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'The Daily Show' Gets It Wrong on Amazon Tax

 

Hilarious segment on Monday night's "Daily Show" about Amazon's efforts to repeal California's online sales tax at the ballot box. 

Only one problem: Amazon is no longer trying to overturn the law.

Back in September, the online retail giant abandoned its proposed referedum and agreed to begin collecting sales tax from its California customers by September 2012, making this the last holiday season that consumers can avoid paying state and local taxes by buying from Amazon.

The Seattle-based company had already spent $5.25 million gathering signatures, polling and producing radio advertisements. Analysts said the company backed away from the repeal effort because it realized it would face a costly and extremely negative campaign with labor groups and brick-and-mortar retailers like Walmart and Target portraying Amazon as a tax cheat.

Still, the "Daily Show" segment is not without its moments. The best one, from my perspective: California Democratic Party Chair John Burton explaining his refusal to use the Kindle his daughter bought him as a birthday present.

"I will not use it, because of these goddamn people at Amazon," the veteran San Francisco politician told Jon Oliver. "I go to my bookstore to buy a goddamn book and sit and read it. It's that simple. I can read it taking a crap as opposed to looking at a Kindle or a computer taking a crap."

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