Deadline for our March issue: February 23.
You can always reach the Georgist News at firstname.lastname@example.org
CONTENTS: (to return here just click the headline)
A note from Sue Walton:
The Enterprise representative also told CGO staff that by not picking up cars at the airport or from an airport location, our participants will save 12% in taxes. Albuquerque airport is part of a special high tax district which has one of the highest rental car tax rates in the entire USA.
For more information on the CGO conference, contact Sue Walton by phone at 847-475-0391 or by email at email@example.com
A note from Paul Martin:
You will also find photos of the complete set of the full color visuals (approx. 30) and newspaper article collages (10) used in the IHG's "Comprender La Economia" course, linked to the summary of the CE/P&P argument.
These photos can be printed onto an 8 1/2 x 11 page in decent quality for immediate use in a Spanish language course on CE/P&P.
GN Comments: Spend some time browsing around at the IHG web site. You will find worthwhile material and an atmosphere of optimism. Their motto is "Work with passion, have fun, save the world!" ("Trabajar con pasión, divertirse, salvar el mundo!")
Occasionally a Georgist-flavored letter to the editor will appear in a major print publication, and that's always nice. In the United Kingdom recently, the frequency of these breakthroughs seems to have increased greatly. Does this mean that Georgist ideas are now being expressed in ways that "connect" better with the broad concerns of the public?
Here are three examples. The first appeared in the Evening Standard, Friday 16 January 2004. The second and third, though not related, appeared on the very same page of The Guardian, on Saturday the 24th of January.
Example A - Tax land to save railways
The only conclusion to be drawn from your article "Ministers ban rail report" is that the 'wish list' is actually a number of vital projects, central to accommodating economic and social growth in the UK and finding the funds is now the key task.
Much of the energy of the debate has been generated in London. The Land Levy originally suggested by Bob Kiley, based on securing funds against the inevitable increase in land values arising from transport infrastructure, has been very well received by all those who take the time to study the ideas. Only last year, Digby Jones of the CBI backed this approach. Those who will now be naturally concerned about our Olympic bid should take note that in New York their transport infrastructure to Olympic Square is being funded out of a land levy type scheme.
The Chancellor and Prime Minster have the opportunity to send this government into political legend by reforming our public revenue system. A lifting of the tax burden off business and working people and on to landowners, who gain without any effort on their part from public expenditure and the efforts of the wider community, is a realistic and realisable way out of the difficulties transport policy now faces.
Example B - Game plan
Henry George Foundation
Here is a link to the article which evoked the letter: www.guardian.co.uk/comment/story
Example C - Taxing logic
Land Value Taxation Campaign
Here is a link to the article which evoked the letter: www.guardian.co.uk/comment/story
A preliminary agenda has been released for the May 27-30 conference of the International Union for Land Value Taxation and Free Trade, to take place at the Hotel Foxa in Madrid, Spain.
Some selected highlights from the preliminary agenda:
For full information on this conference, visit the IULVTFT web site at http://www.interunion.org.uk/
(As of January 30, that web site was not responding properly. We recommend that you keep trying. Contact the Georgist News if you need help.)
Lucy Silfa is preparing to launch a major campaign to implement land value taxation in the Dominican Republic. Silfa has taught Georgist economics to over 30,000 students in the Dominican Republic during the past 40 years.
To assist in this new effort, contact Alanna Hartzok, co-director of the Earth Rights Institute, at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 1-717-264-0957.
GN Comments: You might help with money, time or ideas, but please do something, no matter how small.
Charles Bazlinton has written an introduction to citizen dividends, called "The Free Lunch: Fairness With Freedom."
For full information, visit the web site at http://www.the-free-lunch.com
These are some of the topics to be discussed at the U.S. Basic Income Guarantee Network 3rd Annual Congress, February 20-22, 2004.
This event will be held at the Hyatt Regency Washington on Capitol Hill, Washington D.C.
Full program, registration instructions, and hotel information are available at www.usbig.net. Registration for the 2 1/2 days is just $60.
You will be able to find many top Georgists among those making presentations.
The congress is being co-sponsored by the Citizen Policies Institute, a new nonprofit organization in Washington, D.C. For more information, visit http://www.citizenpolicies.org
GN Comments: Kevin Cahill's book "Who Owns Britain" made quite a splash in the year 2000. And when people ask the right questions, they are drawn naturally to the Georgist perspective.
Now Cahill reports that a new book, "Who Owns the World," is in process. The book will be displayed (in rough draft) at the London Book Fair March 14th 2004 - he is going to cover 191 countries and 41 territories, examining large land ownership, land registries, and general land ownership. The book's planned publication time is May 2005.
Cahill is inviting Georgists to submit ideas for how Henry George might be treated, and how his ideas might still be relevant (land value taxation being one of them). But what the author especially wants is names of large landowners - corporate and private, around the world.
The book will highlight 1,000 of the largest individual landowners and 1,000 of the largest corporate owners. Data for the USA are not a huge problem, as Cahill has 440 landowners already, but all new names are welcome and will be acknowledged in text. For the US, anything over 20,000 acres - and for the rest of the world, above 2,000 acres.
Cahill looks forward to hearing from Georgists. You can reach him by email
at email@example.com or postally at:
PO Box 151, Exeter, EX4 4WG, Devon, UK
Phone 00 44 1 392 252 008.
At the 2003 CGO conference in Bridgeport, Connecticut, we launched the Henry George Awards for Economic Justice Advocate, Economic Justice Organization, and Economic Justice Educator. The recipients were Ted Gwartney, E. F. Schumacher Society in honor of Bob Swann accepted by Susan Witt, and Harry Pollard.
This program was very well received, and we intend to continue it at the next conference. If you have recommendations for the 2004 Henry George Awards, please contact Alanna Hartzok at firstname.lastname@example.org
GN Comments: Polly Cleveland has circulated this interesting inquiry.
"In Second Life, players are not set challenges but are rewarded for creating impressive clothing, art, architecture or other items that attract visitors to their plot of virtual land.
"Founder Philip Rosedale says its economy is regulated like a
real economy in order to stimulate content creation. 'We created
pressure for better and better content by levying a property tax
on land and objects. We also wanted very high liquidity, so we
made transaction costs low, and we wanted a high level of price
transparency to incentivise more rapid evolution.'"
(FT 12/29/2003 p 6.)
Has anyone tried Second Life?
Alan Ridley has been involved with many Georgist organizations a nd projects. He recently wrote a nice note to the Georgist News, a portion of which we reproduce here:
"That way I think you might be on the way to more productive collaboration, partnering, networking, idea sharing, and success.
"I think one hundred years of trying has proven that the hard core Georgist message has not been put in a form that resonates with enough people to make it more acceptable. I don't think Henry George would be a Georgist. He wanted people to think for themselves and follow the truth wherever it leads.
"An approach that I suggest is reaching out to others with a similar message, justice, environment, tax fairness groups, and try to discover where we have common ground and work together to help each other achieve some of your most practical and realistic and do-able objectives.
"Good luck in 2004."
GN Comments: Many thanks to Alan Ridley. A couple of years ago we took a poll among Georgist News readers, concerning the best possible name for this newsletter. No consensus for a change developed from that, but we should always be ready to make improvements. If you have a bright idea for a more cooperative- sounding, more open and inviting title for the Georgist News, please let us know.
by John McConnell
Founder of Earth Day and Earth Trustees
Following is a vision and agenda that, given global attention, can provide a peaceful prosperous future all over the world.
Scholars from science, religion and philosophy have different perspectives on what is important and what life is all about. But most can agree we have a global crisis that could end civilization. To continue the human adventure we must now see and support the actions that will best provide a global future.
In the original Earth Day the purpose was to have an annual global holiday that would focus attention on "peace, justice and the care of Earth." This ambitious goal has been sought in different ways by people of different creeds and cultures. To accomplish this we must focus on where we agree and leave room for our differences.
Most people can agree that we have an amazing planet, covered with an amazing skin of life, and that now with wise use of our technology we can eliminate pollution, ignorance and poverty, and provide a sustainable future.
To succeed, we must not repeat the mistakes of the past. Human history has a long record of more evil than good. While the world has long had examples of good, there are far more examples of evil. We need a moral equivalent of war to tip the balance in the right direction.
But first we have to look at the state of the world and understand the problems we face. Our view will depend on what we are looking for. An economist will look at the economy. A politician will look at governments. A theologian will look at religion. People around the world will reflect different views.
But people working in these different areas have not had an agenda that would link their independent efforts. The formula for the Earth Trustee agenda will encourage links and mutual efforts where there is agreement and leave room for differences.
We ask individuals and institutions to all choose and support some project that will benefit people and planet. Call it an Earth Trustee project and share reports of your efforts and their success.
World leaders have a special opportunity. The computer and the world wide web now connect people of every creed and clime. Ted Turner, Bill Gates and TV networks can change the global state of mind from fear to faith. Religious leaders believe in the power of prayer. Let us have faith and put feet to our prayers. Here is the way for everyone to help achieve our common goal.
Together, we can show the power of positive thinking and a great common cause that will foster understanding and cooperation. Everyone is urged to help end humanity's long history of war, injustice and damage to the Earth's precious skin of life.
Together, we can provide a new beginning for planet Earth.
4924 E. Kentucky Circle
Denver, CO 80246
"International Clean Up," a contaminated land exhibition and conference, will take place 30 March - 1 April 2004, NEC, Birmingham, United Kingdom.
The conference is dedicated to the assessment and remediation of contaminated land, and claims that it will "take on a pro-active approach."
For full information, visit the web site at www.international-cleanup.com
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