What we want v what we need?

I am an Amazon fan. I have a Kindle and love it. Most of the books I buy, I buy from or through Amazon. I appreciate the convenience, the customer care, and the competitive pricing.

I used to appreciate that I didn’t have to pay sales tax if I ordered through Amazon.  I am re-thinking this “benefit.”

Amazon shut down a distribution center in Texas earlier this year after Texas sought $269 million in sales tax.  That’s a fair amount of money.  The article alleges internet business takes away a lot of sales tax

The comptroller’s office estimates Texas loses $600 million annually in uncollected sales tax from all Internet-based sales. National studies put the amount of uncollected taxes at $7 billion a year at a time when states are looking at multibillion-dollar budget gaps.

In these days of really tight budgets at the national, state, county, and city levels, it doesn’t seem fair to me to expect the government(s) to continue to operate when businesses (and individuals) can get around paying the taxes on which the current level of services depend.

I’ve been becoming more conscious lately of buying products made either in the US or somewhere else with reasonable protections for workers.  Perhaps I will also need to move toward buying things only from companies that have the integrity to collect and pay sales tax.

Don’t Bite this Apple!

No one is all right OR all wrong. (Ok, maybe the latter wouldn’t hold up, but no one is all right, right?) Not even Apple and Steve Jobs. Wired admitted last week, that they were wrong about some tips they had offered Apple in 1997.  In another interesting piece on March 18, Wired also acknowledged that Apple’s success may, at least in part, be due to ways they don’t fit in with silicon valley wisdom.

But I’ve got to think that Steve Jobs got it wrong here.  Apple’s CEO says that the various methods of electronic delivery of book material, from Amazon’s Kindle to e-books, to other resources is all a waste because “the fact is that people don’t read any more.”

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