The Malaysian government offers tax relief on books bought, to the tune of $RM 1000 or so per year. (That’s $US 290, or $AUD 325, or Euro 200, or GBP 180.) Wonderful idea, and I congratulate them on encouraging reading.
One of my friends has been claiming religiously every year. She and her husband actually spend a great deal more than that on books. Her house is lined with books and book shelves.
This year the Malaysian Income Tax dept queried the expenditure. When my friends queried why they were being queried, the reply was … (wait for it):
“But you have no small children. How can you possibly be spending so much on books?’
Sigh. Says a lot about what you don’t see when you walk into the average Malaysian house, doesn’t it?