…to be a Georgist. Michael Hudson’s analysis and forecast of bailout developments is helpful in understanding who benefits, and how it will be packaged to appear as homeowner aid. One of his recommendations is clearly Georgist:
It is easy enough for fiscal policy to prevent a new real estate bubble. Simply shift the tax system back to where it originally was, on the land’s site-rental value. The “free lunch” (what John Stuart Mill called the “unearned increment” of rising land prices, a gain that landlords made “in their sleep”) would serve as the tax base instead of burdening labor and industry with income taxes and sales taxes. This would achieve the kind of free market that Adam Smith, John Stuart Mill and Alfred Marshall described, and which the Progressive Era aimed to achieve with America’s first income tax in 1913.
Hudson, like Kinsley and a few others, disdains the modern Georgist movement tho he seems to accept the validity and applicability of George’s (and modern Georgists’) analysis.
Thanks to Alanna Hartzok for the tip.
It’s a new book by Phil Anderson of Economic Indicator Services. Some may remember Phil from his talk at the 2006 CGO conference, and earlier from his 2001 Mastering Wealth course at HGS/Chicago. (We offered a money-back guarantee, which no attendees claimed, so it seems the course was quite satisfactory.) The book unfortunately doesn’t seem to be available yet in the US, tho it can be ordered from the UK.
Phil is one of several Georgists who predicted the current economic meltdown. Anyone who’s taken courses at any Henry George School will be familiar with the general patterns. but Phil has studied them in detail and applied them specifically to financial forecasting. He has devised helpful descriptive models, a real estate clock(pdf) and an investment clock.
In the ’90s, Phil produced some studies relating to land value tax in Australia (where they call it “site value rating”), including one showing that land value tax seems to lead to increased manufacturing activity, and another reporting that, when popular vote is taken, in the overwhelming majority of cases land value tax is preferred by the electorate.