Wealth and Want The URL comes from the subtitle to Progress & Poverty -- and the goal is widely shared prosperity in the 21st century. How do we get there from here? A roadmap and a reference source.
Reforming the Property Tax for the Common Good I'm a tax reform activist who seeks to promote fairness and reduce poverty. Let's start with the enabling legislation and state requirements for the property tax. There are opportunities for great good!
Henry George: Progress and Poverty: An inquiry into the cause of industrial depressions and of increase of want with increase of wealth ... The Remedy This is perhaps the most important book ever written on the subjects of poverty, political economy, how we might live together in a society dedicated to the ideals Americans claim to believe are self-evident. It will provide you new lenses through which to view many of our most serious problems and how we might go about solving them: poverty, sprawl, long commutes, despoilation of the environment, housing affordability, wealth concentration, income concentration, concentration of power, low wages, etc. Read it online, or in hardcopy.
Bob Drake's abridgement of Henry George's original: Progress and Poverty: Why There Are Recessions and Poverty Amid Plenty -- And What To Do About It! This is a very readable thought-by-thought updating of Henry George's longer book, written in the language of a newsweekly. A fine way to get to know Henry George's ideas. Available online at progressandpoverty.org and http://www.henrygeorge.org/pcontents.htm
Progress and Poverty, by Henry George Here are links to online editions of George's landmark book, Progress & Poverty, including audio and a number of abridgments -- the shortest is 30 words! I commend this book to your attention, if you are concerned about economic justice, poverty, sprawl, energy use, pollution, wages, housing affordability. Its observations will change how you approach all these problems. A mind-opening experience!
I live in a small city within easy commuting distance of New York
City. It includes some lovely waterfront communities (with property
values to match), a downtown with many corporations, a 1- and 2-acre
zone, neighborhoods that include children who collectively speak 30 or more
different languages and many whose families live below the "self-sufficiency level", multiple high schools, a few magnet schools.
There are a number of subdivisions which have some common property,
and it turns out that the local assessor has been very generous with
them. Is this legitimate, or is it a privilege (private law, for the
benefit of a few at the expense of the rest of the community)? I
can't see how it is anything but a privilege, a free lunch for special
people. (To which I say, eschew privilege!!)
I'll start with the waterfront communities. There are several of
them. Within one, there are are several private associations. No
gates, no signs, except the "no trespassing" signs on their private
beaches; other than the beach signs and the real estate ads, which
invariably mention "deeded beach rights," they don't seem any different
from other streets on their peninsula. But each of the three
sub-neighborhoods has some private property on the waterfront.
I live in small city within commuting distance of New York City.
For the 32 years I've been here, there has been a 4.3 acre
hole-in-the-ground within about 1/4 mile of the city's "100%
location." It is surrounded by a chain link fence, and bordered by a
shopping mall, a hotel, some apartments and some office buildings. It
is within walking distance of a major railroad station and two
interstate highway exits. It is even identified in the city's
assessment database as the hole in the ground. It has weed trees and
concrete-lined puddles. I seem to recall that at least one person has
drowned when their car ended up in deep water on the property.
When I moved here, the tallest building in town was 22 stories.
Today, the tallest building is still that 22-story office building. It
sits a bit to the north of the geographic center of downtown. We
currently have under construction a 37-story luxury condo complex ...
on 1/2 acre at the northwest corner of the downtown ... and a 39-story
hotel and condo complex on 3 acres, solidly in the downtown area and
close to the highway and railroad.