I wake up this morning in Zagreb, Croatia at 10:18am.  Damn!  I missed the free breakfast that went until 10.  Ugh, that will be the worst part of the day.  Guess I’ll meander down to the main common room of the hostel and check some lazy emails.

25 new emails!  Hope nothing too important happened while I was sleeping!

Whats this? “Notice of Termination due to New California Law“  Sent from Amazon?

Hello,

Unfortunately, Governor Brown has signed into law the bill that we emailed you about earlier today. As a result of this, contracts with all California residents participating in the Amazon Associates Program are terminated effective today, June 29, 2011. Those California residents will no longer receive advertising fees for sales referred to Amazon.com, Endless.com, MYHABIT.COM or SmallParts.com. Please be assured that all qualifying advertising fees earned before today will be processed and paid in full in accordance with the regular payment schedule.

You are receiving this email because our records indicate that you are a resident of California. If you are not currently a resident of California, or if you are relocating to another state in the near future, you can manage the details of your Associates account here. And if you relocate to another state in the near future please contact us for reinstatement into the Amazon Associates Program.

To avoid confusion, we would like to clarify that this development will only impact our ability to offer the Associates Program to California residents and will not affect your ability to purchase from Amazon.com, Endless.com, MYHABIT.COM or SmallParts.com.

We have enjoyed working with you and other California-based participants in the Amazon Associates Program and, if this situation is rectified, would very much welcome the opportunity to re-open our Associates Program to California residents. As mentioned before, we are continuing to work on alternative ways to help California residents monetize their websites and we will be sure to contact you when these become available.

Regards,

The Amazon Associates Team

Snap.  I had just spent a lot of time and money implementing the Amazon feed, and Amazon was responsible for nearly $100 of revenue a day for me.  I’ll also have to find out which other retailers will stop working with me because of Jerry Brown.

Leaving California is my ONLY option.

I’ll have to re-incorporate my California business in another state now.  That is the only way to survive.  Maybe Nevada? Delaware? A different country?  I can’t call Amazon (and all the other affiliate programs that might nix me) and say “please please let me work with you!”.  I can’t call Jerry Brown and say “please please please learn how the internet works!”.

I hope you are happy, California lawmakers.  I was paying California income tax but now I will pay zero California income tax.  I’m not sure how you intend to fix the budget when you are driving tax-paying businesses out of your state.

Would Meg Whitman Have Done It?

No!  Former CEO of eBay?  Are you serious?  She understands how the internet works.  Jerry Brown does not.  It is totally not fair for these dinosaur lawmakers in California to pass a budget when they have no idea what it even means.  Try to get each lawmaker to explain what this bill does exactly.

I’m In a Blind Rage.

I thought I had a lot of stuff to take care of when I returned to the states.  Selling the RV, buying a car, finding a place, selling off my websites, developing the new version and optimizing my main site, closing out a few other projects, and somehow fixing my shoulder/wrist injuries.  Now I have to move my entire business to another state.  Change my address for everything: affiliate programs, taxes, payroll, banks, etc.  All because Jerry Brown ignorantly decided that he didn’t want my tax dollars anymore.

Thanks, California.  We had a good run.

 

10 Responses to “Goodbye California! Thanks Governer Jerry Brown!”

  1. Therese says:

    That’s too bad. There was an affiliate on last night’s news explaining how he just lost his business.

  2. Patrick says:

    You should just move your company here while you’re in Europe:

    https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/Isle_of_Man#Economy

    Apparently they have low taxes. If not, seems like all the big corporations are in Delaware for some reason.

  3. Therese says:

    What about Portland. What’s Oregon’s status?

  4. Joseph Noonan says:

    Okay so I am going to break down how broken the state of California is so you can understand the reasoning and place blame in a more accurate direction.

    We have a Proposition system in California with the idea that the public can make decisions to override politicians. It sounds great, but in reality it is a just a horrendously bad idea. This is due to the fact that in general, people won’t vote to raise their own taxes but will make legally binding rules that the government has to follow. The result is the most convoluted and disgusting budgeting system in the nation. The most notable proposition is proposition 13 which made it impossible to raise property taxes at any substantial level. This is for both homeowners and businesses. For instance Disneyland pays taxes from when it was built, 1954. Here is an article on the tax law http://articles.latimes.com/2003/jun/30/local/me-property30

    Now we also have to have 2/3rds majority to pass the budget. All of the Republicans vowed not to raise taxes even though we cut the shit out of the budget already we have nothing left to cut. If we repealed prop 13 just for businesses we would have our budget fixed.

    So now lawmakers need to make revenue but have no options in the traditional ways. This is the result bad tax laws that are completely backwards and weird.

    So don’t place all the blame Jerry Brown or the Democrats, blame Mom and Dad if they voted for Prop 13. Blame the conservatives who have a dogmatic opposition to taxes which is completely unsustainable. I think that NorCal should succeed from SoCal so our states would be more manageable, also we could sell them water. We need to destroy then rebuild our government.

  5. Dad says:

    Joe;

    I was not a California resident when Prop 13 was passed by the voters. It was passed on June 6, 1978. I didn’t show up in California for another 5 months. You can’t blame the mess on me.

  6. Tommy says:

    I think moving to a different country would be much more difficult than just moving to a different state. Plus, I won’t be eligible for a whole lot of affiliate programs being outside the US… Probably just create more of a mess than I’m already in. Delaware has state income tax, but apparently has better business representation. I guess someone proposed the Affiliate Nexus bill in NV, but the truth is: “There was never a bill, the retailers pushed to get a bill sponsored but the legislature handily turned them down flat.” I can live with that.

  7. Tommy says:

    Joe – Here is my rebuttal:

    1. They have already passed this law in like 8 other states. I doubt they had Prop 13 in those other states.
    2. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) vetoed this the last few times it came up. Jerry Brown (D) passed it first time around. The governor of every state that has passed this has been a democrat.

    While I’m definitely not a democrat, I’m also definitely not a republican. Screw the two party system.

    Either way, I’m cutting the umbilical cord with CA. If they are going to pass backwards legislation that wrecks my honest business, I’m out. They don’t get anymore of my money. I have no problem packing up (figuratively) and becoming a Nevada. Viva Las Vegas!

    On another note, I immediately lost all pride in California. I’d constantly tell people I met traveling that I’m from California; since I was much more proud to come from CA than I was the USA. Now I’m embarrassed and ashamed to come from this state.

  8. John says:

    Well, interesting indeed. I know of your blog because I work with Therese; she told me what you were up to business wise. I would like to do something with my long dormant domains, machinist.com machinists.net and machinist.net and so I am starting to read up where I can hence I am here reading and being taken aback by this change indeed. I would really like to know where you end up with it all as I did the math and you are talking about a serious chunk of change lost. I would also like to know what Amazon is going to do in the long run as it seems that they might be throwing the baby out with the bath water to a similar degree as the Governor.

  9. Tommy says:

    Hi John-

    Amazon dumped all their CA affiliates not necessarily to avoid the tax, but to avoid having to put the systems in place to know when it needs to collect the tax. The tax would only be collected if someone clicked a CA affiliate link, so it could hypothetically be avoided if that same person clears their cookies and then tries to order again. This is one of the shortcomings of the law.

    I’ve already established a NV corporation, and have a virtual PO Box in Las Vegas. This was enough to start working with my affiliates again, however I’m still in the process of buying property in Reno.

    They are considering reversing it in Rhode Island already, since it has proven to reduce state revenue. I think this law will be reversed everywhere eventually, so Amazon and all the other affiliates won’t really be losing in the long run.

  10. New York says:

    As an American, I am ashamed and surprised to say that the United States is quite hypocritical. Americans like to say that they love freedom and justice, but here are some examples of where American actions conflict with American standards:

    1. The US inspected a Soviet Union fighter jet that landed in Japan in 1976, but protested that China should not search an American plane that landed in China in 2001.

    http://home.iwichita.com/rh1/hold/av/avhist/mily/spyplane.htm

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/1255343.stm

    2. The Fifth Amendment of the Bill of Rights clearly states that people should not be subject to the same offense twice, but sex offenders can be convicted of crimes and then later be required to register as sex offenders and be held for life under indefinite civil commitment laws even after they complete their original sentences. “John TV” shows that embarrass and punish people arrested on prostitution charges also violate the Fifth Amendment guarantee of due process rights.

    http://edition.cnn.com/2010/CRIME/01/12/scotus.sex.offender.law/index.html

    http://www.acluofnorthcarolina.org/?q=due-process

    3. The Sixth Amendment guaranteeing the right to speedy trials is violated by holding prisoners at Guantanamo Bay without charge. The Eighth Amendment prohibits cruel and unusual punishments and is violated by torturing Guantanamo Bay prisoners. Whether the prisoners are foreigners or not makes no difference because it violates the intent of the Constitution and sends the message to other nations that human rights violations are acceptable. Taking the moral high ground is difficult when you are immoral yourself. If you want to prevent terrorism, give terrorists a trial, improve airline security, and don’t give out visas easily. Torturing suspected terrorists only recruits more terrorists. Two wrongs don’t make a right.

    http://www.historiansagainstwar.org/resources/torture/cohn.html

    4. The Fourth Amendment protection against illegal searches is violated by the Patriot Act that allows secret warrants.

    http://www.renewamerica.com/columns/webster/090419

    5. The Fourth Amendment protection against illegal searches and seizures, the Fifth amendment that allows due process, and the Eighth Amendment that forbids excessive bail, fines, and cruel and unusual punishment are all violated by DUI checkpoints and asset forfeiture laws.

    http://detnews.com/article/20091112/METRO/911120388/Police-property-seizures-ensnare-even-the-innocent

    6. The Fourth Amendment protection against illegal searches and the Fourteenth Amendment that guarantees equal protection of the law is violated by Arizona’s immigration law that requires police to question people who look like illegal immigrants. Illegal immigration would be better stopped by having a strong border and fining employers of illegal immigrants, not by profiling Americans who look like foreigners.

    http://www.salem-news.com/articles/may062010/arizona-law-rs.php

    7. The United States criticizes Iran and North Korea for developing nuclear power, but the US helps the United Arab Emirates, India, and Vietnam develop nuclear technology.

    http://www.boston.com/news/nation/washington/articles/2010/08/07/us_vietnam_nuke_deal_likely_to_allow_enrichment/

    8. The USA supports democracy, but has overthrown democratically elected leaders in Iran and Chile. The US also supports countries that do not have religious freedom and democracy like Saudi Arabia and has supported dictators like Ferdinand Marcos from the Philippines, Ngo Dinh Diem in Vietnam, Suharto in Indonesia, and Saddam Hussein from Iraq.

    http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/06353/747165-109.stm

    http://www.military-veterans-for-justice.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=10&Itemid=13

    9. The US opposes terrorism, but has supported Osama bin Laden and freed the accused Cuban terrorist Luis Posada Carriles suspected of blowing up a plane in 1976.

    http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2001/09/15/osama-qna.htm

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2007/may/15/theterroristbushisntafter

    10. The United States says that it supports free trade, but foreign companies can currently only own 25% of an airline in the US, while American companies can buy 49% of an airline in Europe.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=newsarchive&sid=atMw6Pzh8Ls0

    11. The United States criticizes Airbus for receiving European government subsidies while ignoring the fact that Boeing accepted government tax breaks.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/09/04/business/global/04wto.html

    12. The US has a secret panel “kill list” of Americans who are targeted to be killed. This clearly violates the Fifth Amendment which states no person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law. If China had a list like this, I am certain Americans would be outraged.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/10/05/us-cia-killlist-idUSTRE79475C20111005

    http://www.aclu.org/blog/national-security/targeted-killing-death-without-due-process

    Maybe it is just human nature, but Americans have always looked for an enemy to blame from witches to blacks to Communists. Today people are aghast that the US had Japanese concentration camps and once allowed slavery and segregation. How will people look back on the treatment of sex offenders, Muslims, and illegal immigrants in the USA 60 years from now?

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/05/opinion/05kristof.html

    Criminals should be punished, but only in a way that doesn’t violate the Constitution. Even innocent people can be arrested and wrongly convicted.

    Enough is enough. If you care about your freedom, write your elected officials. Governments would love to take away all your freedom if they could. Our freedoms are diminishing, not growing. Stand up, fight for your rights, and protect our freedom now!

    http://www.usa.gov/Contact/Elected.shtml

    http://www.usconstitution.net/const.html

    ———–

    First they came for the Jews, but I was not a Jew. Then they came for the Communists, but I was not a Communist. Then they came for the trade unionists, but I was not a trade unionist. Then they came for me, but there was no one left to speak for me.

    If only one person is not free, then no one is free.

    They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.

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