Friday, December 15, 2006


Tax closures

Uruguay's tax authorities closed 22 businesses throughout the country yesterday, including one of our favorite restaurants. Most of the businesses will be closed for 6 days. This morning's El Pais quotes a tax official, "As the saying goes, when you see your neighbor's beard burning, put yours to soak." [my translation*] Academics call this the demonstration effect, but I like the burning beard better. The IRS uses the same strategy with high-profile tax-evaders (Willie Nelson comes to mind.)

*Here's the original quote:
"Queremos decir que, como dice el dicho, cuando veas las barbas de tu vecino arder, pon las tuyas en remojo."

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