French Socialist Government Comes Up With Crazy Plan to Tax Facebook Users as Employees

French President Hollande’s mega-tax hikes for the rich were struck down by the court, but not before they drove some of France’s wealthiest businessmen out of the country. Now even more desperate for cash, the biggest loser of Europe has come up with another plan so crazy that it’s bound to work.

French president François Hollande has an idea. In a report, Hollande argues the French government should tax Internet companies like Google and Facebook based on their collection of personal data about their users.

The report published Friday said a tax on data collection was justified on grounds that users of services like Google and Facebook are, in effect, working for these companies without pay by providing the personal information that lets them sell advertising.

The report says tax rates would be based on the number of users an Internet firm tracked, to be verified by outside auditors.

Since the users are “working” without pay, then they wouldn’t be taxed. Yet. For now this is directed at companies. However since users do receive benefits from using free services such as Facebook and YouTube, the logic in this report would then justify taxing the users for the cost of that benefit.

The insanity began when states began treating affiliates as employees. That at least had some legal logic behind it because a transaction was occurring. This is no different than taxing a television network based on the number of people who watch it.

If individuals whose information is collected for advertising purposes are actually unpaid employees, then nearly every advertising or research company has tens of millions, if not hundreds of millions of employees.

This is yet another unserious and illegal gimmick from a desperate Socialist government trying to figure out a way to raise money to fund all its crazy promises. When it isn’t trying to seize property from the Catholic Church to house homeless people, it’s trying to tax the entire internet.

Hollande began crashing and burning from Day 1. Every month that his government remains in power, it finds new ways to embarrass itself at home and abroad.

  • Arlie

    The photo does look like a crazy person his ideas are really crazy. No wonder sane people are leaving.

    • John

      More people are coming to France than they are leaving. We've lost an obese drunkard who cannot handle his estate and could exempted from a lot of his taxes.
      Taxing companies like Google, Amazon and Facebook is in no way a crazy idea. In fact the European Commmission agree. Companies like that who partake in the double Irish sandwich with a side of Dutch should have their benefits taxed on the country where they their goods. Germany is already Goolge. Please wake up, and stop instulting bold initiatibes

  • Raymond in DC

    As in the US, French socialists can't comprehend that spending is the problem. Shortly after his election, Hollande reportedly *dropped* the retirement age from 62 to 60. Perhaps he thought that pushing some into retirement would free jobs for France's many unemployed. But it also increased France's pension costs. Duh! And so they continue searching for other people's money.

    • objectivefactsmatter

      Leftists believe that wealth is like energy. It exists everywhere, but it must be optimized and taken away from "hogs" that have historically abused natural resources, like hard work and ingenuity. The fruits of all natural resources like hard work and ingenuity must be shared equally among all people. Disparity of wealth or lifestyle is proof of unfairness. Social justice is the effort to remedy these historical "economic atrocities."

      It's just like atomic particles. They just need to be placed in the right configuration and you can create anything, even Utopia.

      Good luck with all of that.

  • rodger the dodger

    That is blinding. I love it. There is no limit to socialism’s insanity. I hope it’s true, and not just a rumour.

  • Elaine

    Yes but the people love Socialism. Beyond that, Socialist's always cook up new schemes to confiscate more from those who have anything because they have to. How else do you fund a huge welfare state? Unfortunately, I expect his idea will gain traction and acceptance and soon a committee in the UN will propose taxes on simply being alive. And of course we know there are never too many taxes nor are there ever enough taxes for Socialists.

    • objectivefactsmatter

      "Yes but the people love Socialism."

      These are people raised on the notion that "there are no limits to your imagination" and the idea that it means there are no limits on what your imagination can create in the material world. Just keep working on it. Things might break along the way. Let us know when you get there, we need to go party for a while and then wake up early to destroy someone's corporate headquarters.

      All in the name of progress.

  • JacksonPearson

    It's not a crazy plan…but in fact socialist/Progressive inventive planning. If any political ideologue can dream up a scheme, or how to redefine a terminology as to how to transfer monies from your pocket, into their's, it's socialists and hard line Progressives.

    E.g., Just look at how socialists/Progressives invented abortion, followed by Planned Murderhood, and the other biggie of "we have to pass it to find out what's in it," like in a box of Crackerjack's, the living and breathing Obama-Care Toy of "death panels." There's pros, and amateurs….whereas socialists and Progs are the greatest behind closed doors planners, and schemers.

  • JacksonPearson

    It's not a crazy plan…but in fact socialist/Progressive inventive planning. If any political ideologue can dream up a scheme, or how to redefine a terminology as to how to transfer monies from your pocket, into their's, it's socialists and hard line Progressives.

    • JacksonPearson

      I'm baffled???

  • Michael Copeland

    "Many voters have decided they like spending a lot on themselves and pushing costs onto their children and grandchildren." David Brooks, quoted by Bruce Bawer, FrontPageMag 21 Jan 2013

    This is the flawed basis of socialism. Hollande is failing to face it.

  • objectivefactsmatter

    "The report published Friday said a tax on data collection was justified on grounds that users of services like Google and Facebook are, in effect, working for these companies without pay by providing the personal information (that lets them sell advertising)."

    Now we're taxing non-income. Wonderful. There are no limits to the creativity of those who believe in socialism and "social justice." If you've got a computer connected to the Internet, you're too rich.

  • UCSPanther

    I wager that France has some very serious problems with tax evasion…

  • john Stone

    I wonder how they would collect the tax if the company is located in another country. Would all internet companies have to pay a tax for the number of users, or what, be shut out of the French market? Could they tax companies for non French users if the company is located in another country? As for church property, I thought they seized all that during the French Revolution.