(navigation image)
Home American Libraries | Canadian Libraries | Universal Library | Community Texts | Project Gutenberg | Children's Library | Biodiversity Heritage Library | Additional Collections
Search: Advanced Search
Anonymous User (login or join us)
Upload
See other formats

Full text of "Political Science Of The State"

DEMOCRACY AND  DEMOCRACIES.                    137
that I am deprived of what I own beyond the borders, and
I receive no revenues from my property in Attica, and what
I had in. my house has been sold ; I sleep, quietly stretching
myself out, and I have become to the city an object of trust
and no one threatens me, while I threaten others and like a
freeman can. go abroad or stay at home. And rich men even
rise up when they see me coming, and let me have their seats
and step aside for me to pass. Then I paid tribute to the
city, now the city, bringing me its contributions, maintains
me." *
These services of the wealthy are not to be regarded as a tax,
for they were called for when there were no property-taxes,
and those who were free from the usual litnrgice, as heiress
daughters and minors, bore the other burden. The eisphora,
or property-tax, was first introduced in 377 B. C., and classes
were established in which, as afterwards in the towns under
the decaying empire of Rome, the wealthier members ad-
vanced the contribution of the rest, and then collected from
the other members their shares amicably or by process of
law. This advance for others sometimes bore the name of a
\
liturgia> and was a process full of injustice. It is worth while
to add that in other democracies the same plan was pursued,
and that, if Boeckh is correct f in making the first of Solon's
classes liable to pay taxes on the whole of its income, while
the second paid only on five-sixths, and the third on five-
ninths, we should have here a sliding scale against the more
wealthy of very doubtful justice ; an instance of which, how-
ever, has recently occurred in the United States, where in-
comes above a certain amount paid an income tax of ten per
cent, and those below of only five.
When democracy at Athens took its final form, and while
demagogues, the radical nuisance, corrupted the people at
home for their own ends, thus destroying the energies of the
state, there was far less of oppression, during the supremacy
*Comp. also Xen. GEcon, n, 6, and various places in Aristotle's
politics, and C. F. Hermann, u. s., i.,  68, 160-162.
fComp. Boeckh, Staatsh., book iv./' 5.