41 votes

Internet Sales Tax: It's coming if you don't stop it!


"The Senate could vote as early as Thursday on a bill to empower states to require online retailers to collect state and local sales taxes for purchases made over the Internet. Under the bill, the sales taxes would be sent to the states where a shopper lives."

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"The National Conference of State Legislatures estimates that states lost $23 billion last year because they couldn't collect taxes on out-of-state sales."

How can you "lose" something you never had?

It's called evolutution. No state is entitled to that money.

Buyer "B" buys something out

Buyer "B" buys something out of state from company "C"

Should B's state get the tax, or C's state?

What tax rate is charged? B's or C's?

If C's state determines the rate, and C's state is the recipient, this bill isn't horrible, it's crummy, but it's not that bad.

If B's state determines the rate, and is the recipient (as in this bill) you just made a fur-ball of laws into software code at enormous expense and upkeep.

I'm against both ways, or any combination of B's and C's. This won't work.


Fair TAX? To level the

Fair TAX? To level the playing field?

Hmmm do brick stores have to pay to ship?

I guess congress wants to kill what is left of the post office.

Merkley on the Senate floor

Wyden on the Senate floor



A true flower can not blossom without sunlight and a true man can not live without love.

This is NOT an "Internet" sales tax

This is simply collection of taxes which buyers already owe under their own states' laws. If they don't like the "Internet" sales tax they should move to Texas or New Hampshire instead of moaning about the Congress finally doing its job and regulating interstate commerce.

I'm surely libertarian, and I oppose the very existence of sales taxes and income taxes. I will vote against taxes at every opportunity. But it's my own fault I don't vote with my feet and move out of Massachusetts to New Hampshire, for instance.

This "Internet" tax is not a tax increase, it's just enforcement of existing taxes. Dodging taxes is not libertarian. Ending taxes is libertarian.

Take back the GOP and Restore America Now.


dodging taxes and offensive wars is as libertarian as it gets in times like these. and that's leaving the moral implications of our foreign policy out of the argument for sake of time and patience.

now.. if you want to play semantics and pretend this isn't a tax increase, that's cool. but i'm not buying it. if the MFA passes.. they get to steal more of my money that they can't right now. i don't care if it just didn't have the teeth before hand.

when they quit squeezing little people for every last drop of revenue and start taking some SERIOUS cuts in spending.. maybe then i'd be a little less pissed. but that ain't going to happen.

Damn Straight

Nice post Old Poor Richard. I agree 100%. I'd also like to add that the bill doesn't require a state to collect sales tax on internet sales but merely allows them to enforce a sales tax.

this type of thing was shot down by the courts in the past

because it interferes with Interstate commerce. I suspect it will be shot down again. This is why you never had to pay taxes on mailorder purchases (before the internet) that were from businesses outside your state. The Internet isn't any different than the catalog mail order businesses of the past. They are just trying to eek out more of our money.

If a State has laws that say they have to pay sales tax on everything they purchase then they should go after the individuals not paying their taxes. They can't expect businesses located in other states to be tax collectors for them....unless of course they pay them to do it!

It costs a businesses to collect taxes and pay them. They would be doing it for states where they don't even have any representation which is ludicrous. And to top it off businesses located in states that don't have sales tax (like Oregon- I am told there are 4 of them) would have an extra burden since they are not set up to do sales tax at all.

So, no this isn't about enforcing taxes. If that were it, they would be going after the individuals not paying their taxes which they are not doing.

Yeah you did...

Yes, you did have to pay taxes on mailorder purchases...it's called a "use tax". No one ever did pay them. This is merely fixing bad tax law. If you have to have a sales tax at least make it fair.

And it's not hard to remit sales tax. I owned an internet business and it was easy. Most software does it for you and all you do is cut the checks once a quarter. Let's not pretend like a company with $1 million plus in internet sales is some poor mom and pop business on the corner.

the purchaser owes the tax, not the business

A use tax is tax on the purchaser of the goods not the business who sells the goods. Like I said, they need to go after the individual and not an out-of-state business.

Yes, I can tell you it takes a lot of effort and expense for a small business. And it isn't just one check it will be 50 checks. But many small businesses don't use the expensive software where it is built in and it costs a lot for customization. Also, you would be amazed at how small a business is that takes in $1,000,000.

Tax laws are already too complicated without making it even worse.

The real effect of this is out-of-country businesses will boom because people will be able to buy from them without paying sales taxes. It is another way to drive business out of the country.

You and I both know that the

You and I both know that the use tax is impossible to enforce and this is a much easier solution.

If many small businesses are not using "expensive software" ($200 for QuickBooks) how are they on the internet to begin with. It cost more in labor and money to set up and maintain website than to cut 50 checks a quarter...assuming you sold in all 50 states. I did it and it wasn't a problem.

Out of country sales will not prosper unless you are selling a service. Shipping is too expensive to ship overseas and nothing comes in from Canada or Mexico.

This is similar to the people that complained about cracking down on online piracy; the free lunch is over and now you are upset because it's fair again. Liberty includes fairness.

fairness is that the state should collect their own taxes

and not require businesses that don't even reside in their state to collect them. In fact I don't think businesses should have to collect them at all but states do have control over their own state. The better solution is to not have a sales tax and collect the tax for your state in a different way if you need taxes. Don't put the burden on other states. And yes, it is a burden. To that we will have to disagree. You might want to consider that the only way they will be able to enforce it is to once again invade peoples privacy.

Plus different states have different laws. In many states if I go to their state I have to pay their sales tax. But if I go to Washington State I don't have to pay their sales tax.

As per Canada, I often buy things from Canada over the Internet. They do have things! Case in point, if the price is right people will go elsewhere.

Now nothing will change for me as far as shopping goes but I do think what they are doing is absolutely wrong and I expect it will go to court. I am also glad both my Senators voted against it and I am sure they will vote against it again.

I'm just tagging off the end

I'm just tagging off the end of this, this isn't a direct reply to previous poster.

States have different laws. Some tax food, some don't, it's highly variable. Cities have sales taxes, counties do to.

This law will make it ridiculous to sell online. How are you going to keep track of all this? One state will make a law, hampsters are not food, so not taxable.

100% interfering in interstate commerce. 57 states x 1000 laws and definitions.

Imagine coupons, some states charge sales tax on original value before coupon, some don't. Track that hairy furball of a up and coming tax court notice in your mail box.



... Is there an online petition for people to sign to their senators, kind of like the eff.org one that was going around for CISPA??

A quick search found campaign for liberty's petition that was sent out i believe, possibly in January or Feb.? - http://chooseliberty.org/internet_tax_sb.aspx?pid=0419b

Don't know if that one is outdated? or will it still function correctly? or is there a better one??

Let me know we have to spread this, and an online petition, like the Eff.org one for CISPA was great for people who were lazy, and only took them literally a minute to fill out.

Simplicity like that is good for people to get on board.

Let me know if there is a good one out there so i can post.


Keep your eye on the prize! - Ending legal tender laws in order for the Federal Reserve System to self-destruct is of the upmost importance.
What in the World are They Spraying https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jf0khstYDLA

It's still good.

I received it April 19, from Campaign for Liberty.

Recommended reading: The Most Dangerous Superstition by Larken Rose


taxeswithoutborders.com was a good outline letter to send to your "reps".


... This IS IMPORTANT. Get this is on the front page! :).... Let's take these criminals who want to squeeze every last penny from, and let them now how we feel about an Internet sales tax!!

Keep your eye on the prize! - Ending legal tender laws in order for the Federal Reserve System to self-destruct is of the upmost importance.
What in the World are They Spraying https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jf0khstYDLA

Activism activism activism

sadly the population is brain-washed and ready to be culled by the controllers.

LL on Twitter: http://twitter.com/LibertyPoet
sometimes LL can suck & sometimes LL rocks!
Love won! Deliverance from Tyranny is on the way! Col. 2:13-15


I have wrote both of my senators and called multiple times. This is going to kill my small business..

I doubt it

I'd like to see some numbers on this because I honestly don't believe it. I ran a small internet business selling computer parts for a number of years until it got too big (I had to choose between the business or a Master's degree...went with Masters). Not once was it a burden to collect sales tax. I used Zen Cart which is a FREE program that will handle almost all this for you. On top of that I had Quick Books which also handles all the tax issues. It literally took maybe an hour to handle the sales tax remittance each quarter. Further, it didn't hurt business when California required me to collect sales tax. Because everyone was used to the tax no one factored it into a decision to purchase.

So I'm not buying these sob stories of businesses getting killed. If you want to get rid of burdens on business try eliminating income tax on ALL businesses (as it is a pass-through to the consumer) and get rid of most of the regulations that make it impossible to open up something as simple as a bakery. As for the sales tax, if you have to have a sales tax, make it fair for all.

not everyone uses Zen

there are a lot of small businesses with their own websites and making major changes isn't free. Switching over to a whole new "free" system would cost even more. And I don't buy it will only take an hour either. They tell me my taxes can be filled out in x number of minutes and they are way off on that. Also, the insurance companies think submitting insurance forms only takes 20% more time and they are way off on that too. No wonder health practitioners are getting in trouble for "copying" data from one visit to the next.

A bigger problem is the large increase in taxes most people will be paying - some over 10% more. People will buy less here and more in Canada or wherever.

Then as Wyden points out there are over 8,000 tax jurisdictions in the USA. A lot of other entities add on their own sales tax. AND there are different taxes on different types of products too so it gets very complicated.

Ron Wyden speech on Senate floor


Anyone with a website and $1

Anyone with a website and $1 million or more in sales has some kind of accounting software and certainly some kind of order software for the website. ALL of them can handle sales tax as you are required to collect sales tax anyway for customers within your own state. The 8,000 tax jurisdictions is not a problem if using online software; it's merely a database with zip codes and tax rates (provided by the state as a database). You don't actually have to remit sales tax to those 8,000 tax jurisdictions. You remit to the 50 states. Further, you don't have to comply with 8,000 different sets of rules. Each state can only have one set of rules.

Assuming you don't have horrific accounting records it shouldn't take more than an hour. Sales tax is literally the easiest tax to comply with (and not comply with for that matter).

The two links you provided only reinforce my view that there is not one single legitimate argument against collecting sales tax for online transactions. People just like the free ride and don't want it to end. The reality is that taxes are supposed to be used to pay for goods and services collectively used by society...such as roads. An internet sale uses these services in the same manner as if you went to the store and bought it.

If am in North Carolina and I order from Company X located in South Carolina I don't pay sales tax. If Company X puts a small store forever away from me but in North Carolina I all of a sudden pay sales tax. Literally nothing changed in that transaction. The same resources were used, same result, same everything. I fail to see how we should give tax breaks to companies (or consumers) because of a loophole.

I'm not arguing that we should have a sales tax; I'm arguing that if we DO have a sales tax that it should apply to all businesses.

the national govt doesn't have sale tax

although they will likely add it if this goes through. Individual states have sales tax and they are trying to force other states to do their accounting for them. That is absolutely wrong.

As you pointed out above you are required to pay taxes when you buy out of state, but you don't. The state should be collecting from you and not some out-of-state company. When people from California come up to Oregon they can buy tax free. Yet when we go to California we have to pay their sales tax. Seems to me the taxes they collect from me should be sent to Oregon.

Really it is ludicrous to require a business in another state to essentially pay taxes in a state the do not reside in and have no political representation in.

and $1,00o,000 in sales in NOT $1,000,000 in profits.

I see a national sales tax coming in the very near future.

I hear ya...

It would kill mine as well.

Check out what Ebay said about it: http://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2013/04/23/internet-sa...

Check out the Laissez-Faire Journal at LFJournal.com

"The State is a gang of thieves writ large." - Murray Rothbard

wtg ebay

they are spot on about why big retailers like it.

Tootles to having a small store on line that benifited

by the swap of shipping for the sales tax. Notice they raise the heck out of shipping 1st? Now want to slam the small guys again with a tax.

It's time! Rand Paul 2016!

"Truth, Justice, and the American Way!"

This is important, I don't know why nobody is talking about it.

If they get an internet sales tax, it's not going away.

The tax alone is egregious enough, but this is also a foot in the door for further intervention.

Check out the Laissez-Faire Journal at LFJournal.com

"The State is a gang of thieves writ large." - Murray Rothbard