Tax System Described as “Byzantine”

April 1, 2015

Researchers at Oxford’s Bodleian Library have uncovered ancient parchments detailing a tax code which scholars are characterizing as “overwhelmingly byzantine.”
 
“When you look at a system like this, all you can do is marvel that it survived as long as it did,” observed Dr. Alp Arslan. “You look for equitable, broad-based systems, but this parchment tells a story of carve-outs and exemptions, sowing the seeds of its ultimate collapse.” Among the peculiarities identified in the parchments:
 

​”I can’t make heads or other heads of this byzantine tax structure,” a perplexed John Laskaris, professor of economics and medieval vexilla at Oriel College, declared. “It’s all Greek to me.”

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