THE GEORGIST NEWS

WEB EDITION
Volume Thirteen, Number Five, November 2010

Last month ended without a fright -- no stock collapse, no double dip. Instead, a national government considered a tax on land. We welcome aboard Mark Wadsworth, English economist. If anyone knows anyone else who'd happily be a reader, please put them in touch. Thanks. Enjoy the read!


CONTENTS: 1. News: South Africa's land reform & Invest in land or buildings? 2. Good Press: New Statesman, Macleans' Canada, Raleigh News & Observer, EHow website 3. Numbers: Presented to the New York Tri-level Task Force on Jobs 4. Movement Progress: LandValueScape Update, Frank De Jong Toronto Results 5. Letter: 2011 CGO Conference, Woodrow Williams Niece, HGS Philadelphia 6. Correction: Phil Anderson's book 7. Likable link: Common Ground in Manhattan, Recorded lectures by Ian Mason 8. What You Can Do: Georgism Sean Hannity discussion, Get it going viral 9. At the Margin: Quips and Quotes 10. Publication affairs: Contributors, About the Georgist News


1. News: South Africa's land reform & Invest in land or buildings? Minister Gugile Nkwinti warns that the patience of black South Africans awaiting land distribution is not inexhaustible. "New paper on land grabs proposes farmland tax" http://www.progress.org/2010/taxrates.htm Land still matters. It just goes by the name of real estate. It makes some rich, or it could make everyone comfortable. "Get Rich Quick Scheme" http://www.progress.org/2010/getrich.htm To keep up with the latest in the world of economic justice, visit the daily news site, the Progress Report, where such articles appear. To establish a shared frame of reference for a discussion about how to solve economic issues with friends, family, neighbors, and co-workers, try sending them the progress.org link, see how it goes.


2a. Good Press: New Statesman By Dave Wetzel, October 20,2010 The current [Oct.] issue of the New Statesman has a front cover article about land ownership in the UK and includes quotes from Dave Wetzel, the President of the Labour Land Campaign suggesting an annual Land Value Tax as a fair and efficient way for addressing this historical injustice. www.newstatesman.com/society/2010/10/land-tax-labour-britain


2b. Good Press: Macleans' Canada By Joshua Vincent,Exec. Dir, Ctr. Study of Economics, October 21, 2010 Canadian weekly asks if HG should be Man of the Year. www2.macleans.ca/2010/10/21/did-2010s-man-of-the-year-die-in-1897/


2c. Good Press: Raleigh News & Observer By Joe Johnston, October 23, 2010 My letter to the editor made it to the Raleigh News & Observer www.newsobserver.com/2010/10/23/755955/strategies-for-jobs.html What you produce, belongs to you; what no human produces, belongs to everybody. http://www.TaxWorkOrTaxDirt.blogspot.com


2d. Good Press: EHow website By James Withers, a Texas-based journalist, July 8, 2010 [My] article on urban decay quotes Michael Strong and John Mackey, authors of Be the Solution: How Entrepreneurs and Conscious Capitalists Can Solve All the World's Problems, saying, "Shifting the property tax partially or entirely off buildings and onto land would create a powerful incentive for investment in city and town centers and adjacent neighborhoods."


3. Numbers: Presented to the New York Tri-level Task Force on Jobs New York City has 22 sq. miles of vacant land and a half a trillion dollars of site rent -- enough to replace other taxes. "Land Values Taxes and State Banking" http://www.progress.org/2010/newyork.htm Want all the current indicators in one place? Periodically, The Progress Report publishes just such a digest. To give readers greater breadth, depth, and the most salient facts, many articles at the Progress Report are not single articles but compilations on a particular theme, offering a compendium of data on one sector:


4a. Movement Progress: LandValueScape Update by Tony Vickers, tonyvickers at phonecoop.coop, October 18, 2010 The Professional Land Reform Group (PLRG) is pleased to announce: CentreForum asks Legrain to write on Land Tax http://tinyurl.com/2ga46la China talk for PLRG: http://tinyurl.com/27f8m2d Party Conference report: http://tinyurl.com/2bjaf66 Opportunity to influence the top UK property professionals http://tinyurl.com/2b7zxs3 Another smart city? http://tinyurl.com/2cm5wws And a paper submitted to Government? http://tinyurl.com/29whta2 FuturePlanner speaks Wednesday, 24th Nov. at 6pm. http://tinyurl.com/2a6vuwm Research Opportunities in LVT for UK? http://tinyurl.com/347lhhs "LandValueScape News" is the newsletter of the Professional Land Reform Group.


4b. Movement Progress: Frank De Jong Toronto Results by Frank De Jong, October 26, 2010 Third place out of 12 candidates! Thank you to all who voted in yesterday's Ontario municipal election. And thanks especially to all who volunteered on my campaign and supported it financially. We ran an excellent campaign, raised important issues, engaged thousands of people, received city-wide and local coverage, and produced a good showing -- third place out of 12 candidates! We had a strong team, worked hard, and built additional capacity for future elections. Go green! www.votefrankdejong.ca/


5a. Letter: CGO Conference - Mall of America & Minneapolis by Sue Walton, Administrator, October 15, 2010 One of America's top tourist attractions is Mall of America in Bloomington, MN. The Council of Georgist Organizations will be meeting literally down the road from the Mall in Bloomington, August 2-6, 2011. Our hotel will be offering special shuttle service for Georgists to the mall which is built on the site of a former Minnesota Vikings football stadium. Speaking of hotels, our hotel is the SHERATON SOUTH. When we did our site inspection, the hotel's General Manager told us that he has actually read Progress and Poverty. The Sheraton has free parking and airport shuttle and an indoor pool. Next store is a small shopping center with three restaurants, among them, a large TGI Fridays. Across the street is the Soffitel Hotel which has a French bakery with sweets to die for. So mark your calendars now.


5b. Letter: Woodrow Williams Niece by Sue Walton, Administrator, October 18, 2010 Woody's niece, Sue Ellen, contacted me tonight. She's living in Vegas and wants to get know other Georgists in the area. She knows Harry P, but wants to know others. She is very interested in organic farming; she lived at Heathcote. She does not have email; but she may be reached via cell phone at: 818/290-4093.


5c. Letter: HGS Philadelphia by Richard Biddle, HGSPhila at gmail.com, Oct 14, 2010 I am resigning as the director of the Henry George School Birthplace Museum.


6. Correction: Phil Anderson's book by Stewart Goldwater, October 12, 2010 The link supplied last month requires a Facebook Login. This one doesn't: http://tinyurl.com/2v6tjnj


7a. Likable Link: Common Ground in Manhattan by Scott Baker, September 30, 2010 Be sure to check out this page on our site, for great links about Georgism and a new link to videos about Henry George: http://groups.google.com/group/common-ground-nyc/web/great-geoist-links (unreachable on Nov.1 but the web-site is here: http://www.commongroundnyc.org/ ) I recommend an OpEdNews Article: "As World Food Day approaches, NGOs warn of increase in land grabs": http://tinyurl.com/25dxkgd Land grabbing has reached a new peak, with foreign farmers losing their lands to American agribusiness, while American farmers, so deeply in debt they are committing suicide. Then their lands are held by speculators for resale at higher prices. Are we ready for Georgism NOW?! Would you like a subscription to Opednews.com? Progressive, Liberal, United States and International News, Opinion, Op-Eds, and Politics. http://tinyurl.com/27eq2nr


7b. Likable Link: Recorded lectures by Ian Mason by Stewart Goldwater, October 3, 2010 Recorded lectures by Ian Mason (Head of Economics) School of Economic Science (UK) Opportunity out of Crisis ~6MB http://tinyurl.com/2652uu6 Economics & Law ~16MB http://tinyurl.com/2epd2st World Without Want ~23MB http://tinyurl.com/295r4oa MP3 format


8a. What You Can Do: Georgism Sean Hannity Discussion by Wyn Achenbaum, October 18, 2010 The blogger copies in a Wikipedia entry, and asks for comments. Georgism named after Henry George, 1839-1897 is a philosophy and economic ideology that holds that everyone owns what they create but that everything found in ... http://forums.hannity.com/showthread.php?t=2095081


8b. What You Can Do: Get it going viral Gavin R. Putland (http://www.grputland.com/) has composed his "Top 10 Solutions to Unemployment" and would like to see it go viral. Send it to everyone you know. PROBLEM: Because of taxes on working and hiring, it costs employers $9 to pay workers $8, of which the workers keep $7 to spend on employers' products now or later. So how can employers afford to hire more workers? CONSERVATIVE SOLUTION: Make workers work for less, so that it costs employers $8 to pay workers $7, of which the workers can spend $6 on employers' products. And don't mention land values, because property is sacred (unless it's earned as wages). PROGRESSIVE SOLUTION: Make employers pay more, so it costs them $10 to pay workers $9, of which the workers can spend $8 if they can still get jobs. And don't mention land values, because job-providers are the true enemies of workers. SOCIALIST SOLUTION: Increase government spending and regulation, so it costs $9.50 to pay workers $8, of which they can spend $6.50 on what they now get for $5. And don't mention land values, because they're socially created and we'd rather socialize PRIVATELY created values. TEA PARTY SOLUTION: Cut government spending, so it costs $8.80 to pay workers $8, of which they can spend $7.20, including $1 for essential services that were previously free. And don't mention land values, which soak up the benefit of any real improvement in efficiency. FREE TRADE SOLUTION: Open the market to cheap imports, so it costs $9 to pay workers $8, of which they can spend $7 to employ foreign workers. And don't mention the land unless you're selling it to foreigners. PROTECTIONIST SOLUTION: Tax imports, so it costs $9 to pay workers $8, of which they can spend $7 on what they now get for $6, because domestic producers, including exporters, will pay higher prices for imported inputs. And don't mention the land, lest anyone notice that the owners are "protected" by geography. FAIRTAX.ORG SOLUTION: Replace existing taxes with a retail sales tax, so it costs employers $8 to pay workers $8, of which they can spend the whole $8 plus a 50c prebate on employers' products, but the employers will get only $6.50 after retailers pay the tax. Well, at least exporters won't pay it. And don't mention land values except to complain about property taxes. BANKERS' SOLUTION: Let us generate extra demand by making loans against inflated... ahem... land values, until the bubble bursts and the government raises taxes to bail us out. Then it'll cost $9.50 to pay workers $8, of which they can spend $6.50 -- just like the SOCIALIST SOLUTION, except that the extra tax won't be used to create jobs; for that purpose we'll lend the government even more money, which will be repaid by raising taxes even higher (a.k.a. the Keynesian solution). And don't mention the academic paper called "The business cycle: a Georgist-Austrian synthesis", which predicted the Global Financial Crisis a decade in advance. PROPERTY INVESTORS' SOLUTION: Cut recurrent "taxes" on... ahem... land values so that we can more easily hoard idle land, prolonging the artificial shortage and pumping up a bigger bubble, causing a bigger burst, a bigger bailout, and a bigger tax increase, so it'll cost $10 to pay workers $8, of which they can spend $6. Then blame the recurrent land-value charges for bursting the bubble, and hush up the fact that higher charges would have stopped the bubble forming in the first place. THE UNMENTIONABLE SOLUTION: It costs NOTHING to produce the LAND that yields $2 (or $2 million or $2 trillion) in "capital gains" and imputed rents, which are now taxed less than earned income, and which the owners therefore like to reinvest in more land. So let's collect public revenue from LAND VALUES. Then it'll cost employers $8 to pay workers $8, of which the workers can keep the whole $8 to spend on employers' products; and idle hoarded land will be opened up for job-creation. Land Values Research Group: http://lvrg.org.au/


9. At the Margin: Quips and Quotes Come live in my heart, and pay no rent. - Samuel Lover Drink is the curse of the land. It makes you fight with your neighbor. It makes you shoot at your landlord, and it makes you miss him. - Irish proverb Life is either a daring adventure or nothing. Security does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than exposure. - Helen Keller (1880-1968, Georgist)


10. Publication affairs: Contributing to this issue Along with those acknowledged above with each blurb, Editor: Jeffery J. Smith Assistant Editor: Caspar Davis Archivist: Stewart Goldwater Owner: Robert Schalkenbach Foundation Founder: Adam Monroe Send your news and other interesting material to the Georgist News, jjs at geonomics.org or gn at progress.org. The deadline for the next issue is the 25th of this month. The Georgist News, a project of Robert Schalkenbach Foundation, is an email newsletter brought to you free of charge. Its purpose is to keep you updated on the latest news, citations, events, and initiatives of relevance to people who, like Henry George, seek a world free from special privilege and the causes of poverty. Do you know someone who'd enjoy reading the GN? Please forward them an issue and ask them to subscribe, or send us their eddress. As always, it's free. Thanks. The Georgist News is also available online http://www.Georgist.com/


The Georgist News, Volume Thirteen, Number Five, November 1, 2010