Cellphone "federal excise tax" dates back to the Spanish-American War - Engadget
So the telcos are paying a tax which started back during the Spanish-American War, huh? Well, not really. You see, as I mentioned earlier, telcos pass their taxes on to you. I don't know the whole truth of it since the telcos aren't really forthcoming about their various "questionable" charges (you know, the ones they were forced to show as line items on your bill?), but it seems to me the phone companies aren't being very honest about these charges, and somehow it seems they're trying to make their customers foot their legal obligations to the government as well. Of course, we're all sheep, though, and we'll never cry out in large enough numbers to make the phone companies bat an eyelash. The only way they'd stop passing their non-consumer related costs on to the consumer would be if the consumer stopped consuming, and somehow even I (the cynic I am) wouldn't want to lose the use of my celly.