Today's tax-encumbered citizen is not only aware that death and taxes are certain but also realizes that they walk hand-in-hand. At the most he may experience a sense of nostalgic grief over Pliny the Younger's argument that an inheritance tax "is an 'unnatural' tax, since it augments the grief and sorrow of the bereaved." He knows that as a matter of history Pliny's argument, however touching and delicate, has not deterred ways and means committees, intent on meeting revenue needs.
Paul G. Kauper,
FEDERAL ESTATE AND GIFT TAXATION: A REVIEW,
Mich. L. Rev.
Available at: https://repository.law.umich.edu/mlr/vol40/iss6/5