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The Internet

Gingrich: No taxes on e-commerce, T1s for all 191

P.J. Hinton writes "Newt Gingrich, of all people, is made some interesting remarks at the Internet Commerce Expo. He warned attendees to keep an eye on government efforts to regulate the net, exhorting them to keep the politicians and the press educated so that we don't have the "ignorant creating the impossible." He also drove home the need for high speed access in the home. His remark, "to have every home in America have a T1 line," is something that sounds good to me ;-). " No, not every home. Even just my home would be fine.
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Gingrich: No taxes on e-commerce, T1s for all

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  • by Anonymous Coward
    I'm not about to ask anyone to believe the government actually buys into any of this, but the theory is as follows...

    When I buy locally, I jump in my car, drive over the paved roads, expect the police to keep me free from harm, etc. These things are government services and they cost money. I'm talking sales taxes since the services I demand are directly related to the amount of time I spend using them to buy stuff traveling to the vendor. Sales driven taxes are honorable and just when levied for such.

    Property taxes pay for the government to protect stationary stuff. They cover my house and Amazon.com's facilities. I pay these in the affected locallity since part of Amazon's book price is local property tax. Again, honorable and just.

    The e-tax clamor is loudest from states/locals looking to levey sales taxes on e-tranactions. However, they are fully aware that they are in no postion to offer any service in return. My phone services are regulated at the federal level, and the fed's extract income and useage based charges to perform this "service". The state/locals collect usage charges and property taxes to protect the phone company's facilities.

    States/locals want to tax e-transactions simply because it is revenue for its own sake. Their attempts to extract funds for services they are in no position to tender is dishonerable and unjust.

    Now, one could hold that taxation is simply governments right to practice social engineering. To that I have nothing more to say than Bah.

  • Currently, most of the high-speed internet connections availible to consumers have so many restrictions on them. For example limited to one computer, one IP address, no servers, limits on the amount data transfered, etc. Of course there's a good reason for these restirctions, so that these companys can keep control of the content provided. Imagine what the internet would be like if everyone could be there own information provider, without having to deal with stupid restrictions from ISP's. This is true promise of the internet.
  • Our health care system could be worse; we could have to pay for everyone's health care. Right now, we just have to pay for those to lazy or stupid to get a job and their own health insurance.

    Why do people think they have the right to vote money out of my pocket? Damn it, I have earned my money. And I am irritated to no end that some schmuck who can't be bothered to get a job to get health insurance for his family or set aside money for retirement has the right to money that I've worked my butt off for.

    If people can't afford kids, they shouldn't have kids. If people haven't saved up for retirement, they should get back into the work force. Don't make me pay for other's stupidity.

    And I don't want to hear crap about medicine being too expensive. What doctors do is expensive, and that's that! If you want cheap medicine, eat well, get excercise, and take asprin. But if you want quadrouple-bypass surgery or spinal reconnection expect to pay some money! Hospitals have to pay for their equipment. Doctors have to repay what they lost in med school. And if there aren't enough doctors, then they have the right to ask for whatever salary they want!

    Damn it, stop thinking that society owes you something. It doesn't. It doesn't owe you a free education, it doesn't owe you free medical miracles, it doesn't owe you a job, it doesn't owe you a place to live. Get a job that can pay for these things. And if you can't get a job that can afford these things, then you can (A) get another job or (B) get training so you can get a job that can.

  • Newt might be a combative jerk, but he's not stupid.

    BTW, I wouldn't read too much into his "T1" statement. I think he was trying to say that everybody needed access to T1-type speeds at home for a reasonable price in order to make the Internet work the way it should. Newt's not a technology person, so I'm sure he wasn't talking about using any particular technology to get those speeds.

    -- Eric
  • My ISP charges $500/month for T1 service, and BellSouth charges $500/month for T1 access to their frame relay cloud so that I can get to my ISP. That's $1,000 per month. And that's not even direct T1, that's going through a frame relay cloud with a maximum guaranteed rate of 960,000 bits per second. Direct T1 access would add another $500/month to that charge.

    If the government cut my taxes by $12,000 to $18,000, they'd be paying ME!

    Moral of the story: Tax cuts aren't going to do it.

    -- Eric
  • A man who divorces his wife because she's sick in the hospital with cancer is HONORABLE?

    Newt's smart, but he's also a real jerk.
  • Posted by Big Bad Daddy:

    I was actually at this and I have to say, he actually did make a couple of good points. It was interesting that there were a few chuckles in the crowd when he suggested the T1's in the home, but there were a large number of vendors pushing DSL, which would provide the equivelant of a T1's bandwidth. Besides, we all can dream, well, except for Bill Gates that is(I don't think the Borg dream).
  • Posted by Lord Kano-The Gangster Of Love:

    Let me remind you all that the goal of the GOP is as few government intrusions into our lives as possible.

    Speaker Newt is an honorable man. He is one politician whom I'd trust to drive my little sister home from the mall. Who can say that about ALGORE (the father of the internet, NOT) or Comrade Clinton?

    Dropping taxes INCREASES revenue. Stores don't have sales to lose money, now do they? Lower prices (taxes) will cause more economic activity and increase your revenue in the long run. It is that increase that could pay for T-1 speed access for everyone.

    LK
  • Posted by Lord Kano-The Gangster Of Love:

    If our medical system is so horrible in the US, why then do we have people flocking in from all over the globe to make use of it?

    LK
  • Posted by Lord Kano-The Gangster Of Love:

    It's not possible. Everything we do in this country is about liberal ideas vs. conservative ideas.

    Earlier this year when the Prisident faces trial in the Senate the issue was not "Is he guilty of the charges against him?", The issue was "Should we stand by our man?".

    This battle is for the soul of this country. This war is to determine the shape of the world for generations to come. The moral, ethical, and intellectual bankruptcy of modern liberalism is at the core of the battle. Liberals change their minds on key issues like integrity means nothing. 6 years ago Al Gore bragged that he'd grown, and sold tobacco when he was trying to get the votes of tobacco farmers. Today he does his best to put those farmers out of work.

    In 1972 Edward Kennedy was an outspoken Pro-Life politician. Two years later he was a "Pro-Choice" hero. Why? Because like all good little liberals he follows the party line.

    I realize the /. isn't the best forum in the world to sidcuss this, but it enrages me when I see someone pretend that something as important as this is a trivial matter.

    LK
  • Posted by Buffy the Overflow Slayer:

    The Kennedy, Kitty Hawk, and Constellation are
    not nuclear powered aircraft carriers.

    -buffy

    If the Titanic was full of lawyers, it would not
    have been a disaster.
  • Posted by Lord Kano-The Gangster Of Love:

    Hemp & Marijuana are illegal because of all of their wonderous properties. Men like William Randolph Hearst exploited the racism and fear of minorities that was so prevalent in the early part of this century.

    The man owned thousands of acres of trees that would have been made WORTHLESS after the hemp paper procedure was perfected. How many billionaires do you know who would be willing to let their fortunes disappear?

    So among the average white people they spread rumors about drug crazed blacks and mexicans who smoke hemp. (The term Marijuana was popularized because it sounded like an exotic mexican word. To further scare the white peope)

    Hemp was even made legal again for a breif peiod during WWII for the navy's ropes, some people still have the "Hemp for Victory" posters tha tthe government produced.

    Granted, smokeable product and regular hemp look the same, it really makes no difference. People smoke it already anyway. The positive uses outweigh the negative a hundred times over.

    LK
  • Posted by Lord Kano-The Gangster Of Love:

    You need to learn your history. Marijuana is illegal because of it's relationship to hemp.

    MJ wasn't a threat to the rich and powerful elite. Hemp was.

    LK
  • Posted by 244:

    it's very simple, legalize marijuana, sell it for 99 cents a box, with a 9 dollar tax, tax money goes to getting everybody in america a free T1 in thier house.



    if only life could be soo simple?
  • Posted by Lord Kano-The Gangster Of Love:

    Don't forget the lumber industry's lobbyists.

    LK
  • Posted by Lord Kano-The Gangster Of Love:

    There are only three reasons to travel ffrom the US to canada, Niagra Falls, Cuban Cigars, and the Bacon.

    I am by no means rich, but I can afford $70 ($85 canadian) for medical insurance every month.

    Even middle class canadians have been known to come to the US for medical procedures that your socialized system makes too difficult to get.

    LK
  • Posted by Lord Kano-The Gangster Of Love:

    Newt is honorable. He did divorce her, instead of porking his brains ou tin his office at tax payer expense.

    LK
  • Posted by Lord Kano-The Gangster Of Love:

    I'll take this point by point.

    >What about the War on Drugs, which trashes part of the Bill of Rights, and even has judges pissed at the intrusion into their work lives?

    The war on drugs is pure idiocy. You can't save a man from his own desires.

    >>What about egging on Ken Starr to invade the lives of people?

    The democrats pushed to get the Independant Prosecutor statutes on the books, it just came back to bite them. Besides, Bill Clinton is THE exact model of what they had in mind when they wrote the law.(Excet they thought it would be a republican)

    >>What about intrusion into the lives of women, who have their reproductive rights tinkerred with?

    Is this a backdoor way to mention abortion? Tell me where in the US Constitution it is stated that a woman has the right to murder her own children?

    >>What about intrusions into the lives of people all around the world, whose governments and economies have been trashed by the CIA and other wonderful GOP-sent Americans (many Democrats are guilty as well)? Does Chile ring a bell? Nicaragua? Iran? Vietnam? Jamaica?

    Intelligence is important to all countries. Let me remind you that a democrat sent us into Vietnam.

    >>What about the CDA? Were Republicans all lined up to denounce the thing?

    Were democrats? Who signed it into law?

    >>Despite many of my political heroes being Republican, they have become the Party of FUD and Deceit in the past two decades. The Democrats are only slightly better, but they'll have to get worse if they are to win elections on a more consistent basis. That's pretty sickening, isn't it?

    FUD & deciet from the GOP? That's a joke and a half. The Democrats have been scaring old people shitless with their lies about GOP sponsored Social security cuts which never existed. How about the GOP sponsored growth of the federal school lunch program that the congressional democrats characterized as cuts?

    How about the obvious and awful race baiting conducted by Jesse Jackson and Maxine Waters?

    >> Anyone who says "Republicans Rule" (or "Democrats...", or "Libertarians...", etc) is missing the point. A bunch of lockstep ideology-zombies will more likely do more harm than good. What is needed is genius and deliberation, not scripts and spin.

    Appearantly you don't get what it is to be a republican. Of course everyone should be a free thinker. To be a republican means to be a free thinkter and to freely choose to join the party.

    LK
  • ...and the comment about american's being "afraid" of comunism.. hahahah.. of course we are.. tell me one place in the world that is has been sucessful. thats all i am aware of is failures.

    If we could poll all 5+ billion people in the world, I'd think you would see a massive thumbs-down for capitalism. It may work in a relative handful of countries (and, even in those places, you'll find many negative votes), but what does the average person in Malawi, Honduras, Malaysia, or Pakistan think? "We" are not the center of the universe, and the world (and "we") might begin to improve once that fact sinks in.

    --

  • Let me remind you all that the goal of the GOP is as few government intrusions into our lives as possible.

    What about the War on Drugs, which trashes part of the Bill of Rights, and even has judges pissed at the intrusion into their work lives?

    What about egging on Ken Starr to invade the lives of people?

    What about intrusion into the lives of women, who have their reproductive rights tinkerred with?

    What about intrusions into the lives of people all around the world, whose governments and economies have been trashed by the CIA and other wonderful GOP-sent Americans (many Democrats are guilty as well)? Does Chile ring a bell? Nicaragua? Iran? Vietnam? Jamaica?

    What about the CDA? Were Republicans all lined up to denounce the thing?

    Despite many of my political heroes being Republican, they have become the Party of FUD and Deceit in the past two decades. The Democrats are only slightly better, but they'll have to get worse if they are to win elections on a more consistent basis. That's pretty sickening, isn't it?

    Anyone who says "Republicans Rule" (or "Democrats...", or "Libertarians...", etc) is missing the point. A bunch of lockstep ideology-zombies will more likely do more harm than good. What is needed is genius and deliberation, not scripts and spin.

    --

  • Despite what they might consider objectionable all this free speech has certainly been a boon to true Goldwater conservatives...

    I think Barry Morris Goldwater spins in his grave at the thought of so many "conservatives" trashing Goldwater Conservatism. He was pro-choice, remember? His idea of Free Speech was not about the freedom to shout "Fire!" in a crowded building, or "Fire!" where there was none - yet many "conservatives", on the Net or not, do just that - yes I refer to Rush and Drudge, but also to many forked-tongue pols and Rush-alikes. There are differences between Goldwater's conservatism and that of the New Right conservatives who birthed this current era; I think the Senator just went along for the ride, content that post-Watergate America didn't become a one-party state.

    My 2

    Errors in spelling / typing / grammar left intact. I'm in a hurry today.

    --

  • Remember, we're talking about intrusion in peoples' lives here, and the sidebar of party rhetoric being hot air for suckers.

    The war on drugs is pure idiocy. You can't save a man from his own desires.

    That's not the point. It's bipartisan idiocy, started by a GOP Prez. Can you name the original Drug Czar? And who coined the phrase "Just Say No"? Remember we're talking about intrusion here.

    The democrats pushed to get the Independant Prosecutor statutes on the books, it just came back to bite them.

    True.

    Besides, Bill Clinton is THE exact model of what they had in mind when they wrote the law.(Excet they thought it would be a republican).

    I don't think so. If a guy's sex life in in-bounds, somebody's intruding on someone's life. If this had been France, a mistress would have been no big deal. Remember, we're talking about intrusion here.

    Is this a backdoor way to mention abortion? Tell me where in the US Constitution it is stated that a woman has the right to murder her own children?

    Your words, more or less, are in the GOP platform. But it's intrusion. I'm pro-choice and anti-abortion. I don't like the government putting itself in the role of Womb Police; there are better, more humane ways to stop abortion. Or would you rather send abortionists and their patients to prison without parole? Give 'em The (Uncomfy) Chair?

    Intelligence is important to all countries. Let me remind you that a democrat sent us into Vietnam.

    I'm not here to defend Democrats - that's a typical kneejerk reaction, to assume that. It was a bipartisan effort, started by LBJ's subterfuge. But you didn't mention the Nixon, Ford, Eisenhower, Reagan, and Bush Administration's efforts in the other countries I mentioned. In the name of the Cold War or Kapital Über Alles, they fucked over numerous Third World countries, in ways that would make the Womb Police look like stuffed Tinky Winkys.

    FUD & deciet from the GOP? That's a joke and a half. The Democrats have been scaring old people shitless with their lies about GOP sponsored Social security cuts which never existed. How about the GOP sponsored growth of the federal school lunch program that the congressional democrats characterized as cuts?

    Both parties do that, but it was an invention of Reagan's people. If you're not giving COLAs and expanding the per-capita expenditure, it's probably a cut - even if the dollar amount goes up. It's a have-your-cake-and-eat-it-too scenario: brag about the increase, and hope that no-one sees the frayed edges in the program.

    What about the McCarthyite demonization of anyone to the left of Bob Dole? That's an example of FUD. Even the term "Liberal Republican" (which many were, once upon a time) has been FUD-ded out of existence.

    How about the obvious and awful race baiting conducted by Jesse Jackson and Maxine Waters?

    They don't represent the party. What about leaders like Trent Lott and Bob Barr sucking up to the CCC (a latter-day White Citizens Council). What about the party's Southern Strategy (1968-today), which opened up the Big Tent to disgruntled Dixiecrats (does the name Strom Thurmond ring a bell?), to the point that even (ex-KKK Grand Wotzit) David Duke has frequently been a viable GOP candidate?

    Appearantly you don't get what it is to be a republican. Of course everyone should be a free thinker. To be a republican means to be a free thinkter and to freely choose to join the party.

    Listen. I'm the offspring of Republicans. I've been around Republican pols (New York, New England, North Carolina) since I was in diapers. I read Buckley and Goldwater at an age when my classmates were reading Judy Blume. I'm old enough now to realize that politics is a business - one where winning counts a hell of a lot more than truth, fairness, or altruism - and many (perhaps even most) of its practitioners are as suspect as the suits and moguls we pillory here at /.

    It doesn't say By their rhetoric ye shall know them in the Bible.

    OK? Ditch the rose-colored shades, and do some thinking on your own.

    --

  • That description fits both the federation and the borg.
  • As already stated by the first respondent, hemp is illegal to grow because it is closely related to marijuana. This point needs to be expanded a little bit. The problem is that it would be very difficult for government regulators to walk into a hemp field and find out if the farmer were growing a little patch of marijuana, camouflaged in a sea of hemp plants.

    And that, friends, would give the tobacco industry competition that they don't want: a better buzz that any random citizen can grow for themselves. I think the answer to your question is that tobacco lobbyists still have too much power and too much interest in keeping hemp illegal.

  • Copper may be a problem, but optic, certainly not? It is a bit expensive now, but compare the expense of fiber to the expense of your wireless solution.. I bet the fiber compares quite well. I bet if you do a cost/bandwith analysis, it compares even better.

    And even if we went wireless what would we have then -- great bandwidth... on clear days. What happens when it rains and snows? Your bandwith goes out the the window (if you even still have a connection).

    Wireless may be good for one thing as you said -- distributed LANS. Lets keep it out of the home.
  • No new taxes... Heheh. Sounds familiar. :)
  • by hawk ( 1151 )
    I forget the current number; i think it's down from 14 a few years ago, but only by a couple. *all* of our carriers are nuclear, unless they're still using that old one for training.

    hawk, who is still upset about scrapping the battleships. Never mind using them, the ability to toss something the weight of a volkswagen for 30 miles is just plain cool :)

  • There is a big difference. Maybe one day you'll figure it out.
  • Socalism, (Not Comunism) has been sucessfull in a few places. Norway for one. Or so I understand it. Ofcourse Norway is a Democratic country. And the Israeli Kibutz system didn't do to badly. Ofcourse these are very different examples.
  • A one terrabit optic fibre cable... Now, THAT I could accept. Just.
  • As usual, the political figure is:
    • Stating something useful but creates no work for him - "Smart people should be involved in lawmaking"
    • Sharing a 'Vision' that he can't possibly see through - "A T1 in every pot"
    • Making himself look not quite as stupid as other politicians - "My two year old picks on Al Gore"

    The US government didn't put a car in my garage, a computer in my den, or a television in my bedroom. Why the heck should a politician's "vision" have anything to do with my personal bandwidth. It's ludicrous. This "total immersion in information" sounds more like drowning to me.

    Those of us who would like the government handing out T1's should consider that if Uncle Sam foots the bill, he usually has more of a say in where he put his money. I'm personally happy with my government's lack of control over the internet. I don't want to owe them my connection. You shouldn't either.

  • Hey how about instead of having to have someone else pay for our medical expenses why not be able to have affordable medical treatment.
  • But you forget that you won't be the only one affected by a tax cut... Your ISP will have tax cuts as well allowing them to lower their prices and BellSouth as well (allowing them and them actually doing it, is of course two seperate things) So instead of paying $1,000/month you might need to pay only $700/month (yes I pulled this figure from the air and has no reality basis except as an example) so combine that with your tax cuts it actually brings it down to a possible payable amount for an individual person.
  • Although he can be pretty volitile, Gingrich has always been progressive and "hands off" in regards to technology and the government. I think he dead on in his views on the way technology and the government should interact. Anybody see the course he taught along these lines? (it was on cable where I live). He is definately one of the good guys on this issue.
    Notice the sharp contrast to VP Gore's views. A Gore presidency would be VERY BAD for privacy and the net in general.
  • Give me my T1 today! I'll let *you* wait 10 years until fiber becomes "reasonable".

    If you keep waiting for the price to stop dropping, it'll never happen.

    Even better if the government helps out. This would be at least as important as postal service, highways, and other infrastructure, all of which the government already subsidises.
  • I forgot, the USPS turns a profit now. Ooops.
  • Umm, the US Navy is at 336 ships and dropping. Pretty soon it'll just be a branch of the Coast Guard.

    Doug Loss
  • Nobody said anything about T1's supplied by the
    State. Why do you assume that because someone
    advocates T1's for every home that he's advocating
    the government pay for it?

    I don't need the State to provide for me. It's there to protect my freedoms and all I want it to do. Let me keep what I earn and I can pay for my own damn health care thank-you-very-much.
  • I mean to say "and that's all I want it to do"
  • ...i agree with newt gingrich. will wonders ever cease?
  • by T.J.Hooker ( 5086 ) on Wednesday March 24, 1999 @04:28AM (#1965241)
    The impression I got from this is that he wants the internet community to become more involved with politics at an earlier level.

    To date, it seems that the internet community has been very reactive to laws, making protests at the late stages of laws being passed and such.

    I believe that newt would like to push internet politics to the front, make it a platform issue that people would have to vote on, not something that people discover only after they have elected someone to office.

    Also, any way you look at it, this is still a more intelligent comment than Al Gore "creating" the internet.

    --T
  • I'm sure he didn't mean actual T1 ... even if he did it doesn't matter, you get the point (which is high bandwidth)
  • In an age where our politicians are souless, pathetic cardboard puppets "invented" by marketing committees, I found Newt refreshing, even if I did disagree with him. He was at least alive, and he had the courage to state his ideas in public. Even if he was a real jerk in his personal life.

    He was a loose cannon, and he did put his foot in his mouth quite a few times, but neither did he deserve the merciless treatment he got from the media.

  • Ditto. Losing 12.4% to SocSec, 2.9% to Mediscare, 28% to Federal income, 4.4% to State (which provides the bulk of the services I actually use, so I don't mind), plus property, sales, unemployment, and whatever else Big Brother comes up with, is most annoying. Plus having to fund ye olde 401k so I'll have something to live on after SocSec goes kaboom. (Screw reform, just phase it out!)

    Back to the topic at hand: I'm paying $35/mo to MediaOne for one-way cable modem access, and when the two-way upgrade is done (parts of the city already have it) the cost might, *might* go up to $50/mo. That's T1-equivalent bandwidth, at least to the home, and that's what Gingrich was talking about. Given that I lose about four months per year to the taxman on less than what the average local public schoolteacher makes, and that it'll cost my employer $2 for every extra $1 they put in my pocket at review time, it wouldn't take much of a tax cut to cover the $50/mo cost of a cable modem.

    Didn't we throw out the English kings for less than what Big Brother subjects us to?
  • Like any politician, Newt panders to the desires of his constituents, saying anything that sounds good. It's easy to say, "everyone should have a fat pipe", but does he say what programs he'd cut or taxes he'd raise to pay for installing and maintaining them? No. I could say, "Everybody should be a millionaire!", but that doesn't quite pass for sound policy decisions.

    (BTW, for everyone confused about Newt's status, he left the House leadership because the Republicans have lost seats in both the House and Senate in the last two elections.)

    Having just had an ADSL line installed (thanks, Pac Bell!), i'd speculate that the limiting factor in the adaption of high speed lines is the number of people who can install them. The two people who put in my line had been flown up from San Diego and working 14 hour days just to deal with the crush of demand here in San Francisco. Good line of work to enter?

    I agree that taxing Internet commerce needs to be considered. I really don't think it would put much of a damper on it at this point. Just a flat 3% tax across the board, distributed to the counties the buyer resides in. All eCommerce companies benefit from the stability our local governments provide; they can help pay for them.

    mahlen

    His lordship is in the enjoyment of very low spirits, owing to his inexplicable inability to bend Providence to his own designs.
    --Dorothy Sayers
  • shells, man... shells
    .
  • Newt is a futurist, and generally against government regulations. This does not surprise me coming from him

    He has been severly crucified by the media since 1994. Most people don't take the time to really listen to what he says, they just hear out of context quotes from him.
  • If you don't live in America, why should it bother you what kind of health care system we have?

    Besides Our government screwed up Social Security and Medicare already, they're both going bankrupt... So we should let them do the same thing with healthcare? I think not! ;^)
  • If the phone companies positioned T1's for home use, the prices would come down dramatically, because T1 backbones or other high-bandwith service would be everywhere.

    In the beginning, phone service was expensive, people had "party lines", that is shared phone lines with their neighbors.
  • Libertarian and Conservative Republicans have this as a goal, but not necessarily the whole GOP
  • I just love this talk about philosophical "contracts".

    So you're saying, that Jews who where living in Germany during the Nazi era had to accept the Holocaust because they entered into a contract with the Nazi government by living there at the time?

    Also, it isn't like he has any choice, sure he can leave the US, but he will be taxed no matter where he goes.
  • Who pays 15%? Not me, I live in the US.
    15% may be the Federal rate, but then there is also State income taxes, local income taxes, FICA (Social Security), and Medicare on top of that.

    About 27% of my check is eaten by taxes, this doesn't account for the hidden taxes that my employer pays on my behalf that I don't see.

    Then there are the non-income taxes.
    Real Estate taxes (currently 2.5% of my income)
    Most states have sales taxes 4-8% of what you buy.
    Gas tax, cigarette tax, booze tax, tax on gambling winnings, tax on capital gains, taxes on employee bonuses (They took nearly 50%!), estate taxes (can't even escape by death), hotel taxes, duties.
    Occupational Privilige tax (In PA, I kid you not!) Auto Excise Tax (Here In MA). School taxes

    And when they are done taxing you, they hit you with fees... Auto registration, Driver's license, tolls roads, Water, sewer etc.

    In short, I can't imagine that the US is any tax bargain.
  • I've been hearing these fantastic hemp claims for years. (Summary: Hemp the wonder crop! You can eat it/wear it/makes good wallpaper/1 hemp twig can produce 6 reams of paper/stronger than steel yet softer than velvet, but it's NOT marajuana, you can't smoke it!)

    What I want to know, if hemp is so great, than why is it not used? Why is it only the non-mainstream hemp people know about this?

    Don't give me the marajuana angle. There is worse legal stuff. E.G. "White Out", sniffing the stuff can kill you, but kids do it anyway for a high.
  • Contrast him to Clinton

    The ethics committee found some ridiculous little ethical violation, using a consultant for something, (not illegal, just unethical under House rules) The press made him out to be this really awful guy, and he was fined over $100,000 for this. He resigned when the pressure to do so got intense

    Clinton, on the other hand committed perjury (A felony) the press kept repeating "He just had sex". He didn't have the decency to resign, and got off scott free.
  • ...Until the Republicans forced him out after the disappointing '98 results.

    Now he's not running for anything that I'm aware of
  • I think that's alot of the problem, since so many people have health coverage, and they are covered anytime they cut their finger or something, it has effectivly done away with effective price controls in the Health Care industry. --Big insurers don't fret over costs as much as the average consumer. As a result, costs sky-rocketted.

    Instead of trying to fix THAT problem, we seem to think we can fix it by putting layer upon layer of bueracracy and regulation instead.

  • Were I a moderator, you'd have a few more +1's on yer post. Lemme check Webster's, I seem to remember that definition from somewhere.
  • Nah, I'm not reading it only for linux... I also read it for the in-depth, unbiased reports and reviews of the latest and greatest hardware. Oh, wait, no... thats Ars Technica [arstechnica.com]. My bad =D
  • No taxes on internet commerce is a great idea. We currently have a bill in the works here in Texas to exempt e-commerce from state sales taxes, it would be nice to see this nation-wide.

    T-1 bandwidth for every home is a great soundbyte, but it would be expensive as hell to implement. Besides, what would you do with it, once his republican cronies bring out CDA 3.0? It'll be like surfing from a Utah public library!
  • I think that not taxing e-commerce when other kinds of commerce are taxed is a stupid idea. The fairest taxes are broadly applied and don't force people to do things they ordinarily wouldn't do just because the tax system is set up a certain way. Of course, that would mean getting rid of dependent and mortgage deductions, too, which will probably never happen, but at least we shouldn't twist the tax system more than it already is.

    I myself favor a national consumption tax over income or property taxes (the latter the least fair of all); in countries that already have a national value-added tax, I think it's perfectly fine for e-commerce to be taxed that way -- no more, no less than other kinds of commerce. But in the US, we don't have anything like VAT in place, so we can't have a coherent national policy on e-commerce taxation (if states decided they want a cut of the proceeds).

  • Have you looked at the cost of getting a T1 installed and maitained? Its upwards of thousands of dollars a year.

    I do agree with your statement in principle though.

    On the other hand, cutting taxes might interfere with US policy of bankrolling the Israeli, Egyptian, and South Korean governments, as well as the maintainence of a 500 ship navy to keep the Cubans at bay.
  • Doesn't make sense, does it? Nor does Newt.

    Newt isn't in the loop anymore - ostrasized by his own party.

    Even if it were possible, I would not advocate T1 lines to every home. Optics will improve and become cheaper such that within ten years they will make a more realistic wiring option. I would not waste the money now rewiring "the last mile" with T1 capable lines.
  • I never thought I'd see the day.

    I wouldn't mind paying a bit more in taxes even to have a T1 (or a line as fast as one).

    I'm still waiting for cable modem in my area.
  • I dont know if you people watch C-SPAN very often, but I do every once in a while. Let me tell you gingrich is one bag of hot air. The so called "futurist" just repeats outlandish suggestions to make people think what he says is really worth something. Example? Of course...

    One happy afternoon while watching c-span I happened to tune in on one of gringrich's wonderful speeches, where he was talking about education funding. This was his idea: You can decrease education spending, and increase tax-cuts, so that people can get internet access at home. His hypothesis: After about age 5, "kids can learn all they want from the Internet!". He actually said this. I spent the next week and a half fucking laughing my head off. That statement ranks up there along with gore's "I created the internet."

    Politicians can talk sweeter than a jock on prom night, but it doesnt mean shit.

    -Laxative
  • by K. ( 10774 )
    Why not concentrate on ADSL (or VDSL for that matter) and leverage existing cable?

    K.
    -
  • by cswiii ( 11061 )
    it's been said that he has been, at least at some point recently, been considering running for Gov. of Georgia. Who knows.
  • e-comerce is NO different then calling up and ordering from a catalog. The vendors pay taxes and the manufacturers pay taxes. They pay taxes to ship it.We all pay for those in the end.

    They should actually offer tax breaks for e-comerce.

    A website is just another way to show your product. Taxing it is just another way for the Libs to tax us to death.
  • Bill Clinton escalated the War on Drugs. Nancy just said "Just say no"

    Ken Star was apointed by Democrats and kept in business by Miss. Janet Reno, a lacky of Mr. Clinton.

    To hell with those countries. Besides, for most of that time, the democrats were in control.

    Now, lets talk about running our lives....

    Over taxation. Gun control. Tipper Gore and her anti rappin'

    Sure, both sides have their faults, but I think the Republicans are more sincere, more honest and I doubt that Bob Dole would be sending us to war or selling our national security to China right now...

  • Good points.

    Concerning the privacy issues... I've always personally felt that ubiquity is the one way to handle that. The reason people can track that data today is that it is a handlable problem.

    The government could track us today without the internet if they had enough people working for them to stand on every street corner. This just isn't going to happen.

    When there are billions of people on the internet everyday it will become much easier to blend into the noise. There will be companies that will sell information about us, just like today with telemarketing phone lists, etc.. But the amount of correlation that goes on today within the internet domain just wouldn't be possible.

    Also, as bandwidth propagates it will be harder to find exactly what point of entry was used to connect. This further supports a user's anonymity.

    Sure, over time technology will improve and people will be easier to track... but the way things go everything else will advance as well. Tracking one person will always be easy just like today. If the government really wanted to watch one person then they will.

    Watching everyone, probably not.

    As long as we are aware that abuses are possible, and as long as we are vigilant in our lookout for these abuses, then it will be highly unprofitable to be "caught" abusing the system. If company XYZ tracks our info and company ABC advertises that they don't... who will you buy from?

    -Paul (I can't believe how much the SNL ratio has already improved for me. Great job Rob!)
  • think about this for a second - how many of your senators and reps know what a T1 is? how many understand the concepts of bandwidth and what it would take to get everyone connected, to reach TV levels of saturation?

    They might all have the money to buy a new fancy machine, but do you seriously think strom thurmond goes home at night and says "man, downloading over a 56K sucks... we should all have T1's"

    Although Newt and I disagree on a lot, i will say that it is refreshing to see him have an opinion on this technology, rather than just show ignorance, which in the political world, all too often leads to denial...

  • Given the same sort of usage statistics that let ISPs buy one modem for every 20 customers, times the speed advantage of cable modem, you need to have 120 users on the same local loop before the T1 becomes the better bet. My experience is that 60+ X-windows workstations can share a 10Mbps link just fine. Oh, and cable modem in my area costs 40 times less than a T1. I think I'll take my chances with the cable modem. :-)
  • First of all, there are many dimensions to liberalism and conservitism. Secondly, both sides have their good points and their flaws. Thirdly, it's crap anyway because politicians of both flavors are more alike than different. Fourth, you're not going to change my mind and I won't try to change yours. Fifth and finally, it's more fun to talk about T1 lines.
  • You people are not getting my point. When I said politicians are more alike than different, I really meant it. That means:
    1. It doesn't matter whether they are liberal or conservative. Most politicians of any party (except possibly Libertarian) want to take your money and give it to someone else. You will not be able to persuade me otherwise, so don't try. If you say "Republican", I will laugh out loud.
    2. Most politicians, "a" or "b", are good little party players. Who stand by their man, right or wrong. Who vote in blocks, right or wrong. Who vote the way their party boss tells them to.
    3. For every politician of flavor "a" who has ever toed the party line, flip-flopped, lied, taken a bribe, cheated on their SO, gotten sexual favors while at work, broken campaign finance laws, put national security at risk, engaged in back-room dealmaking, raised taxes, wrote pork-barrel legislation, or farted in public, I can name one of flavor "b" who did the same or worse.
    4. For every dimension in which "a" is good and "b" is bad, I can both find someone who believes the opposite, and name a different dimension in which you will believe the opposite. Different people also happen to value different dimensions more or less highly.
    5. Your impression of what "a" and "b" mean is almost certainly different than mine anyway.
    6. Unless you're a better rhetorician than I think, you absolutely will not change my mind, because you cannot convince me that the evidence of my own experience is untrue, and I agree not to try to change yours. Or attack or defend the pack of lying, cheating mongrels you prefer to identify with. :-)
    7. It's still more fun to talk about T1 lines.
  • Rejoice about the tax-free eCommerce, at least someone in the government (, unless he was thrown out, I don't really keep track,) knows where the country's (and the world's) commercial future lies. But I really hope he doesn't take that "T1 line in every house" too seriously, the last thing we need is the government regulating high-speed internet access. As forward-thinking and well-intentioned as Gingrich is, let's just hope he knows what (and when) to leave the government out of.
  • Preach on brother , I got a cable modem thinking it was direct connection, damn crowding might be the only down fall of the cable modem. Although they could always fix this with bigger and better servers on the backend..
  • has been taken away from me without my consent.

    Umm...you most certainly have consented. Living in the country is consent...in the same way that e.g. entering (some) restaurants means consenting to buy at least $15 worth of food. When you were born (and a minor) your parents entered you into a contract with the United States of America. When you came of age, and didn't leave the country, you continued that contract.

    Your continued presence in this country is continued consent. In the same way that if you don't like AT&T you can go to Sprint, if you don't like the particular implicit contract in America you can always try some other country. There are, what, 200+ countries in the world?

    How do you expect to survive in a libertarian utopia when you don't even want to abide by the contracts you enter?
  • I'm not positive but I was under the impression people were talking about some kind of sales tax for the internet. Amazon wouldn't pay that tax.

    As I understand it, the omission of an internet sales tax is supported because "we should want the most rapid possible expansion of e-commerce". But I'm not sure why that is the case.

    On a superficial analysis it would seem more likely to destroy jobs than create them. How many jobs would be lost if all of the Barnes and Nobles, Borders, Waldenbooks, etc, were closed down and replaced by online only offerings? I'm not sure, but it seems like these destroy jobs rather than create them. And if they don't create jobs what is the reason for wanting more of them? Prestige? So you can say America has the biggest e-commerce dick in the world?
  • If you thought I was saying that if you were born into something you had to shut up and accept then either I wasn't clear or you are dilerately misunderstanding what I wrote.

    The original claim was that there was no consent involved in taxation; that it is "coerced" from you. That is not that case. By living in a country you "consent" to be taxed. You can disagree about how much you should be taxed, how the tax money should be spent, and so on. But you can't claim there is no consent involved.

    Maybe if the US government abducted your parents from their homeland and then closed its borders and refused to let you leave...then you claim there was a lack of consent and that you were being coerced. However, I'm gonna go out on a limb here and say that isn't the case for you.
  • I just love this talk about philosophical "contracts".

    I don't know about you but I'm talking about an economic contract. Philosophical would be more like "I have a right to own land" or "I have a right to freedom of speech".

    So you're saying, that Jews who where living in Germany during the Nazi era had to accept the Holocaust because they entered into a contract with the Nazi government by living there at the time?

    First off, most of the Jews who died in the Holocaust were from Poland. In fact, most of the people who died in the Holocaust (considering that almost half of them weren't Jewish, I think you do a disservice to those who died in the Holocaust by ignoring the non-Jews) were from Poland. The Polish citizens most certainly were not in any kind of contract with the German nation.

    As for Jews in Germany, I really don't know enough to say but my initial thoughts on the matter would be: they didn't have to accept the Holocaust. But by the time most of them realized the reality and magnitude of what was happening they were no longer able to terminate their contract. At that point it had stopped being voluntary (now, if they had been able to leave the death camps whenever they wanted to but chose not to I'd have to say it was their fault...however that wasn't the case). I would probably argue that there was no (as you say) "social" contract between Germany and its Jews.

    Also, it isn't like he has any choice, sure he can leave the US, but he will be taxed no matter where he goes.

    Yes, he can emigrate, just as you could buy a different car even though your favorite company doesn't produce cars which let you travel at the speed of sound and get 2000 mpg. Even if nobody produces exactly what you want, you can choose any car the market produces or you create yourself.

    There are roughly 200 nations to which you could emigrate. They are the product of an anarcho-capitalist free market: there is no over-government dictating to those sovereign nations.

    Indeed, the only difference between the anarchy of nations and libertopia is that anarcho-capitalists are wishing for a smaller granularity. These nations have found that it is most cost-efficient to defend themselves territorially.

    If any other market provided 200 choices, libertarians would declare that the sacred workings of the market blessed whatever choices were offered. The point is that choices do exist: it's up to libertarians to show that there is something wrong with the market of nations in a way they would accept being applied to markets within nations.

    Libertaria is a combination of values that just doesn't exist: the government equivalent of a really posh residence for very little money. You can find nations which have much lower taxes, etc.: just don't expect them to be first class.

    And the reason these combinations don't exist is probably simple: the free market of government services essentially guarantees that there is no such thing as the free lunch libertarians want. It's not competitive.
  • By your definition of "consent," I would be consenting to EVERYTHING which is policy and/or occurs in the country.

    No, all I said is that you have consented to abide by the terms of the contract the USA offers you. I didn't say a single thing about what those terms were. It seems like you are reading more into what I wrote than what I wrote. Luckily for you (and me :-) the USA doesn't require you to agree with every policy it has when you consent to the "social" contract. Among the fairly minimal terms the USA requires you to abide by is taxation.

    You are still here, thus you consent to the social contract, one of whose terms is taxation. Thus you have consented to taxation.
  • In that case, then, many blacks should not have to pay taxes at all.

    If they were born here then their parents exercised their power of custody and made them US citizens, thereby entering them into the social contract. Last time I checked the US government wasn't preventing people from emigrating and renouncing their citizenship. So, I guess what I'm trying to say is I don't understand what you're point is.

    The reason you don't live somewhere else isn't because you don't have enough money. I could move just about anywhere in the world for a few hundred bucks. If you don't have a few hundred bucks around I suggest you sell your car and computer and then you can buy a plane ticket to paradise. Besides, how many times a week do you eat out? Go to a movie? Buy a book or computer game? Sorry if I find it hard to take your claims about moving elsewhere seriously....

    I can't help but wonder, if you are really so upset with the amount you pay versus the amount of benefits you receive why haven't you left? Or is it that there is nowhere else in the world that gets you a better ROI? Perhaps you just want a free lunch? You want everything the US provides but don't want to have to pay for it?

    I'm sure Ayn Rand would be proud of socialistic tendencies like that.
  • Hemp is like the potato.
    The potato is related to moonshine.

    Time to outlaw it right =)

  • As a counterpoint to all the libertarian cheerleading around here, let me offer the following excerpt from an essay by Brad DeLong, an economics professor at Berkeley. (Click here for the complete essay [berkeley.edu] and click here for DeLong's home page [berkeley.edu].)

    This was written in response to Ira Magaziner's recommendations for government regulation, or lack thereof, on electronic commerce. In the introduction, which I snipped, DeLong gave Michael Froomkin, Hal Varian, and Paul Romer credit for most of the ideas in the essay.

    As I read over the Magaziner report, and think about how what it says and leaves unsaid interacts with the other pressures on government policy, I find myself more worried about the future than most of the speakers at the conference. Look at the principles of the Magaziner report: "the private sector should lead," "avoid undue government restrictions," "government should provide a predictable, minimalist, consistent, and simple legal environment," "recognize unique qualities," and "facilitate global electronic commerce." Look at how they are applied: No internet taxes, but also no pools of government money to help provide the public-goods commons for our global electronic village. An information superhighway, as the Vice President used to say, but one without federally-funding. A heavy push to embrace and extend private intellectual property rights. A push to end, worldwide governments' ability to require compulsory licensing as a matter of course. Extension of the property rights of current trademark holders, at least for those with deep pockets. Privacy principles which seem to be honored in the breach because the private sector has not yet led.

    It seems to me that Ira Magaziner and his political masters have a view that government is the surveyor of the electronic frontier. The government's job is to draw the property lines--the north boundary of parcel 24 runs from the cottonwood tree to the waterhole--set up rules for selling off the plots, make sure that the railroads get their share of the land, and provide a judge to rule on disputes and a sheriff to enforce the judge's orders.

    Now when you are settling a real frontier, this kind of "letting the private sector lead" works pretty well. We may not like what happens to the Indians, or what happens if the judge decides that no witness born in Mexico is credible, or how much land the railroads get, or what happens when the cattle baron has his hired hands homestead all the waterholes in the county. But in the main letting the private sector lead works very well. The Invisible Hand of the marketplace does a good job at guiding people to reach productive and fruitful decisions as to how to use resources as they settle the frontier.

    But I suspect that the information economy is going to be different. I may be wrong, but I think it is going to be different enough that the market economy is going to work much less well than we are used to. I suspect that going down the road marked by the Magaziner report is going to leave us suffering from carpal tunnel syndrome of the Invisible Hand.

    For one example, consider the push to embrace and extend intellectual property rights. The idea is that by making more information appropriable, we are making incentives better. After all, who is going to finance work if you cannot make money off of it? But when I look at current stock market valuations, I find it hard to believe that many internet enterprises today cannot find financing because investors fear that they will not be able to profit from the consumer value they create. And the dangers of providing broad rights to intellectual property are great.

    You see, information goods are what economist Paul Romer calls non-rival. You can sell it more than once. Just because one of your customers is "using" a piece of information doesn't mean that another--or many others--cannot be. This non-rivalry gives the largest producer the potential of unlimited economies of scale. It means that, as Carl Shapiro and Hal Varian write in their Information Rules book, information goods markets will not, cannot look like the competitive markets in which the Invisible Hand works well.

    So do we break up every very successful company once a decade? Do we learn to live with natural monopoly and be happy about it? Bear in mind that this time the economies of scale or so large that it is monopoly, and not the early twentieth-century oligopolies that we face. I suspect that in many cases in the future we will find that in market after market the most powerful competitor of the dominant firm is its own installed base, the products that it sold to end users as it was becoming dominant. It seems to me that some leakage or slippage in control over intellectual property may well be desirable.

  • columbus.rr.com has had similar problems. More people have been signing up; speeds have dropped at exponential rates; and you can't get a static IP for less than $499/month on a *24 month* contract. Even then, there is a huge clause stating that you can't use any 'high-bandwidth' services, like chat, webhosting, streaming video/audio, MUD-type games, information services, etc...!! This can be interpreted as damn near anything that a linux-user might have. Apache, NCSA, etc... I wonder if sendmail pisses them off, too.

    Things like unannounced changing of IP range completely without notice for absolutely no good reason. Technical support people with the intelligence to tell you to unplug your PC for awhile when you can't grab an IP in linux -or- windows, or power off your cable modem for the next half hour. Don't want to spend any money on tolerable upgrades or tech support. We spent about a -year- without the login servers(which no one understood the existence of in the first place).
    our local RR newsgroups are full of spite and sad sob stories of lame support. A shame. Noone wants to leave yet, though; the only other alternative in the area is going back to dialup, and nobody wants that! Don't get me started about local phone lines.

    Tis sick that a multi(m)(b)illion dollar company is so interested in profits. They own the cable lines, though, so it doesn't really matter to them what they do. They'll still have control when it's all over. Or so they think.

    .ad.

    apologies for turning this into a rant session about my (lack of) ISP service. Corporate america.. DIE.
  • At first I found myself agreeing with Gingrich. After the shivers of horror passed, I considered the situation again. After all, we've heard of this before: a chicken in every pot, a T1 in every home!

    But consider what the implications of ubiquitous, high-speed access into each and every home would mean. More people on the wire means more traffic, exponentially. More people means a larger consumer base to target with advertising, which means yet more traffic. It also means a larger pile of information to collect, collate and analyze regarding people's online activities. So far, we (seem to) have avoided having that happen on a wide scale. But if almost every person in the country were to be online, representing an unprecedented opportunity for corporate and governmental bodies to tap that information, how long would they resist the temptation?

    I think fast access to the wire is good, and ubiquitous access would be best. But the system needs to be capable of handling the strain of greatly increased traffic (which means faster and more robust backbone structure) and the checks and balances need to be in place to discourage wide-spread abuse, by any of its users.

  • Absolutely, unquestionably, Newt is right: If we want our government to make informed decisions regarding the rapidly developing tech fields, they need to be informed. As the "priveleged class" of the internet, we should, at the very least, consider what we, the informed can do to help facilitate that.

    To that end, we would need someone to represent the technologically capable to the government. But who? Look around at the leaders of the technology revolution! Over there in the corner, ESR and RMS are fighting again! There's Scott McNealy, ragging on Bill Gates! Steve Jobs has brought great new flavor to the world of computers!

    And so on. I'm not ragging on these people; I think that Steve Jobs is a stunningly brilliant man, and ESR and RMS have both done great things to advance the cause not just of free software, but of software in general. But would you want to have these people representing you to the government? I know I wouldn't.

    So where can we find a political liaison to help guide our government into the 21st century?

    Thoughts? Suggestions? Flames to /dev/null?
  • Of course, if you cut taxes, we would have money to get our OWN T1.

    Oh, that's right the liberals want to give all the money to the government, who will decide who DESERVES a T-1 (heaven forbid it be the ones who earned the money).

    All I can say is, "Atlas Shrugged".
    -- Keith Moore

  • Actually, yes cutting taxes would be enough for me, However, that's the whole point, since I make money, I'm EVIL.


    -- Keith Moore

  • I agree, Sorry, it's common terminology, however it would be more accurate to say socialist (Money by Need) and capitalist (Money by talent/willingness to work for it, luck)


    -- Keith Moore
  • Isn't this what the Sprint ION [www.sprint.comion] initiative is supposed to ultimately be all about?

    I've read alot of the materials about how ION (which is Sprint's way of using ATM to offer multiple services via one line),is planned initially for larger corporate users but as demand grows to include homes (the proverbial "last mile" copper loop) so that with one line we can do phone, fax, internet, etc. all at the same time.

    Although I don't know the details, Sprint even had some kind of beta user/tester program in the works (sign me up, Scotty!!)

    If you know much about this, feel free to comment!!

  • If you noticed, he didn't (and wouldn't) make this as a promise. If you think about what you jsut said, it's not consistant with your comment for any company (ISP) to get subsidised. It is the government's job, hovever, to make sure that resources are available to all people. (Not jsut the rich or "middle class") "The government doesn't belong in business" means just that. It is not the governments place to do more then protect our constitutional rights. Our rights allow us protection from monoplies, and if this is set up right, no company would have a monopoly on T1's to your house. Monopolies are created by patents, not congress. If we all expected politics to be focused the basics, they wouldn't have an opportunity to be liars and cheats.

    Also, in case you haven't noticed, politics is all about doing things to get votes. That is the right way to do it. It is not a congressman's responsibility to be compasionate, but to do what is going to get people to vote for him. That is how a politition represents his district in their best interests. Keeping th emiddle class happy won't get him any votes from the lower classes. (Who are the majority) No votes, you don't get elected. If you don't vote (intellegently: issues, not party alignment) you deserve the shitting on that you recieve. Everybody in the US HAS the opportunity to have a home and food. (Yes, they do.) This is THE basis of a representitve republic like the US. In a way, however, you are right. Anybody who would vote for somebody based on one issue should be slapped. Hard.
  • I remember a work of fiction about a society with universal, government sponsored, high bandwith two-way communication. Scary.
  • Hmmm. It makes me wonder what old Newt is up to these days. Making public appearances...Talking about the future... Sounds like retirement may not be sitting well with him. He's probably been playing a bunch of Quake and is getting tired of getting Fragged by LPBs. Either that or he's thinking of running for office again.
  • Within three months, I will have cable internet access for $50/month. The child tax credit put into place last year will pay for my internet access this year. So yeah, in my case at least, a tax cut is paying for high-speed internet access.

    Of course, that's anecdotal. The truly fatal flaw of your argument is your implicit premise that bandwidth costs are constant, which is a patently absurd idea.
  • "We the people...in order to provide for the common defense..."

    When was the last time a foreign power launched a military attack against this country? I say if asystem ain't broke, don't break it.
  • "Abortions for some, small American for others!"
  • About 90 percent of the users in my office seem to have heard of a T1 line and know that they are faster than 56K dialup. No big surprise, since that is how our network is connected to the internet. However the understanding stops here. Out of that 90% most of them seem to think that ANYTHING faster than dialup is T1. Typical conversation:

    User: "Hey! I just got a T1 line installed in my house!"

    Tech: "Really, what are you using it for?"

    User: "I can surf the web so much faster now..."

    Tech: "Gee, isn't it a bit expensive for just web surfing?"

    User: "No, only 60 bucks a month and it comes with basic cable"

    Tech: "oh, ok"

    They pick up on the T1 buzzword, and use it to sound 31337 to thier friends. I have a feeling that Gingrich has a similar grasp on the technology. Its OK though because for the most part he is right on. Big pipes, no taxes seems to be a great policy coming from the government.
  • > Do we *REALLY* want to give ecommerce an inherent tax advantage over local brick and mortar stores, and if
    > so, why?

    How about we cut taxes on locally-sold goods, too, to even out the disparity?

    Why isn't e-commerce taxed? Well, I don't necessarily want to pay the same tax rate for something I buy as, say, someone in a high-tax place like NY, but that's the only place product XYZ is available. Now, XYZ Widget Corp. would love to sell me their widgets, but because it would cost extra money to a) pay NY state taxes on the purchase, b) pay MO state taxes on the purchase (don't think that wouldn't happen... it's government, and they're out to screw you and me), I might be able to do something else.

    E-commerce is not taxed for the same reason as interstate commerce is not taxed. It would be a friggin' nightmare to do so and keep all of the tax codes for all of the various municipalities, counties, states, and all the other rubbish in sync.

    Besides which, taxing commerce in that sense is just plain stupid. The ripple effect of my purchase of XYZ widgets in NY will help the XYZ widget company to pay its employees, which will then help local car dealerships and grocery stores and such to pay their employees, which will then help to pay fast food stores employees' wages, etc.

    At all these steps, where a wage is paid, the government already pulls an exorbitant amount of money from income tax, social security, medicare, and the like.

    Why should there be any tax at all? Or, if there is to be a sales tax of some kind, why is there an income tax?

    --C
  • by Bendeco ( 20118 ) on Wednesday March 24, 1999 @07:32AM (#1965330)
    Your post makes me wonder if this will be the way popular democracy starts to become possible. It would be a cold day in hell before congress would directly enact such a system, but perhaps by having a more accessable route to our representatives, we can start actually make them represent us the people. In other words: "do their jobs".
  • by angelo ( 21182 ) on Wednesday March 24, 1999 @05:29AM (#1965332) Homepage
    sorry had to be said...

    "Telemachus Sneezed"

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