Filed Under: Food Police

CSPI on fat taxes: “Nobody is complaining”

Sometimes the lunatic fringe makes our case for us. On Thursday, July 25, Fox News Channel viewers got a firsthand look at Michael Jacobson, the twinkie-taxer-in-chief who runs the Center for Science in the Public Interest. Along with the Center for Consumer Freedom’s John Doyle, Jacobson appeared on The O’Reilly Factor. Here, unedited, is a brief transcript of one tete-a-tete between Jacobson and the show’s host:

O’REILLY: Now, in moderation, Doctor, why should I be taxed if I want to have a cheeseburger and a Coke?

JACOBSON: Well, these taxes we’re talking about are so trivial that it wouldn’t matter…

O’REILLY: But it is a tax anyway. It is an intrusion anyway, Doctor.

JACOBSON: It is worth pointing out that a dozen states, including California and New York, already have special taxes…

O’REILLY: So what?

JACOBSON: … on soft drinks. Nobody is complaining in those states. There’s no influence on consumption.

O’REILLY: Wait a minute, Doctor. I bet you there are plenty of people complaining in those states. I don’t want to pay — I don’t want to pay any more extra taxes on anything because I’m taxed up to here. But, look…

JACOBSON: Well, that’s your prerogative.

O’REILLY: But, look, what you’re saying — I know what you’re saying, that you can raise more money to do more good and it wouldn’t hurt anybody. But the point of the matter is that we’re Americans. We should have freedom of choice and we shouldn’t have to be paying to the government for that freedom. That goes against everything we stand for.

JACOBSON: Well <chuckles>, I don’t think people object to that. I mean, if you’re saying…


O’REILLY: Doctor, I’m telling you you’re nuts. With all due respect, you’re going to get more e-mail on this and they’re going to say “I object, Doctor.” You’re going to have thousands of people telling you you’re crazy because they do object.

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