“Tax Man”

“Tax Man” December 27, 2019



My wife and I have spent some of our time over the past few days trying to work out a little year-end business deal in such a way that any profit that it generates won’t all go to the federales.  Which, naturally, has put me in mind of a classic Beatles song — to which you can listen by means of the link given above:


Let me tell you how it will be

There’s one for you, nineteen for me
‘Cause I’m the taxman, yeah, I’m the taxman

Should five per cent appear too small
Be thankful I don’t take it all
‘Cause I’m the taxman, yeah, I’m the taxman
If you drive a car, I’ll tax the street
If you try to sit, I’ll tax your seat
If you get too cold, I’ll tax the heat
If you take a walk, I’ll tax your feet
‘Cause I’m the taxman, yeah, I’m the taxman
Don’t ask me what I want it for
(Ah ah, Mr. Wilson)
If you don’t want to pay some more

(Ah ah, Mr. Heath)
‘Cause I’m the taxman, yeah, I’m the taxman

Now my advice for those who die (taxman!)
Declare the pennies on your eyes (taxman!)
‘Cause I’m the taxman, yeah, I’m the taxman
And you’re working for no one but me (taxman!)


Scholarly annotation:

“Mr. Wilson”:  James Harold Wilson, Baron Wilson of Rievaulx (1916-1995) — Harold Wilson was first elected to the House of Commons in 1945, and served in the House of Lords as a life peer until his death.  A member of the Labour Party, he served along the way as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1964 to 1970 and from 1974 to 1976.

“Mr. Heath”:  Sir Edward Richard George “Ted” Heath (1916-2005) — Edward “Ted” Heath served as a Member of Parliament 1950-2001, as leader of the Conservative Party 1965-1975, and as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom 1970-1974.

“the pennies on your eyes” — In Greek mythology, dead souls had to cross the River Styx after departing the world of the living.  And the only way to do this was via a boat operated by Charon, an underworld spirit who served King Hades. Charon charged for his service.  His price was a single obolos (a silver coin) that was placed in the mouth of the deceased or on his or her eyes at the time of burial.  If this was not done, the deceased soul, lacking money to pay the fare demanded by the ferryman, would be left to wander the river shore and to torment the living (on this side of the Styx) as a ghost.


Posted from Richmond, Virginia



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