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Comment Re:Texas Budget Deficit (Score 1) 811

Of course, I think sales tax conflicts happen because they are an ill-defined problem. If I go across the border and buy a durable good from an appliance store (or any other good), I will pay the sales tax for Illinois even though I am transporting it back to Wisconsin. I can't say I'm taking it to a different state and not pay sales tax..

Interestingly enough, that's not even true in every state. In Washington state, if you are buying a durable good, have ID from a state that charges 3% sales tax or less, and say that you will be using it in your home state, then the retailer is not required to charge sales tax. (They may not be *allowed* to charge sales tax, I don't remember precisely.) They do this because they have so many neighboring states with low sales tax rates (OR, ID, AK) that retailers would lose too much business otherwise. (Yes, I know Alaska isn't technically 'neighboring' but when Alaskans want to go down to the lower-48 and do some shopping, they generally go to Seattle.)

Comment Re:Texas Budget Deficit (Score 1) 811

Companies don't PAY sales tax, they COLLECT it. The people in Texas that order from Internet retailers like Amazon are the ones who pay, or don't pay, sales tax. Amazon just collects the tax from the customer, and then pays it to Texas.

Except if a company doesn't collect sales tax on a taxable sale for some reason (they forgot, or made a mistake and thought it wasn't taxable) they are still responsible for paying the tax. You do a calculation to figure out what portion of the payment that was made was tax, and pay that. But what is true is that any sales tax that a company collects has to be remitted to the state, even if it's more than what should have been charged. That keeps companies from 'accidentally' charging too much sales tax and pocketing the difference.


German Kindergartens Ordered To Pay Copyright For Songs 291

BBird writes "Deutsche Welle reports: 'Up until this year, preschools could teach and produce any kind of song they wanted. But now they have to pay for a license if they want children to sing certain songs. A tightening of copyright rules means kindergartens now have to pay fees to Germany's music licensing agency, GEMA, to use songs that they reproduce and perform. The organization has begun notifying creches and other daycare facilities that if they reproduce music to be sung or performed, they must pay for a license.'"

Examining Indie Game Pricing 188

As the second Humble Indie Bundle flourishes, having taken in over $1.5 million in pay-what-you-want sales, the Opposable Thumbs blog has taken a look at indie game pricing in general, trying to determine how low price points and frequent sales affect their popularity in an ocean of $60 blockbusters. Quoting: "... in the short term these sales are a good thing. They bring in more sales, more revenue, and expand the reach of games that frequently have very little marketing support behind them, if any. For those games, getting on the front page of Steam is a huge boost, putting it in front of a huge audience of gamers. But what are the long-term effects? If most players are buying these games at a severely reduced price, how does that influence the perception of indie games at large? It's not an easy question to answer, especially considering how relatively new these sales are, making it difficult to judge their long-term effects. But it's clear they're somewhat of a double-edged sword. Exposure is good, but price erosion isn't. 'When it comes to perception, a deep discount gets people playing the game that [they] wouldn't play otherwise, and I think that has both positive and negative effects,' [2D Boy co-founder Ron Carmel] told Ars. 'The negative is that if I'm willing to pay $5 but not $20, I probably don't want to play that game very much, so maybe I'm not as excited about it after I play it and maybe I drive down the average appreciation of the game.'"

Comment Re:Ron Paul (Score 1) 565

Keeping the federal government out of DC government decisions is very different from keeping it out of state government decisions. Constitutionally speaking, they have every right to intervene, because that's how the District was set up in the first place. Do you know how he stands on statehood for DC?

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