Who will determine what counts as "junk food" and what the appropriate tax rate is? How will the government make sure people are not evading the tax by making their own junk food at home or buying it in the black market? Is it fair or efficient to make lean, healthy people pay a premium for cookies, ice cream, and potato chips because other consumers do not exercise enough to burn off the calories they ingest? Don't worry, Bittman says: "We have experts who can figure out how 'bad' a food should be to qualify, and what the rate should be."
July 25, 2011
Jacob Sullum has at Mark Bittman.