Berkely Councilman: Tax Email to Fund Post Office

By | March 8, 2013

Offering more proof that Democrats see every funding challenge as a revenue problem, Berkely, California District 8 Supervisor Gordon Wozniak suggested on Tuesday that email should be taxed to fund the heavily indebted U.S. Post Office.

Wozniak said “There should be something like a bit tax. I mean a bit tax could be a cent per-gigabit and they would still make, probably, billions of dollars a year…And there should be, also, a very tiny tax on email.” At a meeting where the council was working to prevent the sale of a Post Office building in the district.

Not missing a chance to go populist, Mr. Wozniak also said that the levy might reduce spam. Ahhh, this is all about helping the people.. or something.

More heavily taxing an overtaxed populace to pay for the failing postal service is one idea. Of course, there will be waivers for families of four that make less than some arbitrary amount to prevent the tax from being supposedly regressive.

One problem with the email tax is in collection. Small business owners already have to calculate and collect sales taxes for their cities, counties and states. They have to figure and hold back taxes from employees paychecks – and pay part of the taxes from their own revenues. Now, businesses that run their own email servers will have to calculate and collect yet another tax for the government.

 

Another thought is to repeal the 2006 law that requires the Post Office to put $11 billion a year into future retirees health benefits. The Post Office is the only agency required to do so.

The difficulty in taking the appropriate action is that Democrats see every bit of red ink as a revenue issue – never a spending problem. If the $11 billion dollar gift to the unions is dropped, along with related labor costs to management and collection of the fund, the post offices losses are actually decreasing year-over-year.

Solving the Post Office’s issues could be as simple as bankruptcy then full privatization. Shake off the union contracts and indebtedness, go private to escape the direct control of Congress and then open all mail service to private industry. Competing with UPS, Fedex and other carriers for basic mail as well as packages will either force the Post Office into becoming an efficient and desired service or have it replaced by private entities that are already doing so.

Mr. Wozniak, taxes are not always the answer. Not everything is a revenue problem.

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