The European Union has proposed to tax robot labor.
This may be one of my all-time favorite “Are you serious?” ideas from any government body.
According to my Economy and Markets newsletter, this proposal classifies robotic workers as “electronic persons,” subjecting their owners to social security taxes.
Why do they feel it’s necessary to tax robots? Look at it this way: most government retirement programs are based on current workers paying for current retirees. If the robots are replacing workers, that means there are less people paying into social security, and less money for current retirees.
This law would force business owners to pay the amount of taxes being forfeited by replacing human labor with automation.
There’s no escaping the taxman. While this particular plan may not have legs, proposals like it will eventually find their way into law in most advanced economies.
Let’s just hope the day never comes when the robots decide they aren’t terribly interested in supporting old people, especially now that we are starting our Senior Assisted Living homes. We had better get that robot tax going as soon as possible over here in the United States. That shouldn’t be too hard, because I don’t think government officials have ever met a tax they didn’t like!