Following a link from Instapundit, I got to read about the “economy” of the Inca Empire.
In the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, the Inca Empire was the largest South America had ever known. Centered in Peru, it stretched across the Andes’ mountain tops and down to the shoreline, incorporating lands from today’s Colombia, Chile, Bolivia, Ecuador, Argentina and Peru – all connected by a vast highway system whose complexity rivaled any in the Old World. Rich in foodstuffs, textiles, gold, and coca, the Inca were masters of city building but nevertheless had no money. In fact, they had no marketplaces at all.
How neat, I wonder how they did it. Of course, they explain it later in the story.
The secret of the Inca’s great wealth may have been their unusual tax system. Instead of paying taxes in money, every Incan was required to provide labor to the state. In exchange for this labor, they were given the necessities of life.
Hmm. People forced to labor for the benefit of others and given the “necessities of life.” This sounds suspiciously like what we used to call slavery.
So I guess “Labor Tax” is the new PC term for slavery. How long until we start hearing our politicians calling for a “Labor Tax?”