If this land (i.e., "land available for building in the neighborhood of our populous cities"), were rated at, say, 4% on its selling value, . . . the owners of the building land would be forced to offer their land for sale, and thus their competition with one another would bring down the price of building land, and so diminish the tax in the shape of ground-rent or price paid for land, which is now levied on urban enterprise by the adjacent land-owners, a tax, be it remembered, which is no recompense for any industry or expenditure on their part, but is the natural result of the industry and activity of the townspeople themselves.
— First Report of the Royal Commission on the Housing of the Working Classes (1885), p. 42.