Aug. 6th, 2017

On July 28, 2017, I entered the meeting room while Open Mike was already is session, and Dan Sullivan was in the middle of his talk. He said that even great progressive taxes on income don't provide good incentives. Land value taxation does. Presumably, he had been talking about why this is so.

Then I gave the next talk. I said that I had been active on, which is a site where people can post questions about various topics of interest, and other people who know the answers (or think they do) can answer those questions. I had been providing Georgist answers to questions about economics, and while I hadn't made the world Georgist, some people had pivoted my answers, and followed me. Sowing seeds like this might be useful; before I read Progess and Poverty, I had vaguely seen a reference to single-taxers and come across a newspaper column somewhere advocating a land-only property tax.

Then Mike Curtis spoke. A hundred years or so ago, the income tax had been a (partial) replacement for tariffs, a good idea, which Georgists supported, but -- he referred to Alexandra Wagner Lough, a historian who had spoken at earlier conferences, and talked about how Georgism had sunk into obscurity in the early twentieth century. He also talked about the minimum wage. Higher minimum wages could result in higher rents, since poor people would have more money to spend on places to live. Raising the minimum wage too high could produce unemployment, so it might be best to index the minimum wage to inflation, so as not to raise unemployment.

Alanna Hartzok, a Democrat and progressive, said that typical Bernie Sanders people don't understand land rents. Talk to them about removing the tax burden instead. Especially the tax burdens on those who aren't making much money.

To be continued.



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