U.S. VAT Tax Would Affect Games, Systems, Online Fees (and everything else)

Suddenly, there’s a good bit of discussion in Washington, D.C. about the possibility of a value-added tax, or VAT.

For the uninitiated, a VAT is essentially a national sales tax. As the Washington Post points out:

Common around the world, including in Europe, such a tax… has not been seriously considered in the United States. But advocates say few other options can generate the kind of money the nation will need to avert fiscal calamity…

A VAT is a tax on the transfer of goods and services that ultimately is borne by the consumer. Highly visible, it would increase the cost of just about everything… But VAT advocates say those negatives could be offset by using the proceeds to pay for health care for every American…

Should a VAT be enacted, it will tax every type of transaction involving a good or service. For gamers, that means disc-based and downloaded software, consoles, peripherals and even monthly fees for Xbox Live, Second Life and World of Warcraft.

The WaPo posits scenarios involving VATs ranging from 10-25% but concludes that a VAT is unlikely – for now.

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  1. Wolvenmoon says:

    I agree with you for the most part, however…

    IF we were to do socialized healthcare, which I don’t think we should, I’d want it to be done this way:

    I think that if the government were to step into the healthcare, they should be a ‘dumb’ provider. Meaning that they simply pay most of the costs of equipment, and provide wages for doctors, then set a cap on each type of doctor’s pay that is adjusted every 5 years or so to something like 50% over the average amount the doctors make per patient.

    So basically the government would buy the MRI machine, pay the MRI tech that makes 65,000 a year about $30,000 of it.

    Basically, doctors would not be able to overcharge their patients, would get rid of equipment costs, and would still have enough pay to make the career path alluring (It is one of the most hellish career paths you can choose, both in education and in practice).

    Annnnd, best part is people would still be paying some money to the doctors, (but there would be providance for people that could not pay), the government would not regulate healthcare on the patient level, and it’d be less taxes than a full blown ‘big government pays all’.


    I too have watched people trying to kill themselves with cigarettes, food, and other drugs. It is ridiculous that we have not just outright banned cigarettes, and started fining the fire out of anyone that’s found doing so.

    I will not buy securom games. http://www.wolvenmoon.com/sharedfiles/message1.jpg and http://www.wolvenmoon.com/sharedfiles/message2.jpg

  2. JeffV says:

    Exactly! A VAT is not just a tax of the sale of a final good at your local Walmart. It is assessed on anything that adds a "value" to the product being made, including transportation and services.

    For example, if you are a manufacturer of a complex product that, say has hundreds of parts, each time a part is installed on the product, assuming that part increased the products value, a "value added" tax would be imposed. Further, once the product leaves the factory and is placed on the freight train, its taxed. Once it is drop at the FOB station and picked up by the local FedEx, it is taxed. And then it gets taxed one more time when the product sells. Now who do you think picks up these taxes that are applied and payed along the way? We the consumer in the form of a much higher price!

    The reason people are quoting a 25% tax rate, rather than the VAT rate of 10%, is because this is an average price increase that we, the consumer, would incur on an average product over its production cycle as a result of the multiple applications of a VAT. Lets not forget this is a tax on purchases you make with dollars on which you have already paid Federal and State income tax. And then it is subjected to your state sales tax of 9.25% (California) plus what ever your local city and county add, usually about 0.5%.

    So lets add up a quick little tax total for an average California resident: say your in the 28% federal income tax bracket. You pay 11% state income tax. That’s 39%. Now there is FICA 7.65% for 47% of your income gone. That’s before any sales tax! So on a dollar earned you keep 53 cents. So to "take home" one dollar you must earn $1.89.

    Now lets spend that money: Lets say we need to buy a new iPod Touch. It was $399, but now with the federal VAT its about $498. Now we need to add the CA state and local sales taxes of about 9.5% for a whopping $546.13. Finally lets figure out how much we must earn to pay for this new iPod: $546/0.53 (from above keeping 53 cents of every dollar earned) = $1030.43. So with a VATs we will need to earn about $1000 to buy a $399 iPod. WOW!

    A few other notes:

    3% of our taxes already goes to national healthcare. Its part of the FICA tax.

    And don’t forget, the evil Bush tax cuts are expiring at the end of the year so everyone’s taxes are going up and the above calculation will be even worse.


  3. chadachada321 says:

    I thought the death tax was still gone in America? I know it used to be here (thank the Democrats) but then was gotten rid of at one point…

    -If an apple a day keeps the doctor away….what happens when a doctor eats an apple?-

  4. chadachada321 says:

    Michigan doesn’t have any toll roads =D

    But I see what you mean. 1000000% agreed

    -If an apple a day keeps the doctor away….what happens when a doctor eats an apple?-

  5. chadachada321 says:

    And like the user above said, don’t pay for TEENAGE WHORES (sorry, teen moms…) and other idiots that are too stupid to help themselves.

    -If an apple a day keeps the doctor away….what happens when a doctor eats an apple?-

  6. Shahab says:

    Nothing quite as crappy as the value added tax. Who do you want to tax? Every single person who adds value to a product? I guess we want to discourage people from turning raw resources into products that have value to human beings.

  7. Brokenscope says:

    With the exception of two activities you mentioned, all can be done reasonably safely.

    I’m sorry though, but I have yet to see someone find a safe way to consume cigarettes in a fashion that does not cause permanent and at least to my knowledge irreversible lung damage.

    It takes a lot of alcohol to destroy your liver, unless you are an idiot and mix medications by accident.

    If you want to fuck your brain chemistry over with heroine, meth, cocaine, or any of the plethora of drugs, be my guest, it your choice its your life, but its your responsibility to live with those consequences. You know what though, everyone gets one paid course of drug rehab, but you have to stay their till your done.

    If you want to eat food and sit in your house and slowly let your body turn into a giant pile of jello fine. If you want to have those stents put in, then you are going to go on a fucking diet so that the money spent on your inevitable quad bypass isn’t wasted because six months later you are back on the couch killing yourself again.

    I’m sorry but for years i have watched members of my family bitch about health care as they have crossed the 300lbs mark. I try work out everyday, I drink soda in moderation, I drink water, I cook my own meals when I get the chance, I take the stairs, I walk across campus, I don’t buy shit I can’t afford, I actually try to put money away into savings when I get the rare chance, I try to help people around me, and I do my god damned best to my good sane decisions.

    Pardon me If I’m a little fucking bitter about having to constantly support that small minority of assholes who claim the right to do what they want, and it is their right and I fully support them in that right, but then demand that I bear part of the burden of the consequences of their actions.

    As I said before, you chain smoke your entire life knowing full well the risks of smoking. You deal with the consequences yourself.

  8. Bill says:

    You mean like, not being a safe driver?  Having unprotected sex?  Playing sports?  Mountain climbing, sky diving, surfing, skating, running marathons.  Or what about the lack of so called good behavior?  Like demanding a certain amount of exercise?

    BTW just because motherfuckers screw us with taxation is not any reason to support further abuses by elite political class on the common underclass. You may not want universal healthcare, but my response is to your flippant comments about so called fat asses etc. Those people would probably pay more into taxes than you would since you apparently don’t buy junk food, cigarettes, booze, or anything else fun.

    Yet you would deprive them of medical care and demand a rebate of your money from the savings of that denial of service.  The sad part is, that’s the exact attitude politicians try to foster.  They pit us aginst one another. We, like dumbasses, fall for it then they go on with the business of taking over our lives and we fucking thank them for it.

  9. Brokenscope says:

    The only treatments that can be denied to them are for problems stemming from their actions.

    As for them paying taxes and not getting something in return, that happens all the fucking time already. I don’t want universal healthcare in the first place.

  10. Adamas Draconis says:

    In Alabama sales tax applies to ALL sales so I’m paying taxes on food and clothing as well.

    Hunting the shadows of the troubled dreams.

  11. axiomatic says:

    Guess what doesn’t have a VAT tax? WAREZ

    I haven’t gone the WAREZ route in years but a VAT tax might send me back to it again.

  12. hellfire7885 says:

    Either it’s free for everyone or free for no one.

    I’m all for free healthcare since my father lost his job and now we can’t even afford medicine for my mother, who has to go through with chronic pain daily.

    Usually those who say the healthcare system is good enough are able to afford it or have insurance, and could spit on those who don’t.

    Only wayI could see it turning into a nightmare is due to all the hypochondriacs we have thanks to news hype.

  13. Bill says:

    Ah but that’s the point isn’t it?  Government involvement will not lower medical expenses, but it will make it less expensive for the patient.  BUT as a patient you may be denied care if you are, as per your example, a smoker or heavy drinker etc. 

    That means those people will have to pay thier own way without government assistance, but medical costs will go so high because the Medical Industry will have permanent customers and people without government assistance will not be able to afford medical treatment at all. 

    What does this do?  This will alter behavior through punitive government measures for those who don’t step in line.  That’s fucking mind control bullshit.  And of course you go right along with it just because it’s a freedom that you choose not to use.  You have to remember that smokers and drinkers are paying taxes too shithead.  But will they get treatment that thier taxes pay for?  Not with dickheads like you backing a system like this while demanding only people with certain behavior deserve treatment. 

  14. Brokenscope says:

    I’ll support public health care when public health care doesn’t cover people who decided to smoke themselves to an early grave. They can have their pain killers to the bitter end as the lung cancer slowly kills them, but fuck them getting a new lung on my dollar.

    Same goes for people who drank themselves into liver failure.

    Same goes for every addict who smoked/shot/snorted himself brain dead.

    Same goes for every fatass who wouldn’t get off the couch and eat cheaper, healthier meals to save his own god damned life.

    Same goes for every dipshit who drank soda constantly till his pancreas shriveled up and died.

    The people who spend most of their lives killing themselves can piss off, they don’t deserve the medical care. Then with the savings from that, you can refund some of my money.

  15. Wolvenmoon says:

    Boo national healthcare, boo vat tax.

    How about paying our current medicare/medicaid doctors parity with what non medicare/medicaid doctors make? We already have a national healthcare system – it’s not supported because it’s screwing the doctors over!

    A normal clinical physician that doesn’t accept medicare/medicaid patients makes around 130,000 dollars a year. If they accept those patients, they end up having a TON of new administrative costs, AND they go down to 85-90,000 a year. They also are packed EVERY DAY OF THE WEEK. So they work harder for less money, with an 8 year degree. Sounds fun, huh?

    What most people don’t get is that the U.S.’s healthcare system is pretty damn good. I have cysts in my knee. I scheduled an appointment with a specialist on a monday, tuesday I was in. Two hours later that tuesday I had an MRI, and that friday the results were interpreted, I was brought back in, and found out they were benign (and quite odd at that).

    In canada, home of the ‘model’ socialized healthcare system, a man needed an emergency surgery to cut part of his skull off, because his brain was swelling and he would die if it hit that part of his skull. (I don’t know the medical terms for this, but it was a large section at the back of his head.) This was done on the double, but three years later the man did not have a plate in his head to protect his brain – a small object hitting his head would have killed him. However, he was on the ‘waiting list’ for care!

    Because the plate insertion was not for a ‘life threatening’ condition as determined by the gracious canadian government, and was complex and costly, he got put into beauracracy hell. I don’t know how his story ended, but I damn sure know that an MRI is a costly procedure, and that my insurance covered it to where I paid a grand total of $80. I also was given a tour of the control room, as it was near the MRI center’s closing time.

    Also remember that people don’t value what they get for free. Our government cannot be counted on to ‘go the extra mile’, and a doctor being paid 40,000 less a year than his colleagues, and working three times as hard, is not going to be one you want working on you. Remember that our government didn’t require schools to teach children with disabilities (physical OR mental) until the ADA in the early 90s. What kind of crap is a government healthcare system going to pull?


    On the VAT


    This is why I don’t order out of the EU. I’ll be perfectly happy to spend my money on singapore/brazillian software and hardware if this gets added. All it’ll do is get gamers to spend less, and spend it on sources that don’t have a VAT. Maybe the government could look at oh, taxing businesses exclusively and not taxing citizens, so that the IRS was downsized hugely? How about cutting down other excess administration? Maybe they could even *gasp* pay the politicians normal wages!

    Oh oh oh! Heaven forbid they provide incentives for more MMORPGs to be developed and hosted in the U.S., and tax the companies’ revenue.

    …Or they could just drive them all out with ridiculous price hikes. I don’t buy console games because of the $10/game hike. $12.50 and I’ll stop playing pay-games altogether.

    It could be the ridiculous VAT that’s preventing european hardware devs from really taking off.

    I will not buy securom games. http://www.wolvenmoon.com/sharedfiles/message1.jpg and http://www.wolvenmoon.com/sharedfiles/message2.jpg

  16. konrad_arflane says:


    While in general, I’m one of the only GP commenters who will go YAY TAXATION at the drop of a hat (being the recipient of an excellent state-sponsored education will do that, to some people anyway), there’s one huge gap in the argumentation for this VAT:

    Universal healthcare wouldn’t need additional funding. Government spending on healthcare in the US *already* exceeds, per capita, what most single-payer healthcare systems cost in other countries. If the US were to do a proper, thorough reform, looking at best practices worldwide (wouldn’t even have to be single-payer, there are hybrid systems that work quite well, AFAIK), the government could save a bit of money, and the citizens would get better care AND save significantly on health insurance costs. It’s a win-win situation, unless you happen to be a private health insurance company.

  17. Alyric says:

    Our current leaders really should study history.

    Taxation was one of the driving points of the American Revolution. Sure, it was being taxed by England without being represented in Parliament – but how many people today really feel like they are being represented by their Congresspersons? Replace "represented" by "shafted" and sure, I can relate.

    All the hand-wringing and moaning in Washington about "how are we going to pay for this?" Here’s a tip: don’t pay for it. Cut spending. Cut some of those ridiculous, unnecessary programs and services. Fire unneeded and redundant government workers.

    The solution isn’t impoverishing an entire generation of Americans into third world status with taxation.

    And yes, at this point, that is a risk. For those of you who think it couldn’t happen to America, again, I strongly suggest you pick up a history book. Start with the reasons for Rome’s collapse. Here’s a hint: one of the big ones was extreme taxation and the problems it caused.

  18. Alyric says:

    I believe an independent study a while back found that a significant percentage (over ten percent, as I recall) of all taxes collected went to keeping elected officials in office (or attempting to, at least).

  19. fdouglas says:

    I live in California and as for the VAT or flat tax, if and only if it lowered your income tax would I be for it.  Two things, if you ship a bunch of manufacturing jobs overseas and import illegal cheap labor, you lose your tax base very quickly.  That same tax base in past decades helped us pay fro the systems that today are a ghost of what they used to be.  The best thing about a flat tax is that everybody pays the same percentage, or what I would call "fair".  Oh, I know that people will say that it affects the poor disproportionally, but how could that be if it is the same across the board.  Not to mention that if a particular group isn’t paying taxes due to the fact that they are payed under the table, yet continues to utilize social programs, they end up contributing whether they want to or not.  Since our government won’t bust the employers for not hiring legal people and allows them to make a profit on the taxpayers backs, I think a flat tax will fix the problem.  The funny thing is Steve Forbes brought this up years ago.

  20. PHOENIXZERO says:

    Sweet! Another tax on purchases on top of our state sales tax of 6% (in Michigan), awesome!

    Gah! Washington DC is still in dire need of an enema. >_<

  21. tuaamin13 says:

    So, if I’m right, they want to add a VAT and knowing the government, keep this tax stacked with everything else.

    Not cool.


    I’m also surprised no one has mentioned the fairtax yet.  No income or paycheck taxes, just a 23% inclusive sales tax  on goods sold at the retail level, NOT tacked on at every stage of production (this is different from VAT).  Oh, and everyone gets a prebate by the government for the amount of tax they’re expected to pay during the month up to poverty level.
    If you spend more in tax than the prebate, then by definition you are not in poverty.

    Seems simple enough…

  22. Austin_Lewis says:

    I pay nearly 50% income taxes.  Then add on the cost of everything else, and you’ll see why I’m pissed.

  23. PHX Corp says:

    People are going to be voting the pols out if they pass the vat tax(or soda tax or even upping the Beer tax) if it happens

    Watching JT on GP is just like watching an episode of Jerry springer only as funny as the fights

  24. ZenAndNow says:

    Well Australia has a GST of 10%, which is exactly the same as a VAT except for a different name.

    Thing is though that the Federal Government collects it… but they can’t use any of it. All of it, absolutely all of it, gets divided up between the states for their use in various projects.

    Which in my mind is a decent idea. Unfortunately our state governments are utterly incompetent and waste the money, and there is no set algorithim for dividing the money up, so it comes down to politics.

  25. Schrock says:

    keep YOUR receipts and paychecks for a year.  add up everytime you pay a FEE or tax.  Fees paid to government are just taxes.  I pay 31% in payroll taxes.  this doesn’t include real estate, vehicle, sales, etc.  when all is said and done people are easily paying 50% in taxes.

    It is NOT my job to provide for everyone in this country.  too bad so sad.  I came from poverty, I took NO help, I am doing well and I help who I choose to help through my church and community.  It is not for the government to decide who gets my hard earned money.

    Time to get rid of ALL SOCIAL PROGRAMS.  I can see helping the truly handicapped and truly indigent elderly & children.  If you are a semi-healthy 16 year old +  get off your butt and do SOMETHING or suffer the consequences.

  26. Schrock says:

    best way to pay back …..


    reduce taxes, get government out of private industry and let it do what is supposed to do.  when allowed to actually work capitalism helps. 


    I am not willing to GIVE (more like steal from me) to people who spend recklessly on BS.

  27. Schrock says:

    not ruined YET.   

    Starting adding up the taxes.  Current tax cuts are set to expire, deductions for mortgage and charitable contributions are up for debate, talk of taxing foods the government deems harmful (i.e. soft drinks, beer, any thing with sugar or trans fat).  will they tax beef because the cows harm the environment (think not  think again)

    Smokers – taxes increased about 200% recently

    gas – possibly going up …. some think it should hold steady at $4.00 a gallon min. at all times.

    social security / medicare going broke – but we still pay for it.

    fed, state, county and city taxes won’t go away with the VAT it will be added on.

    sampling of current taxes – these won’t go away either – they never do.

    Accounts Receivable Tax
    Building Permit Tax
    Capital Gains Tax
    CDL License Tax
    Cigarette Tax
    Corporate Income Tax
    Court Fines (indirect taxes)
    Dog License Tax
    Federal Income Tax
    Federal Unemployment Tax (FUTA)
    Fishing License Tax
    Food License Tax
    Fuel Permit Tax
    Gasoline Tax
    Hunting License Tax
    Inheritance Tax
    Interest Expense (tax on the money)
    Inventory Tax I
    RS Interest Charges (tax on top of tax)
    IRS Penalties (tax on top of tax)
    Liquor Tax (going up soon)
    Local Income Tax
    Luxury Taxes
    Marriage License Tax
    Medicare Tax
    Property Tax
    Real Estate Tax
    Recreational Vehicle Tax
    Road Toll Booth Taxes
    Road Usage Taxes (truckers)
    Sales Taxes
    School Tax
    Septic Permit Tax
    Service Charge Taxes
    Social Security Tax
    State Income Tax
    State Unemployment Tax (SUTA)
    Telephone Federal Excise Tax
    Telephone Federal, State and Local Surcharge Taxes
    Telephone Federal Universal Service Fee Tax
    Telephone Minimum Usage Surcharge Tax
    Telephone Recurring and Nonrecurring Charges Tax
    Telephone State and Local Tax
    Telephone Usage Charge Tax
    Toll Bridge Taxes Toll
    Tunnel Taxes
    Trailer Registration
    Tax Utility Taxes
    Vehicle License Registration Tax
    Vehicle Sales Tax
    Watercraft Registration Tax
    Well Permit Tax
    Workers’ Compensation Tax




  28. Zeke129 says:

    10-15% in VATS is abysmal, Bethesda needs to stop screwing it up with each patch.


  29. PHX Corp says:

    I think we should start an ECA/Fox news endorsed vat tax TEA(taxed enough already) party to protest agains the VAT tax, I may sound like rick santelli here. but I dont want a national sales tax

    Watching JT on GP is just like watching an episode of Jerry springer only as funny as the fights

  30. jedidethfreak says:

    I like it – "few other options can generate the kind of money the nation will need to avert fiscal calamity."  Here’s one – Don’t spend money you don’t have.  That’s why California is in the crapper, and they taxed everything they could get their grubby mitts on!


    Freedom of speech means the freedom to say ANYTHING, so long as it is the truth. This does not exclude anything that might hurt someone’s feelings.

  31. Cerabret100 says:

    My CTRL-F function has not found any use of the Fallout 3…was it just too obvious?

  32. Austin_Lewis says:

    I’m not FORCED to tip, and in some instances, I don’t tip at all.

    I went to an Outback Steakhouse a while back, and ended up waiting with my wife for some of our friends for nearly an hour.  So, I continued getting free water, but the woman refused to bring us more than one loaf of bread.  So, when we got up to leave, I left her no tip whatsoever, and wrote the reasoning behind it on the back of the receipt.  She provided poor (and oftern RUDE) service, and so I gave her no tax.  The government, on the other hand, provides RUDE service and DEMANDS I pay 50% of my income, property taxes, 6 to 8 percent sales tax, various taxes pertaining to my firearms, and I can’t opt out of it because few of the services ever reach me in any positive way.

    Your point is moronic and without merit, in other words.

  33. Austin_Lewis says:

    I pay 50% of my income in taxes this upcoming tax year, as well as sales taxes, and that doesn’t even begun to take into account property taxes and whatnot.  How is THAT fair?  

  34. NovaBlack says:

    lol unless you live in the uk…

    approx 30% on income + ‘national insurance’ taxes straight out of your paycheck.

    THEN 17.5% VAT on everything you buy.

    THEN you get charged tax on any interest you earn on savings in the bank.

    THEN when you die you pay 50% inheritance tax.



    hmm i wonder why i want to move abroad.

  35. the1jeffy says:

    If you can’t see the difference between a voluntary tip and a government taxing you, there is no hope for you.

    ~~All Knowledge is Worth Having~~

  36. NovaBlack says:

    I don’t get the problem.  The rich pay more because they buy more expensive things, and the money comes back around to social programs for the good of everyone. 


    see here in the uk i get frustrated. Having a good well paid (but not incredibly well paid) job, i dont really see why i should then pay more than somebody else…

    Surely we are taxed for the same services etc (healthcare garbage disposal etc)..

    If anything, the fact that (here in the uk) i get private healthcare through my job, if anything means that im less of a drain on the system since i wont be using publically funded doctors etc. Its frustrating when even the guys who collect the garbage round here do an incredibly bad job (knocking things over n just leaving it etc). Or the police for example.. Well when my girlfriend called them because some random drunk off the street was at her front door TRYING TO KICK IT DOWN (smashed all the glass panes out and everything, and splintered the rest to pieces ), it took them a whopping 45 minutes to respond. Wow. Great f***g use that was.  I dont really get where my cash is going. 

    well actually.. i do. Down the road the road there is an estate full of teenage mums and their drug dealing partners using the state funded ‘dole’ or ‘job seekers allowance’ (you have to go to one interview every 6 months to qualify… ONE.. and you can just act like a dick and not get it on purpose). They dont work and yet they seem to somehow all have money for a £150 pair of sneakers and £100 sports brand name clothes, and sky television.

    Then there are the others who work for a week and then get ‘statutory sick pay’ for 6 months as they are away from work with ‘stress’. Then when thats up they suddenly get better for a week, and the same thing happens again at a different company. Oh n then they sue the old company with a ‘no win no fee’ claim for something like ‘damaged hearing’ if they were in an industrial environment. Y’know , damaged hearing where the test consists of saying ‘can you hear me’ and they say ‘no’ so they say ‘well your hearing must be damaged then’.


    AGGGHHH. so frustrating.

  37. wintermute says:

    In Pennsylvania I already pay a 6% sales tax on "non necessity" items.  The only things that are exempt are clothing and most foods (treats/snacks and sodas/sports drinks are not exempt).  Other states, like New York, tax everything.  I don’t agree with an extra tax for any reason.  If the goverment needs money, they can get all the money they need by cutting out all the BS they put through each year.  Some senators and reps actually take federal money and use it to advertise in the districts.  That’s right, they’re using your tax money to smear their faces on your TV screen, blare their voices on your radio, and harrass you with automated phone calls.  There is a metric crapton of useless and wasteful spending being done in the U.S. government, but it all gets hidden because it’s tacked onto "must pass" bills, bills that in their original form actually serve a purpose to the average tax payer.

    The rest of the country is buckling down and looking for ways to save money, the U.S. government can easily do the same.

  38. Cronbie6669 says:

    Either you tax income, or you tax spending – NOT BOTH.


    And "universal healthcare" sucks. I come from a place which has this and I know what it is.

  39. Bill says:

    That’s for one meal if the service is good, not for everything I buy ever.  You don’t tip somebody when you buy a Kit Kat, or a magazine etc.

  40. Bill says:

      No, the 10% number is what Rahm Emmanuel’s brother reccomended.

      Look just because you’ve been getting financially raped by your government and have learned to live with it doesn’t mean I should just accept it.

      I just crawled above the poverty line last year but if the price for everything went up a minimum of 10% my entire fucking budget goes down the tubes and I’m effectively poor again.  And I sure as fuck don’t want to wait for a government rebate check after a year has gone by so I can finally buy the rest of my groceries.  The last thing I want is the motherfuckers who run the Post Office, DMV, and IRS to be in charge of the medical care I will be allowed to recieve.

    That’s right US Government, get your hand out of my pocket and stay out of my life.

  41. Meohfumado says:

    Most people touting the 25% VAT number are ones who saying using it would exempt anybody making under 200K from Federal income tax.

    If this is true, I’d have no problem with paying a 25% VAT tax if Uncle Sam isn’t taking 33% of my paycheck every month.


    "You know what I wish? I wish all the scum of the Earth had one throat and I had my hands about it."

  42. Vordus says:

    A VAT is probably a good way to pay back your defecit, but there’s no way that people would support it.

    Odd that you’re willing to pay a high percentage in tips in resteraunts, but shy away from tax, though.

  43. SeanB says:

    Yup, i get something like $5,000 paid to me from the GST program, because my family is low income.

  44. SeanB says:

    back in the 80’s (i think) canada enacted a federal GST (goods and services tax), which if i understand is equivalent to your proposed VAT. In addition to that, most of our provinces have thier own PST (provincial sales tax). Some provinces have a HST (harmonized sales tax) but that’s just a blended PST and GST situation that cuts down on some paperwork at the retail and government level.

    Where i live, Manitoba, we’ve almost always had a 7% PST and 7% GST. Just over the last few years has the GST fallen. It’s now at 5%. So whenever i buy a $9.99 item, i pull $11.19 out of my pocket. It’s just the way things work.

    The WaPo estimates of 10-25% are ignorant commentary meant to scare you. It probably wont be anywhere near that high, since your already high yearly income taxes already pay for many of the things our GST and PST are meant to pay.

    I know you americans fear tax, but seriously, you have to do something. You sat by for 8 years and let Bush run your country into the ground. Sure you complained about it, but you still let him do it. Now it’s time to pay what it’s going to cost to get your numbers back into the black.

  45. SimonBob says:

    I don’t get the problem.  The rich pay more because they buy more expensive things, and the money comes back around to social programs for the good of everyone.  You’d be exempted from a large amount of your income tax — thousands of tiny payments over the year instead of one lump sum — and if the applied system were anything like our Canadian Goods & Services Tax, you’d probably even see returns on your form.  (Another minor problem is that "VAT" is a highly unappealing name.  "GST" doesn’t have that menacing ring.)

    10% might sound high, but I’ve been paying 15% between the federal and provincial taxes my entire life, and I’ve never heard of anyone getting ruined by it.  Not to mention you’re paying way more on fuel taxes, but you don’t seem to cause commotions for that.  Aren’t you yankees supposed to be richer than us, anyway?  Quit bein’ greedy and share a little with your common folks.  They can’t all be unscrupulous stock traders or house-mortgaging shortchangers, can they?  (Really, are they?  Because if they are, then I don’t think I want to move south any more.)

    The Mammon Philosophy

  46. ZippyDSMlee says:

    Sure if congress caps pay and healthcare for themselves if you have more than 5 million in the bank/property you don’t get a paycheck or healthcare or travel expenses, you may apply for hardship but all your (and spouse divorced or not and children if living with you) finical records will be open to the public, not to mention default daily drug testing regardless of hardship or not.…  


    I am a criminal because I purchase media,I am a criminal because I use media, I am a criminal because I chose to own media..We shall remain criminals until Corporate stay’s outside our bedrooms..


  47. Austin_Lewis says:

    Vote Lewis in 2012.  That’s right; we’ll go libertarian on their asses.

    Hell, we can even make that the campaign slogan.

  48. chadachada321 says:

    I believe that the past 4 or so Presidents are making this country into a 3rd world one, it’s just that it’s exponential. The Democrats had a horrible president in the 90’s (Clinton), and so the Republicans knew that they had to come back with an even worse President, which they did. After 8 years of that, the Democrats had to pull something REALLY horrid out of their asses to top what the GOP had. So they found Obama, a racist and economically-challenged fellow. Who would’ve thought that anyone could’ve found a worse President than Bush and Clinton…but those Democrats found one…

    Can I get some change?

    -If an apple a day keeps the doctor away….what happens when a doctor eats an apple?-

  49. Neo_DrKefka says:

    This man reminds me of how Romans felt when the Goths are sacking Rome.

    Some people are so blind they can’t see a world to where they live in the poor house where someone is telling them what to believe and what not to believe. Difference is now, you have a choice but if the U.S goes or we elected someone who takes total power away from the Republic or if we just fall which it’s looking like every day since we officially owe China and depend on China now since they hold all our money just imagine a new Dark Age.

  50. Randomavatar says:

    Actually it is BS, the us can’t become a 3rd world country.

    People need to stop misuing the term, its actually a reference to the cold war era, the first world being the western nations, the second being the russians and their allies and the thrid being everyone else. It doesnt technically denote any level of economic development.

  51. the1jeffy says:

    Hyperbole, yes.  Bullshit? 

    Spending 5.9% of the US’s GDP with no way to fund/repay it just might push a great majority of the middle class into poverty.  If your middle class becomes impoverished, what do the poor become?  3rd World.

    The way out of debt isnt to take out more loans. 

    ~~All Knowledge is Worth Having~~

  52. chadachada321 says:

    That’s why it should be similar to the Michigan sales tax. It taxes 6% on goods but doesn’t tax on food or drink. It taxes on "services" (like McDonalds) but doesn’t tax at Kroger or on food. That way poor people don’t get boned over from buying food but rich people that buy more goods/services (like video games and couches and cars and McDonalds and the like) still get taxed.

    -If an apple a day keeps the doctor away….what happens when a doctor eats an apple?-

  53. Adamas Draconis says:

    The problem with most taxes is (sales tax in particular but most taxes have similar effects) is that the lower your income, the harder burden it places on you, when your trying to live on minimum wage and your paying 8-10% tax on food, it hits you a hell of a lot harder then if your making 100k+ a year. And read my reply above and think about all the other taxes already levied on people for basic services, and tell me tacking on another 10-25% sales tax is gonna help anybody but greedy politicians.

    Hunting the shadows of the troubled dreams.

  54. chadachada321 says:

    I’ve heard of some state/county taxes that work nicely. In Florida there is a state sales tax, but some counties have a sales tax also that just adds the percentage prior to the sale. So if the state tax is 6% and the county tax is 1%, it’d just be 7% sales tax.

    Same could be done with national level taxes. Add a 8% sales tax to that, and any purchases in this county in Florida would be 6+1+8 = 15% sales tax total. In other words, tax on the original sales price, not on the other taxes.

    -If an apple a day keeps the doctor away….what happens when a doctor eats an apple?-

  55. Azhrarn says:

    I see, well that changes matters, if the state can already create a sales tax, then a national one would just conflict with it, which is certainly not a desired effect.

    US states and cities are much more free to do as they please in terms of taxation it seems, while most of that is controlled on a national level over here.
    I can see how an additional tax would really mess things up. (because I doubt a state or city would drop their sales tax if a national one was introduced unless they were forced to do so)

    "Service charges" for the services you describe exist here too, and especially on fuel they’re a good deal higher. (converting from euros to dollar, we’re at about $7,70 per gallon here. Most of it tax.)

  56. Adamas Draconis says:

    whwre I live city/state sales tax is already 10% Azhrarn and we’re getting SHIT for it. Not to mentions property tax,fuel tax,taxes on services like water,power,phone,sewer,garbage collection etc etc ad nauseum.


    Hunting the shadows of the troubled dreams.

  57. Azhrarn says:

    Oh, many social security features are already supplied by other taxes here too, you seem to forget that the taxation levels in the EU are generally a good deal higher than in the US.
    (atleast on a national level, no idea how state taxation works, local taxes are farely minimal here)

    But most of the EU has a much broader social security system to maintain aswell as an excellent public education system. Fleecing such as you mention for the US is considerably more rare here I believe, since all the financial data is open to the public. Scrutiny is probably considerably tighter.


  58. zel says:

    I think the problem here is we already have taxes in place that cover those things, well other than public healcare but other stuff ya :P. They’re reasoning this to support public healthcare and like someone else pointed out already, Social Security is a great example of why we don’t trust the politicians with broad taxes like that. They end up just funneling that money for their own purposes (Golden Fleece anyone?) and the original reason for the tax ends up broken and full of holes.


    I am a signature virus, please copy and paste me into your signature to help me propagate.

  59. pantear says:

    This is one of the most perpetuated myths about sales tax. The person that spends the most contribute the most.

    * If you spend more than you earn then you have bigger issues than taxes.

    * If you spend close to what you earn, the person with higher earnings contribute more.

    * If you are frugal with your money, you contribute less.

    What’s better, higher earning people can’t cheat on sales taxes as easily as with income taxes.

  60. Zerodash says:

    The worst aspect of sales taxes is that it affects the poor even more than successful people.  I’m no fan of raising income taxes (Obama say’s I’m "rich" which is bullshit), but at least those are better able to shield the lowest earners (or non-earners) from the brunt of it.  Sales tax = poor people’s tax.

  61. Vordus says:

    "Obama has made this country a third world country"

    Good to see that you’re supporting the economy by manufacturing massive amounts of grade A bullshit.

  62. Austin_Lewis says:

    Wow.  That is fucking awesome.  Good for those people.  I’d be pissed off if I sent 18 million to the county and only got 4 million’s worth back too.  I hope they do secede.

  63. Neo_DrKefka says:

    Who is going to pay for obamanomics? In his third month in office he spent more then any U.S President in US History and any other leader in natural history. You’re going to have to pay like it or not. Obama has made this country a third world country and has taken country of industry telling people who they can do and cannot do.

    Your going to have to pay for your neighbor’s mortgage even though he took a loan he knew he couldn’t afford. You’re going to support car companies that cannot sell but your only supporting them to support the unions for people getting paid 30 to 50 plus an hour to put windshield wipers on car.

    You will pay for dying cities because they choose to give homes to the poor and bad loans to the poor. You will pay for cities choice to spend, spend, spend and tax businesses over seas.

    Get used to it.

    We in Chicago are that’s why it’s becoming a ghost town. To pay for a free hospital in Cook County, and to support the black community and to illegally tear down airports in the darkness of night (See Meigsfield) to make parks for the community making us lose tons of revenue and to where like Detroit we have miles of vacant and abandoned buildings Chicago and Cook County is the most taxed area in the U.S and you all elected Chicago good job!

    Oh, but at least Cook County citizens are doing something about it. Read about the Cook County Secession that was recently voted for and the South and West Sides of Chicago suburbs will vote for.

  64. Azhrarn says:

    While VAT rates vary quite a bit around the EU, I’ll use the Netherlands as an example, since that’s the one I’m most familiar with.
    The VAT on pretty much everything is 19%.
    A 6% VAT is applied on food and drink (except alcohol), medication, books, sports activities, cultural events and restoration work to houses older than 15 years.

    That 19% may seem high, but has been in place for a long time and the money earned from it is used for many government projects, including healthcare, public schools, etc.


  65. zel says:

    wow, just wow….   as if we didnt have enough taxes. Next thing you know they’ll start taxing your tax returns…..

    ack! i just read the range they were considering, 10-25%?!?  *heart attack*



    I am a signature virus, please copy and paste me into your signature to help me propagate.

  66. Bill says:

    I thought of that too, but that is not their plan.  They want more revenue, not a new way to collect it.  They are talking about adding this tax to the current system.

  67. PxDnNinja says:

    Get rid of federal income tax and I’m for it. You either tax it when I spend it or when I make it, not both.

  68. Bill says:

    Because no matter what, the increase in costs are simply passed on to the consumer.  So, if they went after profits instead of a sales tax, prices would still go up to compensate and the consumer would still pay for it.

  69. Deamian says:

    Science, and logic, dictates that most product with a price actually cost MUCH less to produce than the price they are sold for.

    Why congress doesn’t simply take 10-25% from the profit made? 10-25% more to pay is asking for the rivers to flow red with blood and frogs to fall off the sky.

    It makes as much sense to the consummer.


    Besides, what works in Europe, doesn’t necessarly work or fits in America… Like the Metric System. Unless things have changed recently.

  70. hellfire7885 says:

    I have three answers.


    No, NO, and HELL NO!!!

    Economic stimulation isn’t possible when no one has money, and at this point that’s all that’s happening, they’re seeing to it no one has money.

  71. E. Zachary Knight says:

    My thoughts exactly. Why would I want to pay more in added taxes than I currently pay for my health care? 10-25% sales tax would cause mass riots in the street.

    This reminds me of Social Security Taxes. That was supposed to go into a little savings area to hold for when people retired. Then the government needed some extra money and started syphoning funds from it and now it is a huge mess that we cannot get out of. Sounds like what would happen if we get a VAT.

    E. Zachary Knight
    Oklahoma City Chapter of the ECA

    E. Zachary Knight
    Divine Knight Gaming
    Oklahoma Game Development
    Rusty Outlook
    Random Tower
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  72. Zerodash says:

    So, in addition to raising income taxes, capital gains taxes, business taxes, etc the Fed wants to tack a sales tax onto everything else.  Way to go "stimulating" the economy- reducing the purchasing power for people of all income levels is absurd.  Oh, and I pay for all of my health insurance, and it sure as shit doesn’t cost me nearly as much as these new taxes would frisk me for (and surely not 40-60% of my income). Of course, since this country will be a planned economy in about a decade or so, it makes little difference…

    Never trust a politician with anything- especially money.

  73. Neeneko says:

    That is my basic take.  If a new tax is used for something that has a wide ranging federal benfit then I am for it… if it is just being funneled back out into earmarks for various districts then I’m against it.

  74. Vake Xeacons says:

    Were the taxes actually going to fund a national healthcare, I’d say fine. In reality,

    "Bullsh**!" This would go right back into Congress’s VAT-ass pockets. Don’t even try it.

Comments are closed.