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#31
09-23-2013
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yes that
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#32
09-23-2013
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Originally Posted by Lucky View Post
yes that


How convenient that I fit so nicely into a caricature.
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#33
09-23-2013
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#34
09-23-2013
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#35
10-18-2013
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Nowhere else to put this :\

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#36
10-23-2013
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Originally Posted by davobrosia View Post
Nowhere else to put this :\

Bringing land sites into productive use or keeping land sites from being used in production (conserving resources) is an important role in the economy. Land owners seeking to maximize intertemporal profit ensure that land areas are rented out to those who provide the most value to consumers over time (something desirable from a consequentialist perspective). Private land ownership provides an important social function (see "tragedy of the commons"....here might be a good point to note that I am criticizing Marx's quote and not land value taxation per se).

The land owner does contribute something as seen above, and every decision he makes has opportunity costs. In addition, people buy and sell land, and have a definitive risk when they purchase land in that they may not end up getting the returns necessary to justify their purchase of the land.

So the landowner does contribute something, and does risk something.

As for Friedman, not sure of a way to separate the value of land from the value of its improvements without introducing arbitrary assessments by people who can be bought and sold by those in the business of buying and selling political favors.

As for if land value taxation is better than other taxation (assuming we aren't talking about a 100% Single Tax), I don't know. Either way, it is definitely not a tax without social costs. Whether the benefits outweigh the costs I am unsure.
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#37
10-23-2013
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clean post 10/10
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#38
10-25-2013
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Originally Posted by zyphex View Post
Bringing land sites into productive use or keeping land sites from being used in production (conserving resources) is an important role in the economy. Land owners seeking to maximize intertemporal profit ensure that land areas are rented out to those who provide the most value to consumers over time (something desirable from a consequentialist perspective). Private land ownership provides an important social function (see "tragedy of the commons"....here might be a good point to note that I am criticizing Marx's quote and not land value taxation per se).

The land owner does contribute something as seen above, and every decision he makes has opportunity costs. In addition, people buy and sell land, and have a definitive risk when they purchase land in that they may not end up getting the returns necessary to justify their purchase of the land.

So the landowner does contribute something, and does risk something.

As for Friedman, not sure of a way to separate the value of land from the value of its improvements without introducing arbitrary assessments by people who can be bought and sold by those in the business of buying and selling political favors.

As for if land value taxation is better than other taxation (assuming we aren't talking about a 100% Single Tax), I don't know. Either way, it is definitely not a tax without social costs. Whether the benefits outweigh the costs I am unsure.

Good post

I might say that the risk is not up to some lacking on the land's part, but rather from a lack of creativity/ability on the owner's part. In other words, the risk he takes on is the risk of his own inability to extract a profit somehow. So the risk is one of time and resources for a potential gain of the latter. What is a society to do when a landowner is letting the land lie fallow and there are others who could by all accounts (but the owner's) put it to better (more profitable for himself, more profitable for society, more socially beneficial, whatever metric you want to plug in here is probably fine) use? And if we grant that there may be a point at which it is justifiable to take it back into the commons and let someone else have a crack at it, where would the cutoff be? This may not be a huge issue at the moment, but there's only so much actual physical space and land out there to use, so as we grow as a species it will probably be important at some point.


I think the spirit of Marx's quote is that there is no unique value added by the land's being "owned" by a given individual over another. By virtue of sheer numbers, it seems that some other owner would be at the ready if any given owner were to suddenly not exist. I.e., the idea seems to be that land ownership itself is contingent and that allowing its use* is the essential (i.e. essence) function of the landlord (i.e., he is a sort of middleman for a given bundle of resources). At this point we diverge axiomatically and teleologically regarding the nature of social structures and what a man's purpose is, but really it was interesting to me to see Friedman say something that aligns more or less with a common Leftist idea. Given the vast creativity of human endeavor, the value of the land is something that would probably have to be decided as some sort of aggregate, and the math would be tricky and beyond human comprehension of course.


*As far as Geoists (and to a lesser extent left-libertarians and OG anarchists a la Proudhon) are concerned, ownership is a separate concept from use, and they would argue that the minor semantic distinction carries some very important implications vis a vis justice and socioeconomic consequences.
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#39
10-25-2013
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Originally Posted by davobrosia View Post
Good post
Thanks . You as well!

Quote:
I might say that the risk is not up to some lacking on the land's part, but rather from a lack of creativity/ability on the owner's part. In other words, the risk he takes on is the risk of his own inability to extract a profit somehow. So the risk is one of time and resources for a potential gain of the latter.
But what is said here could also be said of the "industrial capitalist." He purchases factors of production (labor and capital) and combines them in an attempt to make something that is more valuable than the sum of the inputs. It is only his lack of creativity/ability (and I would add, lack of proper judgement/foresight) that causes him to be taking a risk.

Quote:
What is a society to do when a landowner is letting the land lie fallow and there are others who could by all accounts (but the owner's) put it to better (more profitable for himself, more profitable for society, more socially beneficial, whatever metric you want to plug in here is probably fine) use?
But this is the real difficulty which is glossed over when you say "who could by all accounts (but the owner's) put it to better use."
One of the fundamental aspects/problems of decisionmaking is the inherent uncertainty of the future (which implies uncertainty as to the consequences of an action). Economics can provide a base of knowledge that will tell you general qualitative laws as to the effects of certain actions if they are undertaken, holding everything else equal. But it cannot tell you what actions people will actually take, as the economist and the entrepreneur are not imbued with the ability to absorb knowledge of the constantly changing preferences of individuals.

Before I go too off base, what I am trying to get at is that there is no theoretical way to say once and for all that the man holding land from production is not employing land in its most intertemporally productive use. His refraining from producing on the land or renting it out immediately may be the most intertemporally productive thing to do. As soon as he begins to produce on the land or rent out the land, he either engages in changing some physical aspect of the land or enters into a contract with someone else who will in some way alter the location. If he makes an extended contract today with one business, he will be unable to sell the land to any other business while the contract remains in effect, no matter how much more beneficial it would be to society for another business to be able to use the location he owns. So instead of entering a contract with a business today, it may be more beneficial to society if he leaves the land unaltered and waits until a more profitable/beneficial enterprise arrives.

There seems to me no way to know, with certainty, that land sitting idle for an extended period of time is not the most beneficial to society, when we take the view of society as intertemporal, rather than as the current generation.

I know this seems unsatisfying and you may want to conjure up a hypothetical case where a man says "to hell with society or to my own money-making prospects, that which I want most is for this land to be withheld from society indefinitely." But at this point we seem to be dealing with an extreme anomaly, rather than the rule.

My question I have to ask is what you find to be more likely:
That individual landowners will seek to maximize their intertemporal profits, and thus the intertemporal benefits to society, or that a government will seek to the maximize intertemporal profits.
I think it would be hard to argue that governments would be more inclined to maximize welfare in society over time. Rather, in the best case they try to maximize profits here and now (which results in hurting future generations) to satisfy voter bases. In the most likely case, some type of land policy would be skewed towards the advantage of cronyists and not society as a whole, as government officials seek to maximize their own return on every policy and deal they make.

But perhaps you aren't advocating (conditional) government takeovers of land, but instead are thinking of some alternative. But it is difficult for me to imagine a practical alternative, as "nobody owns any land" and "everybody owns the land" reduces to utter nonsense and an untenable ethical position, as well as a disastrous economic/societal policy (tragedy of the commons...not to beat that horse too much, but it seems particularly relevant).

(^^^and I'm not saying there aren't other types of ownership schemes, I'm just trying to push aside these two other so-called alternative to private ownership and government ownership.)

Quote:
And if we grant that there may be a point at which it is justifiable to take it back into the commons and let someone else have a crack at it, where would the cutoff be? This may not be a huge issue at the moment, but there's only so much actual physical space and land out there to use, so as we grow as a species it will probably be important at some point.
The cutoff (if there exists one ... I'm unsure on this point, I would have to think longer about it), I believe, cannot be answered theoretically. It appears that some common law precept would have to answer this question. Then the question becomes, who legitimately can determine the common law and enforce it. I'm afraid this would get us into farther away territory than either of us are willing to go because in this question is imbedded the question of "what is legitimacy or ethical justifiability" and "what qualifies as a justifiable social order." But my summarized answer is this: I do not think that political theory (or theory of justice) can tell us the correct policy, but I do think it can tell us whether or not there is a cutoff, and what institutions can legitimately make and enforce such a policy (or, alternatively, choose to not enforce a landowners right to land left idle for a long time).


Quote:
I think the spirit of Marx's quote is that there is no unique value added by the land's being "owned" by a given individual over another. By virtue of sheer numbers, it seems that some other owner would be at the ready if any given owner were to suddenly not exist. I.e., the idea seems to be that land ownership itself is contingent and that allowing its use* is the essential (i.e. essence) function of the landlord (i.e., he is a sort of middleman for a given bundle of resources).
Not to cut you in the middle of your thought here, but this is where I disagree (and this disagreement has been the most important point/theme to have taken away from my post thus far). I believe that restricting the use of land is an essential role of the landlord. His role of conserving land (holding land idle from production) and waiting for the right moment in time to use it himself or open it up to others for production purposes is essential and beneficial to society, once again, when we view society as intertemporal and not as a single (or few) generation(s).

Now back to your thoughts:

Quote:
At this point we diverge axiomatically and teleologically regarding the nature of social structures and what a man's purpose is, but really it was interesting to me to see Friedman say something that aligns more or less with a common Leftist idea. Given the vast creativity of human endeavor, the value of the land is something that would probably have to be decided as some sort of aggregate, and the math would be tricky and beyond human comprehension of course.
I agree.


Quote:
*As far as Geoists (and to a lesser extent left-libertarians and OG anarchists a la Proudhon) are concerned, ownership is a separate concept from use, and they would argue that the minor semantic distinction carries some very important implications vis a vis justice and socioeconomic consequences.
Sure, there is an important distinction to be made between ownership and use. Of course, I'm sure I would have some disagreements on their interpretations given I fall on the other side of the land ownership question.
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#40
02-11-2014
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Here's the problem - I am not a means to the end of rape culture, I am the end. I am literally the termination of this whole ordeal.
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