Sunday 23 March 2014

More Than Half Of Cigarettes Sold In New York Are Black Market

Just the other day, we learned that organised criminals are latching onto the sky high price of tobacco in Australia and making a mint. It's a simple basic economic fact that the more a state raises prices, the more human beings will look kindly at cheaper sources from whatever source - of course, this is always denied by professional tobacco prohibitionists and denounced as a tobacco industry fabrication.

Anyhow, following on from that, it seems that the same 'fantasy' scenario is happening in New York too.
The boom in smuggling to avoid cigarette taxes
More than half of the cigarettes sold in New York State are smuggled in from other places to avoid the Empire State's taxes on smokes, which have soared nearly 200 percent since 2006, according to a report issued by the conservative Tax Foundation. 
New York is the highest net importer of smuggled cigarettes - illegal smokes account for 56.9 percent of the state's total market. New York's cigarettes tax is $4.35 per pack, the country's highest.
So, the tax on cigarettes in New York is the highest in the country, and the level of smuggling in New York is also the largest in the country. You know, I think the two might be linked? Unless, of course, it is just pure coincidence (or a conspiracy) that, out of 50 states, New York handsomely leads in both criteria.

Considering the incredibly weak associations and vague correlation considered by tobacco control to be "compelling" or "overwhelming" evidence of causation, it's hilarious that they still try to lie claim that - even faced with real life evidence like this - basic laws of economics are magically incorrect when it comes to tobacco.

This isn't rocket science. It is simply people doing what the laws of economics have always consistently predicted people will do.

With Osborne announcing a rise in tobacco taxes by 2% above inflation for every year till the end of the decade in his budget this week, we can expect the same proportional increasing rise in the level of tobacco sourced from other countries in the EU. The booze cruise of the 90s, of which I'm sure we all have fond memories, will hopefully become increasingly more financially attractive again - most especially if there is the added bonus of being able to buy properly branded packs instead of plain packs which our daft one party state looks set to approve - except that this time it'll be the 'fag cruise' with a side benefit of stocking up with cases of cheap French wine while we're there.

With any luck, one day we may be able to proudly boast - just like New Yorkers - that over 50% of UK consumed tobacco has not contributed so much as a brass farthing to our hideous government. Bring it on!

H/T Norcal David G


Blad Tolstoy said...

"With any luck, one day we may be able to proudly boast - just like New Yorkers - that over 50% of UK consumed tobacco has not contributed so much as a brass farthing to our hideous government. Bring it on!" Dick P.

Yes, indeed, bring it on, and so say all of us!

Junican said...

New York's cigarettes tax is $4.35 per pack, the country's highest.

$4.35 equals roughly £3. That is about half of UK duty. But I think that, generally, in the UK, there is the problem of 'know somebody who knows somebody who knows who is selling illicits'. How can you blame them? Thus, it is likely that 100% of certain 'communities' are buying fags only from 'illicits'. I doubt that such a source would ever reach me personally since I do not frequent the places where these people ply their trade. But there are other ways.
Whatever, one must take into consideration the spread of ecigs.
What might alarm tax authorities is that The Revenue relies upon people who are light smokers. They are the people who pay, say, £3.50 per day and can afford it. What would happen if large numbers of those people switched to ecigs fairly rapidly 'for health reasons? Those people are the backbone of tobacco revenue.
I can see that happening, and I can see why the Zealots (that is, those zealots who are charlatans) are horrified. I can also wee why Chapman, in the BMJ, poo-pooed the idea that ecigs and cutting down on smoking make any difference to ailments.

Jax said...

Wasn’t the extensive smuggling which ensued from extortionate taxation rates on countless commodities the hidden message behind the nursery rhyme “Pop goes the weasel?” As I understand it from history, the amount of smuggling of all over-taxed items (often taken advantage of by those in positions of authority and even organised by those supposedly stopping it) caused such severe financial problems for the Exchequer that eventually virtually all of the taxes were reduced or dropped completely – the Exchequer (supposedly) having “learned their lesson the hard way.” Except, it seems, where tobacco, alcohol and fuel are concerned. Oh, well. I guess they’ll just have to “learn the hard way” again, like the fools that they are. Serve them right. I just wish that I knew, as Junican puts it: “Someone who knows someone,” but sadly my sheltered and prim upbringing (yeah, right!) has prevented me from making the right sort of contacts in that direction. Dammit!

nisakiman said...

Here's one you might like, DP:

Australia tobacco sales increase despite plain packaging

"Deliveries of tobacco to retailers in Australia
rose slightly last year for the first time in at least five years, even
after the introduction of plain packaging aimed at deterring smokers,
according to industry sales figures to be released on Monday."

I wonder how long that story will be allowed to stand. You can bet that the TC spin machine will be revving up right now to say what a great success PP has been in Aus, despite the figures.

Lone Smoker said...

The main problem with buying tobacco in the EU is the RauchGestapo(fagseekers) on return to the UK. These clownish jobsworths spend more time looking for Golden Virginia than terrorists,illegal immigrants,pimps,drug carriers,kidnappers,pickpockets,murderers,and other undesirables put together Just how sad can a Nation be.
It is the sacred legacy of every Briton (who honours freedom and liberty) to
defy the Westminster Tyrrany and only use products bought abroad (non British if possible),indeed it is more honourable to buy from a dodgy back street Balkan dealer than to buy in a British shop and contribute to the continuing hatred of a sizeable minority.
To be fair to Osborne and Cameron they DARE'NT offend the anti smoking Mafia,their pockets and position would be under threat.
PS As a matter of interest does anyone know why the 100s of so called
freedom and liberty groaners cant get their act together and get some profile where it matters ,on the streets.
Paradise Lost

Dick_Puddlecote said...

Yes, saw it last night. Wonder how they'll spin their way out of that one?

truckerlyn said...

Haven't paid UK tax on cigs in years! We have 2 glorious holidays in Majorca each year and bring back 75 to 80 cartons of cigs, which last us until our next holiday. Great!
The prices are going up in Spain, but nowhere near as much as here and at least there is the added pleasure of doing our load of pillocks in the exchequer out of their cut!

Dick_Puddlecote said...

You'll appreciate this sentiment, then.

truckerlyn said...

Absolutely! And likewise for us. Can't even imagine how much we have saved or how much we have deprived the exchequer of! Best of all, it's LEGAL!