Sometimes, I wonder how they pay their taxes in different countries.

In Russia, two big burly guys probably knock on your door and say, “Give to us all the money you haven’t hidden yet.” Then they pocket some of it and give the rest to some apparatchik, who pockets some of it and then passes it along to some other official, who takes a cut. On and on and on it goes until, at the end of a long road, it goes to the government. The Russian government then takes that money and uses it to pay for things like snowplows and secret prisons.

Contact Jim Mullen at mullen.jim@gmail.com.

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