I came across a link claiming that the two senators from Tennessee, Bob Corker and Lamar Alexander are both likely to vote for a scheme to tax internet sales called the Marketplace Fairness Act. Alexander has already spoken out as being for separating you from more of your money — because apparently the government is doing such a bang up job with what it is already spending that, Goshdarnit, they just deserve more!
As with everything else these days they are going to try to ram this thing through without full hearings and outside the normal process because if we had a full and open debate about it, and if we moved with intelligence, caution and deliberation, the people might decide they feel differently than their overlords in Congress. Apparently Democracy looks like the Senate cloak room (whatever the hell that is… people always talk about it when they want to look sophisticated and sound like an insider… how is it working for me?) And as we all know, the best legislation is that which is given the least thought and public input.
If you think localities should be forced the face the discipline of competition when it comes to tax rates (or if you are just tired of the governmental maw swallowing everything in sight in a vain effort to prove that socialism will work if we just spend the next dollar despite the trillions already spent) you might want to contact these two jokers.
Bob Corker (202) 224-4944
Lamar Alexander (202) 224-4944
Everyone always says not to be rude and angry but I think the days when that sort of interaction with your representatives was effective are long gone. I will just caution you to try not to get arrested or draw the attention of the DHS. If they cared what you thought they would have debated this thing fully and openly. They could give a rat’s ass what you think — constituent or no — unless you can grease their palms and have clout of some sort they feel obliged to acknowledge. Keep in mind that this is all about them and arguments which do not benefit them personally will be of interest to them. If you gave them money in the past they will be more likely to listen to you… in direct proportion to the sum you gave them.
And aren’t there constitutional issues with one state being forced to collect taxes for another? I know the Constitution is pretty much a dead letter these days (which ironically is the inevitable result of pursuing a “Living Constitution” — these guys never miss an opportunity to rape the English language and miss the point) but isn’t there some vestige left that addresses this sort of regulation of one state by another? Somehow I don’t think TN getting to set the sales tax for a transaction conducted by a business in MO is what the founders had in mind. Nor do I think Congress can hand its responsibility for regulating interstate commerce off to the states. I can’t imagine what it would be like to get audited by 50 sovereign entities for the crime of trying to run a business in the US.
The backers claim that businesses under $1 million in sales will be exempt. But as a small business guy I can tell you I brought home a whopping salary of $60,000/year on sales of $10 million dollars (and keep in mind that it is common to have to rick everything you own to start a business). It is quite likely that the compliance costs alone would wipe out any profit someone grossing $1 million would make. Which is exactly what the big corporations who back this crap hope will happen. They know it will limit competition and make it unlikely anyone else will ever be able to grow their business into a rival. This is why Europe is so stagnant and lacks in innovation so much compared to what used to be the norm in the US BO (Before Obama). There were fewer barriers to entry here and thus more dynamism and innovation. That is EXACTLY what the backers of this bill want to stamp out.
I did not vote for Alexander the last time around after having voted Republican in every election since I started voting. I abstained in his race. After he and Corker made fools of themselves with their gun control vote I wrote them both off, but would be willing to give them another look if they got their minds right on this issue. No harm was ultimately done to anything but their reputations on the gun control vote so I can make this sort of trade in my mind without feeling completely dirty.