Capitol Hill Crooks

Capitol Hill Crooks

We’ve elected a bunch of robbers, crooks, pickpockets and thieves to run this nations government and I’m fuming mad about it. I would normally say "our government" but those days are over, this government doesn’t represent me.

How could they represent us, while hurting our children and making our lives unbearable? Last week I sent my husband to the store for a carton of cigarettes and got the shock of my life when he came home saying they cost us $47 and some change. Now I find that my "habit" is going to cost my family another 60 cents a pack, on top of the last increase starting today.

Gee, this makes me wish that I had decided to become a heroin addict all those years ago, when I first started smoking. If I were hooked on smack I could get treated for free, compliments of our benevolent government — free needles, free methadone, what a deal.

However, since I’m a cigarette smoker I get blamed for the problems of the entire nation. Not only am I restricted as to where and when I can smoke, I also get to pay everyone’s health care costs. That part really sticks in my craw because we don’t even have medical coverage — we can’t afford it.

I can’t even get dental work done because I can’t find a dentist willing to give me an estimate, because we pay cash money. Isn’t that rich? Anyone know of an honest dentist? Is there such a thing?

While technically, I can afford to keep smoking, why on earth would I do that to my family? While we manage to get away for a quick two-day trip away from home every few months, it’s been years since we’ve been able to afford a real honest to goodness vacation. My son has never been to Great America, Disneyland, Sea World, the San Diego Zoo, etc. and it’s doubtful he’ll be visiting there any time soon.

I have been working up to quitting since California passed their so-called "fire safe cigarette" (FSC) law, requiring banded papers on all cigarettes sold in this state. Of course like many I’ve been able to get around this law by purchasing real cigarettes in Nevada. The trip to Nevada was no hardship, especially when the trip could be topped off with a visit to the Carson Nugget, which has the best Seafood Buffet (Comstock Buffet), anywhere.

At least I could feel good about supporting the Indian Smoke Shop, especially since I’m part Blackfoot Indian.

When I discovered RJ Reynolds sold us smokers out, and announced they would convert all production over to FSC cigarettes by the end of 2009, that was my queue that it was time to quit. Just how long will it be before the other cigarette manufacturers follow suit?

Since I began smoking them my chest hurts, I cough constantly; I’m having chest pains, daily and other symptoms that I believe are all related to the change. Almost makes me want to continue smoking them, just so I can sue the pants off someone.

I just hope those red nosed baboons on Capitol Hill, who congratulate themselves by toasting their cheap booze, while sticking it to us smokers, get their just due. I have no doubt they will. I’ve heard from every non-smoker on the planet just how bad cigarette smoking is but I can tell you first-hand the cost of drinking. Every man in my immediate family has died in their early 40’s as a direct result.

You can look at all those red noses and see just who has a drinking problem and who doesn’t and that my friend is why taxes on alcohol remain low and no other reason.

For the rest of us, we must remember to lock our doors because the crime rate is going to double in the very near future. This tax hike is going to cost our children more than any of us can imagine.


Most low-income families are already living in crisis mode, they are budgeting every single dollar. When in crisis mode a smoker will smoke more to handle the stress, not less. Increasing the cost of tobacco is going to put so much pressure on families that are already close to the breaking point that many will snap.

When I was in my early adult years they doubled the cost of cigarettes, taking them from 75 cents to more than $1.50, people were angry and desperate. My husband and I were both smokers, unemployed and past desperate. I can recall walking along the road, next to all the parked cars in the middle of the night, checking door handles.

We were looking for an unlocked car, not so that we could steal the car or even any money found inside; we were looking for cigarettes. Sad but true!

If you ask me, America is about to become one angry place to live and rightly so.

I’ve always thought that Jimmy Carter was the worst president in our nations history but Obama in his two very-long months in office has already beat out Carter for that title.

So far, people seem to be taking the price increase in stride. Everyone I’ve spoke with is quitting — no one has actually managed to quit yet, so we shall see. At any rate, the lie that this increase tax on cigarettes will balance the budget is just a fantasy. I bought one last carton, then I’m done — I smoked just 8 yesterday, down from my normal 25-30 cigarettes.

Am I the only quitter?

~Sally Sunshine