In Coyne's latest he suggests tax-breaks for Xmas gift-giving. Coyne plays things straight for the body of the column, but gives the jest away in his last paragraph:
Space does not permit going into some of the other advantages of this proposal, whether in terms of regional development, global warming, or national security. But I will say that if you believe one word of what I've written here, you're in even greater need of a Christmas break than I am.
However, many of Coyne's readers didn't get the satire, and expressed their approval of the idea, much to his chagrin and embarrassment.
I share Coyne's credulity. Because, frankly, Xmas giving is a sin, and any tax levied in connection with it should be considered on the level of a tax on cigarettes or booze.
Because modern Western Society trains people from the cradle on up to binge at Xmas, to battle for garbage patch dolls at midnight sales, to spend recklessly on junk like slow cookers and nose hair trimmers, to behave like the working men of the last century who drank up their pay-cheque in a single night so as to black out the emptiness of their sad existence, and etc.. In other words, you couldn't stop people from splurging on crap at Xmas if you wanted to, so why give them a tax break for it? In fact, why not hike the sales tax for a few months every year around the Holiday Season, rake in more dough to use for saving the polar bears up in the fast melting arctic?
Tax breaks on Xmas gifting are like baby bonuses, which are in essence a government incentive for screwing. Which is ridiculous. People will screw no matter what the economic cost, so logically they should be taxing it. Issue coin operated chastity belts, which have to be sent back to Ottawa at the end of every month.