The State and its Money – The History of Taxes (Part 2) | DocFilm | DW

Tax collection: an instrument in the service of the powerful or a means of better distribution of wealth among the people? Part 2 of the documentary sheds light on the history of citizen protests against “they up there” demanding more tax justice. In the wake of the global financial crisis of 2008 and the austerity policies that came with it, riots broke out across Europe: whether it was Brexit supporters in the UK, yellow vests in France or losers of reunification in Germany. The protests illustrate the growing distrust of the citizens towards their rulers. The stumbling block is often tax policy. “No taxation without representation” – since the American independence movement, taxation and popular sovereignty have been mutually dependent. The current civil protests remind those in power of this basic rule of democracy. The protests are thus linked to an eventful history: since the Middle Ages, conflicts have repeatedly flared up between the peoples of Europe and their rulers over the tax issue. The two-part documentary traces these conflicts.