Wednesday, December 02, 2015

Islamic State: Death and Taxes

Islamic State Flag

Writing for the New York Times (November 29, 2015), Matthew Rosenberg, Nicholas Kulish, and Steven Lee Myers inform us that the "Predatory Islamic State Wrings Money From Those It Rules." The bastards! What's ISIS up to now?
"They fight in the morning and they tax in the afternoon," said Louise Shelley, the director of the Terrorism, Transnational Crime and Corruption Center at George Mason University.
Taxes, eh? The rates must be high:
Officials of the so-called caliphate dislike the term "tax," preferring the Islamic term "zakat," which refers to the alms Muslims are required to pay. Although the norm would be 2.5 percent of a person's wealth under typical interpretations of Islamic law, the militants are taking 10 percent, justifying the high rate by saying they are a "nation in a time of war," according to a citizen journalist in Raqqa who asked for his safety to be identified only as Abu Mouaz.
Only 10 percent? I knew life was cheap in the Islamic State, but I'd never have guessed the reason! A fellow could almost consider moving there . . . if the ISIS authorities weren't such sticklers about punishing us for enjoying some of life's simple pleasures . . . you know, like getting your head chopped off for drinking a good cold beer.

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At 5:08 PM, Anonymous The Singing Organ-Grinder said...

Wealth, not income. Offshore has never seemed more attractive.

At 6:33 PM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Comments have never been more weird and wonderful.

Jeffery Hodges

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At 10:54 AM, Anonymous Tom Ball said...

I'm tired of all this caliphate-bashing. If American theater has taught us anything, it's that Caliphs are wise and charming leaders, who easily see through the machinations of their corrupt Wazirs, and dispense dazzling justice, all to the soaring melodies of Borodin.

At 7:55 PM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

You pried the words right out of my fist just as I was wadding up that NYT article that . . .

Jeffery Hodges

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At 10:34 PM, Anonymous tom ball said...

Honestly, I didn't know about that. I never see the Times.

At 3:58 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

I was joking. The NYT is pretty good on covering jihadi motivation, though there is a tendency to avoid the possibility that it might an authentic expression of Islam.

Jeffery Hodges

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