Friday, August 19, 2005

The economic impact game...

.....when city councils & county commissions, who recently passed smoking bans, attempt to provide lip service to the multitudes of businesses and people harmed by the smoking ban; they make a half-hearted effort saying....we'll conduct an economic impact study.

The reality of the matter is that they've already made the back room deal with the devil ( er....non profits) and simply return with the Johnson & Johnson pharmaceutical (er.... non-profits) talking points.......sure there maybe individual "corrections", but the overall tax impact is a net no change. Westover puts it in easy to understand Lunger terms:

Bob (Moffit of the American Lung Ass. of MN.) 's argument has always been an aggregate argument that hides the fact that individual small bars and restaurants are hurt by the ban. But as long as overall tax revenues stay the same or go up, which could be for any number of reasons not related to the ban, we can conveniently ignore those people government put out of business.

To use an analogy -- if everyone stopped contributing to the American Lung Association of Minnesota and instead gave to other charities, overall charitable giving in Minnesota would remain the same. That the ALA of Minnesota had to shut its doors and Bob was out of a job would be irrelevant -- charitable giving remained stable......Somehow, I don't think Bob (Moffit) would agree.

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