Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Taxes and History

Naomi Rawlings here today. We've just finished up tax season here in the United States--how lovely for us.
I'm sure you understand that taxes have been around for a long time, certainly for centuries, and possibly even for millenia. Did you also know that evading taxes has been around for just as long?

Yep. It sure has, and my most recent novel, The Soldier's Secrets, deals with exactly that--a band of powerful people who have gotten themselves very rich by evading the King of England's customs agents and smuggling goods like tea and tobacco into England. These smugglers would also secretly spirit wool out of England as well, because there was an export tax on all wool leaving the country.

Of course, the hero and heroine of The Soldier's Secrets aren't helping the smugglers, but they still find themselves rather tangled up in some of the smuggler's nefarious deeds.

About the time we were throwing the Boston Tea Party here in the United States, 75% of the tea in England was being smuggled, according to some historians. So are you surprised to learn that smuggling and taxes are so closely related? Are you shocked that people were trying to evade taxes hundreds of years ago?

11 comments:

Christine Johnson said...

Not surprised at all that tax evasion is a longstanding practice. I immediately thought of the despised tax collectors during Jesus's time and the question posed to him if they should pay Roman taxes (to which Jesus asked whose image was on the coin). Your story sounds fascinating!

Margaret Daley said...

Very interesting. Thanks for sharing.

Pamela Tracy said...

Your post made me remember junior high and learning all about the Boston Tea Party.
Your book sounds great!

Sherri Shackelford said...

Never shocked! Human nature hasn't changed ;)

Debby Giusti said...

People rebel when they're unfairly taxed, which is often the case historically. Some say our tax code is unfair as well. Fodder for debate no matter the period of history.

Sandra Orchard said...

So glad to be done taxes! :) Too bad we can't send sonny boy to the lake to catch a fish with coins in its mouth to provide our tax money. ;)

Your story sounds intriguing, Naomi.

CatMom said...

I had to giggle at your opening comment when you added: "how lovely for us." ;)

Sadly, I'm not surprised either that tax evasion has been around so long.

I'd already planned on getting your book, but after reading this I'm even more intrigued! Thanks for sharing today.
Blessings, Patti Jo

Leann Harris said...

I remember years ago that Poldark was on PBS station, and it was all about taxes and French brandy or some liquor that the English didn't want to pay taxes on.

Dana Mentink said...

Maybe that's why tax collectors have historically been despised!

Jenny Blake said...

no not surprised about the tax evasion. I did know about england over taxing americans etc. I learnt some while in the states last year and the slogan taxation without representation which Washington DC has on its cars.

Allie Pleiter said...

One of the few advantages of having kids in college is that you usually have to get you taxes done very early--helps for an enjoyable April. :)