Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Tourist Tax Fallacy

I need some help backing this up with data, but here's what I think about "tourist taxes" like the car rental tax and the prepared food and beverage tax:

1) they are mostly paid by non-tourists
2) people actually buy into the arguments that say otherwise (making it a fallacy)
3) local politicians feed on this ignorance

What is the best way to get evidence on the burden of the "tourist tax"? My dad operates a car rental agency and I have seen the people who rent the cars. Most of them are locals, but they still have to pay the combined 11% tax on rental cars.

I have to pay the prepared food and beverage tax every time I go out for lunch, even though I'm not a visitor. The fallacy can be summed up as this: Nearly all tourists rent a car or dine out. Therefore, a tax on prepared food and rental cars will be borne by tourists.

The fallacy could be corrected by admitting that: While nearly all tourists rent a car or dine out, most of the people who do so are not tourists. It follows immmediately that the tax burden in this case is not borne exclusively, or even largely, by tourists.

How can I test whether or not my intuition and anecdotal evidence give me the right impression?

Monday, April 17, 2006


Just in....Worker Exploitation is GOOD!!!

See here.

Friday, April 07, 2006

The discussion

Join in on the discussion over here.

Global Warming...Drug Use...South Park

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Sending Off Sendek

It's still unofficial at this point, but NC State basketball head coach Herb Sendek has accepted an offer to coach at Arizona State. While I'm sure he's a perfectly nice guy, I think his time was up. The ACC is a high-pressure environment for coaches and I don't think he was ever comfortable with that pressure. For the better.

But what are we going to do about a coach now? Anyone care to speculate who NC State athletics will hire? If we can't find an experienced coach, I think we should just let Tom Burleson take the job. He could put together a heck of a team, but of course he wants David Thompson to be the coach:
I shouldn't say this but I would like to see David Thompson as the head coach
and Monte Towe as head assistant and build a staff around them. If you're going
to go after a marquee coach, go after a Rick Barnes or go after a John Calipari
but you've got to realize it's going to take a lot of money to do that. I just
think that we have so much talent within our own alumni.

Whatever Burleson says. David Thompson would no doubt be more popular with the fans. It's just crazy enough to work.