Buried deep in the transportation bill was an amendment which was added to the legislation which will change the definition of cigarette manufacturers to include those who own and operate roll your own cigarette machines, effectively shutting down these small businesses all across the country.
For those who do not know: Loose tobacco is taxed at a much lower rate than cigars and cigarettes and because of this many people have opted to save money by rolling their own cigarettes and this led to a boom in the roll your own cigarettes business. Entrepreneurs went into business for themselves by purchasing rolling machines which afforded smokers with the opportunity to roll many cigarettes in minutes while paying half the price for name brand cigarettes.
Needless to say, “big tobacco” wasn’t happy about small businesses moving in on their territory and they lobbied the government to crack down on these small businesses, and let’s face it, the government doesn’t really want people to quite smoking because quite frankly the government would lose too much money. The government simply wants the people to pay more to the government for theprivilege to keep smoking and because many people found a way to legally avoid paying taxes on cigarettes the government had to step in and do something about this.
So naturally the federal government was more than willing to partner with “big tobacco” to take down the little guy. The federal government and “big tobacco” are the winners here and the losers are the small business owners for they can no longer compete. And it mustn’t be forgotten that this bill was passed with bipartisan support, the Republicans are just as guilty as are the Democrats for putting tax revenues and special interests ahead of the people.
Absolutely despicable. there is no place in our republic for this. Of course this is what happens when bills become so massive no one can fairly be expected to know what is in them. We need some reform that disallows amendments, which have nothing at all to do with a bill, from being attached. We also need to end this practice of government using taxes to pick winners and losers, or to favor large businesses over small. Our Congress is out of control. They are no longer representatives, they are slave masters. This is nothing more than hiding legislation from the people. I will let Matt have the last word
So, this story has it all, intrusive government that causes people to lose their jobs, and closes businesses, with a heaping helping of crony capitalism.
This story reminds us just how deep in the pit of big government we are.