I've been meaning to write something about liquor taxes, especially since Illinois (where I live) has decided to lead the nation in yet another dubious capacity, this time with the highest liquor taxes.
Instead of writing about it myself, I'll refer you to this excellent piece by Sonja Kassebaum who is, among other things, a small distiller here in the Chicago area.
As Kassebaum points out, higher liquor taxes take a toll on the hospitality industry: bars, restaurants, and the people they employ. I've also read an analysis that shows how, because liquor taxes are so high already, higher taxes that supress demand can actually be counter-productive, in that if the higher rates are offset by weaker sales, tax revenues can actually decline.
But that's for another day.