Tech at Night

As is usual, tonight I’ll give priority to the things we had posted at RedState, and mention those first. Especially My own post on the latest on the California Amazon Tax referendum, and more specifically on the plans of Democrats to nullify the constitutional referendum process, in service of their unconstitutional Internet sales tax. We need to pressure Republicans to vote the right away, at least.

We also have a post by streiff on regulation, and how we need to do something about it. He asks a great question, on the relative levels of oversight the Congress gives to the military and to the post-New Deal alphabet soup: “So why should the commissioning of a lieutenant or the promotion of a mid-grade officer merit positive action on the part of Congress but an EPA regulatory regime that seems focused on making the use of coal illegal allowed with no action?”

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In the big budget deal this year was a provision known as the Amazon Tax or the Internet Sales Tax. Officially it’s an expansion of the Use Tax. Whatever you call it, it’s an unconstitutional* cash grab, attempting to force out-of-state Amazon to pay California sales tax.

The tax has already killed businesses in California that depended on revenue from Amazon and other affiliate program hosts, who were forced to shut out California residents in response to the tax. Even though the tax itself is set to take effect January 1, out of state retailers needed to take action to protect themselves in advance. So as a result, state revenues have been reduced, not raised, by this bill. The already lagging state economy has been worsened.

So a referendum will be put on the ballot by the people, to be voted on by the people, to stop this harmful, illegal tax. It could pass, too. Early polling hasn’t been bad. So the Democrats are going to try passing a new bill, starting in the Senate, to change the tax to make it take effect immediately.

The trick is that by passing the tax as urgent, it will nullify the referendum under the state Constitution. And worse, to get support for this, Democrats have effectively bought off eBay to turn on Amazon, by making tweak to the bill to exempt eBay from having to collect tax. Convenient, huh?

So, California, it’s time to take action and defeat this attempt to nullify the referendum.

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The California Amazon Tax violates Props 25 and 26

On June 15, 2011, in General, by Neil Stevens

Don’t our elected officials have access to Ballotpedia? If the California Democrats did, they’d know that the Amazon Tax being taken up this afternoon in the legislature is unconstitutional under the state Constitution. And it’s not some old, obscure provision that’s violated either. It’s the brand-new Proposition 26, a constitutional amendment passed in November, that the tax violates.

Put simply, Proposition 26 doesn’t let the state raise new revenue without a 2/3 requirement, so the Amazon tax cannot be passed with a simple majority. And no, Proposition 25, another constitutional amendment also passed in November, doesn’t change that fact.

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Nima Jooyandeh facts.