The Rundown-Weds 4/18/18: RIP Barbara Bush; Internet sales tax; Gorsuch!

 

Here's Barbara Bush taking on David Letterman in 1994:

 

Yesterday, the Supreme Court heard arguments in the case of South Dakota v Wayfair in which multiple states are trying to require online sellers to collect and remit sales tax to them. Predicting SCOTUS is a difficult thing, but my inclination is that the states will lose. They should lose; this is a matter for Congress.

Also, this is a great example of where Bastiat should be heeded: Everybody is talking about how much money the states would take in; almost nobody is talking about the truly massive burden on online sellers given the insane number of separate taxing jurisdictions in this country. 

Here's a well-reasoned amicus brief for the defendants, and against increasing Internet taxation:
https://www.supremecourt.gov/DocketPDF/17/17-494/42195/20180403175153268_17-494%20Amicus%20Brief.pdf

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Starbucks has announced that for one day in late May they will close about 8,000 company-owned stores to engage in training against "unconscious bias". I have VERY mixed feelings about the subject. Here's a pretty good article on it:

http://www.chicagotribune.com/business/ct-starbucks-unconscious-bias-training-20180417-story.html

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Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch sided with the Court's four liberals yesterday, ruling against the Trump Administration's effort to deport a legal alien convicted of burglary on the grounds that the crime had posed a risk of violence even though the statue calls for deportation for the conviction of an actual violent crime. 

Gorsuch's argument, which I agree with, is that vague laws are the breeding ground of tyranny. Conservatives who are upset with Gorsuch are making a mistake.  It was interesting to note that President Trump's response was not to criticize the man he named to the Court.

 
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