When it comes to finding excuses to pillage the public, you can always count on politicians to find an excuse, no matter how ridiculous:
A 44-year-old Web site designer, Oldham is not now and never plans to be a member of the television-owning public, having given it up in exasperation when “Inspector Morse” went into reruns. But for more than a decade he has been enmeshed in a bizarre pas de deux with the agency that polices television ownership in Britain, and that seems intent on proving him a liar.
No matter how much Oldham protests, he said, stern letters come inexorably in the mail, informing him (in case he has forgotten) that he has not paid the £121, or $233, BBC license fee required annually of every owner of a “telly.” If indeed he is found to be harboring a television illegally, they remind him, he could be fined £1,000 or wind up in jail.
On a related note, a Munich court has ordered a €12 “copyright levy” to be paid on all new Fujitsu Computers PC’s. The tax, which will likely be extended to all new computers is meant to compensate uh, someone for software piracy costs.
I have an idea – how about a “life tax” – for the privilege of being allowed to live in a “democratic society?”