(2014 September-October) Contents: CGO Presentation Submissions

THE GEORGIST NEWS
– Serving the Earth Sharing Community

  1. (2014 September-October) Conference: CGO Request for Submissions
  2. (2014 September-October) Social Media: Peter Thiel on Henry George
  3. (2014 September-October) Good Press: Henry George and Modern Ireland
  4. (2014 September-October) Likeable Link: China Rolling Out Property Taxes
  5. (2014 September-October) Social Media: Libertarians Battle… Citizen’s Dividend
  6. (2014 September-October) Earth Sharing: Gaffney on Piketty (Abridged)

1. (2014 September-October) Conference: CGO Presentation Submissions

The CGO & IU will be hosting a joint conference next August in Southfield, Michigan (suburb of Detroit).  We need to know in advance who the speakers are and what they will present. To submit presentation proposals, please contact Dan Sullivan (director@savingcommunities.org) for US topics and Dave Wetzel (dave.c.wetzel@gmail.org) for international topics.

*The deadline for submissions is October 10th.

2. (2014 September-October) Social Media: Peter Thiel on Henry George

The following is a response from the controversial Peter Thiel, the cofounder of PayPal and Facebook’s angel investor. Thiel was asked by one of Fred Foldvary’s students, “rromanchuk”,  what he thought of Henry George:

[–]rromanchuk 31 points 10 days ago

Have you ever read anything from Henry George? If you have, any thoughts? I think he gets an unfair treatment from almost every school of economic thought, including the Austrians, no, especially the Austrians.

When it comes to the three factors of production, it bothers me how lazy academia is when it comes to land. The fact this guy induces so much rage from every political faction and almost all schools of economic thought (from fringe to keynesian) seems like a signal he might be on to something.

[–]PeterThiel[S] 56 points 10 days ago

Yes, I think George is a really interesting thinker. The idea that we should tax land heavily (and perhaps not tax anything else at all) is very interesting, since many of the bad monopolies in our society involve the unholy coalition of urban slumlords and pseudo-environmentalists.

http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/2g4g95/peter_thiel_technology_entrepreneur_and_investor/ckfjrtn

3. (2014 September-October) Good Press: Henry George and Modern Ireland

Thanks to Wyn Achenbaum for sending this article to the Georgist News. It details the enduring effect Henry George had on Ireland. There is also an interesting discussion of how Joseph Fels improved employment opportunities for Dubliners with his campaign to use vacant lots for urban farming.  We think you’ll find it thorough and informative.

http://www.theirishstory.com/2014/08/24/progress-and-poverty-henry-george-and-land-reform-in-modern-ireland/#.VBsWqhbE4RH

4. (2014 September-October) Likeable Link: China Rolling Out Property Taxes

“Now Chinese authorities say they are moving to rapidly roll out property taxes nationwide, in a bid to reshape the country’s financial structure and curb some of the incentives for local governments to trammel the rights of farmers and others left behind by China’s extraordinary wealth gains.”

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/international-business/china-moving-quickly-to-roll-out-property-taxes-nationwide/article20294761/

 

5. (2014 September-October) Social Media: Libertarians Battle Over a Citizen’s Dividend

Michael Huemer is a libertarian writing for the Cato institute. He is a proponent of the Basic Income Guarantee (BIG). In an article which can be found here, he argues against LVT from the standpoint of the best way to fund a BIG. His contention boils down to opposing redistributing what people produce in a high density area to those in a low density area. He says that the Georgist ethos of “one ought to keep what they produce” is contradicted by such spatial redistribution.

In this article, Matt Zwolinski, also writing for Cato, argues that the Georgist ethos is not inconsistent.

“Mike brings up the issue of population density to show that a large part of land’s value depends on the productive activity of other people. But, really, all of land’s economic value depends on the productive activity of other people… It’s not benefitting from the positive externalities of others’ labor that’s the problem. It’s the forcibly excluding others from doing so [the higher return available given access to the best locations].

This explains why, contra Huemer, people in low-population-density areas are entitled to compensation from people in high-population-density areas. High-population-density land is, ceteris paribus, more valuable than low-population-density land.”

6. (2014 September-October) EarthSharing.org: Gaffney on Piketty (Abridged)

“A few days ago I sent you some notes on Piketty’s current blockbuster. Reader Lindy Davies, a skilled and insightful editor, quickly recognized it was too long, technical, and divagating for many busy (and who isn’t?) readers, so he has abridged it.  So here is the Reader’s Digest version, for those who might prefer it.”                                                           -Mason Gaffney

Thomas Piketty’s book, Capital in the 21st Century, has been a best-selling book on economics recently, but who has time to read it?  Piketty’s thesis is that modern economies are self-destructive because they permit the income from owning property to grow faster than wages and the economy as a whole.  The result is growing inequality and social unrest.  Most of the book is a description of historical statistics demonstrating that simple point.  But, as Mason Gaffney, a retired economist from the University of California, Riverside explains, the point really is not as simple as it might seem.

http://earthsharing.org/capital-in-any-century-a-response-to-thomas-piketty/