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that may eventuate in the establishment of such a uni-
versity. If the agencies under the direction of the school
can be organized for effective co-operation in a nation-
wide movement we seem at last to have entered upon a
real educational programme.

In the confused babel of opinion that prevails, a cer
of authoritative information and enlightenment may
visualized that will grow to be of tremendous influe
and power. Addressing himself more particularly to th
young, Mr. Geiger as director, with those who have volun-
teered their co-operation as teachers, will do invaluable
work in the years that stretch before us.

Mr. Geiger has enlisted for the war, and our readers
will wish him Godspeed. Equipped as he is with a wide
knowledge of the books and the various schools of economic
teaching; familiar from a long platform experience witf
different kinds of audiences; able to meet the difficulties
that occur to the inquiring mind, he is essentially a teacher i
The school is fortunate in securing Mr. Geiger as director ;



LAND AND FREEDOM



51



and the movement that promises so well will be watched
with keen anticipation and real hope.

In reference to the distinguished group of sponsors, we
take our theme from the acceptance letter of Morris Van
Veen, in which he says that these will constitute an honor
roll on which those concerned will be proud to have a place.

Schalkenbach Foundation Busy

ID ECENTLY the editor of the St. Louis Post Dispatch

* * asked the Robert Schalkenbach Foundation for an
article on the Single Tax and its relation to the current
depression. Mr. Byron W. Holt, treasurer of the Founda-
tion, wrote "The Single Tax vs. Depression; How and
Why Land Value Taxation Would Prevent Business
Depressions." The article was sent to the editor, placed
in a large box on the editorial page of the issue of Feb.
27, and a letter has been received from the editor thanking
Mr. Holt for his good work. A letter from Mr. Boeck,
of St. Louis, tells us the article has given the people in St.
Louis new hope and courage. The Foundation intends to
reproduce this article and send it to other editors.

Commerce and Finance of this city has reprinted, by
arrangement with the Foundation, the complete text of
Henry George's "Causes of Business Depression" in its
Jan. 27 issue. Since then there has been lively discussion
in its columns by those who did not entirely approve the
Georgeist viewpoint; but the latest full-page article by

ay R. Waterbury, of Washington, D. C., supplies a "last
in effective statement of the Single Tax. The title
'George Points a Way Out."
Elsewhere in LAND AND FREEDOM is a reprint of an

iitorial of the Dayton Daily News for Feb. 26. Friends
Dayton have been supplying the editor with material
about Henry George, and Mr. Kirkendahl, in writing short,
to-the-point letters to the People's Column about Henry
George and his books, has no doubt helped in cultivating
a favorable attitude in the editorial mind.

(Mr. Kirkendahl gives us some information regarding
Mr. Locke, the writer of the editorial in the Dayton Daily
News which appears on another page. He was editor of
a Western paper until James M. Cox paid him more money
to come East. He was for a number of years interested
in the Chicago branch of the Henry George movement.
He has the courage of his convictions and cannot be swerved
from his course. He believes that with the destruction
of our autocratic capitalistic system perhaps socialism
may precede the Single Tax.)

The lectures given by Mr. Geiger in the metropolitan
district under the auspices of the Foundation for the past
month are as follows: Speech before the Round Table
Club at Lawrence, L. I. (Full reports of the speech were
sent to the local newspapers, with an article about Henry
George, and picture.) Address to 300 members of the Mon-
tifiore Congregation, Bronx; a return engagement at the



Young Israel Forum. Mr. Geiger will also speak before
the Men's Club of the Unitarian Church at Hollis, L. I.,
at 9 p. m., March 21.

Through the co-operation of Mr. H. C. Harris, of Cordele,
Ga., the leading educational and public libraries of Georgia
have been supplied with needed Henry George books.

In a letter from the Argentine we find that the vice presi-
dent of the First National Bank of Boston, Argentine
Branch, received some of our circular literature. He aroused
the interest of nine other bank employees and sent us an
order for ten copies of "Progress and Poverty." He will
continue his work of interesting other people in his com-
munity.

This leads us to state again that the policy of the Founda-
tion is to expend a good part of its efforts in reaching new
fields by advertising and by direct circular appeal. During
February 8,800 circular letters have gone out, about half
of which were sent to professors and high school teachers
throughout the country. Many orders for books are due
to the generous work that Single Taxers are doing in inter-
esting people in the writings of Henry George; but over
and above that we are obtaining many results from this
circularizing of new groups. The office has sent out, since
the first of January, 1932, 1,310 books, of which 613 are
the unabridged "Progress and Poverty" and 418 "Signifi-
cant Paragraphs," the balance being made up of the other
titles on our list. More than 12,500 pamphlets, mostly
"Causes of Business Depression," have also been sent out.

A new reprint of "The Single Tax; What It Is and Why
We Urge It" has been added to the list of pamphlets avail-
able. ANTOINETTE KAUFMANN, Secretary.

OUR readers get eight additional pages in this issue to
accommodate the admirable papers published herein
and the news of extensive lecture work.

We must ask delinquent subscribers to renew promptly.
In these times every dollar counts. May we also impress
upon our readers the need of securing additional subscribers
to the magazine? Our subscription list ought to be doubled
in 1932, and this can be accomplished if every one will
work among his friends.

WHOEVER becomes imbued with a noble idea kindles
a flame from which other torches are lit, and in-
fluences those with whom he comes in contact, be they
few or many. How far that influence, thus perpetuated,
may extend, it is not given to him here to see. But it may
be that the Lord of the Vineyard will know.

HENRY GEORGE.

IT is around the standard of duty rather than around
the standards of self-interest that men must rally to
win the rights of man. And herein may we see the deep
philosophy of Him who bid men love their neighbors as
themselves. HENRY GEORGE.



52



LAND AND FREEDOM



Editorial Comment Gleaned From Many Sources



IS OUR TAX SYSTEM WRONG?
(Buffalo Courier Journal, Alma, Wis.)

Is it wrong to be rich? Is it a crime against the State to build a
modern home, or factory, or develop a farm, that the State fines the
builders fines them not once but once a year?

Stores, railroads, theaters would be considered not quite sane if they
charged for their groceries, fares, admissions according to the wealth
of each customer as he came in but that's the way the government
sells most of its goods and services.

Is our taxing system wrong? and Is there a better way? are questions
that may well be asked not only by the wealthy but by all. For out
of tax injustice grow many of our present social ills.

Why should it not be possible for our learned statesmen and econo-
mists to work out and apply a method by which people will pay taxes
more nearly in exact proportion to actual benefits received?

All government and social improvements, some claim, are reflected
in the site or location value of bare land -mines, timber, power sites,
city lots, farms and the annual rental value of the unimproved prop-
erty should therefore be the tax, they explain, thus relieving from burden
both labor and industry; income and inheritance taxes to be levied
only if needed.

WHAT IS THE MATTER WITH INDIA?
(Irish Weekly and Ulster Examiner, Belfast, Ireland)

Walking through the fields [in India] we met a "Zemindar" (land-
lord), and fell into talk with him about the system of land tenure. It
had a feudal origin, and dates from the time of Moghul, who relied
on these gentry to support them in the field with foot and horse. The
relationship, under British rule, became purely economic. The "Zem-
indar" levies a rent, out of which he must pay 45 per cent to the pro-
vincial exchequer. He sinks no capital in the land. It is the peasants
who dig the wells on which its fertility depends, and construct the mud
huts which form their crowded and unsanitary villages. Relics of feudal
service survive. The "Zemindar" may summon the peasants to plow
his own fields, and exact from them, when he gives a feast, a tribute of
milk and fodder. In return I could hear only of a rare permission to
cut timber. I asked my "Zemindar" bluntly what social service he
performed in return for his rent. He answered as plainly that he had
"bought his rights and owed no obligation to the tenants. We're
filling our bellies as everyone does." In fact, few of the old gentry re-
main ; their successors are mere tax farmers.

Through outworks of dung heaps, and over runnels of filth, we had
now reached the little village. The sun was setting; work was over,
and the peasants grouped themselves around me under the banyan
tree. Three questions almost sufficed to define their condition. Every
man was in debt. Not one could read. Not a child was at school. The
rate of interest was apparently uniform, 37^ per cent. Of debt, indeed,
as I wandered next day through other villages, the peasants talked
incessantly. I met a "bunya" (money lender) in the act of bullying a
weaver as he was working at his primitive craft under a tree. He was
as frank about his exactions as the "Zemindar." It was not risk that
excused his rate of interest; up till three years ago he rarely had a
bad debt.

HOW TO REDUCE WAGES
(Coshocton (O.) Daily Tribune)

' ' The surest way to force wages lower would be to increase the tax
on industries. '

"This is not a statement by a representative of a business interest.
It was made recently by Senator Borah of Idaho, who is not generally
regarded as a hero worshipper of our industrial system. And the truth
in it is self-evident. Those Senators and Congressmen who are now
campaigning for greatly increased corporate taxes, on the old theory



that the rich should be taxed to support the poor, are unknowingly
enemies of the worker.

" In the operation of any business, taxes must come first. They are
a definite and inescapable levy. Wages and dividends follow. There
is no way a business can either maintain high wages or pay its investors
good dividends without making money. If an exorbitant part of that
money goes to government, the other interested parties will be the
losers and business and jobs will decrease. In brief, keeping the cost
of government at reasonable levels would be the strongest possible
influence in favor of industrial revival, a high standard of employment,
and maintenance of wage scales."

The above clipping from an exchange shows the strange mixture oi
truth and inaccuracy in economic thinking with which the world is
afflicted. The fallacy is just as apparent in what Senator Borah says
as in what the paper says.

If, for example, what Senator Borah says is true, and we will all agree
to it, then why stop the line of reasoning he has started? He says "the
surest way to force wages lower is to increase the taxes on industry."
That is so true that it is never disputed by the theorist in economics
nor by the hard-headed business executive. Tax industry, tax the mak-
ing of commodities, and the price of commodities goes up. We have
stressed that point a thousand times in this column. Tax is always
added to price. Tax is ever one of the costs of production, and it is
just as true whether the tax is levied on a bushel of corn or a pair of
shoes.

But the Idaho statesman stops with a half truth, which is generally
more damaging than an absolutely false statement. He knows that a
tax on anything is a brake on production. They used to tax saloons
and they still tax dogs, not so much for the revenue derived as on the
perfectly correct rule of taxation that the more you tax a thing the
less you will have of it. That's why a tax was levied on saloons and dogs,
to cut down the supply, on the theory that both are largely nuisances.
But if a nuisance can be lessened or entirely driven out of existence
through the power of taxation, then why can't our representatives in
Washington see the thing clear through? Why can't they follow on to
the one and only logical conclusion, the ultimate economic truth, which
to see and follow will lead on to the end of depressions and the long-
awaited era of permanent prosperity, namely, that if dogs can be driven
out of existence by high taxes, why can't all trade be diminished, even
abolished, by excessive taxation?

Further, why isn't Mr. Borah discerning enough, or if he sees, why
isn't he honest enough, to accept the inevitable corollary of the above? ;
If high taxes hurt industry, if they hurt both the capitalist and the
laboring man, why tax industry at all? If trade is the thing we want/
why tariffs? If we want to sell more goods, why tax them? If tariffs,
which are only another form of taxation, restrict traffic, and if internal
taxes reduce production of the things men want, why resort to either?
Admittedly the greatest civilizer the world has ever known is com-
merce. Yet taxes cut down production at the source, and tariffs restrict
their sale generally, with the resultant corruption of officials and the
people due to their attendant nuisances.

CAUSE OF UNEMPLOYMENT IS A SIMPLE MATTER

(Hartselle (Ala.) Enterprise)

What is meant by the term employment? Of what does employment
consist that there should be such a huge army of unemployment in
America and the balance of the world? All employment consists of
one thing, and one thing only the application of labor to land or the
products of land. No matter how intricate may become the process of
production, nor how minute the division of labor, in the final analysis
all employment of whatsoever nature is similar the application of
labor to land or the products of land.

If it be true, and it unquestionably is, that all employment consist*






LAND AND FREEDOM



S3



of the application of labor to land or the products of land, it follows
that any interference with the free access of labor to land or the prod-
ucts of land must necessarily tend to the throwing of labor out of
employment. Unemployment merely reflects the difficulty of labor
in obtaining access to land or the products of land. As it becomes
increasingly difficult for labor to obtain access to land, just to that
extent unemployment increases, the power to consume the products
of labor decreases, throwing additional labor out of employment, sur-
pluses accumulate, there is what for lack of a better name is called
"overproduction, " and in due time industrial depression with its accom-
paniment of misery, soup houses and crime grips the land in all its fury.

When land values fall to a point where access of labor to land is pos-
sible, unemployment decreases, there is a demand for the products of
labor, prices increase, wages rise and so<alled prosperity is again the
lot of the populace. This is the history of the industrial development
of recent times.

As soon as labor has access to land, unemployment will decrease,
the depression will rise and conditions will become normal. Until such
time as labor can obtain access to land at a price that will leave the
laborer sufficient of his product to insure more than just a miserable
existence for himself and dependents, there is not the remotest possi-
bility of the depression ending.

As stated above, all employment consists of the application of labor
to land or the products of land, and nothing else. Whenever land be-
comes accessible to labor, unemployment will cease and we may with
reason expect an end to the depression. This is all there is to the un-
employment situation. It is very simple when understood.



IF WASHINGTON HAD KNOWN HENRY GEORGE

(Dayton (O.) Daily News)

hington, the background of the national government, is as much
queen of the hive a special creation for a special purpose. As
it fills up with a special population of a special point of view,
tiington as a whole doesn't know, for instance, that there is a depres-
The well-to-do people who retire to Washington to spend their
in a beautiful environment maintained largely at the national
may know a depression is on. But Washington as a whole
epends for its income not on Wall Street stocks but on government
alaries. Government salaries, though the income of the government
las been cut in half, go on exactly as before. The dollars of salary have
ot been diminished. The value of the dollars has grown.
Washington's total buying power is greater now than it was three years
[o. In other cities, pedestrians have the comfort of finding that the
epression has left them slightly fewer automobiles to dodge. Not so
Washington. But if we were Senator Borah we should not try to
ross a street at all. The one statesman who has proposed to Washing-
on's own face to cut Washington's own salary that man will be run
ver by a Washington automobile if ever it gets a chance.
If George Washington had known Henry George the story of Wash-
gton might have been vastly different. And yet, they might have
uarreled. Henry George was the nemesis of land speculation. George
Washington had a good eye for the unearned increment. That was
hat made him one of the richest men of his time. He liked to buy
) land and watch the growth of the country, the energies of his
Duntrymen, make its value grow. There have been mean insinuations
lat Washington placed the capital with a view to adding value to his
ount Vernon lands just down the river. Those charges do not stand,
he capital was put where any patriot, anxious to bind together the
outh and North, would have put it. And what happier convenience
in we find than that which permits a visitor to Washington, the capital
his country, to whirl in a few minutes the fifteen miles to the home of
/ashington, the father of his country?

If Washington had known Henry George there might have been a

fferent financial story of the City of Washington. Henry George

ould have told George Washington that the value which the presence

the government would put into the land of the District of Columbia



would suffice to build the Capitol itself and all the buildings of the
government, and to operate the place besides. Henry George would
have made the government its own landlord and land speculator. We
note a little wedge of land out Rock Creek parkway, four miles from
the Capitol, three miles from the White House, which can be bought
for about $3,000,000 an acre. These values, Henry George would have
told George Washington, were made by the government, by its presence
and its improvements, and the government should have had the values
which it made. A few such acres as this would have paid for the mam-
moth Department of Commerce structure which Mr. Hoover built,
with its private elevator for the Secretary, two attendants and one
passenger. A Western Congressman tried to walk around it, he tells
us, and fell exhausted by the way. The Troy around whose walls Hector
ran nine times must have been smaller, the Congressman thinks, than
this building which Mr. Hoover built.

George Washington did not have the pleasure of the acquaintance
of Henry George, so the enormous values which the government put
into District of Columbia real estate fell into private hands. When-
ever the government needs new land for its new improvements it ran-
soms these values back, paying hugely for the values which it made.
All of this enters into the deficits the taxpayers groan about.

Meanwhile the Washington owners of the real estate which the govern-
ment has made so valuable raised pained cries to high heaven because
they are asked to pay taxes at the rate of $1.70 a hundred on an assess-
ment somewhere in the vicinity of half the amount they would ask the
government for their property if the government needed it.



SEES THE SAME DEPRESSION OCCURRING AGAIN

(Dr. George P. Clements of the Agricultural Dept. of Los Angeles

Chamber of Commerce, in Los Angeles Sunday Times)

The story of the spurious side of farm land promotion in California
during the past decade is not one which will appear in future treatises
on the economic development of the Golden State during this period.
In fact, the "hush-hush" ban has already been clamped on, and white-
wash is being freely used in business and official circles.

This suppressive activity raises a question of motive in my mind.
Are we ashamed of our record, or are we laying "doggo," waiting for
purses to fill again?

While I would rather believe that our reticence comes from a realiza-
tion that we have erred, and that we have promised ourselves to take
a righteous path in the future, years of experience in farm-land settle-
ment cause me to fear that this is not the case. We will again have our
Promota Fig Farms, our Alchemic Avocado Acres, our Gilded Grape-
fruit Groves, and our Golden Egg Farms, just as we have had them
during the past decade, and in earlier periods of real estate inflation,
unless we take steps to remove some of the causes of this sort of exploi-
tation and to educate the land-buying public.

This type of project has been our promotional specialty projects
using "magic" crops as bait to sell land, development which can never
under the wildest stretch of imagination become agricultural. True,
there have been certain abuses in straight farm land selling, but it is
in the smaller unit projects, largely under the "plant and promise to
tare for" plan, that the most millions have been mulcted from a misin-
formed and therefore gullible public.

What can we, who know the direful effect of this sort of thing, do to
lessen the burden of speculative farm land activity when it comes again?
It will come, as sure as taxes.

As I see it, we should first honestly attempt to fix the causes. This
may bring out some rather frank and even embarrassing information;
nevertheless, we cannot sidestep it if we are to make any sound gains.



F*HE farmer who took a part of the oats of his insuffi-
* ciently fed horses to increase the food supply of his

poultry is as wise as the legislator who votes for a tax on

industry to help the unemployed.



54



LAND AND FREEDOM



Manhattan S. T. Club Activities

THE report of the Manhattan Single Tax Club's ac-
tivities for the last two months tells mainly of the
tremendous work of Charles H. Ingersoll on his Western
lecture tour. The audiences have been of the highest
class. Publicity has been remarkable. Every lecture and
published notice is straight Single Tax.

Arrangements have been made with Mr. Ingersoll for
him to buy a small car in California, with which he will
make his trip through the Northwest and homeward, tak-
ing at least three months more

We feel that the work done by Mr. Ingersoll is probably
the most effective work that can be done for the Single
Tax.

We have reprinted Mr. Brown's pamphlet "A Plain Talk
on Taxation."

The work of the Manhattan Single Tax Club is progress-
ing. We have requests for lectures from several univer-
sities in Maryland and Virginia where our late President,
James R. Brown, lectured. Mr. Fairchild has volunteered
to spend a week in March filling these engagements. Re-
quests for literature are filled every day.

REPORT OF INGERSOLL LECTURE TOUR

On Saturday, Dec. 26, Mr. Ingersoll left New York for Columbus,
O., to join Mr. John S. Maclean, manufacturer and well known Single
Taxer of that city, who had kindly volunteered to drive Mr. Ingersoll
to the Coast, stopping en route wherever speaking dates are arranged.
To reports of lectures printed in January-February LAND AND FREEDOM
are added the following:

Jan. 5 Lexington, Ky.; Transylvania College. This is the oldest
college west of the Allegheny Mountains; 400 present, and all listened
to Mr. Ingersoll's message for a half hour, followed by a question period
of fifteen or twenty minutes.

Jan. 6 Danville, Ky.; Centre College. A big day for Mr. Inger-
soll. He started for Danville from Lexington at 7:30 a.m., arriving
at Centre College at 8.30 a. m. ; was cordially received by president
Turck; addressed 350 boys in the auditorium. At 10:00 a. m., across



Online LibraryOutdoor Advertising Association of AmericaLand and freedom (Volume 32) → online text (page 13 of 54)