Iowa has brought Scrooge to Halloween. Before, pumpkins (an edible foodstuff*) were not taxed. Now, the tax man has decided that the state just needs to get 5% of the sale of every jack-o-lantern, which are, after all, used for entertainment/decoration and not for food. A person who purchases a pumpkin must fill out a form for sales tax redemption, if he chooses to actually eat the pumpkin instead of carving it first.
This raises some interesting questions. Do you pay sales tax if you buy the pumpkin for the seeds only? Would you have to pay if you ate the seeds put also carved up the pumpkin? Can you use a pumpkin for decoration and later make it into pumpkin pie? What if the pie burns in the oven and the whole enterprise is a disaster? Should people have to pay tax on food if they manage to make it look pretty before throwing it out?
Can you uset he new taxes to threaten your kids if they won’t finish their dinner? “Kids, if you don’t eat your squash, Mommy and Daddy have to pay sales tax on it. That’s coming out of your allowance.”
If a bartender uses lime rinds to make cute curliques to decorate martini glasses, must the bar pay sales tax on the limes? What about those little silver balls that are put on Christmas cookies but are inedible? No one really ever eats the little parsley sprigs put on their plates in restaurants; will there be a line item charge for those?
Inquiring minds want to know!
*Unlike Cheez Whiz, which is an inedible foodstuff