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The Democratic Socialists of America (DSA)

A forum for discussion of regional topics including oil depletion but also government, society, and the future.

Re: The Democratic Socialists of America (DSA)

Unread postby lpetrich » Wed 27 Feb 2019, 09:57:43

KaiserJeep wrote:Nobody has a civic duty to pay taxes, when alternatives exist. Government tax incentives play a role in stimulating and locating businesses. ...

So the second type of business success is a legitimate one? Even if it involves crony capitalism?
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Re: The Democratic Socialists of America (DSA)

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Wed 27 Feb 2019, 10:22:16

I pay sales taxes on Amazon purchases which originate in California. Nor does Amazon even tell you until after the order is placed whether they will be collecting a sales tax or not. You CAN go through the order cancellation/reorder routine, picking an out-of-state vender, but that is a real hassle and you still end up on multiple mailing lists.

Note that on shipments which originate and end in the same state, sales taxes are always charged and collected by Amazon, if they exist. However, in the USA, sales taxes can be collected at the state, county, or municipal level. Unless these various governments agree to enforce such taxes for one another, enforcement of the tax laws does not exist. The practice of not collecting sales taxes on out-of-state shipments did not originate with Amazon, and is decades older than Amazon, and is not Amazon's problem to resolve. It is a problem with the government bodies levying and collecting sales taxes, not a problem with an individual online vender. Furthermore Amazon has won multiple lawsuits about taxation, simply by proving that other online venders were not collecting such taxes. Sales tax enforcement is a binary thing, you either do it or don't do it, but if you want such taxes collected, you cannot selectively force Amazon to comply and let other venders slide. This equal enforcement legal precedent is well established, and California has an entire revenue tax board, a taxation database, programmmers, and is paying for sales tax enforcement - which is why they are getting revenues from sales taxes.

I even remember buying stereo equipment and camera equipment mail order from a certain infamous vender in NYC decades ago, to avoid the sales taxes. When I visited the "storefront", it was a locked cage inside a mantrap and they were taking cash only, and there were muggers outside ready to steal your stuff. Amazon took advantage of this tax collection situation, and is being blamed for not going to the expense and trouble of collecting taxes that state/county/municipal tax agencies can't demand without being able to prove equal enforcement. However, they collect sales taxes when asked to do so, and their online purchasing software allows this. The various state/county/municipal revenue agencies must be prepared to prove that they equably enforce taxation on all venders, or Amazon need not comply with their demands.

I repeat, nobody has an obligation to pay taxes - especially if the tax board is not prepared to even ask for such.
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Re: The Democratic Socialists of America (DSA)

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Wed 27 Feb 2019, 16:40:14

KaiserJeep wrote:I repeat, nobody has an obligation to pay taxes - especially if the tax board is not prepared to even ask for such.

OTOH, since you're talking about state taxes, unless you want to lie (perjure yourself) on your tax form, you are supposed to pay state sales taxes, at least for the state you live in, whether the vendor collects the tax or not. (Given the big fight with Amazon, and it mostly complying, I presume this is still true. I KNOW it was in KY a decade or so ago.)

For several years before Amazon started collecting such taxes, I'd estimate my purchases, and tell my preparer to use that estimate (if the state isn't going to bother to force the vendors to charge the tax, or enforce making most people pay it for such vendors, I wasn't going to bother with detailed records on that). By the time Amazon started collecting taxes in my state, practically all major vendors I was aware of were already doing that.

And, I realize I was probably a very TINY minority that paid such taxes. I just prefer to be honest and sleep at night.

So, I guess it depends on what you mean by "obligation". Are you obligated not to commit murder (which is mostly frowned on in the US) as long as you don't get caught? I would say yes, since, for example, deadbeats are OBLIGATED to pay their debts, whether they get away with running from them or not.

...

After typing the above, I became curious, so I just looked it up, and obligation is defined as having BOTH a moral and a legal meaning, FWIW.
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Re: The Democratic Socialists of America (DSA)

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Wed 27 Feb 2019, 17:21:33

My wife is a CPA and Tax Specialist has always scrupulously paid such taxes herself, at least on major purchases. But when you reach the end of the year and look back, especially after just refurbishing your house for sale as we have done, you find dozens of purchases from dozens of venders from dozens of states. She is working on our own taxes this week, and I just told her "yeah, that looks good", but who really knows? Even the professionals have to make estimates, nobody can know every tax collected in every jurisdiction. It's the sort of things that computers would handle without a problem, if everybody could agree to use the same software. But don't hold your breath waiting for that.

Meanwhile, my wife knows California taxes backwards and forwards, as she has been practicing here for decades. Then she knows a bit about Wisconsin because she does taxes for our kid who lives there, and a bit about Massachutsetts because she is executor of her Mother's estate. But nobody knows it all.
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Re: The Democratic Socialists of America (DSA)

Unread postby Plantagenet » Wed 27 Feb 2019, 17:35:02

I’m very disappointed in Bernie Sanders after he refused to criticize Muduro in Venezuela. Muduro has collapsed the economy and driven his own people to digging through garbage bins to find enough to eat, but Bernie won’t criticize him because is a communist scum dictator, and apparently Bernie never criticizes communist scum dictators.

Sheesh! I’m sorry I ever supported Bernie in 2016. I had no idea he had such a soft spot for communist scum dictators.

Cheers!
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Re: The Democratic Socialists of America (DSA)

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Wed 27 Feb 2019, 17:54:17

Image
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Re: The Democratic Socialists of America (DSA)

Unread postby Cog » Wed 27 Feb 2019, 18:05:44

How quickly people forget the Solyndra scandal and who created it.
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Re: The Democratic Socialists of America (DSA)

Unread postby lpetrich » Fri 01 Mar 2019, 07:13:30

Cog wrote:How quickly people forget the Solyndra scandal and who created it.

The right wing, by getting worked up over it. Like with Travelgate and Waco and Whitewater and Paula Jones and "death panels" and Benghazi.

I recall how a certain Trumpie once defended Trump's business failures by claiming that the notion that one always has to succeed is a "socialist" one.
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Re: The Democratic Socialists of America (DSA)

Unread postby Cog » Fri 01 Mar 2019, 07:16:33

Wait you are saying Solyndra went bankrupt because the right wing wanted it so? LOL You really have drank the Kool-Aid deeply.
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