That quote comes from a smoker in New Zealand, where the tobacco tax has been hiked again, and where retailers must now hide cigarettes under the counter. It’s all part of the country’s effort to force smokers to stop. Well, actually, not quite stop, because that would mean giving up the tax revenue. Here’s reaction from smokers:
Chris Hobman said the cost is “horrendous” and could drive some low-income people to commit crimes to support their habit. He said the government needs to provide more support and alternatives to smokers if it’s serious about making them quit.
Wellington resident Hayley Mauriohooho, who has smoked for about 20 years, said that although it would be good if more people quit, higher taxes won’t stop her.
“It’s quite ridiculous for the government to be concentrating on that,” she said. “They have bigger things to worry about.”