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Tax Credits

Keep taxing diapers and tampons

Keep taxing diapers and tampons

When it comes to consumer goods, California's sales tax philosophy is pretty simple: Tax retail purchases except for things that people could die without, such as food, shelter, power, water and prescription drugs and devices. Other states exempt clothing too, considering them essential to human survival. In the temperate Golden State, however, clothing is still optional.

Of course, some nonessentials end up being spared from taxes. Many prescription drugs — think Viagra and Ritalin — are dispensed to improve quality of life, not to maintain it. Girl Scouts don't have to collect sales taxes on Thin Mints, nor do other nonprofits raising money for charitable causes. And...

EDITION: California | U.S. & World