Fast Company March : LUSENET : M.Ed./International Falls : One Thread

Fast Company March 2000 Digital Matters by John Elliss pp. 270-274

This article, written by John Ellis, deals with commerce on the internet and taxes. At the present time the Advisory Commission on Electronic Commerce, which was created by Congress in 1998, has placed a moratorium on all taxation of Internet transactions until October 1, 2000. In April they will recommend either to lift the moratorium or extend it.

The commission is divided into three camps. One group opposes taxation of any kind. The second group is not opposed to Internet taxation but sees the already cumbersome list of tax groups to be impossible for smaller companies to deal with; states, counties, cities,areas, etc. The third group wants Internet transactions treated like every other commercial endeavor and taxed accordingly.

The author feels that the internet is a very powerful voice and gives some very good reasons why. He feels that even if the commission unanimously recommends taxation, congress will never pass it. He talks about the Clinton impeachment proceedings and how email affected the outcome of whether or not congress went ahead with it.. I have to agree that email is a very powerful tool to use to influence congressman as to their votes and decisions on public opinion as far as polls and input are concerned. I agree that the Clinton impeachment proceeding was probably affected by all the email that the politicians received, forcing them to bend to popular opinion rather than the good old boys club of the not to distant past. The author feels that politicians realize that anyone that will take the time to write will take the time to vote, even in ;the primaries. This considered, the email significance looms greatly.

Many people including the author feel that commerce on the Internet is fueling the economy and dont want anything to stifle this effect. He thinks that this has also helped what he calls the  brick and mortar companies who are liable for all this taxation. Politicians know that if they get on the wrong side of their voters, they not only risk losing the job they want , but the job they have.

I agree with the author that email and Iternet commerce are very; big and growing at an unbelievable rate. They represent; a very large section of our population that cannot be ignored and as time passes will be; more and more influential. I ;think he is on track and I enjoyed his slant on politics and business. I would reccomend this article to everyone who uses the net.

-- Anonymous, April 10, 2000

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