Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Needless Government Regulation

About four years ago when I realized I was not only running out of book shelf space but that I had many books that I would never touch again, I decided to open a book store.  I do like collecting books and as with many book lovers each title exerts some type of talismanic feeling when you look at them and think about where you were and what you were doing when you were reading said title.  But this post has nothing to do with that.

Rather than throw the books out on the street or donate them (which I've done before) I decided to put them up for sale on Alibris.  For the first few years sales weren't so bad but with the recession and the fact my inventory is less than half what it was I only sell about a book every four months.  It looks like I am now saddled with about 100 books that will probably never sell.  I've been thinking about closing the store for a while but imagine my surprise when I recently visited the Alibris site and I was asked to present my social security id for tax purposes.  I'm selling books for 99c and the IRS want to tax my earnings: I'm not against taxation but this is completely nuts.  My cost of goods are ten times my selling price; do I have to hire an accountant to do my book sales taxes?

I'm pulling the shutters down on the store.  And it's not Alibris' fault by the way.

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