Treasury mulls end of phone excise tax, the article in the Wall Street Journal said, pointing out that the law had originally been enacted to help pay for the Spanish-American War in 1898. Jesus, I don't think any of those veterans are still alive, are they? Apparently Congress tried to repeal the tax in 1990 but couldn't override a Clinton veto. The black cloud around this silver lining is that the paperwork required to get the refund of the 3% tax is so onerous that the average phone user, who's entitled to a refund worth $50, probably won't bother, according to this article from USA TODAY. You'd think it'd just be simpler to give everyone an additional $50 refund on their income taxes.