Start thinking now about your New Year's Resolutions. Make at least one resolution that pertains to economic justice, and share it with the Georgist News. Happy holidays!
The deadline for our January 2006 issue is December 24.
You can always reach the Georgist News at email@example.com
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The newsletter is newsy, beautiful, and upholds Georgist principles. Don't miss it! Contact Alanna Hartzok, co-director of the Earth Rights Institute, to request a copy. You can reach Hartzok at firstname.lastname@example.org
"A very small number of us are refuting the consensus that "the government must pay" whenever an economic use of land is constrained by law, with the argument that 'the landowner must pay' whenever land values increase as a result of land-use planning, annexation or condemnation.
"These are all indirect presentations of the Georgist perspective. I believe an attempt was made during the last session of the Oregon legislature to introduce a Georgist bill but am unaware of its fate."
The Henry George birthplace is yielding a rich body of writing and other documents going back to Henry George's own lifetime. Slowly I am setting up files and cataloguing this material as part of a broader effort to organize the birthplace library. Our goal is eventually to add a list of the books and other materials in the library to our website. Since initiating this work, I have scanned, formatted and added several hundred Georgist writings to the School of Cooperative Individualism on-line library.
Another component of documenting - and creating a living history of - the Georgist movement is building a library of audio and video materials. One day it would be amazing if we could go to a Georgist history website and listen to inspirational talks given decades ago by some of the movement's leading thinkers. I have found numerous references to radio broadcasts and television programs in the U.S., the U.K., Australia, Canada and other countries. Unfortunately the birthplace archives do not include any of this material.
One example is a reference, in the Henry George News report on the 1966 Henry George School conference, to the playing of a tape recording of an earlier speech made by John Z. White, a prominent Chicago Single-Taxer. The report indicates attendees were greatly inspired by listening to this recording. What might have happened to this recording? My thought is that it became part of the holdings of the St. Louis extension of the Henry George School. Which brings up this question: what happened to the Georgist material housed in the extension when it was finally closed?
I would very much like to hear from anyone who has material they might be willing to donate for inclusion in the birthplace library.
You can reach Ed Dodson at email@example.com
Hartzok's article can already be found at www.earthrights.net/docs/alaska.html
For more information about the Canada West Foundation visit http://www.cwf.ca
This new site was created by Wyn Achenbaum and is the product of years of data
collection, organizing and arranging to make an adaptable yet thorough
presentation of Georgist ideas. Achenbaum invites your comments and
List manager Wyn Achenbaum says: To subscribe, send an email to Geo-Lawfirstname.lastname@example.org This was an outgrowth of discussions at the August, 2005, CGO meeting in Philadelphia, and is a place for discussing the Public Trust Doctrine, Proposition 13, Oregon's Measure 37 and similar topics.
The building was eventually purchased by the Henry George Foundation in 1926 and is now serving as headquarters for the Henry George School of Social Science. I have not been able to uncover any details of how the building was utilized between 1904 and 1926. For some period of time there was an active Single Tax Club in Philadelphia. Perhaps its members continued to look after the birthplace. I suspect there is a good deal more to learn about these early decades.
You will find an opportunity to hear Dave Wetzel, vice-chair of Transport For London and chair of The Labour Land Campaign, discussing congestion charging and land value taxes.
This change has already taken effect. Please make a note of it. From now on use email@example.com
You can find Metalitz's comments and compilation of passages at http://menace.bloghorn.com/23
To view the Common Ground-USA website visit www.progress.org/cg/
GN Comments: This search function is available to any Georgist site courtesy of Ask Henry, our movement's overall search engine. For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org
The American writer Kathleen Norris is quoted in Georgist materials, as follows:
Does anyone have a source for this quote?
Ms. Norris (1879-1966) was a renowned author with strong libertarian inclinations. In May of 1955 she visited the Henry George School in New York and announced her intention to write a novel in support of the theories of Henry George. I have thus far been unsuccessful in discovering whether this novel was ever written or published. Does anyone know the answer to this mystery? Perhaps someone has the book in their library and would be willing to write a summary/review to share with others?
Contact: Ed Dodson at email@example.com
For details see www.sinceslicedbread.com
Georgist News reader, Roy Langston, has written in to say, "I agree this is an excellent opportunity to present a brief, compelling argument for LVT to a wide - possibly very wide - audience.
"Unfortunately, as I am not a US resident, I am not eligible to submit an entry. However, I would be willing to lend my assistance as a professional copywriter to you or anyone you know who would like to submit an entry about LVT, but who might not have the skills to craft the winning entry or even to make the finals."
You can reach Roy Langston at
Take advantage of his offer.
If I'd had the foresight to buy real estate during my younger years, I would be rich and powerful now. Real estate in Marin has been going bananas for decades.
But as the cost of housing continues to rise in California, as well as the rest of the country, I am priced out of my native territory.
I'm living in a small apartment in the Sierra Nevada foothills. The compensation I make for my work is plummeting. And I can't help but obsess on how silly it is, under the current system, for me to work, to provide goods and services for a living.
Here is why I am anxious. Not only Marin, not only California, not only the U.S., but the world, itself, is addicted to an outmoded, exclusionary form of ownership and control of the land and natural resources which disrupts a natural economic power balance. It is as if our economy has unconsciously fallen into a vast multi-generational pyramid scam. Our hallowed free market can never truly be free with such fundamental checks and balances so out of kilter.
Land costs skyrocket, and cities sprawl across rich farmland, as expensive, hoarded land in the populated areas forces builders to leapfrog ever farther into the hinterlands.
The system does not create true prosperity for all: it hemorrhages wealth from those who create it to those who have the power to appropriate it. It imposes a revolving debt that must be paid by those who are not a part of the economic power structure; for instance, me.
And it comes at an exorbitant price: unsupportable housing costs, regressive taxation, poverty, inflation, economic and cultural polarization, recessions, and depressions.
I believe there is a solution. Everything besides land, you can own. You devise it, you create it, you make it, you get to keep it. It's that simple. Land and resources, though, should no longer be subject to that mode of ownership. One may still hold private title to land, but he must pay for the privilege in a manner that captures the speculative value and distributes it for the benefit of all.
As I write this, I am aware of how nutty my words sound: as out of tune with current mainstream thought as abolitionism would have sounded to denizens of the 16th century, or the concept of democracy would resonate with those living in the year 400. Clearly it will require a paradigm shift.
Of course, I can still choose to join the fray. For me the decision is whether to remain an apartment dweller, work for a living, and make do with an ever dwindling share of the value I create as an American worker or, regretfully, buy into the pyramid scam as I try to figure out a how to survive the next recession or depression or worse.
In the meantime, as I inhabit my non-coastal, lower-middle-class apartment, I hunger for an evolution in human consciousness and survey my chances of staying out of poverty as I enter old age. For my fellow human beings, who are suffering from even worse conditions, I have to ask, how bloody long, and at what price in human suffering?"
Housing-price futures, based on the median home price in ten U.S. cities, may provide protection for mortgage companies, home builders and anyone with exposure to residential real estate, the AP said.
The investment product is set to debut in April, based on a final go-ahead given by the Merc after months of review. The concept of real-estate futures has been discussed since the early 1990s, the AP reported.
Investors will be able to trade contracts electronically based on median home prices in Boston, Chicago, Denver, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, San Diego, San Francisco and Washington, D.C., or a composite index of the cities, the AP said.
GN Comments: What does this mean for Georgists? Is the new tradable "instrument" a silly thing to ignore or a potentially useful tool to help make a Georgist point?
The first observance of a global Minute for Peace was at the time of President John F. Kennedy's death. His efforts to see peace realized through the United Nations were ended in Dallas at 19:00 GMT, the very moment on the global clock when the United Nations Charter was signed eighteen years earlier. In the Minute for Peace broadcast given at the end of the mourning period (December 22, 1963), a recording of President Kennedy was broadcast globally, preceded by front-page announcements in many newspapers telling when this would occur.
The recording was from Kennedy's speech at the United Nations, September 25, 1961:
"Never have the nations of the world had so much to lose or so much to gain. Together we shall save our planet or together we shall perish in its flames. Save it we can - and save it we must - and then shall we earn the eternal thanks of mankind and, as peacemakers, the eternal blessing of God."
It's amazing how many different views are expressed about the issues which separate us. Too often we reject those who differ with us. The message of Christmas was peace and good will - to all people. Everyone can agree that we need peace on Earth, and unite in support of a Minute for Peace Day that will stimulate minutes for peace every day on radio and TV worldwide. This is the way to change the global state of mind from fear to faith, from despair to hope.
Let each individual who believes in the power of prayer, of goodwill, join with others on Minute For Peace Day - December 22 - conscious of being linked with others throughout the world on that day, as they pray for peace, talk about the way to peace, and purpose peace in their hearts and minds.
To people of every religion it will be a means to realize the potentials of their faith, that if they agree at the same time, for the same purpose, they can ask what they will, and it will be done. On Minute for Peace Day they will ask, in love, for peaceful progress in their lives and throughout the world. To humanists this will be a time to ponder peace, to celebrate peace with a new awareness of our common humanity.
"Peace is when flowers say hello to the sun."
- Debbie Oppenheim, Swedish kindergartner
"All people can live together in peace as a family. We here at the United
Nations School feel we are a family.
- Ahmed El Bouri, Libyan boy
"Peace starts with yourself, inside yourself. If you are happy, then with your
friends you will be happy and will not fight."
- Alexandra Pollyea, American girl
I think I began learning long ago that those who are happiest are those who
do the most for others.
- Booker T. Washington
Disarm, disarm. The sword of murder is not the balance of justice. Blood does
not wipe out dishonor, nor violence indicate possession.
- Julia Ward Howe
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