New York and California have not been shy about their liberalism and progressivism in recent years. The two states seem to be having a competition to see who can enact the most insanely and radically progressive laws. Over the past year, New York has taken a commanding lead.
When you’re overtly more progressive than California, it’s time to stop and self-reflect. Unfortunately, New York is doing the exact opposite. Right on the heels of passing a law that literally protects infanticide, the New York legislation is now trying to introduce socialist price fixing into the state’s economy.
The New York legislature is debating a new bill towards a specific purpose. According to the Democrats in charge, the bill in question could be used to put an end to the so-called pink tax.
The idea is to eliminate price differences between common goods that are marketed for women rather than men. This is based on the common liberal perception that manufacturers, retailers and marketers consistently charge more for goods if a woman buys them.
Yes, this is ridiculous, but before we break it down, it’s important to understand the claim. According to the left, there are prolific upcharges for products geared toward women. One of the most common examples used is razors. Both men and women regularly shave, but some liberal studies claim that feminine razors cost more than male razors.
You can apply that idea to a lot of other goods like soaps, clothes and even toothbrushes. New York is trying to make the free markets more fair for women.
Let’s address the first problem with this idea. As the incredulous look on your face suggests, the “pink tax” is not a real thing. Plenty of studies have shown that male razors cost more than female razors.
Even so, it doesn’t matter. One razor is designed for a face while the other is designed for legs. They have unique engineering, and they don’t cost the same to produce.
Even if that wasn’t the case, it wouldn’t matter. There can’t be a pink tax because women aren’t compelled to purchase things that are marketed to them. If men’s razor are actually cheaper, then they can buy it. No one is stopping them.
Some leftists will suggest that the pink tax comes in the form of women having to buy things that men don’t. This would include feminine hygiene products and other goods like makeup. This is a pretty weak argument, since you’re still not compelled by law to make any of these purchases. Even so, the state of New York has already eliminated sales tax on these products. They’re already catering to a female crowd.
There’s a second problem with New York’s new legislation, and it’s a lot worse than general stupidity. Even if the pink tax was a real thing, New York’s plan is the most dangerous solution imaginable. Rather than invest money into make feminine products more affordable, they’re suggesting outright price fixing. If the state finds any evidence that a manufacturer, marketer or retailer is up charging for feminine products, they’re going to issue a fine.
This goes beyond the lightweight socialism we see from a lot of leftists. This is planned market economics, and it has never once been successful in the history of humanity. This is the version of socialism that starved a hundred million Chinese under Mao, and it’s coming from the same place. False claims of unfair markets is all the excuse the government needs to target businesses and seize their assets.
If New York continues down this line, they’ll be empowering the government to discriminate against businesses via any means they choose. Since the pink tax already doesn’t exist, a legislation stopping the pink tax can’t possibly be grounded. The law is hazy at best, and it’s just an excuse to introduce the worst kind of socialism to one of the largest local markets in the western world.
The New York Democrats know exactly what they’re doing. This is a deliberate assault on free markets. This is their chance to experiment with full-fledged socialism, and when it fails, they’ll use the collapsed local economy as an excuse to introduce more government intervention and more socialism.
We’ve seen this story hundreds of times in as many locations over the past century. If New York passes this bill, it might already be too late.