Your free speech rights are secondary when some potential tax revenue is on the line, at least in Philadelphia.
Check out this outrageous story.
For the past three years, Marilyn Bess has operated MS Philly Organic, a small, low-traffic blog that features occasional posts about green living, out of her Manayunk home. Between her blog and infrequent contributions to ehow.com, over the last few years she says she’s made about $50. To Bess, her website is a hobby. To the city of Philadelphia, it’s a potential moneymaker, and the city wants its cut.
In May, the city sent Bess a letter demanding that she pay $300, the price of a business privilege license.
“The real kick in the pants is that I don’t even have a full-time job, so for the city to tell me to pony up $300 for a business privilege license, pay wage tax, business privilege tax, net profits tax on a handful of money is outrageous,” Bess says.
So you now need a business license to have an online diary. This is outrageous! Do these people even understand what it takes in revenue to even break even on a blog?
Is it improper for a government to require business licenses for actual businesses, even if they are blogs? No. But this is the typical heavy handed approach of those in government more concerned with getting your money than protecting your speech rights.
There out to be reasonable thresholds for this sort of thing otherwise you will prevent those who can least afford it from expressing themselves.
And trust me, if Philly gets away with it, this ridiculousness will be coming to city near you–soon!
Go! Confront the problem. Fight! Win!
ht Gateway Pundit.