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Europe's War on the Internet
EU Moves to Tax Robots as “Electronic Persons”
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  • Boritz

    Watch for a crazed gunman to one day take out a bunch of robots with an AR 15 then kill himself or be shot by police.

    • Jim__L

      I’d say it’s not out of the question that those police would instead proceed to go out and round up the usual suspects.

    • lurkingwithintent

      RoboCop anyone?

  • Blackbeard

    Stagnant economy, collapsing demographics and an impotent military. Doesn’t bode well for Europe’s future. And here our “progressive” elites are eager the follow Europe’s example. And people wonder why Trump won the nomination.

  • Jim__L

    “Whether you call them “electronic persons” or not, robots don’t retire
    (and don’t need to save for it), don’t have healthcare needs (and their
    owners, not the state, services them), don’t have families, and, you
    know, aren’t people.”

    And Bruce Jenner isn’t a woman, and there’s a qualitative difference same-sex couples and opposite-sex couples that makes it a societal benefit to legally recognize the second but not the first.

    What does reality have to do with Western legal systems, in their senility?

  • http://www.camalg.co.uk/ Nigel Sedgwick

    Presumably these new (robotic) taxpayers will also have votes in elections!

    Best regards

    • QET

      You may have meant this jokingly but in fact it is probable.

  • Kris

    Taxation without representation. Is the real reason to suggest this to eventually give robots the vote?

  • Bob Parkman

    It’s be interesting to see them define a “robot”. Most “robots” are merely simple machines, like a robotic arm that welds in programmed positions during auto assembly. You could contend that my toaster is a robot as it automatically stops heating and ejects the slice of toasted bread after a programmed time period.

    Like all great socialists, they have a never-ending need for cash to fund their impossible dreams. They’ll tax anything.

  • douginsd

    Some cities in the PRC’s Pearl River delta are providing $7500 tax credits Per Robot to contract assemblers like FoxConn, in order to increase quality and win back business they have lost to even cheaper offshore countries. Now that robots cost as little as $35K, it’s a no-brainer. Incentives like this one led FoxConn to replace 60K of 150K employees in their main factory city with robots. Chinese companies are doing this because the one child policy is now resulting in an end to a cheap source of labor.

    This will not end well for these EU bureaucrats with way too much time on their hands.

  • QET

    This is just the opening act. Right now, the impetus may be from particular economic interests with solely economic goals, using this as a stunt. But in 10 years the Left–mostly the 18 – 30 year old children–will, in all seriousness, be demanding that human rights charters be revised to add robots and that courts allow robots standing through self-appointed representatives to sue human beings for violations of their “human” rights. They will succeed in getting a court or two here and there to agree with them, which will then entrench the idea. This WILL happen, and it will NOT be prevented either by ridicule, by just ignoring these kinds of people hoping they go away, or by argument/rhetoric. These are the same people, after all, who just got a court to allow that chimpanzees have “human rights.” They will prevail because they are single-minded and relentless, having nothing better to do in a world made mad by peace and luxury.

  • Rodney

    Three fifths compromise, anyone?

  • InklingBooks

    An interesting concept, but why limit it to robots that may be built in the near future? Why not tax traditional industries for all those not employed because of the industrial revolution. Why not tax shipping companies because steel-hulled, power vessels don’t require as large a crew to work as the sailing vessels of two centuries ago? The list of employment lost to technology is endless.

    • lurkingwithintent

      Exactly, so don’t give them any more ideas.

  • unominous

    Will construction firms have to pay extra social security tax or declare savings because of all the ditch diggers they didn’t hire when they bought a back hoe?

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