Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Crash Tax Conversation

"Hey, did you hear the news that cities in 26 states charge you if they have to respond to an accident you caused?"

"Man, that's wild. How else will they tax us?"

"What do you mean?"

"Everytime we turn around, there's a new tax."

"Well, this isn't really a tax. If you don't pay taxes to that city--in other words, you live somewhere else--and you cause an accident, they'll charge you several hundred dollars for their fire department and police department to show up, take care of you and clean up the mess you created. It's more like a glorified user fee. You use their services, you have to pay."

"Well, I'm not going to any of those cities."

"Hmmm, interesting. Some cities have repealed their fees, or crash tax, for fear that people won't want to shop in their communities anymore. Why wouldn't you go to a city that has a crash tax?"

"I don't want to get charged for their fire department."

"You plan to have an accident when you go there?"

"No, but I'm just saying."

"If you're the kind of guy worried about paying a crash tax, then you must be the kind of guy who always drives new cars and has the worst driving habits."

"What do you mean?"

"People in new cars and bad drviing habits probably just had an accident and needed a new car. I get out those people's ways as fast as possible. By the way, how new is your car? Naw, don't answer that. Tell you what though. If you're worried about a crash tax my city might have, please stay home and have your accidents in your own neighborhood. Okay?"

"I'm not going to have an accident!"

"Okay, then you don't need to worry about the crash tax. All those cities can keep them to help defray the cost and still count on you, the good driver, to continue to shop at their stores, right?"

"I don't know."

"If you don't know if you're avoiding accidents, then you need to stay home. Look, give me a ten minute head-start going home tonight."

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