When It Comes to War, Beer Beats Silver and Gold

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Written by Leslie Gevirtz for Reuters

(Reuters) – The Dutch drank their way to victory and independence from Spain in 1648 through the taxes they paid on beer, according to a report in the April issue of the Journal of American Association of Wine Economists.

Economists Koen Deconinck of the University of Leuven and Johann Swinnen of Stanford University wrote that taxes on beer “played a crucial role in financing the revolt … (and) were the single largest revenue source” for the outnumbered and outgunned Dutch, who were facing “the mightiest empire on earth.”
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