Action Stations

by Karl Fitzgerald

The Georgist movement is at an interesting point in time. A new generation of reformers have found the story via the many online learning tools available. The potential to develop new avenues of learning awaits. Geo-Spatial analysis is just one of the new windows of opportunity, where Google Earth-type public policy surveying of land use is thriving. Continue reading

Oakland 2016: The Recession Generation Unconference

Alodia

Alodia

by Alodia Arnold

After the Detroit Conference last August, I was inspired to stay involved with the Georgist movement. Detroit was a wakeup call to reality for me — to the existence of a movement with promise and real opportunity to make the world a better place.  It was important to me to follow through with what I challenged the group in Detroit to do, to pick one project to work on during the year and to give it your all. Continue reading

Keep Calm and Carry On About the Single Tax

As I write this, news of the terrorist truck-massacre in Nice, France has just broken. This comes on the heels of a series of horrible bombings and shootings. One may be inclined to let the mind go blank, refuse to engage, dive into entertainment or anesthesia. Another common response is to drop everything and try to do something about it! Now! Before it’s too late!  Yet I believe a deep breath and a healthy dose of course-staying are really what’s called for. Continue reading

A Story that Needs Telling

by Jonathan Hall

Like many Georgists, I know that the ‘lift off” is going to include a dramatic work that puts a face to the wrong that is resource privilege. But few have a skill set that includes both insight into economic life and compelling storytelling. Yet this is still a “must do” avenue for the movement. I saw something today that was dramatic and could help.

It was from a piece of fiction, but very real, almost even a cliché. There was a giant movie project that involved hundreds of lives, and it could not go forward because the son of the financier was jealous of the lead’s girlfriend.

Corny? Sure — but this is what rent does: it gives great power to people who haven’t earned it, and that power gets abused for the pettiest of reasons. Just about every class-conscious piece of fiction exposes the decadence of the privileged class as it rains collateral damage on the serfs that make it all work.

We have an almost comic example of this, writ large, running around the country pretending to be worthy of the White House. A man whose father left him $200 million in real estate — had he not, we’d never have heard of him. And his support seems to come from nothing other than a) he hates the “bad” people; b) he’s very, very rich. It’s a rent cult!

Here in Kern County, California, I’ve seen some of the nation’s most profound poverty, and the culture of “faith” dependency. I was stuck looking at the wrong end of the story. How hard people try to make their business work, but they just cannot stay ahead of the rent payments! Landed privilege forces people to bust, even when there is 50% plus commercial vacancy.

We need a Great American Story that ties these two ends together. This country is aching for a tale of decadence and revolution: something more organic, more human, than vampires of Jupiter Ascending, or the faceless aristocracy of Hunger Games.

Henry George and the Crisis of Inequality

by Edward T. O’Donnell, Columbia University Press, 2015. Review by Ed Dodson

Henry George’s life and work have interested a small number of academic historians in each generation since George died in 1897. The latest of these, Professor Edward O’Donnell, succeeds in bringing to life the temper of the times during which Henry George rose from obscurity to become a champion of what he embraced as the true principles of republican democracy. Continue reading

I’m Old Fashioned…

by Lindy Davies

…sang Ella Fitzgerald,

ellaI love the moonlight
I love the old-fashioned things
the sound of rain upon a windowpane
the starry song that April sings…

It’s a romantic love song — but, there are some who might be tempted to suggest it as a theme song for the poor old Georgists. We live in a newfangled era — have for at least a hundred years. My goodness, people, by this time a century ago the Model T Ford was already seven years old (and Progress and Poverty came out twenty-nine years before the Model T)! Continue reading

Scrolling By: Where the Action Is?

Readers may have noticed a lack of Letters to the Editor in recent issues. It’s not because we don’t want them! It’s a situation that has puzzled me. I mean, I don’t flatter myself that thousands of people drop everything to read every word the minute their GJ arrives — but I have no reason to believe that our number of opinionated readers has fallen that far. Continue reading

Things Are Bad. Carry On.

I am a big fan of Star Trek (I admit it). Week after week, the Captain’s
intrepid crew faces a situation that gets bad, then worse, then they really get thrown a curveball, until by the final commercial break, not just the starship but the entire bloody universe is in mortal peril — I mean, the shields are down to 1%, ten heavily-armed Zarlengan vessels are attacking, half the crew’s minds have been hijacked by ectoplasmic communists and Spock can’t stop crying. Continue reading