Only someone entirely a cynic, hatefully so, could believe that this story  from 1907 has anything at all to do with the expansion of the public payroll over the past decade.
Similarly, we would have to be silly to think that there are such examples  of rent-seeking here in the UK.
If we are indeed to do anything about climate change  then it's clear that a carbon tax provides the fewest opportunities for such rent-seeking.
Originally these tariffs  were simply rent seeking. But now that 99% of shoes bought in the US are imported, they don't even cover that function, they're simply a particularly nasty regressive tax.
Staying with the US tax system, has it become more or less progressive in recent years do you think? Given that average tax rates  for the poorer groups have fallen further than those for the richer, perhaps it has become more progressive?
Coming soon to an internet near you. The confiscation  of any equipment being used to breach copyright. So that's Google's servers running Blogger for chop then, eh?
And finally  , in the comments at Guido's, Stanislav, a young polish plumber. Not PC, foul language and very, very funny.