A one-stream economy
Devotion News No 60, July - August 2011.
Letter from Hiram Abiff
Dear W Bro Damien
Some narks say I had a tombstone promotion to Grand Master. I was denied the opportunity to complete my Temple. There is still much speculation about what I would have done and how it would have affected the worshipers. I had no idea that we would end up with so many wanting to be priests and so many who would rather pray rather than work.
These things had a serious impact on the economy. All the nation’s wealth had been spent on a monument for our King. It did our souls good but did not put food in the bowl. It was becoming harder to extract copper from King Solomon’s mines and the price was likely to be under pressure with the coming Iron Age. How were we to pay the bills and keep the non-workers and priests paid? We had a one-stream economy: the Temple industries and nothing else. Then somebody came up with a great thimble and pea idea.
The greatest moral challenge in the Land of Canaan was soil erosion. Rainfall was to be taxed when it fell on the property of owners and the revenue would be paid to the idle and the needy for any incontinence that they may suffer. The nation would not fund any erosion abatement programs as the land owners are assumed to be sufficiently rich to pay for these. These works would be done by Royal Decree.
I understand that there were long debates on the number of King’s equerries that would be needed and the number of Tax collectors required to administer the Rainfall Tax. Nobody thought it a problem that these people did not generate any income but were a cost to the nation. With ideas like this we will be very overcrowded here, or so some people hope.
Yours most fraternally