According to the Professor of Classics at the University of Oklahoma that I am listening to on audio CD, the Roman’s paid taxes that were equivalent to two days of work each year. In 6 AD a group of delegates from Judea petitioned Augustus to annex Judea to the Roman province of Syria. When this was done the Jews then came under a similar tax code that required they pay two days of earnings each year as taxation.
In the United States in 2008 our Tax Freedom Day is April 23. This is the day that Americans will have made enough money to pay all their taxes including federal, state and local. This amounts to 114 days (82 days of labor plus weekends) to satisfy our tax requirements. (The good news is this is three days less than 2007.)
I find it hard to believe that the Roman’s could run an empire on 2 days of taxation and we just hit the $10 trillion debt mark as a nation while we are taking 31% of our citizen’s earnings each year. I am still checking these numbers and verifying this comparison. I can’t believe mathematically and financially it would be better to be annexed to the Roman Empire than to be a free American. Some one say it ain’t so!