NEW YORK - Reliable, centrally located sources report that next year, the State will pass a 200% tax on all food and water that is not "sweetened" with aspartame.
There are several reasons, including financial, for this move. Our source told us that the main reason was that New York is too crowded, and that this was a good way to thin out the population.
As well, given the large number of jobless expected next year, this is a good way to prevent their brains ability to realize how bad conditions really are for them. It is expected that the large doses of aspartame will place the population into a mass hypnotic mental fog of denial.
The AMA is said to be lobbying for this, as many drugs are sold to combat the side-effects of aspartame, such as headache (most common 'starter' symptom).
The wealthy are stocking up on real soda from Mexico, and bottled water from Germany, soon to be banned.
Patrols will help enforce the new tax law by checkpoints set up to make sure that blood methanol levels are high enough. If they are not, tax receipts will be demanded, and aspartame administered in the field.