On December 31, Michael Bloomberg will leave the mayoralty of New York City. Unfortunately, that probably won’t reduce the impact the meddlesome multibillionaire will try to have on Americans’ lives and beverage choices. Starting with a campaign to enact a soda tax in Mexico largely funded by Bloomberg’s “philanthropic” arm, Bloomberg hopes to enact soda taxes and regulations globally.
Will he succeed? Our Senior Research Analyst expressed hope to Forbes that Hizzoner would fail:
He’s been the imperial mayor. He will lose power now. There’s not much appetite in many jurisdictions to pursue what he wants to pursue. His money won’t change public opinion. You can’t buy people’s hearts and minds as he could buy the force of law of government.
We’ll see what happens abroad, but the prospects for Bloomberg’s cola wars on home soil look poor. Recent polls have shown that roughly three quarters of Americans want nothing to do with Bloomberg’s cup-size Prohibition. Only slightly fewer—about 60 percent in multiple surveys—expressed revulsion at “fat taxes” on foods Bloomberg and his activist allies don’t like. And when real money has been on the line, voters have sent soda taxes packing by up to 3-to-1 margins, even in one city with a Green Party mayor.
Ultimately, Bloomberg can try to evade the policies he wants us the peons to follow—the onetime salt scold reportedly salts his pizza and even after the soda ban was proposed, Bloomberg offered free sodas to the employees of his company. But in a democracy the people—not peons—get their say, and we can tell Nanny his policies are not welcome.