Wednesday, October 31, 2007

A pumpkin is a pumpkin is a taxable item

In most states across the country, food items are considered tax-exempt. Given that one must eat if they hope to survive, this makes a lot of sense. But what happens when food items become known more for their decorative purposes than for their nutritional content?

Such is the case of many members of the squash family, most notably the pumpkin. The state of Iowa, deciding to settle the matter once and for all, has declared that pumpkins can be taxed, although a tax exemption is available for those looking to eat them, provided they fill out the appropriate forms.

Of course, many people feel as though they've been subjected to a horrible trick this Halloween, when all they were looking to do is treat their neighborhoods to a glowing orange orb, carved into intricate patterns (or, at least, the semblance of a toothy grin). Given that there are a fair number of people who carve the pumpkins for decoration, and proceed to use the pumpkin innards for various foodstuffs, we can imagine that a lot of tax-exemption forms may be getting filled out this year.

Naturally, Iowa tax collectors will be resistant to changing back, especially given that they believe that the predominant usage of pumpkins is for jack-o-lanterns. Never mind all of the other uses of pumpkins, ranging from pie to roasted seeds to extra color for streets and sidewalks.

Actually, come to think of it, maybe it's best that Iowa is taxing the pumpkin. Maybe they should consider taxing some other essentials, as well, such as whipped cream and eggs. After all, when you're young and celebrating Halloween in Iowa, what else is there to do than make foodstuffs into decorations?

It's not like you're sticking lead in your mouth.

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