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View Diary: "Grover Norquist Did Not Elect You": Republicans In Disarray (!) Over Online Sales Taxes (256 comments)

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  •  Solution (8+ / 0-)

    End sales taxes in your state and collect the money some other way.

    Problem solved.

    (-5.50,-6.67): Left Libertarian
    Leadership doesn't mean taking a straw poll and then just throwing up your hands. -Jyrinx

    by Sparhawk on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 08:05:46 AM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  Yes, in general, I'd rather see more progressive (5+ / 0-)

      taxation. But this bill is better than the alternative, i.e., nothing right now.

    •  Californians recently voted to increase our (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      True North, Ian Reifowitz

      sales tax. Believe it or don't.

      How would you get around a mandate by voters?

      "Show up. Pay attention. Tell the truth. And don't be attached to the results." -- Angeles Arrien

      by Sybil Liberty on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 08:48:26 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Any Loophole In Sales Taxes Is A Good Thing (3+ / 0-)

      The leaker sales tax gets, the more pressure on states to replace it with income taxes, thus reducing regressivity. I can't believe how many people here are cheering this idea and supporting continued regressive tax policy.

      On the Internet, nobody knows if you're a dog... but everybody knows if you're a jackass.

      by stevemb on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 09:12:18 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Maybe someone knows the answer. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Ian Reifowitz

        I think CA gives you a choice.  Once your tax return is done  to the adjusted gross income line on your federal return, California gives you a choice:  list all your sales taxes you paid  especially for major purchases, like cars or yachts; save your receipts in case you get audited and claim that amount.
          Or, add together all th tax rates charged by the county, city, and other taxing authorities, depending on where you live, and pay that amount based on the  adjusted gross income line.

          Santa Cruz county came to about 7.35% times AGI.

        The difficulty is for the vendors, since there are so many different different states, cities etc. to keep track of.

        Time is a long river.

        by phonegery on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 11:16:09 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  It's worse than that. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Ian Reifowitz, phonegery

          About.com: Federal tax deduction for sales taxes

          Individuals can deduct either state and local income taxes or sales taxes paid during the year. In other words, taxpayers will need to choose between these two deductions. Generally speaking, the deduction works best for people who live in a state with no income tax, or whose sales tax deduction is larger than their state income tax deduction.
          Residents are better off if a state implements only one of these taxes.  If a state has both a sales tax and an income tax, then the deduction is lower, the benefit is lower, and residents pay more in combined taxes.

          -7.75 -4.67

          "Freedom's just another word for nothing left to lose."

          There are no Christians in foxholes.

          by Odysseus on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 12:22:18 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  We've got a proposal here in Mass (6+ / 0-)

      by Gov Patrick to make income taxes more progressive and lower sales tax. It's a great proposal, but it seems to be running into difficulty in the legislature.

      Want a progressive global warming novel, not a right wing rant? Go to www.edwardgtalbot.com and check out New World Orders

      by eparrot on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 09:13:02 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Sales taxes are not only regressive (4+ / 0-)

        They are difficult to enforce and hard to calculate.

        Income tax is comparatively easy: add up a couple of W2s and a few other forms that get mailed to you by law, done.

        Property tax: How much is your house/car worth? Multiply by X%. Done.

        But sales tax? Pain in the neck for businesses, pain in the neck for consumers. Out of state purchases make compliance a headache and it's easy to accidentally be non-compliant, and you have to endlessly keep records of things no sane person keeps records of.

        Sales tax used to make sense way back in the day, but technology has wiped out the need today.

        (-5.50,-6.67): Left Libertarian
        Leadership doesn't mean taking a straw poll and then just throwing up your hands. -Jyrinx

        by Sparhawk on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 09:24:26 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  How is (4+ / 0-)

          multiplying a sales amount by a sales tax rate harder than computing an income tax amount? That makes no sense at all.

          Brick and mortar retailers have to do it. Why should online retailers be exempt?

          •  Complexity in Sales Tax in several ways (5+ / 0-)

            What is subject to sales tax varies wildly across the country.  For example in some places all clothing is subject to tax, while in others only items costing more than $100 (or other amounts.).  A candy bar may be taxed, while a sports bar is not.   Some places tax books, others don't, etc..

            Quarterly payments to 50 states by the merchant and potentially 9500 different sales tax jurisdictions depending upon the final law.  

            The sales tax rates and what is taxed may be changed at any time by any jurisdiction.

            Sometimes sales tax jurisdictions have weekends or weeks where the sales tax is not due or reduced.

            The most important way to protect the environment is not to have more than one child.

            by nextstep on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 10:07:15 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Why should brick and mortar retailers (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Ian Reifowitz, mmacdDE

              Be subject to more complex rules than online retailers? If local mom and pop shops can do it, why shouldn't an online retailer be able to do it? Your local stores have been doing it forever, whether it's the locally owned liquor store, the gas station, the Ace Hardware franchise owner, the local and big chain grocers or Walmart. They can all figure out how to do it. Online retailers are are in competition with these businesses. If they can't handle the same burdens these local brick and mortar stores have, they shouldn't be in business.

              •  A B&M store is only subject to one sales tax (5+ / 0-)

                jurisdiction that is based on where the store is located.  They do not charge different taxes to different customers based upon the customer's home address and forward the tax to different governments.

                The most important way to protect the environment is not to have more than one child.

                by nextstep on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 10:33:25 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Exactly right (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Ian Reifowitz

                  And if an on online retailer wants to compete, they should have to do so with the same rules. You sell to customers in CA, you collect sales tax the same way a CA retailer does. You sell to Michigan customers, you collect tax the way a Michigan retailer does. I don't see any problem with that.

                  •  Wrong (0+ / 0-)

                    Same Rules = Pay based on the business' physical address.

                    On the Internet, nobody knows if you're a dog... but everybody knows if you're a jackass.

                    by stevemb on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 01:53:07 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Now you're creating a new rule (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Ian Reifowitz

                      That has never existed. Current law is that sales or use tax applies based on where the goods are delivered. This current proposal facilitates enforcing that existing law.  

                      •  You're The One Who Said "Treat Both The Same" (0+ / 0-)

                        Either have online businesses pay their local tax rate, or require brick-and-mortar businesses to see customer ID and charge them their individual locality rate.

                        On the Internet, nobody knows if you're a dog... but everybody knows if you're a jackass.

                        by stevemb on Tue Apr 30, 2013 at 07:20:10 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  With all due respect (0+ / 0-)

                          That would make the problems even worse by shifting them entirely to brick and mortar retailers.

                          •  What Problems? (0+ / 0-)

                            Haven't you read any of the posts here that explain how the magic fairy dust software will assure that compliance with umpty-ump different jurisdictional tax codes will present no problem at all?

                            On the Internet, nobody knows if you're a dog... but everybody knows if you're a jackass.

                            by stevemb on Tue Apr 30, 2013 at 08:49:26 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Haven't you been reading the posts (0+ / 0-)

                            that explain that there is no problem with different jurisdictional tax codes because the proposed law requires all the states to eliminate those differences?

                            When you go into a brick and mortar retailer, do you give them your name and address? How long will the waits in line be when every customer has to be asked where they live and provide a home address and zip code? Frankly, your proposed solution isn't a solution at all. It makes things much much worse and stomps all over states rights.

      •  It's Be DOA If This Bill Passes (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        soros

        Why would any politician vote to give up free money from out-of-state people who can't vote them out of office? Instead, the'll be voting on bills to abolish income taxes and raise sales taxes instead -- more free money, and who cares if it screws the 99%?

        On the Internet, nobody knows if you're a dog... but everybody knows if you're a jackass.

        by stevemb on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 09:25:33 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Opposite problem from Jindal in LA and next (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Ian Reifowitz

        door in Mississippi - they wanted to eliminate all income taxes and make it all sales taxes.  I think those efforts failed, though Kansas, of course, is probably going that way themselves.

    •  Craftspeople who participate in fairs (5+ / 0-)

      need tax numbers for each state in which they sell.

      Sometimes the tax people come around to larger fairs to check on us.

      Keeping the books and filing for each state is more than a drag.
      It does seem that higher income tax and elimination of sales tax would be the simple way to go.

      'A scarlet tanager broke the silence with his song. She thought of the bird hidden in the leaves somewhere, unseen but nevertheless brilliant red. Nevertheless beautiful.' Barbara Kingsolver/ Prodigal Summer

      by flowerfarmer on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 10:05:54 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  But if you're selling online it would be easier (0+ / 0-)

        You already have all the info, whoever processes your credit cards could easily offer that as a service as a small charge. You have the zip code the items were sent to. You have all the items sold. All that info is already in a database, that's how online sales are handled.

        So the info is already there. You just tie your items into categories, match that up with the database for sales taxes, and when somebody from a Philly zip code punches in an order, the zip code ties with the tax table for that zip and calculates the sales tax.

        Pretty straightforward. And already done for pos systems.

        •  Some items need to be handled (0+ / 0-)

          or examined before purchase.
          I do sell on ETSY during the holidays but my sales are a miniscule fraction of my person to person sales at fairs and in galleries.

          I also sell books on Amazon- i know, i know....what can i do- and that certainly is easy and will pass along any costs to the customer without any interference from me.

          'A scarlet tanager broke the silence with his song. She thought of the bird hidden in the leaves somewhere, unseen but nevertheless brilliant red. Nevertheless beautiful.' Barbara Kingsolver/ Prodigal Summer

          by flowerfarmer on Wed May 01, 2013 at 06:29:00 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  We've tried to have an income tax (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Ian Reifowitz

      We only wanted a small surtax on incomes over 250k.  It was voted down.  

      There is nothing better than when libertarians say that we should just do it some other way.  It's always easy to ignore the current state of the situation.  

      Streichholzschächtelchen

      by otto on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 12:45:42 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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