Dr Plokta (drplokta) wrote,
Dr Plokta


So does the VATMOSS craziness mean that while I'm on one of my occasional tax-avoidance day-trips to buy cigarettes and wine in Belgium and France respectively, I can also pop over the border into Luxembourg, connect to a local wireless data network, and stock up on ebooks at 3% VAT instead of 20%? Even while still using my UK credit card and PayPal account? If not then why not -- it will be my right to pay the Luxembourg rate of VAT when buying ebooks in Luxembourg, and will be the retailer's duty to charge me that rate and no more. But if so then what's to stop me from getting an account with a Luxembourgeois VPN provider and doing the same without bothering to go to the effort of actually visiting Luxembourg?

It's high time that we had global agreement that electronic sales work like physical sales, with the regulations and tax rates of the country where the retailer is based applying to the sale, and with territorial rights based only on the retailer's location. Because in fact it's impossible to know where the customer is physically located at the time of the sale. Yes, this gives lots of oppurtunities for tax avoidance, which suggests that perhaps we should just give up trying to levy sales taxes on electronically delivered goods altogether, and replace them with taxes on things that can be unambiguously located geographically.

  • Rogue One

    Is it just me, or is the end of Rogue One pretty depressing? The last half hour or so of the film is basically the entire Rogue One team getting…

  • What Next?

    I want your predictions for where we'll be in ten years' time, June 2026, by which time there should have been at least two general elections (unless…

  • Game of Thrones Meets Monty Python

    It now seems clear that the governance of the Iron Islands derives from a mis-reading of Monty Python and the Holy Grail. They got the bit about…

  • Post a new comment


    Comments allowed for friends only

    Anonymous comments are disabled in this journal

    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    Your IP address will be recorded