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View Full Version : Another Amazon.fail brewing?



Terie
03-14-2010, 02:17 AM
http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/feature/2010/03/12/amazon_tax_wars_ext2010/index.html?source=rss&aim=/opinion/feature

Mac H.
03-14-2010, 04:14 AM
All online companies do the same thing.

Ever wondered why almost every bit of money that Google gets paid actually gets paid to Google Ireland Ltd, instead of Google?

The 'local' online businesses are just a front - the profit is made in countries where the profits get taxed the way the company wants to get taxed, rather than in the country where the work was done.

If the country changes their tax system, a few mouse clicks and technically all the money would go to Google (Obscure Pacific Island) Ltd instead.

Mac

Terie
03-14-2010, 11:21 AM
All online companies do the same thing.

Um, no. Not all other online companies have cut off their Colorado arms.

The issue I'm pointing out isn't the state legislation regarding taxing online purchases. (That's a different discussion entirely, and probably not really one for AW, since it affects all mail-order and internet sales in the US.)

The issue is how Amazon reacted to Colorado state legislation by unilaterally penalizing their Colorado sales associates.

Shakesbear
03-14-2010, 01:06 PM
Um, no. Not all other online companies have cut off their Colorado arms.

The issue I'm pointing out isn't the state legislation regarding taxing online purchases. (That's a different discussion entirely, and probably not really one for AW, since it affects all mail-order and internet sales in the US.)

The issue is how Amazon reacted to Colorado state legislation by unilaterally penalizing their Colorado sales associates.

Surely another issue is that Amazon are also using bully boy tactics and are trying to intimidate other states into not following state legislation concerning online purchases.

Sarashay
03-15-2010, 06:14 AM
I gave up on Amazon back around the last Epic Fail and stuff like this just proves I made the right choice.

kct webber
03-16-2010, 08:54 PM
That is among the most ridiculous articles I've ever read. It's filled with misconception after misconception about business and taxation, all nicely wrapped up with populist ranting, hyperbole, and demagoguery. There are around 7000 tax districts in the US. How exactly is Amazon supposed to collect for all of them? And why should they have to, since they are only based in a couple of them? I could critique the thing point by point, but you'd have to move this thread to P&CE--and it would be a long post.

Here's the key point, though: It's not Amazon's--or any other company's--job to just 'suck it up' make sure a government gets every last penny it demands and hope that it has something left afterward. It's Amazon's job to make money for its shareholders. When something threatens to lessen that money, they take action to make sure it doesn't happen. Contrary to popular belief lately, that's the right thing. That's the moral thing to do. Because a business's responsibilities are to the shareholders and the customer base, not the State of Colorado's social agenda or road works. If their calculation shows that the money they get from the Colorado affiliates is less than the cost of what Colorado is trying to get them to do... Well, the decision is made for them, isn't it? You can't argue with math, no matter how much guys like Sirota want you to.

And this isn't exactly the first time they've done this, contrary to Sirota's wailing and gnashing of teeth. Amazon pulled its affiliate programs from New York, Rhode Island, and North Carolina, at least, in the past, for the same reason. Overstock has done the same thing in even more states. And I've done the same thing. When NY got too free with the idea of taking my money, I moved to TN. States have a choice. They can spend less, or they can lose people and businesses to other places. Don't blame Amazon. I'd be willing to bet that you look for cheaper deals on your groceries too. I'd be willing to bet that you're not thinking about the K-mart workers' kids when you're shopping at cheaper Walmart. After all, you have responsibilities, yes? So does Amazon--its shareholders and their kids.

willietheshakes
03-16-2010, 09:13 PM
That is among the most ridiculous articles I've ever read. It's filled with misconception after misconception about business and taxation, all nicely wrapped up with populist ranting, hyperbole, and demagoguery. There are around 7000 tax districts in the US. How exactly is Amazon supposed to collect for all of them? And why should they have to, since they are only based in a couple of them? I could critique the thing point by point, but you'd have to move this thread to P&CE--and it would be a long post.

Here's the key point, though: It's not Amazon's--or any other company's--job to just 'suck it up' make sure a government gets every last penny it demands and hope that it has something left afterward. It's Amazon's job to make money for its shareholders. When something threatens to lessen that money, they take action to make sure it doesn't happen. Contrary to popular belief lately, that's the right thing. That's the moral thing to do. Because a business's responsibilities are to the shareholders and the customer base, not the State of Colorado's social agenda or road works. If their calculation shows that the money they get from the Colorado affiliates is less than the cost of what Colorado is trying to get them to do... Well, the decision is made for them, isn't it? You can't argue with math, no matter how much guys like Sirota want you to.

And this isn't exactly the first time they've done this, contrary to Sirota's wailing and gnashing of teeth. Amazon pulled its affiliate programs from New York, Rhode Island, and North Carolina, at least, in the past, for the same reason. Overstock has done the same thing in even more states. And I've done the same thing. When NY got too free with the idea of taking my money, I moved to TN. States have a choice. They can spend less, or they can lose people and businesses to other places. Don't blame Amazon. I'd be willing to bet that you look for cheaper deals on your groceries too. I'd be willing to bet that you're not thinking about the K-mart workers' kids when you're shopping at cheaper Walmart. After all, you have responsibilities, yes? So does Amazon--its shareholders and their kids.

Yup, all this.

Well done. And well-written. Kudos.

Jamesaritchie
03-16-2010, 10:29 PM
That is among the most ridiculous articles I've ever read. It's filled with misconception after misconception about business and taxation, all nicely wrapped up with populist ranting, hyperbole, and demagoguery. There are around 7000 tax districts in the US. How exactly is Amazon supposed to collect for all of them? And why should they have to, since they are only based in a couple of them? I could critique the thing point by point, but you'd have to move this thread to P&CE--and it would be a long post.

Here's the key point, though: It's not Amazon's--or any other company's--job to just 'suck it up' make sure a government gets every last penny it demands and hope that it has something left afterward. It's Amazon's job to make money for its shareholders. When something threatens to lessen that money, they take action to make sure it doesn't happen. Contrary to popular belief lately, that's the right thing. That's the moral thing to do. Because a business's responsibilities are to the shareholders and the customer base, not the State of Colorado's social agenda or road works. If their calculation shows that the money they get from the Colorado affiliates is less than the cost of what Colorado is trying to get them to do... Well, the decision is made for them, isn't it? You can't argue with math, no matter how much guys like Sirota want you to.

And this isn't exactly the first time they've done this, contrary to Sirota's wailing and gnashing of teeth. Amazon pulled its affiliate programs from New York, Rhode Island, and North Carolina, at least, in the past, for the same reason. Overstock has done the same thing in even more states. And I've done the same thing. When NY got too free with the idea of taking my money, I moved to TN. States have a choice. They can spend less, or they can lose people and businesses to other places. Don't blame Amazon. I'd be willing to bet that you look for cheaper deals on your groceries too. I'd be willing to bet that you're not thinking about the K-mart workers' kids when you're shopping at cheaper Walmart. After all, you have responsibilities, yes? So does Amazon--its shareholders and their kids.


Exactly right, and well said.