smoked for 25 years...2 packs a day...and I quit cold turkey because I wanted to do so. It was the best decision I ever made, and I have little tolerance for those who claim they can't quit. If I did it, they can do it. Instead they want to make excuses and argue with people about smoking and boo hoo about how they are being mistreated. Maybe it's their BEHAVIOR that makes people shun them, in addition to the way they smell and abuse the rights of nonsmokers. None of us are perfect, and we all have choices in this life. I just think its irresponsible to choose a habit that is so offensive and dangerous to other people and then act like you're being picked on because you made that choice.
Mega1: You have been spot on during this discussion, and I just want you to know that I have agreed with every comment you made. I also want to commend you for being polite and objective while commenting, which is more than I can say for some of the other people who have posted on this one. There are thinkers and then there are all the rest of the people. You're definitely a thinker.
thanks for saying that TimeTraveler2 - I'll tell you why I continued the discussion above so long - I have watched several forum discussions between the same 4 or 5 people and I start to worry about them, because they display the signs of true adrenaline junkies - always wanting to keep the argument going, not letting it be a discussion - using slightly veiled attacks on their "opponents" in order to keep it going, hoping to get insults back to stimulate their adrenal glands. OK, this would seem harmless and just personal style, EXCEPT the end result of all that is health conditions that really can be as disastrous as smoking and booze. So, I have over the time I've been here, tried to point out to some hubbers that they may be in danger because of what they are doing - that it isn't just harmless fun. I am bringing this up out of sincere wishes to help.
Although others have said they appreciate my comments, nobody here or elsewhere has called me a thinker - and that is the best accolade of all! So thanks again!
See my last post TT! And you may also reply to it with any names I've called Mega other than "Cupcake" if your reply to her was referencing my posts!
here's the entire post you were quoting, Randy -
"I don't care what the vices are and I've never heard of anyone NOT choosing their own vices, but if you complain that it is getting too expensive to kill yourself with cigs, then, you're probably either a) a redneck b) a few somethingorothers short of a full deck c) being overly confident and therefore arrogant (see other current thread) or d) just being a dickwad - or all of the above. Because it is expensive in so many ways to smoke, drink, go to prostitutes, and all the other great stuff humans seem fond of doing at their own peril. And I'm not saying I haven't been just as weird and wild - but now making cupcakes all afternoon is as wicked as I get! (and potato salad) big_smile It has always been expensive, by the way, I remember when my daddy used to scrounge for cigs sometimes when they were only a quarter a pack!"
I should have known better than to respond to you at all, but when I said "if you complain" I was using you in the editorial manner, meaning anyone who is reading that. I stand by my words - I do think it is very very dumb to complain about paying lots of money for things that kill you - (especially, when with a little ingenuity you can purchase the damn things much cheaper on indian reservations or from discount websites, etc.) People go to great lengths to keep up their addictions, though, and don't like to think they are dumb for doing so. Roll your own! And like I say, I would call myself those same epithets when I was the one being dumb enough to pull butts out of ashtrays, pull them apart, and re-roll them to get the high. It's a gross and disgusting habit, and that does not mean that people who have that habit are all gross and disgusting, but if the description fits, wear it!
that really is all I have to say about it.
But I notice where you still did not point out where I referenced you as being any unpleasant name or object if you thought as you apparently do. You and TT both cast aspersions upon those who dare to disagree with your views. I didn't respond in a a like manner and I am the bad guy? LOL! And it's great you try to remind others of their shortcomings as you did in your post before last. Thanks for your concern.
Randy Godwin: I think mega1 is correct...you don't want to discuss, you just want to incite. For the record, and as I told you in an earlier post...your comment to me about "possibly being fat" was quite personal indeed. And your comments about obese people in general have been horrible. You should re read some of your own posts. She is absolutely right about you!
Wow, people - some lengthy replies here! I've "skimmed" it and am just weighing in with some factual info.
Firstly, re the price of gas in the US - I am 42 years old and the UK hasn't had petrol (what you call gas) so cheap since before I was born!!! I've done the maths and allowed for the difference in the US measurement of a gallon compared to the British and find that we are currently paying more than $8.00 per US gallon for petrol at our very cheapest of establishments.
With regard to cigarettes, I am afraid that I am a pretty heavy smoker. I'm currently smoking around forty a day. Funny thing is, I save a fortune by smoking American cigarettes, rather than British. Even then, the prices may surprise you! I buy a pack of American Pall Malls for £5.36 (circa $8) while British cigs would be more than £7 - $10 per pack.
I'm determined to quit driving and smoking...
I'm smoking Pall Mall here in Spain too. €3.70 a packet. Among the cheapest, and it is a nice smoke too.
They are a good smoke, Izzy! So far as good smokes go. I'd still love to quit again. You're getting them a lot cheaper than me - hope you are well and bring yourself a good supply when you head home!
There are places here where they will roll your cigarettes while you wait in any blend you choose, complete with filters in menthol, regular, or light blend for $24 a carton. That's $2.00 a pack!
I believe there are a few similar establishments in Glasgow, Randy - however Strathclyde Police and Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs tend to take a dim view of such proceedings!
I used to smoke Regal, and for a while Glasgow was getting flooded with cheap cartons, and I don't know what they put in the ciggies but they were awful. Def not Regal.
Anyway, I have my own supply now, but I remember when ciggies were about €11 a carton and that was only about 10 years ago.
Spain is going through what the UK went through in the late 70s.
Not here, Gordon! Just today a local gas/rippy market was selling both tobacco, filtered tubes and the machine to pack them with for even less than I quoted previously, all out in plain view. It's legal here.
Of course, one may buy other brands already rolled for $2.50 a pack!
I hope I've just given you the idea for achieving millionaire status and cornering the British market at least!
Any chance you'll send me a smoke or two when you own the company...?
I'm saving up like mad!!
My flights are booked for the 27th, but I won't be leaving the airport. Land in Glasgow, and 3 hours later get my second flight to the coast. That gives me a bit of leeway for late arrivals. I don't know how many times I have been on a plane that is delayed for whatever reason!
Got to take at least 10 cartons home - I hardly smoke in Scotland because it is not allowed anywhere except in the street where it is raining, and windy..etc..and I don't smoke in the old yins' house either.
A carton can easily last a month. Changed days! lol
You're right on the smoking allowances, Izzy. I have mixed feelings on that actually, depending upon what mood I'm in but I will never forget the weekend the ban came in so long as I live. That story is so funny, I should probably write a Hub about it.
I hope your return home goes smoothly. I well remember my "homecoming" to Glasgow Airport - but I was only coming from London.
Need any help? Give me a shout! I mean it!
This is just a short note to our American cousins.
Britain always used to only allow you to take 2 cartons of cigarettes in from abroad.
Then new European Community rules came in saying that if you bought the cigarettes in a European country, you could bring as many as you want home, because the tax will have been paid in the relevant country.
So we had people going abroad to Europe and filling their car up, or their truck up.
And then then UK government said NO. We're not having this, you can bring home a maximum of 16 cartons.
This is totally illegal under current EC rules.
But to take them on, you need to have the money to pay for a QC, which will cost £1000s.
Britain gives free legal aid to half the world, but not for this.
Personally, I have taken 30 cartons home and not been stopped. Just as well, because I'd have had a screaming fit at whoever stopped me!
Under EC regulations you can carry as much tobacco as your weight allowance on the airplane allows you. (then you have to argue your case).
Similar laws here. You can't go to another state and bring back as many cartons of cigarettes as you like. With prices in some northern states being raised so much, smuggling cigarettes from down south to up there is a very lucrative business for some.
Interesting that all the ex-smokers are so down on smokers and smoking. It has always been that way.
I started smoking at a very young age (11) and thought I would be dead by 40 because that is what I was told.
I am now 53 and very much alive, healthy except for the broken back someone gave me, and have spent a lifetime around medical people.
It's becoming more and more obvious that smoking is getting blamed for everything.
People sit on pavement cafes breathing in fumes from passing cars and buses, and worry about the smoker at the next table?
Dislike of cigarette smoke is anyone's prerogative, but that is almost certainly not the worst thing you will breathe in on a day to day basis. Even those in the country have to breathe the air that is polluted with airplane fumes.
Then what about all those radio waves. You can't see them, but have you ever looked at a graph about how they are transmitted?
So we have radio waves, microwaves, all sorts of stuff in the air, yet you think (because your doctor told you) that is all caused by the farmer next smoking?
Tobacco smoking has been around for millennia. Other pollutions haven't, yet it is tobacco smoke which is causing everybody to die at least 30 years later than they did before mankind invented cars, telephones etc?
Oh I don't have any sympathy for grotesquely fat people either. They will cost the health service a lot more than me.
My death should be quick. A nice big heart doesn't cost anyone much at all.
Email me if you want me to bring you some back but you would need to meet me at the airport. But they are not much cheaper when you look the exchange rate.
Average medical costs per pack of cigarettes is about $5, lol. Lost productivity is another $5.
So, apparently, the average pack of cigs actually costs $14.80.
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