Mandeville, LA – Exclusive Transcript – Since when is it the job of United States senators to side with traditional retailers? That’s not what they did. They did not side — the more I think about this, the more angry I become. The upshot of all of this clamor and this agitation for this sales tax is that this is an economic miracle. If you work in brick-and-mortar retail, this is the greatest thing that has ever happened, ever. You will never, ever, never find a greater or see a greater miracle of economic fruition than when a sales tax is passed. Check out today’s transcript for the rest…
Begin Mike Church Show Transcript
Mike: I’m going to have to contradict myself in advance. I know that doesn’t make any sense. I was having a conversation with Kevin Gutzman last night about this. I said: Kevin, prior to the passage of the 17th Amendment, if the several states were aggrieved by such a reduction in tax revenues as they claim they are today, and if they thought in unison or in majorities — I’m counting majorities of states, not people in states — that there was a one-size-fits-all way that they could make their revenues right and continue on with their state-level governments, then they might have asked their member of the United States Senate. They might have asked them to go to Mordor on the Potomac River and they might have asked them to act on their behalf. This is what senators are actually supposed to do.
I thought about this yesterday afternoon as my blood was boiling, as I’m sure many of your blood pressures were escalating and your blood was getting to the temperature to boil. I thought about this. We complain mightily all the time that the Senate doesn’t do what the Senate is supposed to do, which is represent the state legislatures. Then when they actually do represent the state legislatures, which was that the state legislatures are too cowardly to pass their own sales tax laws so let’s get the Senate to do it for us. [laughing] I’m laughing because this actually would be a task for the Senate. There are caveats and qualifications for this. Of course, if the Senate is not carrying out an enumerated power or citing an enumerated power in order to do the bidding of the states, then they shouldn’t be doing it.
The Washington Post headline from yesterday afternoon says it all. I’ll read it to you verbatim. “Senate passes bill letting states tax Internet purchases, siding with traditional retailers.” Why doesn’t the headline say, or why do I not have headlines or ever read headlines that read something to this effect? I’ll alter the current flawed headline and replace it with a not-so-flawed headline: “Senate passes bill upholding Constitution and rejecting Internet sales tax initiative.” Since when is it the job of United States senators to side with traditional retailers? That’s not what they did. They did not side — the more I think about this, the more angry I become. The upshot of all of this clamor and this agitation for this sales tax is that this is an economic miracle. If you work in brick-and-mortar retail, this is the greatest thing that has ever happened, ever. You will never, ever, never find a greater or see a greater miracle of economic fruition than when a sales tax is passed.
I think about this and go: Wait a minute! Maybe I’m just a weirdo here. Especially if we’re in business, aren’t we pretty much opposed to taxation, opposed to transfers of wealth away from private exchange, voluntary private exchange, and towards compulsory state-mandated — it’s not even exchange; it’s just mandated transfers. Aren’t we opposed to these things? Why are people that are in commerce — commerce is based on the idea or upon the principle that commerce changes hands voluntarily. You choose to go purchase something at Old Navy because you can go walk into the brick-and-mortar store and to not purchase it online or at some other retailer. You choose to go into the local yokel book store and browse for books instead of buying books at Amazon. You make decisions in other words. It’s all based on freewill. There is some competition involved here.
Why are people that are in business celebrating an increase in overall taxation? At the end of the day, this means there is less revenue. There is less money left in the hands of the private sector. This, by definition, will tilt the scales toward the State. Why in dude’s holy name is anyone cheering this? Despite whether or not the United States senators did the jobs or the bidding of the states that would have sent them to Mordor on the Potomac River prior to the passage of the 17th Amendment? Why is anyone cheering this? This is not a victory for retailers. This is a victory for the State.
When I go to the National Retail Federation website late yesterday afternoon, they are positively ebullient about this. This is the greatest thing that’s ever happened. [mocking] “We’re gonna get taxed! This is awesome!” To make an analogy, how many of you out there that don’t expect to get anything in return from the IRS every year, how many of you wait by the mailbox to fork over what it is that you’re going to have to remand to Mordor on the Potomac River every April 15th? Do you stand there with a bullhorn and your daughter standing behind you with some pompoms? Maybe you have a couple fireworks you’re ready to set off because you can’t wait to tell everybody, to wake up granny and spank her on the fanny, to tell everyone the good news.
National Retail Federation website had this press release late yesterday afternoon. Remember, these are supposed to be business people here, business people who are now trying to use the coercive power of the government to get their way or I suppose to have government do what business ought to be doing for itself. “Retailers Applaud Bi-Partisan Support And Passage Of The Marketplace Fairness Act.”
The National Retail Federation – the world’s largest retail trade association – today issued the following statement from NRF Chairman of the Board Stephen I Sadove of Saks Incorporated and NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay on the Senate passage of S.743, the Marketplace Fairness Act. [Mike: Isn’t the fairness only directed one way? If you’re one of the people like yours truly that’s ultimately going to wind up paying and forking this tax over, is it fair to you? Is it fair to you the consumer? Who is it fair to?] “We applaud Senators Enzi, Durbin, Alexander and Heitkamp and the entire U.S. Senate for standing with local retailers and America’s small business owners in a strong, bi-partisan vote for final passage of the Marketplace Fairness Act, despite a highly-funded misinformation campaign by the legislation’s opposition,” said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay. “Today’s action in the Senate is a significant step for sales tax fairness and we look forward to a robust debate in the U.S. House of Representatives.”
Mike: Now we’re really in trouble. We have to rely on John Boehner and company. Ha!
End Mike Church Show Transcript