The Chicago Sun-Times really pulled a whopper in their March 26th piece about a tax on bottled water that the Chicago City Council passed earlier this year. Chicago levied a 5 cent a bottle tax on each unit of bottled water sold in the city expecting to raise $875,000 a month on the tax. But somehow this windfall to the city has yet to be realized with the tax booty so far only amounting to $554,000. Because of this "below expected" revenue the Sun-Times claimed that this shortfall is "exacerbating a budget crunch" for the city.
I'm sorry Sun-Times but a tax shortfall isn't "exacerbating a budget crunch." The city itself is doing the "exacerbating" not the taxpayers. The City Council created a never before heard of tax and then spent the money it assumed it'd get. But then it didn't get it. How can we blame the taxpayers who avoided the tax -- legally avoided it, I might add -- for any "budget crunch"? The budget crunch is the fault of wild spending by the Chicago City Council, not by the taxpayers not being bled enough.
In fact this new obscenity of a tax reveals a perfect example of human nature in action. The spendthrifts on the Chicago City Council created a new confiscatory tax out of thin air by placing a 5 cent tax on every bottle of water in the city. So, what happened? The suburbs found that, to avoid the tax, Chicago residents streamed into the suburbs and bought their water by the skids full in those neighboring towns.
As the Sun-Times reports:
Are Chicagoans trekking to the suburbs to buy cases of bottled water -- and avoid a new nickel-a-container tax that adds $1.20 to the price of a 24-pack? Or are they making the switch to tap water to save money?
One or the other is happening. Maybe both.
Ah, delicious fate. The City thinks it will raise hundreds of thousands if not millions on a new tax, but taxpayers simply take their business elsewhere, avoiding the tax altogether. Perfect.
Yet, the Sun-Times imagines that this shortfall is somehow causing or making worse a budget shortfall? They blame the taxpayers for not being stupid enough to just bend over, sheep-like, and take this idiotic new tax up the keister?
The fault lies squarely on the shoulders of the Chicago City Council for spending too much, not the taxpayers. The City government caused this "budget crunch," NOT the taxpayers. But leave it to a tax loving paper like the Sun-Times to scold the common man for not allowing himself to be raped by a city government that represents no one but their own bank accounts.
A big thank you for looking out for us should go out to the Chicago City Council and the Chicago Sun-Times. But, I don't want to thank them too loudly lest they decide to tax the "service" as well as the breath it took to relay the sentiment.