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if he is so fortunate as to secure a job, must accept any
pay offered even to the margin of existence, or less, for
many succumb and die, and women and children go hungry
under the strain and privation to which they are sub-
jected.

That the pay envelope bears no relation to the earnings
of the payee is readily seen in recent experiences. Dur-
ing and following the war, notwithstanding the payment
of unprecedented v/ages, the profits of many an employer
(not because he earned them but because of the accident
of his position) were greater than his entire pay roll. Until
recently when "big business" was in receipt of unpre-
cedented profits, wages were declining, as a result of com-
petition for jobs between men thrown out of work by
the installation of machinery, mergers and other
causes.

Though the United States has a billion acres of arable



42



LAND AND FREEDOM



idle land and its used land is used to but a small fractional
part of its capacity, those men cannot have access to it
even for subsistence, because it is "owned" and held out
of use by speculators, who hold by such titles as indicated
above. Arthur Brisbane recently said the whole popula-
tion of the world could subsist comfortably in Texas. The
land was made for the race of all ages and no man has a
right to any part of it except to use it. To as much as he
can use he has an inalienable right. Sir William Black-
stone in his " Commentaries, " which has been the principal
text book in America and Britain for a hundred and fifty
years, of all law students, says: "Accurately and strictly
speaking, there is no foundation in nature or natural laws
why a set of words on parchment should convey the domin-
ion of land. " It is a sound principle that no man can give
a better title to land than he has received. If the crown
had no moral right to convey land as it has done, then no
subsequent conveyance, no number of conveyances, can
correct the original wrong, and every such attempt at
conveyance is morally invalid.

Under the present system men are helpless because
forced from the land. How may it be established that
every worker shall receive his economic wage -his exact
produce? Is it not apparent that it can be done by restor-
ing to man his natural right of free access to land by appro-
priating ground rent to public use? With this alternative
men will be in position to dictate the terms on which they
will leave the land and accept work elsewhere. Their
demand will be their natural or economic wage all they
earn.

Suppose one hundred men with their families were to
arrive in a country previously uninhabited and settle
there on equal footing. Humans cannot live except on
land, which naturally and morally belongs equally to all.
This is a requisite to equality. So each family without
pay or hindrance settles down on a piece of land. The sites
probably are distributed by lot as when the invading Isra-
elites entered thePromised Land. For the time being, assume
all the sites to be equally desirable and productive. Every
family has a place of abode, a sure means of livelihood
(self-employment on the land) and every man receives all
he produces his economic wage. Results to individuals
on the various sites will vary with industry and
efficiency.

Now a factory settles there and wants men. It is evident
that what the individuals can earn on the land, together
with the comparative desirability of the work, will deter-
mine the wages that the industry must pay to secure em-
ployees the minimum wage. Moreover every man will
be perfectly free to accept or reject the work offered ; em-
ployer and employee will be on equal footing. Such terms
as master and servant will be unknown.

The wage will be limited only by the capacity (producing
capacity) of the individual. As all will be employed to
their full capacity or desire, power of purchase and con-
sumption will be multiplied, production will keep pace,



there will be no business cycles, prosperity will be cease-
less and competition for workers will result always in
maximum wages to each worker his actual production.

The land on Broadway with its sky-scrapers and army
of workers is as essential to production as the suburban
truck farm and the respective contributions to produc-
tion of the different areas are in exact proportion to their
respective market values rent or selling value is deter-
mined by productivity.

The physiocrats made the mistake of thinking that agri-
cultural land is the sole ultimate source of all production
(wealth) and so proposed that land should pay all public
revenue- taxation at the source. Henry George saw
that all used land has a part in and is essential to produc-
tion and proposed that all such land shall contribute to
public requirements, each area in proportion to its part
in production as measured by its rent value. Thus would
public revenue be obtained at the actual source of pro-
duction. He saw that ultimately every worker works on
the land, doing his bit in supplying the animal, vegetable
and mineral products essential to the race.

What is a man's wages? How can we measure his pro-
duce?

Some years ago one of our largest coal producing con-
cerns had a general master mechanic in charge of all the
machinery of its more than fifty plants. In the midst of a
"boom" when prices and profits were unprecedented and
the closing of a plant meant the loss of several thousand
dollars per day, an accident occured. A telephone con-
versation followed between the General Superintendent
and the G. M. M.:

G. S. (very earnestly) The crank shaft at Blank
plant broke just as todays' run was completed, how soon
can you get in a new one, how much time must we
lose?

G. M. M. Don't let that worry you; we'll fix it tonight
and you can make your usual run in the morning.

G. S. You don't understand. The crank shaft is
broken.

G. M. M. Yes, I understand. I looked at that a year
ago and saw it was going to break. I had a new one made,
it is lying in the shop. We will put it in tonight and you
can make your usual run tomorrow.

That master mechanic held his job on account of his effi-
ciency. We will not attempt to determine his share in
production (his economic wage) what portion of the thou-
sands of dollars he no doubt was constantly saving his
employer, should be his. Suffice to say that with business
always at capacity (what we are accustomed to in "boom"
times) every man will be in demand and free competition
between employers for men's services will result in each
man being paid his economic wage. With the alterna-
tive of free access to land the economic wage will be auto-
matically determined our master mechanic and every
other man (all being freemen) will demand and get what
they produce or its equivalent. Each individual will de-



LAND AND FREEDOM



43



termine his own wage he will get what he demands or
find self-employment, always available. Each will actually
get what his fellows will pay for his product.

While there will be a constant "boom" it will be merely
a normal condition, every- phase and factor of production
will be adapted to it and it will be without the feverish
nervousness and excitement that accompanies our tempo-
ran- periods of super prosperity.

Moreover, men will desire other things than material
gain and much time will be spent in recreational and cul-
tural pursuits. It will require an astonishingly short time
daily (with modern machinery it has been estimated at
as low as thirty minutes) to gain a comfortable livelihood
since even- man will receive all he produces, and additional
income will depend on the effort the individual may be
willing to devote to the acquisition of more wealth, which
will have no value except to satisfy his individual desires
it will give him neither position nor power. Probably most
men will spend as much time with their avocations as their
vocations. Men will engage in occupations to their liking
and adaptation, no square pegs in round holes, work will
be play, a joy to the worker. As men will receive only what
they earn, no one can cheat every wage will be an honest
wage.

Not only the farmer, but even- man who performs a
sen-ice, works on the land and is a producer. The grain
from the farm or the mineral from the mine is not "pro-
duced" till it is in the hands of the consumer. To place
it there requires the plowman and the miner, the railroad
official and the track hand, the truck driver, the merchant,
the salesman, all the executives and clerks that handle
the business, all the army of skilled and unskilled work-
men who produce all the machinery, equipment, factories,
homes and even,' requirement of production. The rail-
road official and his stenographer and the laborer on the
railroad are as truly producers of wheat and coal as is the
man who reaps the grain or with pick and shovel loads
the coal in the mine. Probably there are no greater fac-
tors in production than the physician who keeps us fit
rally and the man of God who ministers to our spiritual
needs. And there are the writer, the orator, the poet, the
artist, the musician and every man who aids in maintaining
morale and adds to human knowledge and happiness, or
inspires men to nobler deeds and better lives. Even; one
of these is a producer, supplementing the work of the man
in the furrow. The basis of production is land, the means
is labor. All workers work on the land there is no other
place where men can work.

The workers may be thought of as an inverted pyramid
with the man in the furrow at the apex, the area ever in-
creasing to the top, and all resting on the land. The struc-
ture contains every individual contributing to the welfare
of mankind.

While a man's earning, self-employed on the land, deter-
mines the wage, the wage of the immediate worker on the
soil will not be greatly different from that accruing from



equal ability and effort applied elsewhere. Since land is
the basis of all labor, it is evident, if proper economic con-
ditions were established, equal effort and equal efficiency
would automatically produce equal returns wherever
applied or employed. A perfect balance will be main-
tained, a perfect fluidity of labor, because all men will
be free to come and go as they please. If there should be
a tendency for work at one point to command more wages
than at another, men would flock to that place and thus
automatically reduce wages there and raise them at the
deserted places. The law of supply and demand would
have free play and determine wages on a normal basis.
Each family will have such income that every child will
be "well born."

While free access to land is the one requisite to the estab-
lishment of equity, it will not be sufficient to allot certain
land to each individual or family and then say to each,
"Now make the best of what you have." The reason is
that different sites have different values. One must have
an advantage over another on account of location. That
is a fundamental defect in our present system. Some
have sites that have little or no site value while other sites
of very limited area pay (produce) thousands per annum,
with no more effort by the producer than is expended on
the poorer site. Establish equity by taking all ground
rent for public use and thus equalizing advantages of loca-
tion.

To a lone resident like Crusoe, there is but one factor
in production, namely labor. The product has no value
except for use by the producer. In a community the pro-
duct has a commercial or sale value. The latter depends
on location, whence arises site value. The better the site
(the more fertile it is or the more social advantages it en-
joys) the greater the value of the product. This is not
due to the labor of the producer but to environment, the
presence and activities of the community.

The measure of site value is ground rent witness the
enormous ground rents at the centers of urban population
where the produce is not vegetables but dollars. Labor
of individuals produces the labor values, community efforts
the site values, and each should have what it produces.
At present the "owner" gets the value produced by site
advantage rent. It is proposed that the public, its cre-
ator and rightful owner, shall take this product.

As there would be no one but the occupant wanting the
poorest occupied sites, they would command no rent
the "owners" would occupy them without cost. Each
site above the poorest would pay to the public treasury
the difference between its annual produce and the annual
produce of the poorest occupied site with the same expendi-
ture of labor and capital.

Thus all would be on an equal basis the occupant of
the best urban site would have no advantage over the
most remote cultivator of the soil. One might have a
"Lizzie" and the other a Rolls-Royce, but whatever either
had would be purchased from his wages (the results of



44



LAND AND FREEDOM



his own labor) and not from his being in position to take
the efforts of others by appropriating ground rent.

The value of site advantage is a natural fund created for
public use. It increases as the community and its require-
ments increase and is always adequate to public require-
ments.

As the income from ground rent would be adequate for
public needs, all taxes would be automatically abolished.
The amount of ground rent would be graduated from
large payments for lots at the urban centers to nothing
for lands at the perimeter of population.

The ground rent of rural lands would be low and, as
there would be no taxes on improvements, or personal
property, the contributions of the farmer and other rural-
ites to the public revenue would gradually decline with
distance from the center and reach zero at the perimeter.
The contribution to public revenue by the farmers would
be greatly reduced. The bulk of the public revenue would
come from urban lots and royalties or rentals from natural
resources. Every site would pay in proportion to its social
advantages pay for what it got in return and all royalties
would go to the public treasury.

Men would settle contiguously on advantageous loca-
tions, and beyond the perimeter of population no man
would have or want land titles. Land there would be
free as air and just as nature left it. Here would be inex-
haustible publicly owned timber resources and a limit-
less paradise for sportsmen and pleasure seekers. Every
power site and every natural wonder and resource would
be public property. With her present population, the
United States would have a domain of a billion acres of
such land the billion acres now held idle for speculation
by private "owners" and being denuded of everything
valuable for their private gain.

Thus in a simple way (by taking ground rent for public
use) we solve the labor problem and with it the many other
seemingly complex social and economic problems.

G. FRANK KELLY.

Henry George in the

Congressional Record

TV/TR. WHEELER (Senator Wheeler, of Montana)
IV J. "Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent to have
inserted in the Record certain excerpts from Henry George's
Protection or Free Trade."

The Vice President: "Without objection, it is so
ordered. "

Thus, there is printed in the Congressional Record of
March 13 the "Outline of Protection or Free Trade" in
full as made by Will Atkinson.

The tariff just passed is bound to create a revulsion
of feeling, and the sentiment for free trade will grow with
increasing unemployment.



Lecture Work

of James R. Brown

JAMES R. BROWN has rendered a report of his lec-
ture work for the last fifteen years beginning with
Jan. 1st, 1915, when he assumed the presidency of the
Manhattan Single Tax Club.

During these years he has delivered 1,865 lectures dis-
tributed among the states as follows:

New York, 769; Massachusetts, 157; Virginia, 145;
Canada, 145; New Jersey, 140; Pennsylvania, 139; Ohio,
101; Maryland, 88; Rhode Island, 88; Connecticut, 32;
Indiana, 18; Michigan, 15; Illinois, 11; Dis. of Columbia,
8; New Hampshire, 5; Delaware, 2; Maine, 1; Wiscon-
sin, 1.

Last year, 1929, Mr. Brown delivered 209 lectures dis-
tributed as follows:

Business organizations, 84; universities, colleges and
schools, 90; churches, 7; sundry organizations, 28. Attend-
ance at these lectures have run from 25 to 2,000.

Besides the lecture activities articles on taxation and the
Single Tax are sent every month to 850 newspapers.
Many papers have used this matter; and many have made
it the basis of editorials treating of taxation and their own
local problems.

A constant stream of literature in the shape of books
and pamphlets goes forward from headquarters, and great
care is exercised in the distribution of this material. This
work is under the supervision of Miss Beatrice Cohen, the
able and efficient assistant secretary of the organization,
who in the absence of Mr. Brown on his lecture tours
directs the machinery of the club, answers communica-
tions, and arranges advance dates where possible.

Mr. Brown accompanies his report with impressive
testimonials from those who have arranged successful
meetings. Prof. Robert Fry Clark, of the Department of
Economics and Sociology at Marietta College, Marietta,
Ohio, writes: "We were glad indeed to have you here and
hope you may be able to come again. "

Prof. Mitchell, of Johns Hopkins, says: "Mr. Brown is
by all odds the most acceptable outside speaker that has
come to the University in any department in years."

L. N. Deniston, president of the West Hartford, Conn.,
Chamber of Commerce, writes: "That you have made a
lasting impression is certain, for those who heard you
still discuss the topic, and many want you to return."

Prof. E. J. Urwick, of the University of Toronto, On-
tario, writes: "Both on my own part and on that of all
my colleagues I should like to express our very grateful
thanks for the delightful and stimulating address you
were kind enough to give to our Commerce Club. "

Joseph J. Moran, President of the Moran Business Col-
lege, Kingston, N. Y., writes: "A man who can present
so intricate a subject lucidly and entertainingly must,
indeed, be an educator of high rank. Many express the



LAND AND FREEDOM



45



wish that you return in order that they may learn more
of the solution of the tax problem."

R. \V. Swetland, Headmaster of the Peddie School,
Hightstown, N. J., writes: "You certainly made a great
hit with the boys as well as with me, and I shall be most
happy to have you come again next fall."

R. VV. McGriffin, President Marietta (Ohio) Commercial
College, writes: ''The students got some ideas from your
speech that should be of everlasting value to them. "

These commendations are from very recent communica-
tions to Mr. Brown and show a gratifying response to the
message this indefatigable lecturer brings to his widely
distributed audiences.

Mr. Brown's lecture assignments for February of this
year were given in our last issue. Following is a list of
lectures made in the month of March :

Wednesday, 5th: Irvington, N. J., High School, 8.45
A. M. Paterson, N. J., Civic Club, 4.00 P. M.

Thursday, 6th: Danbury, Conn., State Normal School,
10.30 A. M. Bethel, Conn., High School, 1.25 P. M.

Friday, 7th: Canaan, Conn., No. Canaan High School,
2.30 P. M.

Monday, 10th: Plainville, Conn., High School, 11.00
A. M. New Haven, Conn., Stone College, 2.15 P. M.

Tuesday, llth: \Yestfield, N. J., Rotary Club, 12.15,
noon.

Wednesday, 12th: Ocean City, N. J., High School,
9.00 A. M. Beach Haven, N. J., Exchange Club, evening.

Thursday, loth: Westfield, N. J., Board of Realtors,
8.30 P. M.'

Friday. 14th: New York, N. Y.. Dwight School, 11.40
A. M. Waldwick. N. J., Young People's League, evening.

Monday, 17th: Northampton, Mass., High School,
8.30 A. M. Northampton, Mass., Kiwanis Club, 12.15,
noon. Northampton, Mass., Rotary Club, 6.15 P. M.

Tuesday, 18th: So. Hadley Falls, Mass., So. Hadley
High School, 8.20 A. M. Turners Falls, Mass., Rotary
Club, noon.

Wednesday, 19th: Chicopee, Mass., High School,
10.05 A. M. Springfield, Mass., Bay Path Institute,
2.15 P. M.

Thursday, 20th: Springfield, Mass., Exchange Club,
noon. Springfield, Mass., Central High School, 2.30
P. M. Auburn, Mass., Men's Club and Grange, 8.30
P. M.

Friday, 21st: Windsor, Conn., The Loomis Institute,
12.00 noon. So. Manchester, Conn., Manchester High
School, 2.30 P. M.

Monday, 24th: Saugus, Mass., Saugus High School,
9.00 A. M. Boston, Mass., Hickox Secretarial School,
noon. Boston, Mass., Boston University School of Law,
4.00 P. M. Boston, Mass., College of Physicians and
Surgeons.

Tuesday, 25th: Brockton, Mass., High School, 8.50
A. M. Brockton, Mass., High School, 9.30 A. M. New-
ton, Mass., Kiwanis Club, noon.



Wednesday, 26th: Waterbury, Conn., Post's Business
College, 10.30 A. M. Waterbury, Conn., Kiwanis Club,
12.15, noon.

Thursday, 27th: Boston, Mass., Boston University
Theological Department, 11.40 P. M. Brockton, Mass.,
Rotary Club, 6:15 P. M.

Friday, 28th: So. Braintree, Mass., Thayer Academy,
8.30 A. M. Taunton, Mass., Bristol Co. Business Col-
lege, 11.00 A. M. So. Braintree, Mass., Rotary Club,
evening.

Monday, 31st: Newburyport, Mass., High School,
11:40 A. M. Lawrence, Mass., Cannon's Commercial
College, 2.30 P. M. %

A partial list of April engagements follows:

Tuesday 1st: Worcester, Mass., Becker College, 9.00
A. M. Worcester, Mass., Lions Club, 12.00, noon.

Thursday, 3rd: Westfield, Mass., High School, 11.30
A. M. Westfield, Mass., Kiwanis Club, 12.15, noon.

Friday, 4th: Springfield, Mass., Rotary Club, 12.15,
noon.

Tuesday, 8th: Newark, N. J., Reciprocity Club, even-
ing.

Thursday, 17th: Port Jervis, N. Y., Kiwanis Club,
evening.

Wednesday, 23rd: Baltimore, Md., Morgan College,
10.45 A. M. Baltimore, Md., History Club of Baltimore
City College, 2.30 P. M.

Thursday, 24th: Baltimore, Md., Polytechnic Insti-
tute, 12.00, noon. Westminster, Md., Western Maryland
College, afternoon.

Friday, 25th: Washington, D. C., George Washington
University. 6.00 P. M.

Monday, 28th: Williamsburgh, Va., College of William
and Mary.

Tuesday, 29th: W 7 illiamsburg, Va., College of William
and Mary.

Many of these dates in April left unfilled will be taken
up before the month is completed.

An Impressive Indictment

"P\R. HAVEN EMERSON, of the Columbia University
^^ Medical School faculty, in an address at the formal
dedication of the new Institute of Mental Hygiene at the
Pennsylvania Hospital in Philadelphia, said that we were
creating conditions as "unbearable for human beings as
conditions which coasted in the front line trenches during
the World War. "

He declared that much of the wreckage of mind and
nerve today was due to fear, which was induced in no small
degree by unemployment, by depression, by the "sudden
realization of people capable of working for their living
that they have no means of support ; that there is no place
for them in this vaunted modern civilization."

Will not other authorities speak out as frankly?



46



LAND AND FREEDOM



Dinner of the Manhattan

Single Tax Club

(REPORTED BY ELMA DAME)

ON Tuesday evening, February 11, a dinner was given
by the Manhattan Single Tax Club of New York
City at the Hotel Woodstock, to celebrate the fifteenth
anniversary of the presidency of James R. Brown.

It was felt by the directors and members of the Club
that the day Mr. Brown assumed the reins of the club
had marked the beginning of a new era a turning-point
in the life of the club and in the history of the Single Tax
movement. During these fifteen years Mr. Brown has
devoted his whole time to the affairs of the club and to
extending a practical knowledge of the Single Tax by his
lectures and writings, by newspaper publicity and personal
work. It was therefore deemed a fitting thing that recog-
nition of his work be given at this time, and that he be
offered an opportunity to give an account of his steward-
ship.

About eighty persons were present at the dinner. Mr.
Richard Eyre presided. Numerous letters and telegrams
of appreciation were read from members and friends who
were unable to be present. Among these were messages
from Charles T. Root, Tom Work on behalf of Buffalo
Single Taxers, Alfred Bishop Mason, Grace Isabel Colbron,
Mary Fels, Charles J. Ogle on behalf of Maryland Single
Taxers, Allen L. Smith, who spoke for "thousands of
Canadians," Samuel Seabury, Josiah Dadley, William
Lloyd Garrison, Jr., Dr. Solis Cohen, E. W. Doty, R. Louis
Lloyd, Frances S. Boulton, Edwin J. Jones and others.

Mr. Root's letter pointed out that under Mr. Brown's



Online LibraryOutdoor Advertising Association of AmericaLand and freedom (Volume 30) → online text (page 10 of 37)