Politics

sameoldlama
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Re: Politics

Postby sameoldlama » Mon Apr 02, 2018 10:58 am

So how does it work now?

Say the Internet business is based and ships from State "A" and I live in State "B". Does the business / customer now have to fork over a State A and B tax?
IMO only State A tax should be collected - the purchase is no different than if I were on vacation in State A and bought the goods and transported them home.
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psu_dad
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Re: Politics

Postby psu_dad » Mon Apr 02, 2018 11:19 am

It's complicated.

There are items that Amazon sells itself and items that third party vendors sell on the Amazon web site. For the items that Amazon sells itself, they collect the MA sales tax (only) from me. They do not take the responsibility of collecting tax for the 3rd party vendors on Amazon.

By MA law, internet sellers are only required to collect MA sales tax if they have a "physical presence" in MA (a store, warehouse, etc.) A company situated in Washington state isn't required to collect MA sales tax when selling to a MA customer. Whether they're required to collect Washington sales tax when selling to me, I don't know.
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Blue&White
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Re: Politics

Postby Blue&White » Mon Apr 02, 2018 11:40 am

I believe it's where the buyer resides, not the seller. And, I see it differently than when you are on vacation. When you are on vacation, you and the seller are in the same place. When you buy on the internet, you may not be. The sales tax should be collected where the buyer is because that's really the point of sale.

Dad - the states may spend like drunken sailors but losing a considerable amount of revenue will have a huge impact on them anyway. They were better able to get away with it when they collected revenue on every sale. Most of the states have not the past decade or so. Maybe Mass was ahead of the curve, but many states are lagging and PA is one of them.

I'm really not upset about this. Do I like paying sales tax? No, of course not. But, I did appreciate that when I got on I95 this morning to get to work I didn't have to worry about killing myself due to the snow and sleet because the road had been salted. Services cost money.
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psu_dad
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Re: Politics

Postby psu_dad » Mon Apr 02, 2018 12:06 pm

"No one ever died from paying too much taxes." -- appoo.
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psu_dad
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Re: Politics

Postby psu_dad » Mon Apr 02, 2018 12:21 pm

The sales tax should be collected where the buyer is because that's really the point of sale.

The problem with that is that historically, retailers have been responsible for collecting sales tax. If I buy something mail-order from Bill's House of Voodoo Dolls in western MA, the state can drop a house on Bill if he doesn't collect the sales tax. If buy something mail-order from Phil's House of Voodoo Dolls in Washington, Phil is probably going to tell MA to drop dead regarding MA sales tax collection. So MA hasn't bothered with out-of state vendors, historically.

BTW, if you look up "internet sales taxes" on google and start reading, you'll have a popsicle headache within 10 minutes.
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Blue&White
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Re: Politics

Postby Blue&White » Mon Apr 02, 2018 1:03 pm

It's not a perfect solution and what really should happen is Congress should get involved since it's really interstate commerce. But, this is just another example of where technology is costing states and local municipalities money that they have no easy means to make up. The big one, for years, was when all the big banks started using this MERS company/system for title recording and searches. It completely circumvented local governments, who historically have made some money by charging you to file your title changes and liens. That one seriously backfired because, when the crap hit the fan after 2008 and foreclosures ran rampant there were courts that refused to recognize the MERS title documents as having any legal validity and a lot of mortgages were wiped out. The loans were still in place, but the mortgage - which is the security against the house - went away. Once that happened, people could declare Chapter 13 and wipe out most of the unsecured loan on their house. The banks complained and the states just laughed at them.

I laughed too. A lot. Loudly. Like a villain in a Bond movie. In fact, I'm starting to belly laugh just thinking about it!

But, I digress. Point is, the states can't just keep taking it in the shorts on revenue they historically collected and expect to just make up the money some other way. The other way is to raise income taxes which is not going to be popular at all.
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psu_dad
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Re: Politics

Postby psu_dad » Mon Apr 02, 2018 2:15 pm

Point is, the states can't just keep taking it in the shorts on revenue they historically collected and expect to just make up the money some other way. The other way is to raise income taxes which is not going to be popular at all.

That's what I did when my wife lost her full-time job. I just insisted that my employer pay me more. What choice did I have?
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Carl Spackler
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Re: Politics

Postby Carl Spackler » Tue Apr 03, 2018 5:43 pm

"But, I digress. Point is, the states can't just keep taking it in the shorts on revenue they historically collected and expect to just make up the money some other way. The other way is to raise income taxes which is not going to be popular at all."

Or the states could economize? Or is there no waste in state govt.? Oh no, incoming.......
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Blue&White
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Re: Politics

Postby Blue&White » Tue Apr 03, 2018 5:52 pm

I'm sure there is plenty of waste in state government. And they should absolutely work to cut their costs.
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Blue&White
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Re: Politics

Postby Blue&White » Thu Apr 05, 2018 10:06 am

Farm state lawmakers, including Republicans, blame Trump for new China tariffs

My favorite line in this article:

The new penalties are largely seen as retaliation for the tariffs the Trump administration announced against China, the largest purchaser of American soybean exports.

"Largely seen". Implying there are people who think that's not why China did this. It's laughable considering the Chinese have been pretty blatant that this was done exactly to retaliate against the steel tariffs.

Anyway, I don't think this issue is as clear cut as it's being made out to be. Trump's solution to everything is to treat it like a nail and hit it with a hammer, which is a problem. But, his assessment of Chinese trade practices is probably not wrong. He made the comment that trade wars are easy to win. That may be true but presumably that applies to both sides and I don't see why it is any easier for us to win than the Chinese. Especially as they are a command economy and don't have to deal with pesky voters. I'd think that puts them a bit in the driver seat in this situation.
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