Monday, January 04, 2010

The Unbelievable Truth - Tax

On the Radio 4 show, The Unbelievable Truth, Panellists are required to tell lies about a subject and to try and smuggle a few truths past their fellow pannelists as they do so.

During the New Year Special, John Lloyd had to speak on the subject of "Tax".

He told a number of contrived tales that included lies, perhaps the best of which was that in Scotland income tax day is commonly known as Hog Money.

Alleged truths smuggled past include:
  • Bagpipes can enter America tax free
  • On the day PAYE was to be introduced, Sir Kinglsey Wood, the pioneer of PAYE collapsed and died.
A fascinating 'truth' shared during the programme concerned German tax collector Karl Doberman who was (unsurprisingly) not welcome when he went to collect money. To protect himself he bred large fierce dogs that became known as Doberman pinschers.

Panel show host David Mitchell added the observation that in the first century, tax hungry Emperor Nero went so far as to impose a tax on the collection of urine. Apparently he was widely considered to be taking the piss.
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