Essays by Mason Gaffney discussed in his Website

Solving the “Unsolvable”

Such dismal dilemmas economists pose for us these days! We’re told that to attract business we must lower taxes, shut the libraries and starve the schools; to prevent inflation we must have millions of people unemployed; to make jobs we must chew up land and pollute the world; to motivate workers we must have unequal wealth; to raise productivity we must fire people. Mason Gaffney has devoted his career to demonstrating the viability of reconciliation and synthesis in economic policy. In these 21 wide-ranging essays, he shows how we can find “win-win-win” solutions to many of society’s seemingly “unsolvable” problems.

“One of the most important but underappreciated ideas in economics is the Henry George principle of taxing the economic rent of land, and more generally, natural resources. This wonderful set of essays, written over a long and productive scholarly career, should be compulsory reading. An inveterate optimist, Mason Gaffney makes an excellent case that, by applying the Henry George principle, we can reduce inequality, and raise ample public revenues to be directed at any one of a multitude of society’s ills. Gaffney also offers plausible solutions to problems of urban renewal and finance, environmental protection, the cycle of boom and bust, and conflict generated by rent-seeking multinational corporations.” — JOSEPH STIGLITZ

“A crisp cocktail of geography, history and economics, chilled by crackling-clear prose. In these sparkling essays on rent, land and taxes, Mason Gaffney gives us Henry George in his time and for our own.” — JAMES GALBRAITH

Mason Gaffney is a national treasure. He boldly treads where few other economists even dare to peek: at the extraction of rent from the many by the few. Such rent extraction is now massive and threatens to destroy our democracy. To those who wonder how to stop it, my advice is simple: read Gaffney.—PETER BARNES

The Mythology of Neoclassical Economics

I reblogged already Part II. Now I am happy to also reblog Part I. Thank you so much for your posts. 🙂

The Most Revolutionary Act

Classical Economics as a Stratagem Against Henry George (free link)

By Mason Gaffney (2007)

Book Review-Part I

Why do American school children study the beliefs of a German radical named Karl Marx, the villain Americans love to hate? Yet Henry George, whose views on land and tax reform gave rise to the Progressive and Populist movements of the 1900s, is totally absent from US history books. During the 1890s George, author of the 1879 bestseller Progress and Poverty, was the third most famous American, after Mark Twain and Thomas Edison. In 1896 he outpolled Teddy Roosevelt and was nearly elected mayor of New York.

In Neo-classical Economics as a Stratagem Against Henry George(2007), University of California economist Mason Gaffneyargues thatGeorge and his Land Value Tax pose a far greater threat than Marx to America’s corporate elite. America’s enormous concentration of wealth has always depended on the…

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The Robber Barons Behind Neoclassical Economics

I am interested in Henry George. This is why I reblog this book review.

The Most Revolutionary Act


John D Rockefeller

Classical Economics as a Stratagem Against Henry George (free link)

By Mason Gaffney (2007)

Book Review-Part II

(In Part I, I discuss how Henry George’s work inspired the Populist and Progressive movements of the early 1900s and how the corporate elite struck back by inventing a new type of economics for the rich, called neoclassical economics.)

Who Paid for Neoclassical Economics to Take Over American Universities?

Gaffney’s book traces the phenomenal public support Georgism enjoyed before the tenets of neoclassical economics took hold in American universities. In addition to inspiring the Populist and Progressive movements, an LVT to fund irrigation projects in California’s Central Valley made California the top producing farm state. In 1916 the first federal income tax law was introduced by Georgist members of Congress (Henry George Jr and Warren Bailey) and included virtually no tax on wages. In 1934 Georgist Upton Sinclair was…

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Why was Henry George not successful?

Neo-classical Economics as a Stratagem
against Henry George
Mason Gaffney
eoclassical economics is the idiom of most economic discourse
today. It is the paradigm that bends the twigs of young minds. Then
it confines the florescence of older ones, like chicken-wire shaping
a topiary. It took form about a hundred years ago, when Henry George and
his reform proposals were a clear and present political danger and challenge
to the landed and intellectual establishments of the world. Few people
realize to what degree the founders ofNeo-classical economics changed the
discipline for the express purpose of deflecting George and frustrating
future students seeking to follow his arguments. The strategem was
semantic: to destroy the very words in which he expressed himself. Simon
Patten expounded it succinctly. “Nothing pleases a …single taxer better
than … to use the well-known economic theories … [therefore] economic
doctrine must be recast” (Patten, 1908: 219; Collier, 1979: 270).’
George believed economists were recasting the discipline to refute him.
He states so, as though in the third person, in his posthumously published
book, The Science ofPoliticalEconomy(George, 1898:200-209). George’s
self-importance was immodest, it is true. However, immodesty may be
objectivity, as many great talents from Frank Lloyd Wright to Muhammed
Ali and Frank Sinatra have displayed. George had good reasons, which we
are to demonstrate. George’s view may even strike some as paranoid. That
was this writer’s first impression, many years ago. I have changed my view,
however, after learning more about the period, the literature, and later

To read on please follow this link:


I, Uta, am very interested in finding out why there is so much resistance to applying the ideas that Henry George promoted in the 19th century.

The above publication seems to be giving some interesting links.

It Was Class Warfare. And it Sucks.

This article says it all, what class warfare is all about.

The Australian Independent Media Network


Many pages have been written about the budget and as one bled into the next one thing became abundantly clear: It was about class warfare.

It was about who should pay in the long-term for the necessary corrections to budget fiscal policy. Corrections that either side of politics would eventually have to make. There was no immediate budget crisis to correct in the short-term. They were lying about it and the public – to their credit – didn’t take the bait. The Conservatives had decided that the privileged would be protected. One example hidden deep within the labyrinth of the budget papers was that Private School funding would be quarantined from education cuts. There were many others, like the School Chaplaincy program.

The cigar smoking toff, Jolly Joe, and the Prime Minister decided that it would be the poor and the middle class who should pay the price. Certainly not…

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Balmy Days towards the End of May 2014


RIMG1864We did have a lot of balmy days during this month of May. Everybody says it has been unseasonably warm so far.  Only some of the nights have already been quite cold. Occasionally we had a lot of cloud cover with hardly any sun.  Then we feel very much like it is winter already.

I try to take a walk in my toe shoes every day, preferably rather early in the morning. I often walk to Lakelands Park where all the soccer fields are. Right now the grass in this park has been kept quite well cut. This makes it easy to walk on it,  especially with these comfortable toe shoes!



Usually the playground is my destination. It takes me only ten to fifteen minutes to reach it..




I am very fond of all the trees in the park. This is why I take photos of them again and again.




Near the footpath the lantana is thriving again.



I noticed a pattern in the freshly mown grass:



Today, Saturday, there was much activity in the park. The young soccer players were having some good practice at kicking the ball under the supervision and encouraging shouting by a lot of coaches, parents and friends.