I entitled the article "Forget everything you thought you knew about economics, human nature" because Joy came out with one of the most absurd pieces of anti-smoking fantasy I've ever heard.
BBC: There must be a tipping point where you are forcing poorer people to buy their cigarettes without paying duty.
Joyless: Well, it's very interesting because [...] the tobacco companies always say that. If the tax goes up, this is going to increase smuggling. And they say it, it's one of their many deceits as it's not true.You could up the tax on cigarettes to £100 per pack, according to Joy, and it would have no effect on smuggling whatsoever. Smokers would simply give up. End of story.
I do wonder what she would make of this population level ecological study, then. No, not some computer-generated pile of steaming bullshit so trusted by the tobacco control industry, I'm talking about what has been peer-reviewed as something called real life in New York.
The Tax Foundation said that 60.9% of cigarettes sold in New York State are smuggled in from other states.
This makes New York the biggest importer of black market cigarettes, along with the state's highest tax rate of $4.35 per pack. That's compared to Missouri, the state with the lowest rate, of 17 cents per pack.
In New York City the tax rate is even higher, adding another $1.50 per pack to the state rate. It's not uncommon for smokers to pay $12 for a pack.
The report said that tobacco smuggling and the tax rate have risen practically in tandem since 2006. The New York State tax on cigarettes has risen 190% since that time, as the rate of smuggling increased 170%.There comes a point at which we must seriously begin to question the mental health of many in tobacco control. They are either deranged, or compulsive liars in need of urgent help.
Yet government listen to them. Go figure.