1998 Fools: Federal Reserve To Impose Television Tax
From: "Rick Guinn" <rickguinn@carecomputer.com>
Date: Thu, 31 Dec 1998 10:10:14 +0000

Federal Reserve To Impose Television Tax

Washington D.C. - Associated Press

In an era of balanced budget rhetoric, some novel methods of 
revenue enhancement have been presented by congressional 
leaders. In a surprising move spear headed by Senator 
Ted Kennedy (D), Massachusetts, referendum TK741-009 was 
introduced on the floor of the senate today.

This bill proposes that a special "chip", similar in size to 
the so-called "V-Chip" used to sensor television now, be 
installed into all new manufactured television sets, and within 
5 years retroactively installed on all previously sold sets.

This chip would monitor the total accumulated time that any 
television set was operating and record that information for 
download to the Internal Revenue Service. The viewer would then 
be accessed a fee for each hour that the television set was 

FCC Chairman Federico Pena was initially thrilled with the 
concept. "Studies have shown that the average television set 
is on approximately 12 hours a day. There are also an estimated 
433 million television sets in use today. A enormous revenue 
source is presently being untapped. I applaud the honorable 
Senator Kennedy for his foresight."

Federal Reserve board chairman Alan Greenspan was also 
enthusiastic about the Kennedy "Couch Potato Tax". 
Says Greenspan, at a news conference in Washington, "Think 
of it, if the average television is indeed on 12 hours a day, 
and there are 433 million TV sets out there, if we charged 
just 10 cents an hour then the total yearly income would be 
1.896 Trillion dollars a year. The budget could be balanced 

When questioned about the obvious problem with peoples reactions
 to such an additional tax Greenspan replied, "It will be fine 
if you just think about it. At 12 hours a day and at 10 cents 
an hour, that�s a total cost of only $1.20 per day per family. 
Since going to a movie costs an average of $45 for a family of 
four, the cost savings to the family would be substantial. Plus 
a movie only lasts a couple of hours."

How would the new tax be collected? Says Greenspan, "A special 
branch of the Internal Revenue Service would be created to 
handle the increased work load. Television users would be able 
to download the chips memory and file a return with the IRS. 
In fact, there has been some talk of allowing TV users to pay 
there yearly TV fee right along with their IRS tax return. This 
would be a considerable time-saver."

And the cost for monitoring, auditing, and enforcement? 
"We estimate," Greenspan replied, "that approximately $1.8 
billion a year would be required to do this right. But, the 
bright side is that we estimate that nearly 10,000 new 
government jobs would be created, thus stimulating the job 
market at a time when government downsizing are reducing the 
amount of total overall available government jobs."

Well folks, the Associated Press doesn�t feel that this bill 
is reasonable. The average family would be forced to pay an 
additional yearly tax of $438. If you feel as we do, then call 
the "American Peoples Republic Information League For Our Own 
Lifes" (or aprilfool) at 1-800-got-chaa.