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You needn’t mention Henry George…

February 15, 2009

…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.

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