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Coffee Break with Liz and Kate » Headline, Liz's Rants » Liz’s rant: When candy is its own food group

Liz’s rant: When candy is its own food group

As I’ve said on numerous occasions in the past, our money-hungry, spend-more-than-you-have government would soon begin taxing things that are likely to take you by surprise. For all you nay-sayers out there, the tax-you-blind craziness is already well under way. But with a caveat I find especially amusing.

It seems as if several states, who decided to bridge their budget deficit with candy and soda taxes have run into a sticky situation, if you will (think taffy or melty, gooey caramel).

Apparently, there’s some question as to what candy is actually candy and what candy is, well, not. Seems similar to the now-infamous “depends on what the definition of ‘is’ is,” debacle.

Here are a few cases in point, beginning with the state of Washington, where a new candy tax has taken effect. Buy a Butterfinger, pay the tax. Buy a Kit-Kat, and pay only for the candy bar – no excise tax applies. Why? Because unlike the Butterfinger, Kit-Kats contain flour.

Colorado doesn’t tax Kit-Kats, either. But it does tax Twix bars. Unfortunately for Illinois residents, their legislators remain on the fence where taxing Twix bars are concerned, on the basis that they contain both flour and peanut butter.

To make matters even more confusing, New Mexico almost levied a tax on flour tortillas – not corn or whole wheat. That stellar idea was vetoed in short order, though.

Believe it or not, these candy and soda laws have been passed or proposed in more than a dozen states.

Which reminds me of comedian extraordinaire, Bill Cosby, who lamented that since chocolate cake contains wheat, milk and eggs, it is fair game for breakfast. Following his lead, might I suggest you review the ingredients in your favorite candy…

-Liz

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