Finally, the moment we’ve been waiting for: cheaper phone service! The telephone companies will stop charging the 3% “federal excise tax” that was originally instituted in 1898 to help fund the Spanish-American War. At the time, only wealthy people owned phones, so the government had the idea of taxing them to pay part of the war costs. The problem was that when the war ended, the Gov decided it was sort of nice to have that revenue stream (and the number of phones was steadily increasing, of course) so it continued…

for over a hundred years!

But now it’s been harder and harder to justify the tax, so Congress repealed it. Effective today, all of our long-distance phone bills will drop three percent. Yay!