[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: Amazon boycott

Without turning up the rhetorical heat, I'd like to answer the 
two objections to my point.  It is not that Amazon generated 
business does not produce some taxes, it is that they do not 
produce the whole amount nor the type of tax revenues.  When 
trucks deliver to your local hardware store (or bookstore if you 
have one left), they indeed pay taxes on fuel, highway 
surcharges, income tax for the drivers and and so on.  But when 
your local hardware store sells the item, they also collect sales 
tax.  Amazon, being relieved of both this duty and this 
accounting cost, is thus doubly privileged.  That UPS pays some 
taxes is besides the point.  This system of commerce will not 
support the infrastructure it depends upon for business. 
Conversely, if we federalize those taxes and distribute those 
taxes that way... - well, we're in the midst of a huge revolt 
against such redistributions, no matter how fair-minded or 
rational (or misguided and misdirected if you will).

As to discouraging business because of various tax laws, 
collecting and disbursing taxes is a cost of doing business - 
except for the Amazons of this world.  Let me make a wager:  if 
Amazon offered to design a widget that would automatically charge 
and disburse taxes to the states where the credit card address is 
housed, how many of us think a) the states would turn that down? 
b) that the states wouldn't generate a system to take in the 
revenues and credit them properly, pronto?  And how easily could 
such a widget be developed for your small, garden-variety 
startup?  Tax accountants do a version of this all the time - 
mine will do returns for all 50 states.  He just buys the 
software program and then checks over the results after inputting 
the data.  This is no big deal.  The argument is over politically 
privileging one form of commerce with an admixture of magical 
thinking that the increased consumption and the road taxes will 
somehow replace the sales tax revenues.  I don't even want to get 
into sales taxes vs. other, more progressive forms of taxation. 
Right now, we're starving the states of revenue through this 
artificial rule designed to stimulate internet commerce.  It 
worked.  Time for that to end.

John Buschman