Rhode Island Also Wants to Tax Your Pr0n

rgMekanic

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A few weeks ago a Rhode Island representative wanted to tax violent video games, now the Providence Journal is reporting that they also want to tax your pr0n. Sen. Frank Ciccone, D-Providence, and Sen. Hanna Gallo, D-Cranston, introduced a bill that would require ISPs to digitally block “sexual content and patently offensive material.” But, consumers could deactivate that block for a fee of $20.

Wow, Rhode Island just doesn't want anyone to have any fun. Then again I'm the type that thinks the BATFE should be a store and not an agency.

If online distributors of sexual content do not comply with the filter, the attorney general or a consumer could file a civil suit of up to $500 for each piece of content reported, but not blocked, according to the bill.
 

Elf_Boy

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I have never understood why people get so upset about what other people are doing.

I really don't care what other ppl do in bed so long as adults are involved.

Trying to tax porn is no different.
 

kju1

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I have never understood why people get so upset about what other people are doing.

I really don't care what other ppl do in bed so long as adults are involved.

Trying to tax porn is no different.


Eh it has to be ALL consenting adults. But yeah I kinda view this as the same as the soda tax. Not a fan of anyone telling me what I can and cant do with my life. Its not like watching porn or drinking soda, or watching porn while drinking soda, affects anyone else.

Hell I dont even care if people smoke as long as they do it somewhere that I dont get any of the second hand effects.
 

sadsteve

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Won't take long for the public to figure out how to get around this. VPN's are a good thing.
 

Gorankar

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I am getting the feeling this is a revenue issue and not actually a porn issue.
IE, they are going for the money by playing on people's public facing morality show, and private facing unwillingness to give up their porn, and not trying to impose their morality by increasing the cost of porn with a tax.

So, just another sin tax to feed the ever growing financial needs of our politicians imho. Either way, they can screw off.
 

Zarathustra[H]

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Eh it has to be ALL consenting adults. But yeah I kinda view this as the same as the soda tax. Not a fan of anyone telling me what I can and cant do with my life. Its not like watching porn or drinking soda, or watching porn while drinking soda, affects anyone else.

Hell I dont even care if people smoke as long as they do it somewhere that I dont get any of the second hand effects.

Well, to play devils advocate here a little. A reasonable person could argue that drinking excessive amounts of sugary sodas can lead to various chronic illnesses resulting in you becoming a load on society, bringing up other peoples health insurance costs, and in older age exacerbating the already precarious financial health of medicaid...

Everyone in society benefits when people stay healthy. Everyone in society is hurt when people through their own actions become less healthy, even if they are not directly impacting anyone else.

Argument in a nutshell: "Why should I pay more for MY group health insurance because YOU gave yourself diabetes?" :p
 

alxlwson

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What kind of bullshit is this?! How do they think they even have the right to do this? Is this not censorship?
 

NeoNemesis

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Well, to play devils advocate here a little. A reasonable person could argue that drinking excessive amounts of sugary sodas can lead to various chronic illnesses resulting in you becoming a load on society, bringing up other peoples health insurance costs, and in older age exacerbating the already precarious financial health of medicaid...

Everyone in society benefits when people stay healthy. Everyone in society is hurt when people through their own actions become less healthy, even if they are not directly impacting anyone else.

Argument in a nutshell: "Why should I pay more for MY group health insurance because YOU gave yourself diabetes?" :p

I was going to post something similar but you said it better. As someone with universal healthcare, I actually approve of sugar taxes for the same reason I believe in cigarette taxes. If your lifestyle burdens our healthcare system you should have to pay more for it.

But I just can't wrap my head around their reasoning for taxing porn. They claim its to help fund human trafficking efforts, but I'm not aware of any link between porn and human trafficking. There are obviously links between human trafficking and prostitution, but porn =/= prostitution. The whole thing just boggles the mind.
 

MrDeaf

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Not that I would pay for such extortion money, but the details are a bit vague.
Is it $20 per month, quarter, year or one time fee?
 

gxp500

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Not that I would pay for such extortion money, but the details are a bit vague.
Is it $20 per month, quarter, year or one time fee?
Its a monthly fee, includes a free pornhub subscription and coupons for backpage...
 
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rgMekanic

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Not that I would pay for such extortion money, but the details are a bit vague.
Is it $20 per month, quarter, year or one time fee?

I was wondering that myself, the fact that they say the fine is per video, one could fear that the fee is as well
 

AlphaAtlas

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Isn't this a first Amendment violation?

Now, if they reworded the proposal so you instead get a tax break for using the filter, that would be less of an issue.
 

seanreisk

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Well, to play devils advocate here a little. A reasonable person could argue that drinking excessive amounts of sugary sodas can lead to various chronic illnesses resulting in you becoming a load on society ...

Devil's advocate back at you - although I am in favor of people with unhealthy lifestyles paying a premium for their excess, the truth is that people who live a healthy lifestyle and survive past 85 cost more over time than an unhealthy person who dies in his late seventies. And their greatest medical costs will come 20 years after their most productive period for the state, i.e. the taxes they paid at their highest wage level will be at their lowest inflation value when their care cost obligations for the state are the highest. Since we don't have a system where Social Security benefits are allowed to accrue interest (because we have so much national debt) healthy people are doubly burdensome.
 
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Azphira

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Well, to play devils advocate here a little. A reasonable person could argue that drinking excessive amounts of sugary sodas...

Yes, the government trying to save us, too bad their meddling replaced that sugar with high fructose which caused the problem.

The government is a protection racket.


 

AlphaAtlas

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No more so than paying tax on a newspaper would be I should think.

That's a general sales tax though. AFAIK, there's no newspaper where the state says "you can't read this specific paper unless you pay a $20 fee".
 
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WhoMe

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So if you have money no problem, if you barely have enough to eat each month well why would you want to view porn, right? In the UK they are going to require everyone who views porn to prove their age. That so far isn't going so well (and yes VPN is a workaround). Or we could realize that most children don't really care what the adults are doing and would find porn very boring and when they are old enough to be interested they should, you know, be given education about the topic. But let's go overboard and make sure to protect those innocent darlings from something they will find a way to get to when become interested in such things. Puritanism still runs strong in some places.
 

Spidey329

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Will never fly. Pretty sure this would become a freedom of speech issue as the government would be putting up undue barriers to another's protected speech.

If they allow this for porn, then it opens the door for putting content censorship "taxes" on political rivals or speech they wish to prevent from consumption. What would stop them from making the fee $500 or $5000?
 

Gorankar

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That's a sales tax though. AFAIK, there's no newspaper where the state says "you can't read this specific paper unless you pay a $20 fee".
They are saying you can't read/view porn online unless you pay a special tax, not that you can't view a particular porn site. I am not saying it's right, just that it is likely close enough to legal that it will have to travel the court system b4 we find out.
I don't want to liken it to the extra taxes we pay on alcohol or tobacco products, since one is an enumerated right and the other is not. So I will use firearm ownership instead. They can and do tax entire categories of firearms and firearms accessories differently than other firearms already. Again, this is not something I agree with, but it is not without precedent that something we think should be covered under an enumerated right is taxed differently.;)

And, well, stupid politicians trying to get money will try anything they think they can get away with and a few they are pretty sure they can't.
I don't think this will get far, but I guess we will see.
 

Chupachup

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No more so than paying tax on a newspaper would be I should think.
You're paying for the newspaper where at the point of sale a tax could be collected. If you're watching free content, just where is the sale to collect taxes on? Are they also going to block pictures of classic works of art and sculpture? VictoriasSecret.com? Instagram?
 

NeghVar

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RI politician: "Hey, now that there is no net neutrality, lets define and enforce our own ethics. And if they still want the porn, then they pay $20 and we can put them on a list of perverts."
Along with that, it is a source of dirt digging for political opponents. If someone grass-roots is running against an incumbent, the incumbent may have the ties to gain access to the list of "perverts" and use it against them in the smearing campaign.
 

umeng2002

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Let's be honest, if everyone started to get healthy, hospital systems and drug companies would just increase prices to offset the difference.

I've worked in the Healthcare industry for a good number of years and so have other members of my family. All they do is make up any excuse to increase prices.
 

Jehuty

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This kind of bullshit is what net neutrality is supposed to protect. I can't believe those guys.
 
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RI politician: "Hey, now that there is no net neutrality, lets define and enforce our own ethics. And if they still want the porn, then they pay $20 and we can put them on a list of perverts."
Along with that, it is a source of dirt digging for political opponents. If someone grass-roots is running against an incumbent, the incumbent may have the ties to gain access to the list of "perverts" and use it against them in the smearing campaign.

i would counter it with a 'you're a fascist' campaign, with direct comparisons with censorship attempts executed before.

combined with a bible-quoting campaign that says whatever happens in my bedroom remains in my bedroom.

but unfortunately all these politicians with money to mount such a campaign are in the same boat anyways.
 

sfsuphysics

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Wonder where this falls on the spectrum of unconstitutional. You can make arguments that cigarettes, sodas, gasoline, and bags at a grocery store can be taxed (fee'd) because they don't fall in the spectrum of constitutional rights. But for something like porn which actually has been argued as constitutionally protected at the SCOTUS level (I believe) now forcing companies to block your ability to view it sounds a touchy might unconstitutional.
 

Batboy88

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Wonder where this falls on the spectrum of unconstitutional. You can make arguments that cigarettes, sodas, gasoline, and bags at a grocery store can be taxed (fee'd) because they don't fall in the spectrum of constitutional rights. But for something like porn which actually has been argued as constitutionally protected at the SCOTUS level (I believe) now forcing companies to block your ability to view it sounds a touchy might unconstitutional.

They feel like just there shouldn't be any perversion or anything corrupted lol , want go back to the dark ages of computing...
 

ZiggyDeath

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Time to exploit that bill; spend all my spare time trying to find unblocked porn to file frivolous lawsuits for 500$.

OOC, would it be legal for all ISPs to simply pull out of RI?
 
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