atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,
atomic_fungus
atomic_fungus

#5464: Stupid, incompetent, or evil?

More about that stupid, confiscatory soda tax.
...the city is relying on the soda tax to fund its schools. They had planned on $7.6 million per month in tax revenues for that purpose, but only drew in $2.3 million the first month. So, once again good job: linking childhood education to a tax scheme that you had to know would be a disastrous failure.
Here's the thing: the tax has been placed at the wholesale level, apparently on the theory that retailers would eat the cost rather than pass it on to the consumer. But because this tax was emplaced by takers (people who have never produced anything of value) it was emplaced without knowledge of how things work in retail.

Running a grocery store is a balancing act. You need to keep your average profit above a certain level. You do this by rotating what's on sale, and sometimes those discounts are quite steep, just to get people in the store. Most people don't want to do their shopping at three or four different stores, but would rather just go one place and get it done, so the "loss leader" strategy works fairly well.

But it also means that while the individual margins on products are reasonable, typically the products sell much closer to wholesale. People will wait until something goes on sale and buy it then, and stock up; if it's something they need now they'll buy the minimum amount necessary to tide them over until it does go on sale. (Example: store-brand butter is on sale at my local store for $3 a pound. The box was empty. Right next to it, a full box of butter at $3.50 a pound.)

So--in practical terms--there isn't that much margin to cut. The tax is 1.5 cents per ounce; on a 16 oz bottle of Pepsi it's a quarter. On a 6-pack, it's $1.50. On a case of 12 oz cans, it's $4.32. Typical sale price for a case is $5; this tax doubles the price, and there isn't enough margin in the cost of the product for anyone in the supply chain to absorb it. The wholesaler certainly cannot; at the typical supermarket markup of 150% of wholesale cost, there isn't nearly enough margin there to absorb it, either.

And not to put too fine a point on it, all participants in the supply chain are not doing this for their health, but to make money.

Meanwhile, the lunatics in the Philadelphia city government seem to live in a marxist dreamland, blaming "greedy" suppliers for not being good socialists and taking it up the ass in the name of the chawdren.

* * *

An explanation of why the leftist violence cannot lead to revolution. It's true enough: you put the idiots rioting up against real soldiers and they'll buckle. Soldiers have discipline and training; the rioters are a barely-organized mob.

Which is not to say that it's impossible for a revolution to take place. But it's not going to be the idiots in the streets doing it; they're a rabble with no unit cohesion or discipline under fire. It's going to require a lot more than that to pose a credible threat to the nation.

Of course, there's always terrorism, which suits the left just fine. Take a look at the sixties, all the bombings perpetrated by leftists--though I'm not sure how well they'd fare today, when the feds have had fifty years to perfect their techniques for sniffing out and preventing terrorist activity.
The little black-clad Bitch Posse feels brave when pepper-spraying women who thought they were going to a lecture, and ganging up 40-to-1 on unarmed middle-aged guys.

They will, by contrast, squirt their shorts full the first time they start catching facefuls of .30 caliber incoming, in a manner that will trigger the activation of their organ donation cards, and all their chicken-shit posturing has done is get a sizable cross-section of the right to salivating on the prospect of the smackdown we're inching closer to, with each one of these infantile street tantrums.
I don't relish the possibility, but if the radical American left gets the actual war they claim they want, they may find it's not to their liking, after all.

* * *

Man, today is probably already a lost cause. I have to run some errands, and I don't want to, but they won't get done if I don't do them. Argh etc.
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