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InvisibleSilversoul
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Henry George and the Land Value Tax
    #3866828 - 03/04/05 09:29 AM (11 years, 8 months ago)

I?m sure some of you have seen me make references to Henry George and the land value tax(LVT) in some of my posts, but it?s been a while since I made a thread to give the subject the attention it deserves, so since I?ve learned a lot more about it in the time since then, I figure I?ll share what I know. Henry George was a printer in San Francisco who, upon a trip to New York, noticed the paradox that the poor in that well-developed city were much worse off than those in the less developed California. His investigation into this led him to write his definitive book, Progress and Poverty, in which he showed how most of the wealth created by a free market economy was taken by land owners through the land rent, or land value, as unearned income. It was said to be unearned because it had not come about from the labor of the landowner, but rather from the rest of the community(if you need me to explain how this works, I will, but first read this). This would not be too much of a problem if almost everyone was a landowner, but land was concentrated in the hands of the very few, creating a land monopoly. The land monopolists gained wealth by hoarding the best land for themselves and leaving others to use less productive land. As the population grew, people would be left with increasingly lower-quality land, and the less valuable their land was, the more money the land monopolists would gain.

George proposed that this problem be solved through the LVT. You see, when you pay property taxes, you're really paying two taxes in one: one on the building and one on the value of the land. Although it may seem to some that the two are inseparable, they are in fact calculated separately during real estate deals and appraisals. George proposed that buildings be untaxed and land value be taxed completely, or nearly completely. He believed this should be the only tax. This tax made it unprofitable and even costly to maintain valuable land without putting it to productive use, thus making land monopolies costly to maintain with no real benefits, and allowing for more equitable use of the land. At the same time, it removed the tax burden from improvements on the land(buildings), thus encouraging renovation rather than slums and abandoned buildings.

One effect of this is to stop urban sprawl. Many cities are losing their tax base, so they raise taxes, causing more and more companies and residents to move elsewhere, leaving the inner city in slums. By taxing land rent, however, they remove land speculation, the hoarding of land for economic gain. This leaves more productive land within the city for businesses to develop, and discourages buildings from falling into disuse. The thriving of these businesses creates more employment opportunities for residents, thus encouraging more people to live in the city rather than the suburbs, while bettering the lives of the poor people who live in the inner city and raising the land value of residential areas, thus creating even more revenue for the city, which allows for better schools, better services, etc., which in turn further increases land values.

Some might be inclined think the LVT would be an environmental disaster, as it would encourage more land development, but in fact the opposite is true. Land speculation takes up most of the good land, causing business and residential development to "leapfrog" over to more affordable land, creating unnecessary development. With land speculation eliminated under a land value tax, businesses and housing would expand at a much more reasonable rate, preventing deforestation and the kind of overdevelopment that has endangered the California Condor. Taxation of land rent would also make fossil fuels more expensive, since they come from the ground, while making solar energy cheaper. Also, with improvements on the land no longer taxed, it would be cheaper for factories to make smog-reducing improvements. Also, with the urban sprawl problem taken care of, people would not need to drive as much, thus further cutting down on emissions.

Of course, the main issue George intended to deal with was poverty, and indeed the land value tax system does help alleviate the plight of the poor. I have already mentioned how by reversing urban sprawl, the LVT would bring more employment for the inner-city poor, increase their land value, make more affordable land available, and create better schools. This prosperity would likely reduce crime, leading to further prosperity. With all this extra income coming in, people could give more to charity, and with more people living in the city and having a vested interest in it, they would be more motivated to build homeless shelters and soup kitchens for those few poor who aren't able to get a job. The increased tax revenue of cities could also be used for social services.

There are also other ways it helps labor. Although coming to very different conclusions from Marx, George agreed with him in noting that the means of production are land, labor, and capital. These produce returns three forms: rent, wages, and interest. The return on labor(wages) and the return on capital(interest) both depend on the margin of production. As this margin goes down, so do wages and interest, but the rental value goes up. Thus, labor and capital do not really have opposing interests, as many might believe, but land monopolists do. The fact that the capital controllers are often also the landowners can be seen as the cause of this common misunderstanding. By lowering wages and capital, they increase their profits from land rent. With land no longer a viable source of income, capitalists would have to increase the margin of production to increase their profits, benefiting workers as well as themselves.

On top of these benefits, there are a few other reasons why the LVT is superior to other forms of taxation. While income tax penalizes productivity and sales tax makes goods more expensive, the LVT only takes unearned income from land, and does not interfere with the free market as other taxes do. It is also easy and cheap to collect, and hard to cheat on. Other assets can be hidden, or disguised using accounting tricks, but you can't hide a piece of land. It is simple, with no loopholes for the privileged to take advantage of, and no large bureacracy required to enforce it.

From a liberal standpoint, the LVT is good because it helps the poor and the environment. From a conservative standpoint, it is good because it encourages business and competition, and does not interfere with the free market the way other taxes do. From a libertarian standpoint, it is good for these reasons as well as the fact that it does so with minimal government intervention, only taxing unearned income and letting people enjoy the fruits of their labor. Workers win, capitalists win, cities win, the poor win, the environment wins... So why isn't everyone using the land value tax? Aside from the fact that Henry George has been largely forgotten, it's because land speculators lose. Those who own the majority of land are also among the more powerful lobby groups in Washington. They stand to lose their monopolies if the LVT is implemented, so they have reason to prevent such legislation from seeing the light of day.

No nation has yet fully implemented the LVT to the extent that George wanted it to be implemented. However, several countries have used the LVT to some extent or another. Hong Kong and Singapore both have a similar system using long-term leases for developers while keeping income taxes low. This has made both places, particularly Hong Kong, very prosperous. Denmark has its own methods of taxing rental value, which has resulted in higher productivity and standard of living. Japan has had an LVT predating Henry George, helping to foster the space efficiency which Japan is widely known for.

Some may wonder if the LVT would be enough to support the functions of government. There is no country which has fully implemented George's ideas, so there is no concrete example we can point to to say for sure. It must be remembered, however, that the prosperity it brings about would increase land value, thus bringing in more revenue. Personally, I am more worried about it bringing in too much revenue, furthering the growth of government beyond its legitimate purposes. However, this extra revenue could also possibly be used to pay off government debt and balance the budget. Once that is done, any additional surplus could be put into reserves for any future economic hardships that may occur. We would, of course, require extensive checks on government spending to ensure that they do not abuse this revenue.

Leo Tolstoy once said of George, "People do not argue with the teaching of George, they simply do not know it." This is obviously a bit of an exaggeration, as some people who understand George may find legitimate grievances, but the majority of attempted rebuttals have resulted from misunderstandings. I submit to you that the land value tax is the most fair, the most honest, the most beneficial, and the most compatible with liberty of any system of taxation.


Links:


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OfflineCyber
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Re: Henry George and the Land Value Tax [Re: Silversoul]
    #3867124 - 03/04/05 11:38 AM (11 years, 8 months ago)

Well, I find a few problems with it. NOTE: I have only read what you have written in this post.

Let me start by saying that I live in an area with a LVT. The tax is figured on a per 100$ valuation of the property. The property is "Appraised" by the state once a year and taxes are figured from that appraisal. The appraised value is a property value + improvements. The LVT breaks down as follows

City Tax
County Tax
County Hospital Dist. Tax
County College Dist Tax
ISD Tax

So what we end up with is a property that is appraised at a 10% higher value per year (On average) No one from the government ever looks at the property. They just assume a number based on averages. The results of which are a mess!

When I bought the property (5 years ago) the Tax on the property plus improvements was $3000 per year. You should note that this is a 1200 sq foot house! This year it is over $7000.

Now to top it off, The State Constitution has a limit on what the max percentage is that can be charged for the ISD portion of the TAX. It states that the percentage can not exceed 1.5% for ISD tax. The others are open for the government to adjust as needed.

So what is wrong with it?

Well to start, it is my property and not the governments! I personally do not think they should charge me to live on my property!

The second is that the government decided what the land value is. If they need more tax dollars they appraise the value higher. There is no over-site and the state has been sued several times over it.

Third, because the state sets the appraisal value of the property they are known (and have been sued for) lowering the appraised value before announcing the intent to build a state building on the property. Why does this matter, you may ask? Well when the state is going to build a building on a piece of property they are supposed to buy the property from the current owner. By dropping the appraised value they can get the property for a discount! They have done this for large corporations as well. The state buys the property and "Gives" it to the large corporation.

If a big business owner and "Friend" of the local government buys up large areas of property that they know will fall in the area that the government is about to buy. The appraisal goes up! Thus they are guaranteed to make a profit.

Needless to say, it gives power to people that we know are corrupt and they use the power to give there good friends good deals. This in turn promotes the "Land Moguls" buying up property because they have "Friends" in the government and know they will make a buck.

It is a wonderful idea but like other wonderful ideas it does not contain the over-site to eliminate the corruption that follows.


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OfflineProsgeopax
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Re: Henry George and the Land Value Tax [Re: Silversoul]
    #3867209 - 03/04/05 12:14 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

I like Henry George's ideas. If anyone is interested, I would like to offer a few more links regarding the philosophical justification of a LVT...

This essay in *.PDF format, "Really Natural Rights" by Dr. Carl S. Milsted, Jr. is a good start.

This essay about "Royal Libertarians" by Dan Sullivan raises some interesting points.

Pre-dating Henry George, Thomas Paine proposed what was basically the same thing in his essay, "Agrarian Justice."


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Money doesn't grow on trees, but deficits do grow under Bushes.

You can accept, reject, or examine and test any new idea that comes to you. The wise man chooses the third way.
- Tom Willhite

Disclaimer: I reserve the right to change my opinions should I become aware of additional facts, the falsification of information or different perspectives. Articles written by others which I post may not necessarily reflect my opinions in part or in whole, my opinions may be in direct opposition, the topic may be one on which I have yet to formulate an opinion or have doubts about, an article may be posted solely with the intent to stimulate discussion or contemplation.


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Offlinelonestar2004
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Re: Henry George and the Land Value Tax [Re: Cyber]
    #3867222 - 03/04/05 12:20 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

the first house i bought was a fixer-upper in a nice neighborhood. after i removed all the trash, painted it, and replaced the windows my house payment doubled. (the house payment included taxes) the taxes went so high that we had to move. we could not afford the house payment anymore. when i sold the house i made some money but i sold it for 20,000$ less than the county had it appraised for.

i had put so much time and hard work into fixing that house up and was pissed that i could not afford to live there anymore.

why punish people for hauling off trash and planting trees?


--------------------
America's debt problem is a "sign of leadership failure"

We have "reckless fiscal policies"

America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership.

Americans deserve better

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OfflineProsgeopax
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Re: Henry George and the Land Value Tax [Re: lonestar2004]
    #3867240 - 03/04/05 12:31 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

A LVT is not a tax on improvements, but the land value. A plot of 10 acres of bare land worth a million dollars sitting next door to a 1/4 acre piece of developed land worth a million dollars would not pay the same in taxes. The 10 acre parcel would be taxed at a value 40 times higher because the person controlling the land has 40 times as much. The LVT would provide incentives for efficient use of land and leave improvements alone (from a tax standpoint).


--------------------
Money doesn't grow on trees, but deficits do grow under Bushes.

You can accept, reject, or examine and test any new idea that comes to you. The wise man chooses the third way.
- Tom Willhite

Disclaimer: I reserve the right to change my opinions should I become aware of additional facts, the falsification of information or different perspectives. Articles written by others which I post may not necessarily reflect my opinions in part or in whole, my opinions may be in direct opposition, the topic may be one on which I have yet to formulate an opinion or have doubts about, an article may be posted solely with the intent to stimulate discussion or contemplation.


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InvisibleSilversoul
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Re: Henry George and the Land Value Tax [Re: Cyber]
    #3867247 - 03/04/05 12:32 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

Quote:

Let me start by saying that I live in an area with a LVT. The tax is figured on a per 100$ valuation of the property. The property is "Appraised" by the state once a year and taxes are figured from that appraisal. The appraised value is a property value + improvements.



If you're paying for improvements, then you're paying property taxes, not LVT. LVT taxes the land value only.

Quote:

So what we end up with is a property that is appraised at a 10% higher value per year (On average) No one from the government ever looks at the property. They just assume a number based on averages. The results of which are a mess!



If they just assume a number based on averages, then they are not calculating it right. Real estate brokers have long been fully capable of properly assessing land value, and there's no reason why the government should not be able to do so.

Quote:

So what is wrong with it?

Well to start, it is my property and not the governments! I personally do not think they should charge me to live on my property!



You own the building. You are proprietor of land which was not created by human labor, and thus does not rightfully belong to anyone. And if you were paying a true land value tax, instead of property tax, you would only be paying the income generated by the land value. Since you have nothing to do with the earning this income, it is not rightfully yours. I understand why it might not make complete sense that it should go to the government, but if the government is going to tax, it would be best to tax unearned income.

Quote:

The second is that the government decided what the land value is. If they need more tax dollars they appraise the value higher. There is no over-site and the state has been sued several times over it.



Land value is not arbitrary. It is determined by the difference between its productive potential and that of the least productive land in the area. If the government's appraisal does not match that of the real estate market, then the people have every right to sue, as they are being ripped off.

Quote:

Third, because the state sets the appraisal value of the property they are known (and have been sued for) lowering the appraised value before announcing the intent to build a state building on the property. Why does this matter, you may ask? Well when the state is going to build a building on a piece of property they are supposed to buy the property from the current owner. By dropping the appraised value they can get the property for a discount! They have done this for large corporations as well. The state buys the property and "Gives" it to the large corporation.



Again, the land value is not arbitrary, and the real estate market can check the government's appraisal against its actual value. If it does not match, then it is only proper to sue the bastards.

Quote:

If a big business owner and "Friend" of the local government buys up large areas of property that they know will fall in the area that the government is about to buy. The appraisal goes up! Thus they are guaranteed to make a profit.



If the appraisal goes up, that means they're paying more taxes. I don't see how you'd make a profit off of that. Something smells fishy here.

Quote:

Needless to say, it gives power to people that we know are corrupt and they use the power to give there good friends good deals. This in turn promotes the "Land Moguls" buying up property because they have "Friends" in the government and know they will make a buck.



Needless to say, your government's practices in no way resemble a land value tax, save for the fact that a certain portion of it comes from the land value, just as with any property tax. It seems you've simply hilighted your local government's incompetence.

Quote:

It is a wonderful idea but like other wonderful ideas it does not contain the over-site to eliminate the corruption that follows.



It is bad implementation that is the problem. The tax code should set standards for determining land value. It can frequently be determined simply by knowing the size and location, which are easily double-checked. The law may require that the government's calculations match those of the real estate market, in order to create checks and balances. The government cannot tamper with land value and keep it a secret. Real estate agents and appraisers already know what the land value is, and will know if it doesn't match up.


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OfflineCyber
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Re: Henry George and the Land Value Tax [Re: Prosgeopax]
    #3867263 - 03/04/05 12:37 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

Prosgeopax,

Do you believe that a politician will see the difference?

The 10 acres of undeveloped property has less value than the developed property. The politician will immediately change it and make the value = land value + improvements to maximize the tax collection and give him self a raise!

If the US government went back to what it is supposed to be, A small government with no extra subsidies, help programs, agencies, etc. The government could run off of the tariffs of imported goods.


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Offlinelonestar2004
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Re: Henry George and the Land Value Tax [Re: Prosgeopax]
    #3867301 - 03/04/05 12:52 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

so right now i live in a house with a little over an acre. some of my neighbors down the street split up their property and have 4 homes on the same size acre.

should i be taxed higher for having a big backyard filled with trees????


--------------------
America's debt problem is a "sign of leadership failure"

We have "reckless fiscal policies"

America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership.

Americans deserve better

Barack Obama


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InvisibleSilversoul
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Re: Henry George and the Land Value Tax [Re: Cyber]
    #3867326 - 03/04/05 01:00 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

Quote:

Cyber said:
Do you believe that a politician will see the difference?

The 10 acres of undeveloped property has less value than the developed property. The politician will immediately change it and make the value = land value + improvements to maximize the tax collection and give him self a raise!



That is what they do currently. This, of course, requires some amount of appraisal, sometimes combined(as in your case) with estimates based on averages. As I said, land value can usually be determined simply by size and location, so it would actually be harder to determine the value of improvements. Since the government would not be the only ones who know the land value, their actions would be rather transparent. Besides, land value is based on a differential between the most useful and least useful land, so if they artificially raised the land value in one area, they'd have to lower the value of less useful land by the same amount, so they'd have nothing to gain.

Quote:

If the US government went back to what it is supposed to be, A small government with no extra subsidies, help programs, agencies, etc. The government could run off of the tariffs of imported goods.



Unlike the LVT, tariffs harm free trade.


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InvisibleSilversoul
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Re: Henry George and the Land Value Tax [Re: lonestar2004]
    #3867359 - 03/04/05 01:06 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

Quote:

lonestar2004 said:
so right now i live in a house with a little over an acre. some of my neighbors down the street split up their property and have 4 homes on the same size acre.

should i be taxed higher for having a big backyard filled with trees????



Trees have nothing to do with land value. Land value is the difference between the productive potential of the lot the least productive lot in the area. Business districts tend to have the highest land values because they can produce the greatest wealth within a given area. Farmland value is determined by its potential for growing crops. Residential land values are determined by things like proximity to jobs, schools, etc. I assure you that planting more trees will do nothing to your land value, and even if it did, you are only paying back the income produced by that land value.


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Offlinelonestar2004
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Re: Henry George and the Land Value Tax [Re: Silversoul]
    #3867393 - 03/04/05 01:13 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

i will research LVT. but right now the system we have is fucked.


--------------------
America's debt problem is a "sign of leadership failure"

We have "reckless fiscal policies"

America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership.

Americans deserve better

Barack Obama


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InvisibleSilversoul
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Re: Henry George and the Land Value Tax [Re: lonestar2004]
    #3867436 - 03/04/05 01:25 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

Check out the second link I provided for a general synopsis on it. If you want to better understand how land value is determined, read the link entitled "The Law of Rent."


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OfflineProsgeopax
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Re: Henry George and the Land Value Tax [Re: Cyber]
    #3867544 - 03/04/05 01:50 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

Quote:

Cyber said:
Do you believe that a politician will see the difference?



It is a safe operating assumption that all politicians are in it for their self own interest and work from there... In other words, politicians are not to be trusted with ANY system. Eternal vigilance and threat of dire consequences keep them behaving honestly ("the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed").

Quote:

The 10 acres of undeveloped property has less value than the developed property.



By subtracting the value which improvements add to comparative land we can determine the land value.

Quote:

The politician will immediately change it and make the value = land value + improvements to maximize the tax collection and give him self a raise!



Politicians are lying vermin and their numbers should be reduced as quickly and as greatly as possible. The best way to do this is to take away the power we have handed over to governments - there are many areas where we could do this (income tax is a BIG one, another is the government ability to manipulate the money supply either directly or through central banks and deficit spending).

Quote:

If the US government went back to what it is supposed to be, A small government with no extra subsidies, help programs, agencies, etc. The government could run off of the tariffs of imported goods.



You may be right and I would greatly prefer that to what we have now. However, Paradigm did express my sentiments about tariffs. If you get a chance, take a look at Dr. Milsted's essay as well as the one about Royal Libertarians so you will understand where I look at this from a philosophical perspective - practical implementation is another matter. Preventing the creeping accumulation of power by those who govern is something else deserving of it's own thread (the architects of our constitution came up short on that one so I'd like to hear as many ideas as possible).


--------------------
Money doesn't grow on trees, but deficits do grow under Bushes.

You can accept, reject, or examine and test any new idea that comes to you. The wise man chooses the third way.
- Tom Willhite

Disclaimer: I reserve the right to change my opinions should I become aware of additional facts, the falsification of information or different perspectives. Articles written by others which I post may not necessarily reflect my opinions in part or in whole, my opinions may be in direct opposition, the topic may be one on which I have yet to formulate an opinion or have doubts about, an article may be posted solely with the intent to stimulate discussion or contemplation.


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Offlinecb9fl
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Re: Henry George and the Land Value Tax [Re: Silversoul]
    #3868594 - 03/04/05 05:26 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

Let me see if I get this straight.

Say I decide to move to North Carolina in the mountains. I buy a couple acres with a lake and build a house. I then start to farm the land and am able to provide for myself completely without interference from the outside world. Let's say I don't even leave my property and I don't let anyone come onto my property. Am I correct in believing a LVT would then force me to pay someone else just to live on my own land that I farm for myself?

Fuck that.


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It is better to be hated for what you are than to be loved for what you are not. -Andre Gide

"Generosity is nothing else than a craze to possess. All which I abandon, all which I give, I enjoy in a higher manner through the fact that I give it away. To give is to enjoy possessively the object which one gives."


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OfflineProsgeopax
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Re: Henry George and the Land Value Tax [Re: cb9fl]
    #3868646 - 03/04/05 05:34 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

People already do that, it's called 'property tax' but the tax is on the value of the improvements on your land and the land, not just the land. The LVT is not assessed on any improvements.


--------------------
Money doesn't grow on trees, but deficits do grow under Bushes.

You can accept, reject, or examine and test any new idea that comes to you. The wise man chooses the third way.
- Tom Willhite

Disclaimer: I reserve the right to change my opinions should I become aware of additional facts, the falsification of information or different perspectives. Articles written by others which I post may not necessarily reflect my opinions in part or in whole, my opinions may be in direct opposition, the topic may be one on which I have yet to formulate an opinion or have doubts about, an article may be posted solely with the intent to stimulate discussion or contemplation.


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Offlinecb9fl
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Re: Henry George and the Land Value Tax [Re: Prosgeopax]
    #3868684 - 03/04/05 05:40 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

If I live on land that I use for my residence and not as a business I don't feel there should be any tax on that land.

Let's say the farmer from above who lives on and takes care of his own land decides to live as a hermit. He doesn't sell anything because he is completely self-suficient. Now because he doesn't work for someone else and because he provides for himself he has no need for money. He can't pay someone else a "tax" because he doesn't have or use money. Does that then give the government the right to come in and rip that land away from him?


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It is better to be hated for what you are than to be loved for what you are not. -Andre Gide

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OfflineProsgeopax
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Re: Henry George and the Land Value Tax [Re: cb9fl]
    #3869123 - 03/04/05 07:09 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

How much land are you talking about - just enough for subsistence, an acre, one hundred acres, a thousand acres? Do you believe you or your farmer has a right to block water from flowing off of the land? Should you or the farmer be able to dump hazardous waste into a stream on the land? As I suggested to another poster, take a look at Dr. Milsted's essay as well as the one about Royal Libertarians so you will understand the philosophical perspective behind this. Try reading some of Henry George's ideas.


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Money doesn't grow on trees, but deficits do grow under Bushes.

You can accept, reject, or examine and test any new idea that comes to you. The wise man chooses the third way.
- Tom Willhite

Disclaimer: I reserve the right to change my opinions should I become aware of additional facts, the falsification of information or different perspectives. Articles written by others which I post may not necessarily reflect my opinions in part or in whole, my opinions may be in direct opposition, the topic may be one on which I have yet to formulate an opinion or have doubts about, an article may be posted solely with the intent to stimulate discussion or contemplation.


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Re: Henry George and the Land Value Tax [Re: Prosgeopax]
    #3869274 - 03/04/05 07:46 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

Good post Paradigm, you dirty Libertarian. LVT is interesting and seems fesable even to a pinko, commie, leftist such as myself. There is no way this would be implimented short of a civil uprising because politicians, most of which probably own tons of land, would be hurt by this the most.


One issue I have with this is how do farmers pay LVT when they own so much land themselves? Wouldn't this take a huge hit on the agricultural sector? I guess that land isn't as valuable as urban land but it seems to me the taxes they pay would go up substantially and the price of food would also increase because so many would go outta business and more food importation would happen. Am I missing something?


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"And we, inhabitants of the great coral of the Cosmos, believe the atom (which still we cannot see) to be full matter, whereas, it too, like everything else, is but an embroidery of voids in the Void, and we give the name of being, dense and even eternal, to that dance of inconsistencies, that infinite extension that is identified with absolute Nothingness and that spins from its own non-being the illusion of everything."


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InvisibleSilversoul
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Re: Henry George and the Land Value Tax [Re: cb9fl]
    #3869617 - 03/04/05 08:47 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

Quote:

cb9fl said:
Let me see if I get this straight.

Say I decide to move to North Carolina in the mountains. I buy a couple acres with a lake and build a house. I then start to farm the land and am able to provide for myself completely without interference from the outside world. Let's say I don't even leave my property and I don't let anyone come onto my property. Am I correct in believing a LVT would then force me to pay someone else just to live on my own land that I farm for myself?

Fuck that.



No, you're completely off-base here. It's not taxing you for living there. It's taxing the income that the land generates(and that doesn't mean to output--your crops are safe). However, since there would be no one else around, there would be nothing to tax, so you wouldn't have to worry about that anyway.


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Re: Henry George and the Land Value Tax [Re: cb9fl]
    #3869635 - 03/04/05 08:53 PM (11 years, 8 months ago)

Quote:

cb9fl said:
If I live on land that I use for my residence and not as a business I don't feel there should be any tax on that land.



If there's other people around, then that land has some value, which is creating income. You only have that income because other people decided to live in the same area, so you didn't do anything to earn that income. So that unearned income should be put to public use, since it is the public which is responsible for it.

Quote:

Let's say the farmer from above who lives on and takes care of his own land decides to live as a hermit. He doesn't sell anything because he is completely self-suficient. Now because he doesn't work for someone else and because he provides for himself he has no need for money. He can't pay someone else a "tax" because he doesn't have or use money. Does that then give the government the right to come in and rip that land away from him?



As I have said, if no one else lives in the area, then that land has no value, so the tax would not apply here.


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