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Old 03-03-2012, 03:56 PM   #16
xg4bx
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I actually agree with this. Hemp-based paper is sturdier (the original Gutenberg bible was printed on it), there's less environmental cost to growing and processing it than for wood and cotton, and you can use vertical space by growing it in high-rise closets or whatever, leaving arable farmland free for food crops.

Incidentally, I personally think that books and basic forms of soap* shouldn't be taxed unless you want to end up with an illiterate and unhygienic population.

* Both of these are taxed in Canada, and there's some talk of also applying the same tax to even more categories of groceries, so perhaps we can add "half-starved" to the list.
a tax on soap? awesome way to make the smelly even smellier. they should hand soap and deoderant out for free and educate people in their usage. god knows theres plenty of people here in 2012 for whom hygiene is still a new concept .
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Old 03-03-2012, 05:34 PM   #17
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We have the opposite here in the UK. Paper books are exempt from VAT because they are seen as basically a good thing, or something. Ebooks are not, because they are deemed a luxury item (which, in a way, I guess they are), so we have a 20% tax on ebooks and no tax on pbooks.

That doesn't change what I am willing to pay for them, though.
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Old 03-03-2012, 05:36 PM   #18
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Big government is not the solution, big government is the problem.
Nope.. The agency publishers are the real problem.
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Old 03-03-2012, 05:54 PM   #19
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Unhappy

Indeed, the nasty stuffs in your little innocent reader are extremely damaging environmentally, and the production of them, and the manufacturing process involved in the building of them, rather negate your suggestion.
And, as mentioned, the raw material for paper books are now mostly replaced.

No, I'm afraid we aren't saving the world with all our gadget acquisitioning.....
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Old 03-03-2012, 06:41 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by carpetmojo View Post
Indeed, the nasty stuffs in your little innocent reader are extremely damaging environmentally, and the production of them, and the manufacturing process involved in the building of them, rather negate your suggestion.
And, as mentioned, the raw material for paper books are now mostly replaced.

No, I'm afraid we aren't saving the world with all our gadget acquisitioning.....
+1
In addition to the production costs of the technology, there are the ongoing costs to keep the technology running. At a bare minimum there is the cost to generate electricity so that Wi-Fi updates work and so the devices can be charged to continue to work. We think of these as free, but it does cost us something to maintain the technology.
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Old 03-03-2012, 09:02 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by carpetmojo View Post
Indeed, the nasty stuffs in your little innocent reader are extremely damaging environmentally, and the production of them, and the manufacturing process involved in the building of them, rather negate your suggestion.
And, as mentioned, the raw material for paper books are now mostly replaced.

No, I'm afraid we aren't saving the world with all our gadget acquisitioning.....
The environmental impact of ereaders depends on how many new pbooks are forgone. After 20+ new pbooks ereaders become better...at least that is what I read.
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Old 03-03-2012, 09:09 PM   #22
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Great idea then we can lose all the tree plantations that are grown SPECIFICALLY to produce paper as we won't need them... one good move... then we won't have the carbon getting locked up in paper and the NEW trees planted to replace every one harvested... second good move... and we can concentrate on producing millions more eReaders at taxpayers expense for those who can't afford to buy them thus adding to pollution from the electronics production and rare metals extraction... third good move... yea, go green loonies again then maybe you can concentrate on something that both matters and DOES improve things instead of knee-jerk rubbish...

Maybe the rest of us are also getting a bit sick of unwanted governmental interference and taxing of our lives for things that are none of their business... oh, whoops, look there goes another pseudo-liberal transnational who knows what is best for the world and everyone in it because they all know better than the rest of us poor benighted and obviously uncaring people...
You're forgetting about the cost and consumption of resources to actually manufacture the book, the contamination of water from paper mills, resources to transport it (energy, packaging waste, time, etc), cost to store it, and annoyance of dealing with the waste when it is tossed.

In conjunction with the tax, I'd propose that the government prevent the prevention of reselling and loaning ebooks. There should be a way to transfer the ebook like a pbook....if we are to get rid of pbooks.

Pollution of electronics is bad....but environmental impact of pbooks is probably worse overall. a lot of people read ebooks on tablets and computers where they already have a device and don't need to purchase a special device.

I also believe they should greatly increase US gasoline taxes to like $4 per gallon instead of having those CAFE standards. They can gradually institute the tax so people have time to change behavior. I can guarantee u that very few people will buy an SUV if there is a $4 gas tax. the UAW would make passing the tax extremely difficult though, if not impossible. the tax monies could go toward creation of solar power plants and such. the other added benefit is that in effect the tax would transfer wealth from OPEC to the home country as it means that the home country would be effectively collecting some of the oil price increase instead of OPEC. OPEC would not be able to raise the underlying price as high since the cost to the consumer has the added tax to stifle demand.

pbooks are laughably antiquated...the sooner they are minimized the better. imagine a world that instead of using telecommunications and email, you'd have to write a LETTER and send it via post, every time! HAHHAA, that is so pathetic. this is how I view pbooks.

but I agree, the 20% tax would create other problems we'd have to deal with.

Last edited by markbot; 03-03-2012 at 09:27 PM.
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Old 03-03-2012, 09:42 PM   #23
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Indeed, the nasty stuffs in your little innocent reader are extremely damaging environmentally, and the production of them, and the manufacturing process involved in the building of them, rather negate your suggestion.
And, as mentioned, the raw material for paper books are now mostly replaced.

No, I'm afraid we aren't saving the world with all our gadget acquisitioning.....
If you read only a few ebooks and then replace the ereader then yes...this is more wasteful than just buying the books. But if you reuse the ereader many times eventually it will become more efficient...just as a ceramic cup will be more efficient than paper cups after many reuses.

also, we are in a phase where ereaders are new so there are many innovations and we replace them frequently...eventually it will be a mature technology and the replacement cycle will greatly lengthen....just like with TV technology.
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Old 03-03-2012, 10:05 PM   #24
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Uh hell No
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Old 03-03-2012, 10:13 PM   #25
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If governments in the developed world are serious about environmental conservation, they should seriously consider a 20% tax on new paper books in order to benefit the adoption of ebooks. Ebooks take a lower toll on the environment.

This would get publishers to start pushing ebooks more than hardcovers, which are a COMPLETE WASTE of paper, energy, and space.

The tax funds would go to libraries to purchase ebooks.
Like the lottery tax funds go to the education system?

How much electricity and other resources does keeping servers, routers, and all the other necessary equipment just to make those e-books available 24/7 require? Especially since a majority of the electricity in the U.S. is still produced from coal...and we all know how enviro-friendly that is.

What happens when the power goes out long-term...say due to a massive solar flare or some other natural disaster? Then people won't be able to read at all...

Another tax on ANYTHING is stupid. Maybe the Government should tax people that drive red cars, eat meat and hell let's really stick it to the people that do not grow their own vegetables...trucking stuff halfway around the world or the country takes it's toll on the environment too...

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Old 03-03-2012, 10:42 PM   #26
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I generally agree with that stance; however, the full cost of pbooks like negative externalities of environmental degradation isn't priced into the books...thus demand may be too high. There is a useful alternative that has far fewer costs and also some side benefits....ebooks.

I also support the high taxes on cigarettes which funds healthcare in some states. You can think of this pbook tax as a vice tax.
I love your logic, Markbot. I want a 100% tax on cell phone use. They're a blight on the environment. I want a $300 a month tax on every television. They're a blight on the culture. Women's shoes should have a 100% tax. Hey, this is fun and I might get a job in Washington.
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Old 03-04-2012, 06:47 AM   #27
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I want a tax on people who spend their time in front of their electricity powered computers in electricity powered air conditioned offices and homes. They should go green, give up these burdens on the environment and instead work in their local economy with none of the wastage that comes from inter dependence of multiple local economies.
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Old 03-04-2012, 07:18 AM   #28
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if one feels they aren't paying enough taxes, there is nothing stopping them from sending a check to the treasury department. its perfectly legal.

personally i have no guilt that needs assuaging so i won't be opening my checkbook. i didn't sign any social contract, i don't owe the earth or my fellow man jack squat.
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Old 03-04-2012, 07:47 AM   #29
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I generally agree with that stance; however, the full cost of pbooks like negative externalities of environmental degradation isn't priced into the books...
Do you have evidence for this? To provide evidence, you may have to actually quantify those 'negative externalities of environmental degradation' to which you refer; in other words, put a $ on it. As others have eluded in this thread, there may well be an overall positive externality.
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Old 03-04-2012, 07:55 AM   #30
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Unhappy The great recycling question....

Regarding our environment, I do wonder about re-cycling in our brave new caring world.

Our local county Council (read "State" only a bit smaller) has implemented a fairly major recycing policy - foodstuffs, glass, zinc, foil, paper and card, and plastic - interestingly, the worse pollutant quantity-wise, but they can only recycle bottles, without tops, and no packets, trays,bags, etc....
Technalogically advanced trucks of varying sizes, specifications and uses were bought at huge cost, bins commissioned, "fact-finding" jollies undertaken by various Council employees and representatives, and research commissioned.

A major survey, and pilot schemes, were done at great expense, after which we were all given 5 receptacles (plastic!) and told to sort ourselves out.
However, nowhere can I find any investigations into whether householders cleaning habits would perhaps not help matters.
My neighbour, for example, cleans her tins, bottles, zinc/foil to within an inch of their lives - very hot water rinse, washing up liquid, more very hot water - because a] she's worried cats and rats would be attracted , and b] it wouldn't be nice for the binmen to handle dirty stuff. [ Even I rinse them out well - I don't like cats or rats either! They still pop round, mind you....]
Oh, and if you pay extra for garden waste, that must all be a certain size and amount, so it can be made into compost easier and sold back to us,otherwise it's back to the bonfire in the garden............

All this means electricity, gas, chemicals, time and labour, all invested heavily, just to clean something that gets cleaned again anyway !

Quite confusing really.
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