Most of our non-Chicago readers might think we’re blowing things a bit out of proportion, but there’s a sales tax controversey here in Chi-town over leglislation that would make sales tax in Cook County (where Freelance-Zone.com is based) one of the highest in the U.S. if not the world.
I’ve long been a proponent of buying online, especially if you are buying from a big-box retailer. I do spend my local dollars on small mom-and-pop outfits whenever possible but it’s not a political act for me so I don’t beat myself up if I buy a Starbucks latte when the local hangouts are full. That’s just silly, and besides–competition is a good thing. It’s just too bad the Bucks is quite inferior to my local–and often full–favorites.
With the sales tax going well above ten percent here, I find my inner activist getting a bit riled up. It’s sad that I may wind up abandoning much of my local shopping in favor of even more online ordering, but our government here is bloated, corrupt, and out of control. I suspect it’s like this in many areas, so I’m really preaching to the choir, but in my mind, the online marketplace is going to be the ONLY place I buy many things including my big-ticket purchases and entertainment options from now on.
Shopping in stores is fun– but by and large a waste of my time, gas, and now the extra sales tax. I can’t afford to buy local anymore–the markup in the mom and pop stores is to be expected as a part of supporting local business, but add the ten percent on top of that markup and you’re looking at wasteful spending that cannot be justified. Especially when people–my fellow pro bloggers for a start–are running affiliate programs and I can support my fellow writers by clicking on their product links and purchasing things I like that way.
I’m not going to try and recruit the readers of Freelance-Zone.com to follow my lead. That’s a decision only you can make and it’s really none of my business. But if you feel the way I do–that paying a markup for the convenience of showing up in person and standing in line is just ridiclous–remember your fellow bloggers, their affiliate programs, and buy anything wherever you find it cheapest on the net. Don’t waste your gas or your precious money shopping in person if you’d rather save that money. If enough of us vote with our dollars, we can send a clear message that we’re not putting up with the kinds of nonsense that’s being perpetuated in Chicago.
And bloggers, if you aren’t currently putting Google Adsense and affiliate links into your blogs, you’re cheating yourself out of any potential revenue you could be scraping up. Yes, it’s true that not as many people will click on your Google Ads as you want, but you can over a period of months potentially earn at least enough to offset the cost of a part of your expenses of having a hosted website.
I basically said all that to say this: buy Internet and pay less!