Major Online Tax Bill Being “Rushed through”. Thanks for the fish.

By on April 20, 2013 12:54:03 PM from JoeUser Forums JoeUser Forums

DrJBHL

Join Date 04/2002
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The Marketplace Fairness Act… at least it used to be called that, is now being pushed through the Senate. Thanks for the “fairness”. They probably won’t even read it… as usual.

“Proponents argue the proposal confirms the ability of states to charge sales taxes as they see fit, and they have begun to frame the issue as a matter of states’ rights. In a letter to the Senate, David French of the National Retail Federation argued the tax changes are needed to modernize the market.”

- http://news.heartland.org/newspaper-article/2013/04/19/major-online-sales-tax-bill-being-rushed-through-senate

What Mr. French doesn’t relate to is the fact that allowing one state to tax a resident of another state (we’re not talking income tax) is a significant expansion of state taxation power which should end at the state’s border (logically). Now, tax collection would occur where the customer is located, not the business. That won’t be tolerated for long. By removing the actual physical presence standard and as a result of tax competition among the states, this would probably increase the taxes on everyone by the state where the business is located levying some sort of fee on the business selling the goods. This legislation encourages states to collect taxes across their borders from businesses with no recourse. Thus states will compete for revenue by increasing cross-border taxes, rather than lowering taxes. An incentive to raise taxes can never prove beneficial.

Another shot in the neck of the businesses and consumers. In the end, it will, of necessity, hurt our overly robust [insert sarcasm] economy. Typical.

The other byproduct of this benighted legislation will be the establishment of yet another crazy precedent. Once passed, the amendment would be used as an exemplar and precedent for other bills that dramatically expand state tax authority have enough support to be fast-tracked to the floor of the Senate without adequate discussion in committee… clearly in just whose interest? Not mine.

Just to let you know why those great deals you used to get on the net will be disappearing.

Source:

http://news.heartland.org/newspaper-article/2013/04/19/major-online-sales-tax-bill-being-rushed-through-senate

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April 20, 2013 12:59:05 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Looks like another money grab scheme.

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April 20, 2013 1:46:00 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

What a load of horse manure . Since when has anything the government's done, been logical...

 

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April 20, 2013 2:05:32 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Orwellian naming as usual.

 

Marketplace Fairness is not forcing me to buy from localized monopoly chains by penalizing me for taking advantage of "fair market" capitalism to force companies to compete, and reward the better one. Of course, NAFTA is okay and even subsidized and corporations won't be "hit", this is just another means to attach costs to making choices to prevent choices from being made. Using prices, wages and taxes the poor can be ensured to be poor forever.

 

This started with the laws aimed at buying out of state/country cigarettes/alcohol. As some regions began using "punishment taxes" to regulate the impact of "bad habits" on the poor only, the poor responded by going to other places, using competition in the free market. Does this value only apply to corporations now? If these taxes were designed to have equal impact, the "punishment tax", or as Indiana calls it, the "Sin Tax" would scale with income to ensure that rich people are "just as restricted" from smoking/drinking as poor people.

 

To keep people down, laws were made and proposed ever since to penalize everything, including choice. If my locality only has monopoly chains I don't want to buy from and way overpriced crappy mom-and-pop stores who are just as bad, yet 2 miles to my east in Ohio, I can instead buy from a different seller, why shouldn't I? Punishing me for that reduces the choices I can make.

 

If my city decides to impose taxes against a product, and I can avoid the tax the next town over, then I should be allowed to make a choice and not be punished for it. If my town makes a law against R-Rated Video Games, the government shouldn't be able to stop Steam from selling me a game with adult content, and they shouldn't be allowed to punish me for using steam rather than going to EB Games, the only place in town (which I won't shop at).

 

One precedent this could lead to is city/county taxes being added to the penalties, so that if you go to the next town over to eat at a restaurant, get some gas and watch a movie, you have to pay city and county taxes. No surprise that all of these laws target citizen commerce and not corporate commerce, regulate humans but not the market.

 

I wish I were a corporation, because I would have more rights than I do as a human.

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April 20, 2013 2:50:05 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Well for one thing, don't buy things online if you don't have too.  Some folks because of their location are stuck with buying online, I understand that. 

Whatever happened to supporting you locale businesses?

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April 20, 2013 3:32:41 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Quoting Philly0381,
Whatever happened to supporting you locale businesses?
I'm sure alot of people do that. But it may be that the local business doesn't carry what you are looking for. I support local business if it has what I need. 

However I will wait to put gas in the car, until I am going to another town where I can get it cheaper then in my town. Sometimes local businesses charge more for things, well often they do.

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April 20, 2013 6:18:24 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums

Quoting teddybearcholla,
But it may be that the local business doesn't carry what you are looking for.

Quoting teddybearcholla,
I will wait to put gas in the car, until I am going to another town where I can get it cheaper then in my town.

 

Ditto.

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April 20, 2013 6:32:22 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Quoting Philly0381,

Well for one thing, don't buy things online if you don't have too.  Some folks because of their location are stuck with buying online, I understand that. 

Whatever happened to supporting you locale businesses?

 

What if:

a. The price is cheaper online, and you're on a fixed income (or not).

b. The object isn't on sale except through (say) Newegg, and you like the price... but then tax is added and it becomes less of a deal?

 

If you buy online prices should be lower, ideally. Brick and mortar (local) prices are generally higher (inventory, rent, etc.). Then, local taxes are added to the goods on the net... why? The business is say in L.A. (California), the goods are from whatever factory in whichever state.

Whose tax gets applied? The tax where YOU are. That goes against all common sense, and will cause the states where the businesses are to charge as well... then you get a vicious cycle.

The solution lies in providing services which have proved themselves, shrinking non-productive jobs (like government), and lowering taxes to stimulate the economy... which will provide monies via job creation.

I also don't like hasty legislation. It rarely works as imagined.

We don't pay legislators by the amount of legislation they produce, so why not take the time to do it right?

Make sense?

 

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April 20, 2013 7:14:29 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Doc I feel I must clarify something:

A business's requirement to collect and remit sales tax for a state is indeed currently based on its physical presence.  However, the absence of a business's obligation to collect and remit the sales tax does not mean that no sales tax is due on the transaction.  The consumer may very well be obligated to pay the sales tax to the state of his residence.  Instructions for doing so are typically included in states' personal income tax instructions and referred to as "Sales tax" or "Use tax".

I have not read this bill and I have no idea what all is packed into it.  On the surface it would appear we are talking about forcing the businesses to collect and remit taxes that are due to the state of the consumer instead of relying on the consumer to tell the state how much he owes.  In other words, the collection and remittance of taxes which are already in place, not new taxes.

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April 20, 2013 7:45:49 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Dave, I'm not exactly sure why a state is entitled to tax a whole lot of what it taxes... other than to rake in money.

This expansion of even current policy without adequate discussion goes beyond what I'm tolerant of. An argument could be made for a Federal tax as well, seeing it's interstate (in some cases) commerce (for the sake of discussion).

Since the internet is "stateless" in essence, should any tax be levied at all? What's to prevent An unrelated state to ask for a cut... after all, it's tied to the internet too (all just for the sake of discussion).

Theoretically, there's no end to it... and it will cause an inflationary competition for tax monies. I'll guarantee one thing: It'll give the politicians more monies to buy voter blocks with those monies.

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April 20, 2013 8:14:02 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Quoting DrJBHL,
An argument could be made for a Federal tax as well, seeing it's interstate (in some cases) commerce (for the sake of discussion).

Have no fear, they'll get there.  An easy argument can be made for end-user VAT tax verses income tax increases on companies just because it avoids repetitious marking up and compounding down the supply chain.  End consumer pays for it all either way, VAT is less inflationary.

Quoting DrJBHL,
Since the internet is "stateless" in essence, should any tax be levied at all? What's to prevent An unrelated state to ask for a cut... after all, it's tied to the internet too (all just for the sake of discussion).

As long as it sticks to the basic principle of end-user sales/use tax, it's not going to be anything new.  State of consumption gets the use tax.

I'm not crazy about them just jamming anything through either.  I don't want to digress into my opinion of Washington at this point though.

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April 20, 2013 8:36:41 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

VAT? That means a Value Added Tax, yes?

And just what value is being added? Not being sarcastic nor critical of you, Dave.

I'm asking the question because I can't see what of "value" is being added.

By definition, A VAT or GST (goods and services tax) is "a tax on the estimated market value added to a product or material at each stage of its manufacture or distribution, ultimately passed on to the consumer."

So, if it's software, where's the "each stage"... alphas, betas etc.? Who defines the "stages". I bet it's the guys who are telling you how much you owe. 

Just another way to rake in money to inflate government, depress commerce and the economy and take money from you and me. Oh, they'll give you a long list of "programs" and "services" that are being supported. How about cutting off the pork, fat and waste and leaving the money with the wage earner to put away for his/her kids, retirement, investments, etc.

Bet that'd help the economy a lot more... especially if they had a "Suze Orman" course in schools each year, so kids could learn financial responsibility...

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April 20, 2013 9:17:58 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Quoting DaveRI,
I don't want to digress into my opinion of Washington

After I wrote that I do feel compelled to add a little something though: Somebody there did a couple of things right in a few different states this week and for that I do have to say :     Enough said on that.

 

Quoting DrJBHL,
And just what value is being added?

The value of the privilege of paying more taxes without calling it "income tax".

 

Quoting DrJBHL,
Just another way to rake in money

Yep, that would be it. I'm honestly not eager to get into a tax/spending conversation, they just don't seem to go anywhere - even in Congress.

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April 20, 2013 10:59:27 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Look at the source for this post.  Right-wing news outlet preaching fear.  This is a bill designed to empower states to enforce existing tax laws regarding sales tax.  Dave has highlighted some of this already but this is simply forcing all companies to play by the same rules regarding "use" taxes.  Online businesses do have an advantage over brick and mortar shops (both small local business and the mega corps).  There's nothing inherently wrong with that but there is also nothing wrong with making it possible for a state to enforce its existing tax statutes.  

 

People pay taxes everyday.  That money makes society function.  That's the agreement our forefathers made with the government they created.  

 

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April 20, 2013 11:06:32 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

The economist did an article on this awhile ago. It's a little old but presents another view.

http://www.economist.com/blogs/democracyinamerica/2013/04/e-commerce

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April 21, 2013 12:26:43 AM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Quoting UTPriest,
People pay taxes everyday. That money makes society function. That's the agreement our forefathers made with the government they created.

You really ought to look at that one sentence at a time... The fact that people pay endless taxes everyday doesn't justify the taxes. "That money makes society function." Not really... what makes society function is commerce, and a mutually agreed upon medium of exchange. Your tax money pays for a lot of other things... especially debt from money borrowed for not great reasons.

As for the agreements made by our forefathers, government has exceeded them decades ago... without asking for our agreement.

 

Quoting UTPriest,
Right-wing news outlet preaching fear.

But not "Right-wing publication preaching sense." Being Conservative or Right-wing isn't a curse, you know.

 

 

Interesting read. I found this really good:

"The National Conference of State Legislatures reckons that the court’s prohibition cost states $23 billion in lost taxes last year."

As if they were entitled to that... lol. The court said there had to be a physical nexus unless the Congress legislated different. That's what this is all about... and why it's a rush job... a grab for money to fund programs which don't work continue to operate.

 

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April 21, 2013 12:52:23 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Disagree with you fundamentally.  Commerce exists in areas most rational people would consider beyond the pale of society and while certainly part of the motivation to organize isn't the sole factor.  Society is founded on a shared set of beliefs, mutual interests (read commerce), and in democratic societies, a explicit agreement between citizens and the government.  Citizens in these states empowered their government to act in their mutual interest.  This law simply gives teeth to an agreement that citizens have already entered into.  If they object to the law, they are free to move.  That is the nature of our civil society.  The debt you are referencing was likewise obtained through the actions of a government empowered under free and fair elections to render such decisions.  You agreement or disagreement with an individual reason for borrowing that money is irrelevant.  We borrowed it as a nation and we have an obligation to honor that debt.  

Quoting you further DR "As for the agreements made by our forefathers, government has exceeded them decades ago".  True as we have expanded a number of other rights as our society has grown and adapted but the basic premise remains and is affirmed through voting.  We have chosen to step over the original line as a society.  That's the nature of a democracy.


One last quote: "As if they were entitled to that... lol."  Actually, they are entitled to that money under the law.  That's the whole point of the bill.  They are seeking redress for money that is rightfully owed to them under the laws of the state.

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April 21, 2013 1:40:14 AM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums

I like Doc's wrong interpretation of the bill, that would actually be the sensible way to do things.

 

Sales taxes are collected based on the point of sale for a reason.  Your point of sale isn't the chair your ass is sitting on, it's the warehousing complex that ships you your goods.  The only thing that sees your locality is the truck it's delivered on.  Said truck is paying the same fuel taxes everyone else is to maintain the roadways it's using.  The place of business is not.  It uses the local power grid and waterways, pumps it's sewage into the local sewers, and partakes of the local emergency services when a problem arises.  It's employees that are also using said services also partake of them locally.  The costs on society are all at the location of the business, it's theft for another state to be stealing the gains from their economic activity.  It's also unconstitutional, but they've been wiping their asses with that particular document long enough that it's probably not even occurred to them that this bill violates one of the primary requirements of congress.

 

The idea that that would make everyone tax more is quite the farce.  What would happen is Amazon would immediately vacate it's high tax state and go somewhere sane.  Amazon can relocate just fine, millions of people can't.

 

Enforcing the sales tax on you even when you're shopping somewhere else is just the nature of politicians.  They're scum sucking little ass wipes that will do anything to blow more of your money buying power.  Buying somewhere else is a check on your locality's ability to screw you.  They're just upset because it's getting easy enough that they'll have to stop reaming people eventually.  They like how easy it is to get away with absurdly high sales taxes.  People piss and moan about how much the Feds are hosing them for, but the local governments are often screwing them out of just as much in sales taxes they'll bleeding vote for.

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April 21, 2013 2:05:18 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

You point is logical Psychoak but i don't fully agree.  The state where the goods are being sold bears the financial burden of the enterprise but it also does gain revenue from the business to offset that cost through property taxes, income taxes on the employees who work there etc.  So no real screwing going on there that I can see as the state where the business is located has an agreed upon relationship with the business.  The person who is avoiding the state sales tax while sitting in their home is "screwing" someone though.  They have a legal obligation to report and pay taxes on that money.  They just aren't currently (in most cases) due to the complexity of tracking it or the lack of oversight.  The bill addresses both by forcing the business to assume responsibility for the collection of the tax as they do with normal sales taxes.

 

Quoting Psychoak: "The idea that that would make everyone tax more is quite the farce.  What would happen is Amazon would immediately vacate it's high tax state and go somewhere sane.  Amazon can relocate just fine, millions of people can't."  Disagree and agree.  Amazon is a collection of employees (some of them highly skilled) and equipment.  You can't eailyy relocate it anymore than a person can easily pick up and leave.  It is possible in both cases if the situation is intolerable (as i stated previously) but realistically, the business and the customer would likely take a different approach to object rather than physical relocation.  


Finally I agree that politicians are rarely worthy of praise, but I think that asserting that their sole purpose in office is to "screw you" or "blow more of your buying power" is a bit off base.  Government exists to serve the people.  We the people vote for these people.  If you want to affect change, vote out these corporate sycophants and push lobbyists out of the halls of power.  Let citizen money elect politicians not big oil/pharma etc or on the reverse union bosses etc.  and then hold them accountable for their actions.

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April 21, 2013 2:31:48 AM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

From this article, 1st paragraph (thanks for the link by the way):

http://www.economist.com/blogs/democracyinamerica/2013/04/e-commerce

"if enacted, would allow states to collect taxes on sales by internet retailers based in other states."

I understand this to mean that Amazon etc would collect sales tax from the customers based on the states in which the customers are located and remit to those states accordingly.  It would not matter where Amazon is.

I agree with UTPriest that the issue is not whether or not states are "allowed" or "entitled" to collect sales tax on orders shipped in.  The issue is whether or not states are allowed to require out of state retailers to collect and remit sales taxes for and to those states (and audit accordingly).  Since this particular issue has already been addressed by the Supreme Court I would have to say that The Supreme Court's findings should stand until revisited and reversed.  In that regard I'm in agreement with the Doc - I long ago grew tired of legislatures ignoring and sidestepping the Supreme Court based upon the desires of the day, regardless of which side of the fence is doing it.  The Supreme Court is there for a reason and it's an integral part of the process.

So there's my take on it, and it's worth almost as much as the cyber-bytes it occupies.

 

And after that nice little speech I now absorb this from the 2nd paragraph of the same link:

"In 1992 the Supreme Court ruled that states could not force out-of-state retailers to collect tax on sales to residents unless Congress, which oversees interstate commerce, said so."

That's exactly what they're trying to do, isn't it.  I warned you that my little speech was worth almost as much as the cyber-bytes occupied.

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April 21, 2013 3:19:02 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums


 
The Marketplace Fairness Act… at least it used to be called that, is now being pushed through the Senate. Thanks for the “fairness”. They probably won’t even read it… as usual.
“Proponents argue the proposal confirms the ability of states to charge sales taxes as they see fit, and they have begun to frame the issue as a matter of states’ rights. In a letter to the Senate, David French of the National Retail Federation argued the tax changes are needed to modernize the market.”
- http://news.heartland.org/newspaper-article/2013/04/19/major-online-sales-tax-bill-being-rushed-through-senate
What Mr. French doesn’t relate to is the fact that allowing one state to tax a resident of another state (we’re not talking income tax) is a significant expansion of state taxation power which should end at the state’s border (logically).[/quote]

Umm, false.  Have you even attempted to think this through?

Every state I know of that has a state sales tax will tax all purchases made in that state, no matter which state the purchaser resides in.

Public infrastructure costs -- from roads to schools and emergency services -- do not vanish when a purchase is made over the Internet, and allowing Internet sales in a state to be exempt from sales tax represents a very unfair advantage to brick and mortar stores in that state.  Why should -everyone except you- be forced to charge sales tax while you get an exemption?

Now, tax collection would occur where the customer is located, not the business. That won’t be tolerated for long. By removing the actual physical presence standard and as a result of tax competition among the states, this would probably increase the taxes on everyone by the state where the business is located levying some sort of fee on the business selling the goods. This legislation encourages states to collect taxes across their borders from businesses with no recourse. Thus states will compete for revenue by increasing cross-border taxes, rather than lowering taxes. An incentive to raise taxes can never prove beneficial.

Completely false and unreasonable.  The business is selling products to customers in every state.  The purchase is being made in the state the customer resides in.  The 'physical presence' standard is maintained by the seller's website and ordering information being transmitted into the infrastructure in a state.  Do you not comprehend business or the basics of internet infrastructure?

[quote quoting="post"]Another shot in the neck of the businesses and consumers. In the end, it will, of necessity, hurt our overly robust [insert sarcasm] economy. Typical.
The other byproduct of this benighted legislation will be the establishment of yet another crazy precedent. Once passed, the amendment would be used as an exemplar and precedent for other bills that dramatically expand state tax authority have enough support to be fast-tracked to the floor of the Senate without adequate discussion in committee… clearly in just whose interest? Not mine.
Just to let you know why those great deals you used to get on the net will be disappearing.
Source:
http://news.heartland.org/newspaper-article/2013/04/19/major-online-sales-tax-bill-being-rushed-through-senate

Another thoughtless rant by someone who demands all the benefits of living in American society but refuses to pay one dime to support it.  If you don't want to pay state taxes, go live somewhere that doesn't have state tax-funded infrastructure.  Libya, Iran, North Korea come to mind ...

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April 21, 2013 3:59:28 AM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

If anybody actually wants to read it, here you go:

http://www.marketplacefairness.org/bill-text/

 

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April 21, 2013 6:47:27 AM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Quoting Chibiabos,
Another thoughtless rant by someone who demands all the benefits of living in American society but refuses to pay one dime to support it. If you don't want to pay state taxes, go live somewhere that doesn't have state tax-funded infrastructure. Libya, Iran, North Korea come to mind ...

Just a reminder: Trolling violates the TOS... any further and your comments will be deleted.

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April 21, 2013 8:36:36 AM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Another liberal run at money.  All that will do is force the company to another country.

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April 21, 2013 9:29:27 AM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

I may be way off base but to me it sounds like, without all the fancy phrase and such, that a consumer from one state goes to another state to buy something should have to pay state sales tax from the state he or she came from? That's a bit ludicrous dontcha think. I think that regardless of where you buy something you should pay the tax in the state you buy it from. Online tax is different. I live in Pa. If I buy something from California on line I should pay Pa tax not Ca tax. Did I misunderstand all of this?   

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April 21, 2013 9:37:48 AM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Quoting Uvah,
I think that regardless of where you buy something you should pay the tax in the state you buy it from.

Indeed, Uvah. That would be logical... if he were physically there. He isn't, however. Therefore this really needs discussion, and it shouldn't start with the premise

"There has to be a tax". It could start with the premise, "Taxes will depress commerce and the economy. Therefore, how can we AVOID taxes." That, however seems to have escaped notice, and it's no surprise since it would mean getting efficient, stopping pork and reforming election law and funding of politicians.

The system has a bias which is in the end, self defeating.

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