Land Value Taxation will solve many of the 21st century’s most serious social, economic and environmental problems, and promote justice, fairness and sustainability. We CAN have a world in which all can prosper.
August 08, 2014
I posted this comment elsewhere, and thought it worth sharing here:
I’ve not read far into the book yet — and it is available online as a PDF file — but by the time I was into the first chapter, it was clear that Dr. Piketty’s economic education, extensive as it might be, entirely omitted the ideas of the classical economists who described a 3-factor economy: land, labor and capital. Piketty, like nearly everyone educated in economics in the past 40 to 80 years, writes as if there were only two factors — labor and capital — treating land as if it were a mere subset of capital, with no reason to recognize it as differentiated.
Land — not only urban sites, but also the other things the classical economists would recognize as Land, such as water rights, oil, electromagnetic spectrum (our airwaves which we all say belong to the American people, but which are in reality owned by corporations), landing rights at busy landlocked airports, geosynchronous orbits, urban street parking, the value of dozens of other non-renewable natural resources — is completely different in character from that which is created by labor. To fail to recognize that difference lies at the bottom of our inequality problem.
That which individuals and corporations produce is rightly individual property. That which the community and nature produce is rightly common property, belonging to all of us. Conflating Capital and Land leads us to permit the privatization of that which is rightly our common treasure.
You might be interested to know that the Landlord Game, invented by 1902, was intended to teach this concept. You have probably played Monopoly, which was based on this game, played with very different rules.
Explore the ideas of Henry George. Between 1885 and 1900 or so, everyone knew the name and many well understood his ideas. You might start with “Social Problems” or the more analytical “Progress and Poverty,” or his speeches, “The Crime of Poverty,” “Thou Shalt Not Steal,” among others, online at http://www.wealthandwant.com. See also http://lvtfan.typepad.com.
Dr. Piketty and others whose education in economics has omitted George’s ideas should not be treated as experts; they’ve mixed apples and oranges and not noticed that what they’ve created impoverishes the vast majority of us — and enriches a few. (Parenthetically, consider who donates heavily to our universities.)
Posted on August 08, 2014 at 10:31 PM in a wedge driven through society, capital gains are land gains, classical economists, Earth for All, ecosystem services, fixing the economy, Henry George, income concentration, inherited wealth,land different from capital, land value created by community, land, labor and capital, location, location, location, make land common property, Monopoly and The Landlord’s Game, Monopoly and The Landlord’s Game , one solution for many problems, Piketty, privatization, Progress and Poverty, reaping what others sow, rich people’s useful idiots, socializing risk and privatizing profit, special interests, trickle-down economics, urban land value, wealth distribution or concentration |Permalink | Comments (1)
April 14, 2014
Better Insurance Against Inequality
APRIL 12, 2014
Economic View By ROBERT J. SHILLER
Paying taxes is rarely pleasant, but as April 15 approaches it’s worth remembering that our tax system is a progressive one and serves a little-noticed but crucial purpose: It mitigates some of the worst consequences of income inequality.
If any of us, as individuals, are unfortunate enough to have income drop significantly, the tax on that income will plummet as well — and a direct payment, or negative tax, might even be received from the government, thanks to the earned-income tax credit. In this way, the tax system can be viewed as a colossal insurance system, guarding against extreme income inequality. There are similar provisions in other countries.
But it’s also clear that while income inequality would be much worse without our current tax system, what we have isn’t nearly enough. It’s time — past time, actually — to tweak the system so that it can respond effectively if income inequality becomes more extreme.
“Respond effectively if”???
“There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil to one who is striking at the root.”
Posted on April 14, 2014 at 09:03 PM in boom-bust cycles, economic rent, Henry George, Monopoly and The Landlord’s Game, Monopoly and The Landlord’s Game , Natural Public Revenue, radical, rent-seeking, Thomas G. Shearman |Permalink|Comments (0)