Coffee’s ‘tax bomb’ leaves its mark
Since last year, we’ve been at war. It’s a war on prices. Everything is going up, to the point where it’s hard to avoid the price bombs that go off in your sleep. The problem is, we don’t even know when or what will go up. The phrase “people first” has become the voice of a shepherd’s boy as the rulers of the day shout it from the rooftops.
Last winter, when it was unusually cold, many self-employed people were hit by the government’s sudden heating bill. It is difficult to describe the damage done to dozens of coffee farmers who are forced to work during the long heating season.
Now that summer is upon us, we are beginning to hear concerns about when the cooling bills will go off. The dreaded summer is fast approaching, when we’ll be forced to replace our air conditioners with fans, or worse, debt.
The price of beverages, including coffee, has already risen significantly, and it’s not slowing down anytime soon. The coffee price hike boom, sparked by Starbucks’ Americano price hike last year, is still going strong. Even your favorite neighborhood cafe may now have a price tag on it.
One of the ways countries control prices is through taxes. The state has the right to impose taxes because it has to run the country, and the people have to pay for the state’s protection by paying taxes. It’s a tax obligation.
This is why the more mature the democracy, the more important it is to the people’s evaluation of the government, whether it makes their lives easier or harder with taxes. The core of the phrase “people’s life” that politicians often talk about is making people’s lives easier with taxes. People who can elect governments and politicians who do that are happy, and people who can’t are unhappy. We are living in an era where there are many signs that we are unfortunately on the path to unhappiness.
Taxes that don’t exist after you sleep
The street in front of Namdaemun Station during the Japanese occupation. In the second half of the period, the taxes imposed by the Japanese were almost bombastic.
There was also a time during the Japanese occupation when price bombs were particularly hard. It was the early 1940s. The Japanese imperialists dubbed their war of aggression the “Great East Asian War,” as if it were a holy war to rid East Asia of Western imperialism, and plunged all Koreans into the maelstrom of war.
As the front expanded across the Pacific, more money was needed, so by the second half of the war, the taxes they levied were almost bombastic. The next thing you know, taxes that were there go up, and taxes that weren’t there go up.
To glorify the tax bomb, the slogan they chanted was “taxpaying nation”. It was a strange movement to help the country by paying taxes. Paying taxes is a natural obligation of the people, so why did they use the term “tax bomb”?
They started to impose taxes like a bomb in 1937 with the start of the Sino-Japanese War. For example, on April 1, 1938, a “transportation tax” was introduced as one of the “special taxes for the Jiajisabai”. The tax was levied on all users of transportation, including trains, buses, and ferryboats. <The Daily Shimbun reported on this and titled it “A tax on your feet”.
There were also reports of a decrease in attendance at theaters due to the “admission tax. The “special tax on goods” led to a hoarding frenzy in anticipation of rising prices. In March 1939, news broke that the Ministry of the Interior had decided to tax garbage to raise money.
More taxes followed. On December 1, 1941, the “entertainment food tax” was dramatically increased. The shadows of rickshaws carrying parasites were reduced on Jongno Fourth Street. Why? The result was a 10 percent tax, or one hundred percent, on the price of their paintings. Café waitresses also had to tip and pay a 3% tax. With fewer customers, the fairy’s income dropped by half, and the cafe lost more than 30 percent of its revenue.
Nevertheless, the Daily Shimbun reported that neither the fairy owner nor the cafe owner resented the government or felt disappointed, and they were busy cooperating with the government and taking measures to “jump into water or fire.” They were on the side of the government안전놀이터
It was a good example of the fact that a country does not fail because there are many problems, but because many people do not know that there are problems, and it is the media that leads the majority of people down this path.
By 1942, the tax-paying citizenship movement had begun in earnest. The slogan, “The strength of the nation comes from taxes,” echoed throughout the country. Even Japanese living in Korea were not allowed to return to mainland Japan without a tax payment certificate.
On February 16, 1944, the Japanese government drastically increased goods taxes, entertainment taxes, admission taxes, and special activity taxes in order to build a large number of airplanes, warships, and cannons. Of particular interest was the entertainment tax. The 6 percent tax on food and drinks in cafes and bars was raised to 13 percent. The tax was 1.3 times the price of the food and drink. The navel was bigger than the belly.
The 5% tax on fairy food was increased to 10%. Fairy food was taxed at a slightly lower rate than cafes and bars. This may be because the Japanese enjoyed fairies, while the Koreans enjoyed cafes, bars, and tea rooms. There was also subtle discrimination in taxation.
<In the words of the Daily Shimbun, those who had been enjoying themselves at izakaya were now forced to “refrain from drinking tax and getting drunk on tax.” Taxes on restaurants and lodging establishments were not low by any means. A 3 percent tax was levied on food under 2 yuan and 50 yuan, and a 7 percent tax on inns over 10 yuan.
Amidst the tax bombing and the movement to ostracize the West, cafes, coffee shops, and bars that sold coffee either closed their doors or switched to restaurants with relatively low taxes. <The last time the word coffee appeared in a Daily News article was on June 18, 1944, and the word cafe disappeared after March 24, 1944. It had been 60 years since the word coffee had appeared in the newspaper and 30 years since the word cafe had appeared in the newspaper. Price Bombs, Taxes