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Some fun (or macabre) potential taxation figures

Discussion in 'New Members Forum' started by Roger_Lafayette, Jan 19, 2014.

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  1. Roger_Lafayette

    Roger_Lafayette Guest

    Jan 19, 2014
    Moved On
    Looks to me as if 1ml. of e-juice roughly corresponds to a pack of analog ciggies (for those of us who used to smoke the latter). That's what I hear from others, and it matches up w/ my own vaping behavior pretty well - roughly 1-1/3 packs of analog ciggies per day were replaced by about 1.6 ml. of e-juice.

    So what will the #s look like when various gov'ts start taxing e-juice at the same rate as analog ciggies? I was fairly stunned when I ran them. If 15 ml. of e-juice is taxed at the same rate as 15 packs of analog cig.s, you are going to be paying taxes of $103 on it in NYC (highest combined tax rate in the country - $6.86 total) or $17.55 in MO (lowest rate, $1.18). The average state (dependning on how you compute the average) is about $4, so that would be $60 on 15 ml.

    Using Johnson Creek prices (about $10/15 ml.), that means over 90% of the price of 15 ml. of e-juice in NYC will be taxes. In an average state, the tax percentage would still be over 80%.

    Things get more interesting when you look at higher-concentration "DIY" e-juices. Presumably the gov't will set some kind of standard, like taxing the DIY e-juices depending on how many ml.s of finished product one ml. of concentrate can produce. So if you buy (say) 10% (100mg/ml) concentrate, the gov't might set the taxes at 10 times the tax on a pack of analogs (per ml.).

    Let's see, that means a liter (which is basically a quart) of 10% e-juice will carry the taxes of 10,000 packs of cigarettes. In NYC, that comes to $68,600. Even in MO it's $11,800. For the average state it would be $40,000.

    Interesting consequences for organized crime, eh? 100% water-soluable nicotine would probably become the most valuable product to smuggle by weight or by volume - worth more than anything except maybe diamonds and other precious stones (but a lot easier to obtain if one has the right training and equipment: in fact much easier than most if not all illegal drugs). Of course the gov't could simply ban highly-concentrated water-soluble nicotine (or require a license to purchase/possess/manufactur it).

    But I hardly see the difference between taxes at these rates and an outright ban (or strict licensing requirements).

    And if you want to quibble with my rough approximation of 1 ml. of e-juice to a pack of analog ciggies, go ahead and fiddle a bit. Maybe it's 2ml? Or 0.5ml? Hardly matters, does it?

    Of course the gov't could start tightly controlling VG (doing it for PG by itself would probably have little effect). But as far as I can tell, millions of tons of food-grade VG is used in all sorts of food applications as well as soap, costmetics, etc. Not exactly a practical strategy. And taxing e-equipment is probably a loser for the gov't as well, because vapers would stop using disposable equipment.

    So pretty soon we'll be able to say "goodbye" to narcotics cartels, and "hello" to nicotine cartels. Terrorists everywhere will fund their organizations with smuggled high-concentration nicotine.

    And maybe the CIA will start importing it, in order to fund secret wars. (Oh wait, that was Iran-Contra. That can't happen again ... can it ;)

    Happy vapin' :)

  2. djsvapour

    djsvapour ECF Guru ECF Veteran

    Oct 2, 2012
    England and Wales
    Is that right? I disagree.
  3. rico942

    rico942 Ultra Member ECF Veteran

    Jul 12, 2013
    Carlsbad, CA
    Its ironic, but with vapers already on the defensive due to endless media disinformation and local government restrictions, we are probably better prepared for the onslaught of "sin taxes" than if things were otherwise ...

    So much about vaping is knowledge-based, and the hardware is already beyond control. Nicotine from offshore sources could become as common as generic pharmaceuticals are now, with efforts to curtail import ending in futility and failure ...

    Sad that a fledgling US industry could be taxed out of existance in its infancy, but that seems to be the direction that government is taking. My preference would always be to buy domestic, but if the commidity is priced out of reach, there will always be alternatives ...
  4. Roger_Lafayette

    Roger_Lafayette Guest

    Jan 19, 2014
    Moved On
    "Been there, done that, bought the tee shirt (with analogs)." I stopped doing it a few years ago when my last shipment got siezed by customs. Shortly after that, overseas analog cig. vendors stopped shipping to the U.S.

    So unless you're going to smuggle your own e-juice in (and are prepared to get caught and sent to jail), you're going to get stuck paying whatever the gov't charges or you'll be buying it from illegal "dealers" or you'll be synthesizing it yourself.

    Watch the gov't start jailing people for buying or possessing illegal e-juice ... it'll be interesting to see if juries "nullify."

    Hopefully I'll be vaping 0% and maybe chewing nicorette by then, so I won't have to worry. Unless, of course, the gov't figures out a way to make VG unobtainable (which I don't think is practical, as I mentioned before.)

    What a horrific mess this is all going to be.
  5. rico942

    rico942 Ultra Member ECF Veteran

    Jul 12, 2013
    Carlsbad, CA
    Its just not practical or possible to screen even a small percentage of shipments from offshore vendors, the volume is overwhelming. US Customs tried this a few years ago with generic pharmaceuticals, mostly purchased by seniors who simply can't afford excessive domestic prices (like me) ...

    For awhile, shipments were delayed for a week or so to discourage buyers, but it didn't work. The vendors change their shipping address and packaging randomly, and are not bound by oppressive foreign regulations, they just want to sell their product. Good ones are reviewed and establish credibility ...

    I can't see current vapers submitting to obscene tax percentages and inferior products, if a few mouse clicks will deliver quality ...

    Sadly, it could and probably would discourage smokers from switching ...

    Just one of the ways that vaping is profoundly different from smoking. My upstairs apartment doesn't provide me an opportunity to grow tobacco. But my web browser could make it possible to acquire liquid in the future from offshore sources, in the proverbial "plain brown wrapper" ...

    Nicotine juice in a shampoo bottle ? Why not ...
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