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(Politico)   Online shopping: It's cheap, reliable, and there is a great selection of fantastic gifts out there. Except the cheap thing may not be true anymore as states start realizing this and are gonna start taxing your ass   (politico.com) divider line 118
    More: Sad, online retailers, state sales tax, artificial Christmas trees, gifts  
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3636 clicks; posted to Main » on 23 Nov 2012 at 9:53 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-11-23 10:38:44 AM

Super Chronic: Of course, if you buy things on the Internet and pay no sales taxes, technically you're liable for use taxes. But that's impossible for states to enforce. I think it's possible, and Constitutional, for the federal government to address the old Supreme Court cases (e.g. Quill) with federal legislation to protect state tax bases (effectively providing that every vendor has nexus in every state), but there is currently a substantial element in Congress who think tax avoidance is a god-given American right.


Just as long as the implementation for this clusterfark is viable. I make several sales a week over the 'net, to different physical locations every time. If I've got to suddenly keep track of individual tax rates for thousands of different municipalities, all of which are subject to change without notice, and then I've got to cut a check at the end of the year to each one of those individual entities.... well... fark that. Hell, this doesn't even address the issue of whether or not a sales tax license would be required for small online retailers like me. I sure hope not, because there's no farking way I'm going to spend $25 a year to charge $1.27 in sales tax in a jurisdiction I've never even heard of in the middle of nowhere, ad infinitum for every single tax jurisdiction in the US...

Being that this has a large potential to unintentionally shut... down... every small internet based retailer overnight, I sure hope that the implementation issue is addressed rationally with us in mind :P
 
2012-11-23 10:41:19 AM

Silverstaff: NannyStatePark: cryinoutloud: If this is a huge problem for you, maybe you need to stop shopping already.

49 percent of Americans are on public assistance, but let's start judging people for whom this could present a problem, because obviously it stems from a spiritual defect or an allergy to shopping....

/she knows what I mean

49% of Americans are on public assistance? WTF? Citation Needed.

Oh, I'm sure that's your FOX News/AM Talk Radio talking point, with some incredibly vague, or incredibly loose definition of what counts as "public assistance".


Why is it that anytime someone that may give a conservative viewpoint, some liberal moron jumps on this 'Fox Neusss' bullsh*t' talking point?
Even a loose definition of public assistance; SS, medicare, veteran benefits, unemployment, etc, is still public assistance. Many people have payed into those systems that they are now drawing into. It's problematic when they completely rely on some of these programs long term, for what was supposed to be a sort term solution.
The 49% number is probably close, if not spot on, to how many people receive some sort Government assistance. 

For the record; online retail sales should be taxed. States are hurting for revenue, and a large chunk of money can be collected from lost sales tax. 

/Don't watch Fox News.
//Glen Beck is certifiably insane.
 
2012-11-23 10:41:38 AM

Just another Heartland Weirdass: I predict a scheme to tax you for that convenience on top of sales tax. I'm serious.


New York already figured that out. They require online retailers to charge sales tax, and they ALSO charge you internet sales tax on your income tax form. You can either look up the amount of tax in a table based on your income or you can fill in your own number based on how much you bought online that was not taxed (which was nothing I bought online -- including school supplies that would have gone untaxed if I bought them in person), but they explicitly warn you not to enter "$0" for the amount of extra internet tax you owe.
 
2012-11-23 10:44:22 AM

NannyStatePark: 49 percent of Americans are on public assistance, but let's start judging people for whom this could present a problem, because obviously it stems from a spiritual defect or an allergy to shopping....

/she knows what I mean


So 49% of Americans are dependent on tax money to survive? I'm not too sure I'm seeing the problem here.

And yes I know it is a regressive tax, but it is one that brick and mortar stores already pay. I'm not seeing why online competitors who employee less people should be getting tax breaks for selling their products online.
 
2012-11-23 10:45:42 AM
If it moves, tax it.
If it keeps moving, regulate it.
If it stops moving, subsidize it.
~ Ronaldus Maximus
 
2012-11-23 10:45:43 AM

zamboni: SisterMaryElephant: Tuba City, AZ
13.725% sales tax rate

/how are smaller internets business owners going to track sales tax rates for over 6,000 jurisdictions they could possibly ship to?

I think they call them "databases"... but I could be wrong.

If they can ship to 6,000 jurisdictions, they can calculate taxes to 6,000 jurisdictions.


Yeah, but you can't just buy the one database, because tomorrow, rates go up/down in 267 of those jurisdictions. Then, next month, another 1,000 change (quarter/year end). February 1st, more will change.

Some states require licensing. And don't even get started with CO, AL, and LA, whose (local) rates may change depending on what side of the street you're on, and also may require licensing or registration.

And auditors are always a joy to work with.

Don't get me wrong - I specialize in SALT so it would be great for my business. Not so great for the smaller of small business owners.
 
2012-11-23 10:46:37 AM

SisterMaryElephant: Tuba City, AZ
13.725% sales tax rate

/how are smaller internets business owners going to track sales tax rates for over 6,000 jurisdictions they could possibly ship to?


Tuba City? Please let this be real.

*the googles*

YAY!!!!
 
2012-11-23 10:46:39 AM
I'd be ok with them making sales levy the state tax, and let the county and city sales taxes fend for themselves.

But as other small business people have said, the 50-100 sales a month they do would be a horrible burden to keep track of down to the county level. Big sites could do it easy, tell the municipalities if you want your sales tax you need to fill out web form x from the secretary of treasurer or some shiat, but can you imagine being some SBO who suddenly had 'the new internet meme hot thing' and the shiat they have to go through to sell to just the US?

Computers could make it easier, but politicians are involved so it won't be.
 
2012-11-23 10:46:47 AM
Wait, I thought you guys liked taxes....
 
2012-11-23 10:47:32 AM

Wade_Wilson: Even if my state starts applying the same 6% sales tax to my Amazon purchases that I get at the mall, online is STILL better because the base price is so much lower, meaning 6% of it is lower too. Throw in the cost of gas and the fact that Prime means free shipping, and I fail to see the downside.


There's probably some wiggle room in prices as well. I bet once the taxes are everywhere, the price will fall on stuff to still be cheaper to order online.

Not having to leave my desk to get essentials or oddball things sure is appealing though. Some stuff I buy online just isn't available anywhere in the state. I'd have to drive to local large city with overseas importer outlets to find things.

When I hear the first rumors of my state doing the "we want our money" dance, I'll be buying up my entire wish-list lickity split.
 
2012-11-23 10:47:38 AM
If you do business with Amazon and the item is shipped from another state, how can your state argue that the transaction was performed in their state?

buzzcut73: zamboni: SisterMaryElephant: Tuba City, AZ
13.725% sales tax rate

/how are smaller internets business owners going to track sales tax rates for over 6,000 jurisdictions they could possibly ship to?

I think they call them "databases"... but I could be wrong.

If they can ship to 6,000 jurisdictions, they can calculate taxes to 6,000 jurisdictions.

Yes, because putting an address an ZIP code and paying the postage to send it there is exactly the same as knowing the exact tax rate by neighborhood, any changes that have happened recently, the proper forms for each (city, county and state) and where to send those at the end of the year.
Moran.


If only there was some kind of electronic system that could hold database information, this could be possible.
 
2012-11-23 10:49:02 AM
Taxes should be levied to shape behaviour, not as a simple money grab.


/off to buy a pack of smokes
 
2012-11-23 10:50:15 AM

NannyStatePark: I'm in Texas so i'm already paying taxes on Amazon. But it begs the question, exactly where are we doing business technically?


Simple, point of delivery.
 
2012-11-23 10:52:17 AM
Most Canuckistan provinces have adopted "HST" ( harmonized sales tax) - a single dong up the ass with each purchase (instead of two).
The butthurt still stings like hell - but it feels you've only been violated once instead of twice.
 
2012-11-23 10:56:01 AM

SisterMaryElephant: Tuba City, AZ
13.725% sales tax rate

/how are smaller internets business owners going to track sales tax rates for over 6,000 jurisdictions they could possibly ship to?



I guess they'll just have to pay the fines then, won't they?
 
2012-11-23 10:56:19 AM

NannyStatePark: cryinoutloud: If this is a huge problem for you, maybe you need to stop shopping already.
49 percent of Americans are on public assistance, but let's start judging people for whom this could present a problem, because obviously it stems from a spiritual defect or an allergy to shopping....
/she knows what I mean


I read that four times, and that statement doesn't even make any sense. Good thing I have you on ignore.
 
2012-11-23 10:57:28 AM
What have the Romans ever done for us?
 
2012-11-23 10:58:22 AM
I'm kind of surprised that we've gone this long with tax free internet shopping. That's a lot of money left on the table.

Last night I ordered a new TV and home theater system from Best buy online. Free shipping, no sales tax, and they unpack it, set it up, and recycle the old TV. I just basically have to do the wiring. Not bad, plus the selection online is better than in-store.
 
2012-11-23 10:59:18 AM

SuperT: can we just move to a national sales tax and be done with it?



No.
 
2012-11-23 11:02:23 AM

ladyfortuna: Speaking from the small retailer side of things, I don't have a problem with this except that they want US to collect tax, track the tax rates for every single municipality we ship to, and I guess file some kind of tax form with each of those. I sell 50-100 items a month and it would be a huge pain in the ass. I can't even imagine being one of the higher volume sellers and having to do that.

Depending on how involved it was, I'd probably lose at least two days a month to just doing the paperwork. This is assuming ebay didn't implement some tool to help us, because frankly I'd be shocked if they did. They won't even store sales data past 90 days.


Sales taxes are an incredible pain in the ass to deal with, and they are not progressive. But politicians absolutely love them because they can fiddle with them to give specific, visible breaks when they are pandering to target groups.
 
2012-11-23 11:05:36 AM

Silverstaff: NannyStatePark: cryinoutloud: If this is a huge problem for you, maybe you need to stop shopping already.

49 percent of Americans are on public assistance, but let's start judging people for whom this could present a problem, because obviously it stems from a spiritual defect or an allergy to shopping....

/she knows what I mean

49% of Americans are on public assistance? WTF? Citation Needed.

Oh, I'm sure that's your FOX News/AM Talk Radio talking point, with some incredibly vague, or incredibly loose definition of what counts as "public assistance".

It's worded to make it sound like half of America is on welfare and living on the dole, just leeching off the good hardworking Real Americans, but in reality it's more like some people might get some tiny perk that's a drop in the bucket compared to their actual wages and salaries, you know, things they pay for in taxes on their jobs?

Seriously, I'd like to see the math on this "49% of Americans are on public assistance" claim, because I'm calling Bullshiat on this.  Sounds distorted or misleading.


It's wharrrgarble, of course.

Public benefits public assistance.
The real number is closer to 4%.
 
2012-11-23 11:06:37 AM

Krieghund: Public benefits public assistance.


There was supposed to be a "does not equal" in there.
 
2012-11-23 11:08:07 AM
I don't understand the opposition to paying state sales taxes when shopping online. If I buy something in a brick and mortar store, I pay state sales taxes, so why not when buying something online?
 
Slu
2012-11-23 11:09:43 AM

NannyStatePark: I'm in Texas so i'm already paying taxes on Amazon. But it begs the question, exactly where are we doing business technically?


http://begthequestion.info/
 
2012-11-23 11:12:38 AM

cryinoutloud: If this is a huge problem for you, maybe you need to stop shopping already.


This. With the push just beginning (TN has done it) to tax consumption rather than income--though realistically, in most states it's both--it would be foolish to ignore online sales. And Amazon's stand against sales tax? Annoying. I can't participate in their affiliate program because my state charges sales tax. I think this was supposed to make me angry at my state, and pressure them into dropping the tax.
 
2012-11-23 11:16:44 AM
I think subby is trolling a bit with the headline. I have zero problem with paying a sales tax online. It is in no way a deterrent to online shopping.

If you saw the festering human garbage I have to deal with in the parking lots and stores here in Florida to accomplish "shopping", you'd truly understand the appeal of the online marketplace.

I have a few very nice local curiosity/antique/gift shops near my house where I shop for about 30-40% of my purchases, the rest of my monies go to Amazon.com.
 
2012-11-23 11:20:30 AM

ladyfortuna: Speaking from the small retailer side of things, I don't have a problem with this except that they want US to collect tax, track the tax rates for every single municipality we ship to, and I guess file some kind of tax form with each of those. I sell 50-100 items a month and it would be a huge pain in the ass. I can't even imagine being one of the higher volume sellers and having to do that.

Depending on how involved it was, I'd probably lose at least two days a month to just doing the paperwork. This is assuming ebay didn't implement some tool to help us, because frankly I'd be shocked if they did. They won't even store sales data past 90 days.


Honestly, the more I think about it, the more I think a person has to be nuts to want to sell things online. Here in the U.S., it's not just the Federal government and the 50 state governments. Oh, no. Every county and town has its own set of laws, and, say, selling pesticide or dildos to someone in most of Illinois might be okay, selling the dildo to Bumfuzzle, mid-state Illinois could be completely illegal.

Not that those things are all that enforceable without every town becoming Big Brother. I know there's been a few times I've bought things online (not dildos or anything similar) and found out later that I wasn't supposed to be able to have it shipped to me.
 
2012-11-23 11:30:09 AM

Girion47: Taxes aren't going to make me want to suddenly get dressed, get in the car, drive through some traffic lights, hunt for a parking spot, shoulder my way into a store through the cold air, and then hope that they have it in stock, and in a location that makes sense.

Internet wins


And I can get many things on the Net that I cannot find in stores.
 
2012-11-23 11:34:20 AM

Cloudchaser Sakonige the Red Wolf: I don't understand the opposition to paying state sales taxes when shopping online. If I buy something in a brick and mortar store, I pay state sales taxes, so why not when buying something online?



It has something to do with the Several States and their borders.

If the guy/company ships to you from within your State, your State has the power to force the shipper to collect sales tax on their behalf.

If from out-of-State, then no. In that case (technically) YOU are supposed to calculate that sales tax yourself, and send the State a check (but who does this?)

But I find it silly that the brick-and-mortars are complaining that it is the inequity in sales taxes that are killing them.

Hello, wake up and smell the OVERHEAD.
 
2012-11-23 11:34:36 AM

Guntram Shatterhand: Maybe taxes wouldn't be such a horrid thing if we were all paid a living wage and those wages actually went up, allowing everybody to buy more stuff. Seems we're just splitting hairs when it comes to sales tax when the real issue is that stores are paying their employees less yet expecting those same employees to spend more each and every year.


The problem is that everything you buy with your shiny new "living wage" will be more expensive because labor is a huge factor in the price of a product.
 
2012-11-23 11:35:12 AM

zamboni: I don't have a big problem with this, but let the states iron it out.

If I go to my local brick and mortar I don't have to save my receipts, then figure my sales tax at the end of the year. I shouldn't have to with interweb purchases.

Look, you guys figure it out. Calculate the taxes, who they should go to, then give me a number. I'll decide if I want to go with that.

Maybe I'm weird, but I don't shop online because I'll save on sales tax. I do it because I can find a better price than I can locally, better selection than I can locally, and they send it to my door, often free of shipping charges.

I save more than the, in my case 7%, sales tax. I get what I want, and can get it delivered to my office.

You have computers... hell, you sell them... use 'em, dammit.


I even bought my computers on line!
 
2012-11-23 11:41:29 AM

Abe Vigoda's Ghost: Silverstaff: NannyStatePark: cryinoutloud: If this is a huge problem for you, maybe you need to stop shopping already.

49 percent of Americans are on public assistance, but let's start judging people for whom this could present a problem, because obviously it stems from a spiritual defect or an allergy to shopping....

/she knows what I mean

49% of Americans are on public assistance? WTF? Citation Needed.

Oh, I'm sure that's your FOX News/AM Talk Radio talking point, with some incredibly vague, or incredibly loose definition of what counts as "public assistance".

Why is it that anytime someone that may give a conservative viewpoint, some liberal moron jumps on this 'Fox Neusss' bullsh*t' talking point?
Even a loose definition of public assistance; SS, medicare, veteran benefits, unemployment, etc, is still public assistance. Many people have payed into those systems that they are now drawing into. It's problematic when they completely rely on some of these programs long term, for what was supposed to be a sort term solution.
The 49% number is probably close, if not spot on, to how many people receive some sort Government assistance. 

For the record; online retail sales should be taxed. States are hurting for revenue, and a large chunk of money can be collected from lost sales tax. 

/Don't watch Fox News.
//Glen Beck is certifiably insane.


No, the fox news thing isn't a talking point. A majority of the people I talk to who say something stupid about politics are conservative; a VAST majority of those, along the conversation, mention Fox News or one of their personalities. Looks like you're not in that, but it's hard to take you seriously when the only posted citation revealed that SOMEONE in 49% of households get it. It makes us think you didn't find that fact yourself, since you're obviously smart enough to have seen the difference, but just heard it.

//Not really an insult- what do I know that I researched myself? Very little.
 
2012-11-23 11:44:27 AM
It's cute how there are people who think that local merchants are losing sales to online retailers because of taxes. Obviously the ability to search for an item quickly, compare items easily, avoid checkout lines and parking lots and visit multiple retailers in minutes would lose its appeal if I had to pay the same tax rate I'd have to pay at a local retailer.
 
2012-11-23 11:47:00 AM

NannyStatePark: I'm in Texas so i'm already paying taxes on Amazon. But it begs the question, exactly where are we doing business technically?


Read the seller's TOS. It will specify the State whose laws govern your transactions.

Which State gets to collect taxes is a separate question: where are you using the purchases? "Sales" tax is actually a "use" tax owed by the consumer; sellers are just required to collect and forward it to the State.
 
2012-11-23 11:48:50 AM

Gwyrddu: NannyStatePark: 49 percent of Americans are on public assistance, but let's start judging people for whom this could present a problem, because obviously it stems from a spiritual defect or an allergy to shopping....

/she knows what I mean

So 49% of Americans are dependent on tax money to survive? I'm not too sure I'm seeing the problem here.

And yes I know it is a regressive tax, but it is one that brick and mortar stores already pay. I'm not seeing why online competitors who employee less people should be getting tax breaks for selling their products online.


Silverstaff: NannyStatePark: cryinoutloud: If this is a huge problem for you, maybe you need to stop shopping already.

49 percent of Americans are on public assistance, but let's start judging people for whom this could present a problem, because obviously it stems from a spiritual defect or an allergy to shopping....

/she knows what I mean

49% of Americans are on public assistance? WTF? Citation Needed.

Oh, I'm sure that's your FOX News/AM Talk Radio talking point, with some incredibly vague, or incredibly loose definition of what counts as "public assistance".

It's worded to make it sound like half of America is on welfare and living on the dole, just leeching off the good hardworking Real Americans, but in reality it's more like some people might get some tiny perk that's a drop in the bucket compared to their actual wages and salaries, you know, things they pay for in taxes on their jobs?

Seriously, I'd like to see the math on this "49% of Americans are on public assistance" claim, because I'm calling Bullshiat on this.  Sounds distorted or misleading.


Hey, even I'll stand up and say that "public assistance" is a broad term and that I probably count among that having participated in various programs. My kids have attended schools where half the kids get reduced lunch prices, for instance. Politics aside, things are tough all over. Tons of broke people rely on the internet to get their kids clothes on E-Bay or use Amazon to avoid full retail pricing, for example. So even if they don't have big ticket items, they just lost X percent of their purchasing power.

I think insinuating that people don't have the right to be pissed over spending more money in this economy is a dick move.

I haven't even given my opinion of the tax.
 
2012-11-23 11:49:55 AM
The $2.99 delivery fee for a pizza, pisses me off more than taxes.
 
2012-11-23 11:52:01 AM
STILL is a plus for not having to deal with crowds of subhumans.
 
2012-11-23 11:52:39 AM

ladyfortuna: Speaking from the small retailer side of things, I don't have a problem with this except that they want US to collect tax, track the tax rates for every single municipality we ship to, and I guess file some kind of tax form with each of those. I sell 50-100 items a month and it would be a huge pain in the ass. I can't even imagine being one of the higher volume sellers and having to do that.

Depending on how involved it was, I'd probably lose at least two days a month to just doing the paperwork. This is assuming ebay didn't implement some tool to help us, because frankly I'd be shocked if they did. They won't even store sales data past 90 days.


Speaking from the brick and mortar side, suck it.

Technically, if the the website isn't collecting sales tax, the buyer is supposed to pay a use tax. But it's easier to collect from retailers than individuals. And there are plenty of tools to help you calculate, collect and file sales tax. You want the ease and convenience of not having a physical location, you need to learn to deal with sales tax.
 
2012-11-23 12:02:45 PM

cman: Oh goody, another tax thread on Fark.

These always bring out the idiots in masses


"in masses"?

I suppose you are technically correct, although my ironic idiocy spideysense is tingling.

/it feels kinda good
 
2012-11-23 12:07:36 PM

cryinoutloud: NannyStatePark: cryinoutloud: If this is a huge problem for you, maybe you need to stop shopping already.
49 percent of Americans are on public assistance, but let's start judging people for whom this could present a problem, because obviously it stems from a spiritual defect or an allergy to shopping....
/she knows what I mean

I read that four times, and that statement doesn't even make any sense. Good thing I have you on ignore.


Awww. did that mean nasty old NannyStatePark outwit you one too many times?
Hey, if you don't want to play, take your toys and go home like a little girl. I could give a crap. I don't have ANYONE here on ignore. I try not to get baited by your derp myself. This isn't just a problem for shoppers. This is a huge fat pile of red tape for retailers, and it's going to raise prices. Not all shopping is an addictive, materialistic indulgence done for recreation. People also buy -wait for it- stuff they need to live!
 
2012-11-23 12:12:02 PM

URAPNIS: The $2.99 delivery fee for a pizza, pisses me off more than taxes.


OMG THIS!!!
 
2012-11-23 12:21:32 PM

ArgusRun: ladyfortuna: Speaking from the small retailer side of things, I don't have a problem with this except that they want US to collect tax, track the tax rates for every single municipality we ship to, and I guess file some kind of tax form with each of those. I sell 50-100 items a month and it would be a huge pain in the ass. I can't even imagine being one of the higher volume sellers and having to do that.

Depending on how involved it was, I'd probably lose at least two days a month to just doing the paperwork. This is assuming ebay didn't implement some tool to help us, because frankly I'd be shocked if they did. They won't even store sales data past 90 days.

Speaking from the brick and mortar side, suck it.

Technically, if the the website isn't collecting sales tax, the buyer is supposed to pay a use tax. But it's easier to collect from retailers than individuals. And there are plenty of tools to help you calculate, collect and file sales tax. You want the ease and convenience of not having a physical location, you need to learn to deal with sales tax.


You know, back in the mid-90s, a bunch of states got together for this Streamlined Sales Tax Project with the goal of making sales tax collection more uniform and easier. Some of the results:
--Candy is taxable in some states, while food is exempt. Candy is defined (SSTP) as anything "not containing flour". Twix, Kit Kat, Milky Way, and M&M Crispy (but not regular M&Ms) all contain flour and are considered food and not candy
--Food is even better. Many states tax "prepared food". Prepared food is defined as "for immediate consumption", meaning it's sold in a heated state or heated by the seller; two or more ingredients mixed or combined as a single item; or, (my fav) food sold with eating utensils, including either a napkin or a straw.

So, if you buy a bag o'bagels, not taxable. A bagel from the deli with (OMG) a napkin, taxable. Milky way, not taxable. Skittles, taxable.

It gets more fun from there.

So, yeah, I can see how easy it would be for Mom & Pop operations to deal with this.

OTOH, the states will have 2 new revenue streams - sales tax from the internets, and audits from small businesses who happened to ship Joe Q from Podunk a used DVD.
 
2012-11-23 12:22:18 PM

URAPNIS: The $2.99 delivery fee for a pizza, pisses me off more than taxes.


I'm never buying pizza from Amazon again.
 
2012-11-23 12:33:34 PM
I always thought states could not instigate taxation on out-of-state sales, per the Interstate Commerce laws. Internet sales are just multimedia catalogs sales, something we've been doing for over 100 years starting with the Sears and Roebuck catalog. If a product is shipped over state lines, there is no sales tax collected. As a Minnesota resident, I had to pay sales tax on Fingerhut catalog purchases, but not Hickory Farms or those ads in the back of comic books. It's the same for the Home Shopping Channel. Texas cannot tax QVC sales that are not shipped from Texas to Texas residents, so why can the tax Amazon sales that are shipped from another state? Laws regulating interstate commerce have to come from the federal level, so I don't see how what the states are doing are legal.
 
2012-11-23 12:45:27 PM

The Evil That Lies In The Hearts Of Men: debug: The people biatching about paying sales tax on online purchases are the same folks that will complain about how schools don't get enough funding or the museum down town is closing due to lack of funding or program blah-blah-blah is ending due to lack of funding.

Pay up or shut up.

I normally find the folks who biatch about taxes, particularly ones that give megacorp advantages over smaller brick and mortar businesses are more the ones who are left looking all confused when suddenly all the stores in their town are shuttered, their property taxes are jacked up to replace lost revenue and suddenly an entire industry of jobs is gone from their town for good. Then as they tend to be older they decide to retire and go live in a college town that still has a viable main street and focus their biatching on how the town would be so much better without all the college students.


Considering all the tax breaks that the big brick and Mortars get in smaller towns, I'd say that no sales tax evens the playing field.
 
2012-11-23 12:48:04 PM

Guntram Shatterhand: Maybe taxes wouldn't be such a horrid thing if we were all paid a living wage and those wages actually went up, allowing everybody to buy more stuff. Seems we're just splitting hairs when it comes to sales tax when the real issue is that stores are paying their employees less yet expecting those same employees to spend more each and every year.


Bears repeating.
 
2012-11-23 01:10:40 PM

NannyStatePark: Hey, even I'll stand up and say that "public assistance" is a broad term and that I probably count among that having participated in various programs. My kids have attended schools where half the kids get reduced lunch prices, for instance. Politics aside, things are tough all over. Tons of broke people rely on the internet to get their kids clothes on E-Bay or use Amazon to avoid full retail pricing, for example. So even if they don't have big ticket items, they just lost X percent of their purchasing power.

I think insinuating that people don't have the right to be pissed over spending more money in this economy is a dick move.



I'm not saying anybody should like taxes, nobody likes taxes. But people getting pissed at this should realize the other two groups that are also seriously hurting right now. One group are brick and mortar stores that are already paying sales tax on everything they sell, putting them at yet another competitive disadvantage to online retailers. The second group are states governments, which are almost all under water right now. The same state government is often the ones handing out benefits right now. So the state government have to make hard choices, like cut school lunch programs or increase taxes somewhere?
 
2012-11-23 02:02:13 PM

slackux: The best part is the old brick and mortar stores REALLY believe that the sales tax is why I shop online. No, it's because I needed a flash drive the other day, and the local store had 16 GB stick for $40. Amazon had the same thing for $10. I'd have paid $15 at the local store to have it immediately, but not a 400% markup.


Yup, and lets not even get into cables. HDMI cables should not be more than a single digit.

Monoprice, Meritline, Amazon,they get my money. Sure, some of the things will break, but for what they charge compared to brick and mortar, I can buy 35-40 of them for the price of one in store.
 
2012-11-23 02:03:30 PM

Girion47: Taxes aren't going to make me want to suddenly get dressed, get in the car, drive through some traffic lights, hunt for a parking spot, shoulder my way into a store through the cold air, and then hope that they have it in stock, and in a location that makes sense.

Internet wins


Same here.
 
2012-11-23 02:48:32 PM

theMightyRegeya: ladyfortuna: Speaking from the small retailer side of things, I don't have a problem with this except that they want US to collect tax, track the tax rates for every single municipality we ship to, and I guess file some kind of tax form with each of those. I sell 50-100 items a month and it would be a huge pain in the ass. I can't even imagine being one of the higher volume sellers and having to do that.

Depending on how involved it was, I'd probably lose at least two days a month to just doing the paperwork. This is assuming ebay didn't implement some tool to help us, because frankly I'd be shocked if they did. They won't even store sales data past 90 days.

Honestly, the more I think about it, the more I think a person has to be nuts to want to sell things online. Here in the U.S., it's not just the Federal government and the 50 state governments. Oh, no. Every county and town has its own set of laws, and, say, selling pesticide or dildos to someone in most of Illinois might be okay, selling the dildo to Bumfuzzle, mid-state Illinois could be completely illegal.

Not that those things are all that enforceable without every town becoming Big Brother. I know there's been a few times I've bought things online (not dildos or anything similar) and found out later that I wasn't supposed to be able to have it shipped to me.


Fortunately, I sell video games, so most of those concerns don't apply. I do have to be careful about what games I ship to certain foreign countries though. Like Manhunt 2 - can't ship that to the UK or I believe Germany, and probably some middle eastern countries as well.
 
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