Tariffs Are Coming for Your Favorite Things

By April 11, 2018Taxes

Are you ready to pay more for beer and soda?

How about chocolate? Or takeout?

Tariffs are coming, and they’re coming for almost everything you love. Last month, the Trump administration imposed new tariffs on imported steel and aluminum.

Tariff supporters like to claim their favorite regulation will protect American jobs and hurt countries that don’t “play by the rules.” But countries enacting tariffs is like the kid who breaks his favorite toy so he doesn’t have to share: nobody wins and you wind up hurting yourself in the process.

Here’s how:

  • Taxing imported steel and aluminum makes steel and aluminum more expensive (obviously).
  • Companies that use steel and aluminum to make products have to figure out how to deal with the rising costs.
  • They’ll be forced to either raise prices, cut jobs or (most likely) both.
  • That means that if these tariffs stay in place, we’ll likely start paying more for, well, just so many things.

Tariffs are a Buzzkill

Thanks to aluminum tariffs, beer that comes in cans will become more expensive.

But even if you consider a cold domestic brew beneath you, don’t think your refined tastes will protect you from rising prices. Much of the beer brewing process depends on steel containers, so tariffs will hurt your favorite craft brewing startup, too.

Turns out lots of craft brewers are worried about this. In a recent CNN article, craft brewers said they’re concerned the tariffs will force them to raise prices, cut back plans to expand, fire staff, cut costs by no longer buying grain from small farms, or even shut their doors.

“It certainly puts a strain on the business,” says Chad Melis, marketing director at Oskar Blues, a Colorado-based brewery with operations in North Carolina and Texas. “It will affect our ability to grow and create new jobs and invest in our communities.”

In the heavily competitive world of craft brewing, rising costs because of tariffs could seriously hamper the industry’s growth and even kill your favorite brewery.

Tasty Treats, Transportation and Takeout

Does your favorite candy come wrapped in foil? Are you in the market for a car, truck, motorcycle, bicycle, or moped? Get ready to pay more for both.

Because of tariffs, the aluminum foil wrappers on candy and other products (like garlic bread) could make your favorite foods more expensive. Takeout could get pricier because lots of containers are made of foil.

Steel and aluminum tariffs will also make pretty much every mode of transportation costlier, from planes to trains to automobiles.

Tariff Travesty

The reality is that tariffs will do far more harm than good. As higher prices ripple through the economy, it’s going to be harder for people—especially young people just starting out—to make ends meet.

Higher prices aren’t the only thing Americans need to worry about. One study found tariffs could kill around 180,000 American jobs. It could get even worse if other countries retaliate with tariffs of their own.

It’s time to stop these tariffs before things get any worse. Add your voice to the petition supporting free trade over tariffs.

Author Generation Opportunity

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