--Watching the big game this Sunday? Government drives up the cost of beer, wings, jerseys and more--
This Sunday, 179 million Americans will watch the Super Bowl. If you're one of these football fans, make sure you save room on the couch for one uninvited guest: Uncle Sam.
For every aspect of the time-honored football tradition, you're shelling out a little more thanks to government taxes and fees. From the team gear you buy to the beer you imbibe, fans are getting sacked - here are some of Super Bowl Sunday's tax penalties:
False Start (5 yards) Sipping soft drinks? Almost a third of the cost of your soda comes from taxes and fees; a full 28 percent.
Offside (5 yards) Don't think you can escape Big Brother's watchful eye by heading to the bar. The government adds on 31 percent when dining out.
Delay of Game (5 yards) If you're savoring a California wine to cheer on the 49ers, you're not off the hook; 33 percent of the price of wine comes from government.
Intentional Grounding (10 yards) According to the National Retail Federation, 7.5 million households purchase a new TV for the big game, but the cable package that comes with that new flat screen isn't cheap. Before you've even had a chance to change the channel to watch the Puppy Bowl, government bites off 43 percent of your cable bill.
Pass Interference (10 yards) Of the $1 billion in beer sales in the two weeks surrounding last year's Super Bowl, a full 44 percent of the cost is due to government taxation.
Helmet-to-Helmet Contact (15 yards) Perhaps you're one of the 17 million purchasing team apparel and accessories in advance of the game? Taxes and tariffs are going to run up the cost of your new jersey by 46 percent.
Roughing the Passer (15 yards) Taking shots each time your team scores? Government guzzles up a whopping 56 percent of the price of spirits.
Personal "Fowl" (15 yards or automatic first down) The National Chicken Council estimates 1.23 billion chicken wings will be eaten on Sunday, a number that is actually 12.3 million fewer than the previous Super Bowl. Why? Thank Big Brother again: Corn prices are driven skyward by the costly and destructive federal ethanol mandate, also known as the Renewable Fuel Standard. During last year's drought this ate up the country's corn crop and drove up prices, leaving little for chicken farmers. Meaning government is the only one getting its fill this Super Bowl Season.