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The LVTC blog, by Henry Law

The comments in the LVTC Blog are a personal view of our Hon. Secretary Henry Law and do not necessarily reflect the official policy of the Campaign.

This is a place for personal observations and comments on politics, economics, current affairs, on-going discussions on the potential for LVT to remedy some of the current ills, and the impact on Society of any of the above. 

Please read and enjoy, and feel free to respond to Henry if you have any thing you would like to add.

Yet another land tax

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Yet another land value tax, in addition to the present four.


The 2020 Planning White Paper

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The land value aspects of the 2020 Planning White Paper are discussed in this video


Freeports - great idea or scam?

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Some thoughts on the proposed Freeports.


A useful suggestion in the right direction

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FAIRER SHARE is a pressure group campaigning for a reform of UK property taxes, with Stamp Duty and Council Tax being replaced by a national property tax, with the amount payable being proportional to its value, and some other worthwhile changes to the existing system. You can read all about it on their web site. It is a welcome move in the right direction. It is not LVT, but take property taxation in the right direction. However, I think they would get more support if the proposal was for assessments based on rental values. Seilling prices are grotesquely inflated by low interest rates and lax lending policies, whereas rents have roughly kept in line with wage levels. A proposal based on rental values would draw the teeth from a lot of the opposition.


Who really owns the UK?

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Who really owns the UK? Website with good infographics.


How our Economy really works

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BOOK REVIEW How our Economy really works – A radical reappraisal by Brian Hodgkinson.

The author, is, unusually for a supporter of land value taxation and free trade, a graduate in economics, having gained a first class honours degree in Politics, Philosophy and Economics at the University of Oxford. This puts him in the advantageous position of being able to apply a critique of mainstream economics in its own terms, something which most of us are unable to do.

Most supporters come to land value taxation through a study of economics within the mainstream classical tradition as it was developed by the French Physiocrats, Smith, Ricardo and Henry George. As was explained in ‘The Corruption of Economics’ by Mason Gaffney, and is referred to briefly in this book, the classical tradition of economic thinking was re-worked about 120 years ago, with the conflation of land and capital, the former being regarded as a sub-species of the latter. For those who have studied in one of the few institutions which has continued to teach economics in the classical tradition, this volume is a useful compendium, relating classical theory to the main issues which are currently a matter of public concern, and which politicians are chronically unable to address with effective policies. Counter-productive policies are commonly imposed and then surprise is expressed when they do not work. Armed with a knowledge of basic classical principles such as Ricardo’s Law of Rent, failure could have been predicted. If you are familiar with the supporting body of theory, this volume is therefore an invaluable resource and will keep the readers’ thinking up-to-date and relevant.

Unfortunately, for anyone who does not have a grounding in classical economics theory, the book will probably seem incomprehensible, as so much of what is said is counter-intuitive. Ricardo’s Law, which is foundational to the arguments presented, is covered only briefly. Most readers unfamiliar with it would need it to be explained more fully so that they grasped its full significance. The widepread state of ignorance of Ricardo’s Law has become particularly evident in discussions on the changes that will occur following the departure of the UK from the European Union – such as the possible end of farm subsidies and import tariffs. For this reason, this volume is not something that could be handed to anyone in the expectation that it would enlighten them; to that extent, it does nor really live up to its title. It would, on the other hand, be useful as a text book for a course on the subject, where students had the opportunity to pose questions, with a tutor on hand to explain the ideas that they found difficult to grasp.

As a bonus, Hodgkinson clears up a confusion which has always been a difficulty in the theoretical work of Henry George: the notion that interest is the return to capital. Hodgkinson regards capital as an input to production, no different in principle from other inputs such as labour and components which are a product of labour. On that analysis, interest is merely the price of the credit needed to purchase the capital. This view has the advantage of dividing the products of wealth creation into just two streams instead of three: rent and wages, accruing respectively to land and labour.

How our Economy Really Works – A Radical Reappraisal by Brian Hodgkinson. Published by Shepheard-Walwyn (Publishers) Ltd · 107 Parkway House · Sheen Lane London · SW14 8LS

ISBN: 9780856835292 - Paperback £9.95


Cracking down on low pay.

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A new report from the Resolution Foundation Companies says that employers who fail to pay the minimum wage should be punished more harshly in an effort to crack down on low pay. Oh dear.

Wages are the least that someone will accept to do a job. If the demand for labour is buoyant, then stingy employers will not attract and retain the workers they need. A lack of demand for labour cannot be legislated away. The authors of this report ought to know that.

It is also the case that employment will not occur if the value added by a worker is less than the GROSS LABOUR COST to the employer. The tax system is the villain. Gross Labour costs to employers are around 60% higher than real purchasing power of wages.

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