Understanding Economics

Lesson 8: Our Backwards Tax System and How to Fix It!

Please read chapters 29 - 33 and sections 2 - 6 of Henry George's Remedy.


1. Under the feudal system           | Text |

a. the community's right to land rent was partially recognized.
b. economic injustice was far worse than it is today.
c. there were no provisions for taking care of the poor.
d. equality of opportunity was widespread.
2. Private property in land           | Text |

a. has retarded economic development.
b. is less important in the "information economy."
c. is the norm in many primitive societies.
d. was an engine of economic development in the United States.
e. is the basis of today's banking system.
3. How does the term "real estate" lead to confusion in determining the rightful basis of property?           | Text | Supplement |

4. If land is justly common property, how can a person retain undisturbed possession and use of land and still satisfy the equal rights of all?           | Text |

5. How does the treatment of land as absolute private property stand in the way of its highest and best use?           | Text | Supplement |

6. People will be happy to use land productively if           | Text |

a. they can get good wages.
b. they have secure possession of their improvements.
c. their tax burden is decreased.
d. they don't have to borrow money to obtain land.
7. Compare George's proposal with customary "left-wing", "right-wing" and "middle-of-the-road" proposals.           | Supplement |

8. Which of the following is not a likely result of collecting land rent for public revenue?           | Supplement |

a. Local government would have less influence.
b. The process of urban sprawl would start to reverse.
c. School funding will be stabilized and less contentious.
d. Unemployment and inflation will simultaneously decrease.
9. How could a partial application of land value tax raise land prices?           | Supplement |

10. What are the standards (or "canons") to which taxation should conform, according to Adam Smith?           | Text |

11. What are some reasons why land assessments are often inaccurate?          | Supplement |

12. The statement that land rent amounts to less than 2% of national income          | Supplement |

a. is derived from data gathered from Federal tax returns.
b. uses a different definition of "rent" than is used in this course.
c. has been used to deflect support from Henry George's remedy.
d. reflects the methodology of neoclassical economics.
e. All of the above.
13. What are two probable effects of shifting taxes off of buildings and onto land?           | Supplement |

14. With Henry George's remedy in effect          | Supplement |

a. government revenue would have to be less than it is now.
b. government revenue would have to be more than it is now.
c. aggregate rent would have to be more than it is now.
d. aggregate rent would have to be less than it is now.