What Would Henry George Say?
Still Relevant, Still Poignant
By Jeanna Smialek
December 19, 2022
By Dr. Marty Rowland
On Monday, December 19, 2023, the NYTimes published an article by Jeanna Smialek titled Trust the Models? In This Economy? (found here: https://www.nytimes.com/2022/12/19/business/economy/recession-economy-forecast-2023.html).
What would Henry George say about what Smialek says?
Jeanna Smialek says (quoting Claudia Sahm)… “But hey, things that have never happened have been happening left and right.”
One startling event that we are seeing nowadays is the capitalization of future land rents. This is evident when people go to the bank to take out a mortgage and realize that it is more than the building they will own. If 100% of land value increments were returned to the community to fund public services for all its needs and wants, then the price of land would be zero. Not “no value” but “high value, without a price.” Government agencies would have revenue to keep doing their good work, and the rest of us would no longer need to pay income or sales tax and businessmen would no longer need to pay a business tax.
Every problem that Smialek cites will disappear with this simple fix proposed by Henry George nearly more than a century ago. Unfortunately, the problem persists because Smialek and the people she follows don’t have the wisdom of Henry George.
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