No, Georgia Retail Association, there’s nothing “free market” or “fair” about the Orwellian “Marketplace Fairness Act”

The Georgia Retail Association sent out a statement recently, picked up by our friends at the AJC’s Political Insider, in which they defended David Perdue’s support of an Internet sales tax and expressed hope that other Senate candidates would back a proposal currently stalled in Congress:

The Georgia Retail Association, the trade group that represents local retailers throughout the state, today condemned false attacks made by the SuperPAC Southern Conservatives Fund against Senate candidate David Perdue for his position in favor of the Mainstreet Fairness Act.

“We hope that all the candidates in the Georgia Senate race will show their support for Georgia’s retailers and condemn the false attacks by the SuperPAC.

Out-of-state, Internet-only businesses want you to believe Mainstreet Fairness is a tax increase, and that is just not true. It’s about helping small businesses compete in a free and fair market,” said Rick McAllister, president of the Georgia Retail Association.

“Big online retailers are putting Georgia retailers out of business by avoiding sales tax collection. The Mainstreet Fairness Act will level the playing field for Georgia retailers by requiring those out of state companies with no jobs in Georgia to play by the same rules,” McAllister said.

First, the Georgia Retail Association got the name of the bill wrong in its statement to the press. The measure’s Orwellian-sounding name is the “Marketplace Fairness Act,” unless, of course, there’s another Internet tax proposal that’s circulating around Congress, and given that this particular bill has passed the Senate and is currently stalled in the House Judiciary Committee, one would surmise that this is the bill GRA meant to reference.

Second, this bill is terrible. It has nothing to do with “helping small businesses compete in a free and fair market.” After all, there is nothing “free market” about this measure. The Marketplace Fairness Act is protectionist in nature, meant to quash online retailers in favor of traditional, brick-and-mortar retailers.

Third, this measure would bring a heavy regulatory compliance burden on online retailers, which would almost certainly be passed onto consumers, as Jacob Sullum explained at Reason in May 2013 (emphasis added):

[C]ompanies with customers throughout the country are understandably worried about complying with the multifarious demands of the 9,000 or so jurisdictions that have the authority to impose sales taxes. That burden is less daunting to big companies like Amazon (which might even be said to enjoy an unfair advantage in that respect) than to their smaller competitors. In partial recognition of that reality, the Marketplace Fairness Act exempts merchants with less than $1 million in annual out-of-state revenue.

The bill seeks to reduce the compliance burden by requiring each state to offer free software allowing merchants to calculate sales tax and file a single return for all taxing authorities within the state. States could not audit a business more than once a year.

Still, that’s 46 returns (45 states with sales taxes plus the District of Columbia), which have to be filed monthly or quarterly, and 46 potential audits every year, not to mention all the misunderstandings, disputes, and hassles that fall short of an audit. You can start to see why the Supreme Court deemed collection of sales taxes from remote vendors an unconstitutional burden on interstate commerce.

The so-called “Marketplace Fairness Act” is cronyism at its worst, and David Perdue is totally down with it.


  1. saltycracker says:

    Having a bit of trouble understanding how it is unfair to not exempt a large, growing segment of retail sales.

    Collecting sales tax across the spectrum should result in a reduction of the rate. Legislation picking types of retailers, tax free days and exemptions is touchy territory. Seems like if we pick favorites it would be those with brick, mortar, employees and investments in GA.

    As for consumer sorting out, level the playing field and let us sort it out. With the latest incredible programs that can set on line pricing to one’s ability to pay, that contributes to sales tax being a lower concern. A sales tax collection software over thousands of jurisdictions should be easy.

    Perdue just might be way ahead of the curve in a very complex consumer world by the potential to lower rates and minimize govt meddling. That’s good for Georgia business.

      • saltycracker says:

        I prefer my govt to be consistent and predictable in their taxation so I can run my business and they can run in our interests.
        Perhaps if we collect, say 2%, no exceptions, we could eliminate corporate income tax or some other reduction. Kinda easy to sell GA when we can do a business plan sans pages of govt “ifs”‘.

    • xcergy says:

      So many inaccuracies.

      Yes, in theory, if ALL paid Use Tax, States could drop Sales Tax rates up to 1-1.5% and remain revenue neutral. Will they? You are a fool if you believe same. Even in Red dominated States, Pubs want to lower taxes in other areas (income/corporate taxes) and raise Sales Tax to make up the difference. Local communities want that extra 1-2% to build roads, a community center, fire protection, or a statue in town square to celebrate Earth Day … but bottom line, they want more revenue.

      9K tax jurisdictions? Today, it’s over 13K … mute point as MFA requires single point collection, single point audits … not for just 45 States and DC, but rather as stated in S743, The several States (46), DC, all US Territories (15+), and all (565) Sovereign Indian Nations. Online would be required to fill out over 600 monthly tax forms (even if the amount due is $0) Compaired to a B&M that files ONE tax form.

      That $400 B&M item can be had easily for $350 online. B&Ms would rather blame the internet than a poor sales staff, lack of selection, or the BigBox store next door that stole 30% of thir business.

      Oh, and that showrooming myth? How about web rooming? Those Smartphone shoppers find bargains across the street or at YOUR STORE if you had the brains to get on the Internet too that drove $1.2T sales to B&Ms in 2013.

      Keep believing the GRA myth driven by the WalMart lobby … the game plan by them is to further drive you out of business as well.

  2. George Chidi says:

    This issue is relatively easy to demagogue. But the details are a bit more complicated than a first glance reveals.

    Debate remains robust about how many online retailers are out there with sales above $1 million. The SBA says it’s, like, 2000. Ebay says it’s more like 30,000. Compliance costs remain an open question as well. People are bandying figures like $250,000 around, which has got to be baloney, particularly with six different suites of compliance software out there, two of which are free. But it’s not zero, either. I would guess at $20,000 a year for a $1 million seller, scaling a bit with size.

    There’s an SBA definition for “small business” for brick and mortar stores, which varies by industry. But for the retail categories online sellers use, it’s almost never as low as a million. It’s usually closer to $10 million. That doesn’t mean the neighborhood store doesn’t have to collect tax. It does mean they’re eligible for other tax breaks an online retailer can’t really access, like capex deductions.

    My problem isn’t with demanding tax compliance. It’s with the $1 million cutoff. The number should be something like $5 million. States will still end up capturing 90 percent of lost sales taxes — Amazon alone is about 25 percent of online retail sales, while the top 50 are easily 75 percent of online retail in the U.S. Smaller businesses will have a built-in market advantage — a tax break — to compete with Amazon and others long enough to find a more sustainable basis for competition.

    One more thing — I would want at least a third of the money collected by Georgia to be devoted to fighting cybercrime. Georgia has the largest cluster of payment processing firms in America, and we have a special need to be leading the country in creating a secure environment for Internet commerce. Retailers should know what their taxes are being use for, and that it’s to their direct benefit to comply.

    • George Chidi says:

      A third might actually be high. But a set portion, nonetheless. Here’s why. Walk into your county police station and thumb through initial incident reports one day. Count the dozens of filings for identity theft and online fraud. Insurance requires victims to file a police report when someone gets hacked.

      You know what the local cops do about this? Most of the time, not a damned thing. They’ll pass them along to the GBI … who are completely swamped. GBI will tell you it’s a federal problem because the criminals are either out of state or out of the country. Crime has been falling in virtually every category for 25 years … except online fraud and theft. And that’s because law enforcement is completely geared for annoyances like traffic enforcement or hoo-ah Rambo SWAT teams and no-knock police raids and chasing street level drug dealers — despite the fact that sites like Silk Road make the corner dope hustle look desperate and amateurish.


      Georgia is a hacker state. We breed them here. There’s an interesting industrial confluence in the area around metro Atlanta. We have a gigantic cluster of payment processing firms, anchored by First Data. And we have a gigantic cluster of network security firms, anchored by ISS and Dell SecureWorks. This is like chocolate and peanut butter bumping into one another.

      Progressive liberal Democrat though I be, I say screw the feds on this one. We can put together a world-beating anti-hacker organization at the state level, a center of excellence that might carve a position out for the state as a better place to do business.

      • saltycracker says:

        Totally agree with enforcement but as the opposite of a progressive liberal, the one for our side battle is perpetual politics, so let’s forget exceptions/exemptions, save a few that serve everyone equally and allow legislators to fight over something.

        2% state, drop the penny, 5¢ increments, no exemptions.

  3. Charlie says:

    I’m still having difficulty understanding the cognitive dissonance required by folks who are demanding we shift taxes over to retail sales whenever possible (See, FairTax; See, GA Taxpayers United bizarre “repeal all taxes” questionnaire) but then freak the hell out when they think internet sales will be taxed.

    There’s nothing magical about the method of commerce over the internet that changes the basic economics of the sale. Thus, there’s nothing magical in it that would change the preferred mode of taxation.

    the “No internet taxes ever!” memes are from folks that at the end of the day don’t want the government getting any revenue, or at least only want tax systems set up that they believe they can evade.

    We’re either going to have a government or we’re not. (Hint, we are). If we’re going to have one, we need to pay for it (otherwise we’re borrowing from foreign governments that we become subservient to, or we debase currency until it’s worthless – both bad).

    Since we don’t want to do that, then we need to tax in a manner that is the most broad based so it can have the lowest rates possible, thus creating the fewest distortions possible. THAT, is the closest you can get in the real world to a “free market”. Exempting internet sales is nothing but a huge distortion. One that rewards businesses that invest elsewhere at the expense of those that invest here, employ here, and pay taxes here.

    • Will Durant says:

      Unless we establish a National VAT or tariff then any internet tax collected from vendors inside the US would put then put domestic sales at even more of a disadvantage than they are currently. Historically any mention of tariffs is a non-starter in Congress. The internet is most definitely a global entity and we are one of the few industrialized countries that does not tax incoming retail goods. This cannot be done piecemeal.

      • John Konop says:


        I do agree a VAT would work best. A lot less collection issues, and way cheaper to implement….sales tax is a nightmare via collections….

        • saltycracker says:

          Maybe, but let’s fix Georgia, then take on the world.
          No piecemeal is a perpetual delay tactic, think immigration policy. Let’s take a step and see who follows and if they don’t, GA becomes the destination business state.

          • Will Durant says:

            Supposedly Georgia has already been fixed on behalf of the Georgia Retail Association in 2012. The same person that heads up (started?) the association set up the same type of lobbying organization in Florida but has been beat back down there. I don’t know the scope of the Georgia law but to my knowledge Amazon is the only internet retailer that did not have a physical presence in Georgia at the time that was pursued.

            We are talking about a proposal for a national act to enforce sales tax collection over the internet nationwide not just Georgia. My fear is the myopic view of the internet Congress has displayed in the past with blustering about censorship and spam will rear its ugly head again. Enforcing sales taxes nationally on an international platform will only encourage more people to bypass US retailers, certainly not on everything due to shipping or import restrictions, but easily shipped items could be sold cheaper from Mexico, Canada, or even Hong Kong. Canada does have a tariff on goods purchased from the US on its own citizens, I don’t know how that has stayed a one-way street even after the passage of NAFTA.

            • John Konop says:

              …..easily shipped items could be sold cheaper from Mexico, Canada, or even Hong Kong……

              The average sales tax is about 6%, how do you ship goods that materially cheaper especially from out of the country?

              • Will Durant says:

                USPS is not much of a bargain anymore on packages and FedEx/UPS are even higher. Many times the international companies can ship cheaper from their own country depending upon their country’s agreements with USPS. I already purchase many items from Hong Kong that if purchased locally are from the same sources in China. Ink cartridges, rechargeable batteries, high intensity LEDs, etc. I get them at no shipping charges to me and average between 50-75% less than if purchased from retailers here. I have to wait for them to come over via container ship I suppose but the savings warrant the 2 week shipping times for a fixed income guy.

                And yes I realize a VAT or tariff wouldn’t necessarily even it out but it certainly will remain uneven if we enforce a sales tax only on ourselves.

      • saltycracker says:

        In Georgia if we had a visionary leader that could see around corners we would burn him/her at the stake for witchcraft.

    • Raleigh says:

      I don’t have any problem at all in taxing internet sales under a consumption based system. Until we shift current tax systems to a consumption biased system taxing internet sales is nothing more than a tax increase and a way for government to take in more revenue. We pay for plenty of government what we don’t do is pay for just the government we need. Government spends money on Go Fish Museums, bankrupt recycling plants and pie in the sky bankrupt solar energy companies to name just a very few. Government also buys votes with Cash for Clunkers, electric car incentives and special tax deferral incentives. No government gets enough money, government need to reallocate what is received.

      By the way since we “started” the internet tax I have heard no mention of any sales tax reduction. That will never happen.

    • bgsmallz says:

      It’s the “subtle” difference between governing and just throwing stones at those who attempt to do so.

      It’s the same hyperbolic, knee-jerk reaction when the Uber discussion came up. When business enjoy an unfair competitive advantage because of regulation, that’s not innovation or ‘free-market’…that’s inefficient governance and in conflict with free market principles…

      The question should be how do you fix the playing field in a way that will allow free competition without government influence over the winners/losers…not how do we demonize those who might even attempt to do so because we like not having to pay sales tax online.

      Some good thoughts here in the comments about fixing it and out of the box ideas about ways to reduce the inefficiency, etc.

  4. James Touchton says:

    U.S. Congressional Action Supports Georgia E-Fairness Laws
    e-commerce picture
    In 1992, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that states cannot require online retail sellers who do not have a physical presence, such as a “store, office, or warehouse,” to pay state sales tax unless the U.S. Congress gives them the authority to do so. Because of this, online retailers in certain states have been able to offer prices close to a 10% discount compared to local businesses. Customers have an incentive to use local stores as “showrooms,” making their final purchase over the Internet (for instance, a customer going to Best Buy to test a product and purchasing the item from Amazon at a discounted price without sales tax). The inability of states to collect sales tax from online sellers has put local, brick-and-mortar businesses at an unfair disadvantage, and it is estimated that states lost $11.4 billion in revenues in 2012.

    Georgia has taken incredible initiative towards fixing this loophole. In 2012, the Georgia General Assembly passed HB 386, a bill that requires remote sellers to pay state sales tax should they sell to in-state customers, regardless of physical presence. This bill shows the state’s commitment to fair tax policies for all retailers, both local, main street brick-and-mortar, and online. Georgia is also one of twenty-four states that have joined Streamlined Sales and Use Tax Agreement (SSUTA), a multi-state effort to simplify and align sales tax policies. States in this agreement still have autonomy in determining what goods are taxed at what rate, but they adhere to certain rules such as when they can change these rates, as well as uniform definitions for tax purposes (ex. whether marshmallows are defined as food or candy).

    Even though Georgia has taken positive steps on its own, some online retailers point to the Supreme Court ruling and refuse to pay sales tax because there is currently no U.S. Congressional Authority. In light of this, the U.S. Senate passed the Marketplace Fairness Act of 2013, sponsored by Republican Senator Mike Enzi (WY), a bill that requires all large online retailers (more than $1 million in annual remote sales nationally, or more than $100,000 in annual sales in an individual state) to pay sales tax to states who are members of SSUTA or who have met certain standards in the Act to simplify their tax laws. The House version of the bill, sponsored by Republican Congressman Steve Womack (AR), is currently still being reviewed in the U.S. House Judiciary Committee.
    In a report, economist Art Laffer points out that U.S. Congressional passage of the Act would increase national GDP by $563.2 billion and jobs by 1.5 million over the next 10 years. He also notes significant benefits to individual states and estimates that as a result of the Act, Georgia’s GDP will grow $15.8 billion and add 50,642 new jobs by 2022.

    As Georgia continues to make every effort to be the leading state in which to do business, it is important that it be able to enforce its tax laws. Congressional passage of the Marketplace Fairness Act would hault remote businesses from claiming they do not have to follow state tax laws, and give SSUTA states like Georgia the authority to require them to pay.
    To read Art Laffer’s study regarding E-Fairness, click

    To see the specific impacts on each state, click HERE.

    • Will Durant says:

      I’m not an economist. Please explain how the collection of additional state sales taxes would increase the national GDP by more than half a trillion. Isn’t this just out of one pocket and into another?

    • NoTeabagging says:

      James. I am guilty of the Best Buy example you mentioned. However, Best Buy rarely is a “best buy”. Prices are usually higher there with rare discounts. How many remember the Circuit City debaucle. They offered most products cheaper at their online store. Pity the sucker that walked into a store and paid a higher price without checking their online price. They even had in store kiosks so you place an online order and pickup in store. They offered a discount if they could not have your ‘online order’ merchandise in hand within twenty minutes. And guess what, even if you walked the merchandise from the shelf to the cashier, they were still so inept that they could not complete your online order within twenty minutes. Circuit City drove customers to compare prices with other online retailers and drove customers way from their stores by offering higher prices in store than online. Apologies for this diversion from the sales tax issue, but retailers have to keep up with consumers no matter whether they are online or B&M. That includes collecting taxes. If states want sales taxes from all vendors then they need to streamline the system so all retailers, large and small, can easily collect and pay the states their share.
      Good comments from everyone on this issue. Thanks.

  5. Hardly says:

    Bricks-and-mortar stores should reprogram their cash registers to process every sale as an internet order (with immediate in-store pickup), and charge no sales tax.

    • Will Durant says:

      Or they could do like CoPart and collect the sales tax, pocket it, and just consider it extra profits.

    • Raleigh says:

      If you want a level playing field perhaps those brick and mortar stores should get the same 911 emergency response we give to the out of state internet companies. Also don’t forget the shipping and handling charge plus transit wait times. After those you could then “go pick it up.” After all fair is fair, just saying.

      The sad part of this argument is the brick and mortar stores don’t pay the sales tax, you and I do.

      • George Chidi says:

        That’s not entirely true.

        It depends on the elasticity of demand. Under conditions of high elasticity, retailers must absorb some tax costs or face decreased sales. Given the sensitivity of online shoppers to price, I suggest that most of the tax burden for Internet sales will fall on sellers.

        • Raleigh says:

          Mr. Chidi, you can make that case by splitting hairs all you want but the plain fact is the end consumer pays all taxes period. That’s just the way it works. If you have a business absorbing “taxes” for any length of time the business will not be in business for very long.

          The only thing that compounds faster than interest is taxes in products.

          • Charlie says:

            Once again (like in the original post), you’re confusing the political talking point of “end consumers pay all taxes period” with the actual economic principle that George is speaking to (one that is actually taught in Economics classes instead of campaign schools) which is that of incidence of demand, and the effects on consumer and producer surplus.

            The elasticity of demand will determine who bears the burden of a change in price, which in most cases is divided between the consumer’s surplus (utility greater than the price paid) and the producer’s surplus (profit).

            But you probably are more interested in seeing your talking point that you’ve internalized as being true rather than to look at the actual economics of the situation, i.e, “splitting hairs”.

            • jiminga says:

              Gobbledygook. Taxes paid by businesses are included in their pricing. Period. Taxes paid by end users go to the taxing authority, so a new tax decreases disposable income and purchasing power. And please don’t use the argument that “the consumer is obligated to pay the internet tax anyway and chooses not to”. Little tax, if any, is paid now and MFA establishes a new tax. Period.

              The MFA is being pushed by the NRF, ICSC and others because they lobby for bricks and mortar retailers, not consumers, and the MFA damages their competition. Governors like it because it increases taxes without taking the heat, being able to blame it on the federal government. This is political utopia for politicians….increasing taxes and shifting blame to another entity.

              • John Konop says:

                Your post is completely illogical…..sales tax is a tax based on an item being sold. Why should it matter if it sold on the Internet, ship, airplane…..? If you are against sales tax than it should be applied to all….not you picking winners and losers……

                • jiminga says:

                  The MFA institutionalizes picking winners and losers. The states and bricks and mortar retailers win and the consumer loses as the government interferes and tries to create a “level playing field” that lessens competition against bricks and mortar stores. Retailers of all stripes have come and gone for all time, and have adapted for all time without government interference. The MFA is a product of lobbying, not logic.

                  • John Konop says:

                    HUH? What am I missing? You avoided the point of my question!

                    …..sales tax is a tax based on an item being sold. Why should it matter if it sold on the Internet, ship, airplane…..?

                    What part of this question confuses you?

                  • Charlie says:

                    Anytime I see “picking winners and losers” as a reason not to adopt/support new legislation, I have to stop and appreciate how perfect the status quo is. Because to adopt that as an argument, you have to assume the current system doesn’t do that, and that it should be allowed to continue in perpetuity as if government’s current actions aren’t causing distortions.

                    That’s what you’re arguing, right?

  6. Raleigh says:

    Charlie you can quote economics or any other talking point you want but taxes are paid by the end consumer. There is no one left in the supply chain passed the consumer. If a business tries to absorb taxes they put themselves in peril and if they continue to do it they go out of business and that is the non elasticity of marketplace competition.

    Thanks anyway for the attack, the same can be said of you looking at one lecture in an economic class rather than the real world to prop up your talking points.

    • George Chidi says:

      Nothing, and I mean absolutely nothing you just wrote makes a lick of sense.

      Taxes are paid by the end consumer. Sure. OK. But profit changes, depending on how much of the cost of production can be passed on to the consumer. You do understand profit margins, yes? Or is that too much fancy-schmancy economotricks for you? Some products have profit margins that are really wide, like voice mail or tethering on your cell phone. Some are skinny, like supermarket sales.

      Sometimes taxes eat into your margin, because fewer people will buy your goods at the higher price with the additional tax. Sometimes, when a real businessman tries to pass off the entire tax on a customer, an actual business might lose more profits from reduced sales than it would gain from the increased price per product sold.

      But yes! “Taxes are paid by the end consumer.” That has nothing to do with profit retained … which is what an actual businessperson cares about.

    • saltycracker says:

      The elasticity of demand is fancy words for dickering or haggling……in the real world.

      This just looks like I’m agreeing with George the liberal but I will deny it.

      • The Last Democrat in Georgia says:

        It doesn’t really matter what side of the political spectrum someone is on when they are right.

      • Raleigh says:

        Indeed it is Salty, elasticity of demand is what K Street is all about. It’s just a fact of life. Still when all the corporate handouts have been given out in the end it’s still the consumer that pays the bill. The problem for liberals is that explanation is too simple for them to grasp. They all way over complicate things. It’s their nature.

        • saltycracker says:

          Yep and that handout, aka loophole a cow can walk thru, to the seller and the guy next door with the computer is a big one.

    • MattMD says:

      What is being talked about here is basic microecomics, I don’t see any talking points.

      I do see you repeating the Boortz-myth that companies do not pay taxes which is an utter falsehood. You cannot just past the entire tax along because producers would end up with a surplus of goods due to decrease in demand, so the market has to attain an equilibrium. Sellers and consumers share tax payments and the extent of which they do depends on supply and demand elasticities.

      Although not as good as a textbook, these slides might help (and no, it’s not Voodoo):

      • Raleigh says:

        Sorry Matt that predates Boortz by many years and no he didn’t come up with it. If a company made 1 penny profit and paid all of their taxes, ALL of their taxes, then just where did they get the money to pay those taxes. See it’s not Rocket Science.

        • Charlie says:

          No, rocket science is taught in an entirely separate department. This is what we call “economics”, and it’s not usually taught by political scientists or by Boortz nor those that may have preceded him.

          Cling to what you believe to be true all you want. Scoff at anyone that tries to explain what you’re missing as “low information voters”. By all means, stay in your bubble, keep doing the same things over and over, and then be sure to be outraged when you get the same result.

          • Raleigh says:

            So now I’m a “low information voter?” I guess all you can do now is hurl insults, ok at least I have not been through the “Trials and Tribulations” you have Charlie. My bubble has served me well in that regard.

  7. OMG how can retailers possibly calculate 90,000 different local jurisdiction taxes. What a lame talking point – perhaps they can just add a column to the zipcode table in their database called “tax”.

    • Charlie says:

      And when you choose to mock people with an oversimplified answer that doesn’t work, you too make everyone else look stupid.

      Quick question, what sales tax should someone pay that lives in 30213? 30339?

      • bgsmallz says:

        It’s also helpful that when you mock people, you do so based on actual ‘lame talking points’, right…the issue isn’t calculation of taxes (durrr…you guys are dumb….computers can do that…durrrr), it’s filing returns and compliance in all the jurisdictions.

        See…that’s actually a reasonable point…those costs are legitimate.

        My question is…did Jason actually read the whole Reason article he emphasized this point from…?

        From the Reason article on the MFA…
        “it reflects understandable complaints from brick-and-mortar retailers who believe their online competitors have been enjoying an unfair advantage for way too long, thanks to Supreme Court rulings that bar a state from requiring a business to collect sales tax unless the company has a physical presence in that state.” [ORWEILLIEN! …oh wait…]

        and…wait for it…the article doesn’t say get rid of the MFA…it actually makes a reasonable suggestion to lessen compliance costs…

        “Under that rule, which mirrors what happens when you buy something while visiting another state, each business collects sales tax on behalf of the state where it is based, no matter where the customer happens to be. The beauty of this approach is that it treats all retailers equally, eliminates the daunting challenge of dealing with many different taxing authorities, and respects state policy choices while encouraging tax competition between jurisdictions.”

        If you are going to call a law Orweillien, ‘terrible’, and ‘cronyism at it’s worst’…should you really be sourcing an article that calls the bill reasonable and offers to tweak the bill rather than actually argue against it on principle? I mean…unless you are just trolling your preconceived notion of anything that upsets the status quo is anti-free market.

    • DrGonzo says:

      You shouldn’t try to argue with Charlie. He’s got a degree in Economics from UGA, which means he is smarter than everyone he meets and he knows it.

  8. saltycracker says:

    On the lighter side, I think I got elasticised this weekend.

    Store: $220
    Me to store: I can get it for $200 on line, free shipping, no sales tax
    Store to me: can’t do nuthin about the sales tax but I’ll sell it to you for $190 & stand behind it

    So I paid $203.30, local and in sight and delivered

    If politicians would sales tax all retail transactions the same , AT A LOWER RATE, rather than the pick and choose we have, maybe we’d stop calling it a tax increase. And the govt wouldn’t need an empire to admin it selectively. And I’d bet they’d get more revenue – Kingston could call a tax increase, which gets him more revenue from the internet crowd.

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