Nov 092011

One of the things that has been discussed recently among the general population is the amount of government regulation. Most people don’t really care if some other guy is taxed or regulated. Classic Liberals / Libertarians have always taken, “the other guy’s” cause as their own. To try and highlight the ridiculousness of government intervention, let’s take a look at a recent government regulation being called the, “Christmas Tree Tax.”

Today, November 8, 2011, the Department of Agriculture created a National Christmas Tree Promotion Board in the Federal Register. The Board is created for the purpose of promoting the Christmas Tree industry. How will they do this? Well, by imposing a $0.15 tax per tree. If you ask the government bureaucrats it’s not really a tax, it’s an “assessment.” The rule reads, “Under the Order, producers and importers of fresh cut Christmas trees will pay an initial assessment of fifteen cents per Christmas tree.”

This “assessment” by the way is not voluntary. Read further and you’ll see: “(f) Persons failing to remit total assessments due in a timely manner may also be subject to actions under federal debt collection procedures; (g)
The Board may authorize other organizations to collect assessments on its behalf
with the approval of the Secretary.” The emphasis is added because it is, without doubt, the IRS that is the, “other organization” referred to in the rule.

The reason for this Board is to make the fresh Christmas tree industry more competitive with the artificial Christmas tree industry. Once again, the government is picking the winner and the loser. The Occupy Wall Street people should be pissed at this because the government has selected the fresh Christmas tree industry over the artificial trees; just like picking the banks, wall street, the pharmaceutical industry, etc. The government is now siding with the fresh Christmas tree producers. Soon enough, the artificial Christmas tree industry will hire some lobbyists to counter the fresh Christmas tree Board.

It’s also worth mentioning the famous modern liberal complaint of separation of church and state. There will be no cry about this rule favoring fresh Christmas (which is based on religious christian figure Jesus Christ) trees because it involves the government expanding and taxation, er…assessments. The modern liberal/statist won’t utter a peep about this because it moves the government further into everyday life.

So, rest easy knowing that the government has a watchful eye on the Christmas Tree industry. But don’t worry that during tough economic times your Christmas tree will cost you more because of this new tax, er…assessment. The millions of dollars will be passed on to the consumer. The real cost will also have to factor in the cost of enforcement. After all, the Christmas Tree Tax will need to be enforced. Welcome to the era of reduced regulation.

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