While other parts of the U.S. economy are generating less tax revenue due to lower corporate profits and unemployment, latest data shows that America’s federal government collected a healthy $20.6 billion from taxes on guns, booze, and tobacco in 2009.
This amounts to a 41% annual increase.
Hard times are easy times to hike taxes against the the ‘sinful’, as a full $6 billion of the increase was due to higher tobacco taxes alone, thanks to the ‘Children’s Health Insurance Reauthorization Act’.
They’re also fertile times for paranoia. Alcohol and firearms contributed the remainder of taxes, with an special boost thanks to rumours Obama would kill the Second Amendment:
In October 2009, firearms and ammunition excise tax collection climbed 45 per cent from the previous fiscal year, the greatest annual increase in the firearms tax revenue in the agency’s history, the report said. By comparison, the average annual increase for fiscal years 1993 to 2008 was 6 per cent.
A Gallup Poll conducted in early October 2009 said one possible explanation for the surge in gun and ammunition sales could be that more than 50 per cent of the Americans who owned guns and some 41 per cent of all Americans believed that President Obama would “attempt to ban the sale of guns in the United States while he is president.”
These are effectively the tax hikes most people never notice.