The Twice 'Forgotten' Man:
Some Aspects of His Thought in Relation
to His Times and Our Own*
Stuart Weems Bruchey
[* This essay was the keynote address given at a
Symposium on Henry George at St. Michael's College, Winooski, Vermont,
November 16-17, 1970. A grant in which the Lincoln Foundation, the
Economics Education Institute and the Robert Schalkenbach Foundation
joined helped defray the expenses of the meeting. Reprinted here from
the American Journal of Economics and Sociology, Vol. 31, No.
2 (April, 1972), pp. 113-138]
THIRTY YEARS AGO the American philosophical scholar George R. Geiger
published an article bearing the title "The Forgotten Man: Henry
George." Geiger is also the author of The Philosophy of Henry
George, a book which Edward J. Rose, George's most recent
biographer, describes as "the fullest discussion of George's
ideas." In his article Geiger calls it "one of the most
curious anomalies of the entire literature of social reform" that
George's work should have been so largely overlooked. Half-humorously,
Geiger suggested a number of reasons for what he called the "neglectful
contempt that our present-day intelligentsia professes towards
- George's philosophy was connected with "the land question"
and this was out of date;
- George believed in a single-tax, and that was "a utopian
- George believed in classical economics;
- he believed in God;
- he had no standing in academic circles.
Geiger made no attempt to refute all the arguments used to
rationalize the inattention to George. Indeed, he believed some of
them irrefutable, especially the one about single taxers, who were
associated in the public mind with vegetarians, theosophists,
spiritualists, Esperantists, believers in chiropractic and anarchism,
and other eggheads with cracked shells. His comment on the other
reasons for the neglect of George is often incisive but it can hardly
be maintained that he succeeded in overpowering the forces pushing
George into oblivion (1). For were he to contemplate a similar article
today it would be difficult to think of a more appropriate title than
the one he used in 1941: "The Forgotten Man: Henry George."
It is of course true that no historian would care to defend the
proposition that George is a forgotten man. No account of the times in
which he lived can fail to record his tremendous impact upon it, and
so far as I know no account does. How indeed could an historian
overlook the multi-national success of George's Progress and
Poverty, the fact that it outsold any previous work in political
economy, the influence it exerted on men so diverse in the range of
their intellectual interests and life-roles as George Bernard Shaw and
Sun Yat Sen, John Dewey and Tolstoy, Sidney Webb and H. G. Wells? How
could a student of history overlook the intellectual and moral
inspiration that book supplied to a whole generation of American
progressives, including such leading figures as Hamlin Garland, Tom
Johnson, Clarence Darrow and Brand Whitlock? As William E.
Leuchtenburg has recently written,
Over two million copies of his (George's) book were sold
in America alone, and on the dusty plains of Kansas, in the slums of
Liverpool and of Moscow, on the banks of the Ganges and of the
Yangtze, poor men pain- fully spelled out the message of Progress
and Poverty to grasp a new vision of human society (2).
Chester McArthur Destler believes that George "exercised an
unprecedented influence upon the American labor movement," (3)
and Carl N. Degler has pointed out that George's book, together with
Edward Bellamy's Looking Backward, "launched a whole
generation of economic and social reform" (4).
Nor can it be maintained that George and his ideas -- although some
of the latter are now so familiar to us that they no longer bear his
name -- are wholly uninfluential in the America of the 1970s. Since I
shall have more to say about this later on, let it suffice for the
moment to call attention to the continuing work of the Robert
Schalkenbach Foundation in distributing George's books, pamphlets and
speeches and otherwise encouraging the study of his ideas, and of the
existence of Henry George Schools in several cities. In the judgment
of Charles Albro Barker, who knows him best (who knows him best
because of his conviction that moral problems are the most important
problems to which an historian can address himself) when the leader
died he left behind him three types of belief in his ideas: the
fiscal-reform Georgism of the single-tax, the political Georgism which
entered into many varieties of reform activity, and the moral and
intellectual Georgism that, among other results, must include the
production by Barker himself of what Oscar Handlin has recently called
the definitive biography of George (5).
Nevertheless, although George and Georgism occupy secure places in
the annals of our past, and although, as we shall see, more and
brighter candles are today being lit in his memory in places that
would have surprised and pleased him, it is true that George's system
of ideas, the structure of his political economy, has not endured. Is
this because that system does not deserve to have endured? Is it
because George was not only the poor man's economist but also a poor
economist? Or is it because ideas, like dogs, have their day; that
they are framed to fit situations which, by changing, must outgrow
them ? We can make a beginning towards answering these questions by
glancing at some of George's ideas in relation to the economic society
of his time and then inquiring into their relevancy to the problems of
today. Along the way we shall also take into account assessments of
his work by various economists.
GEORGE AND THE INDUSTRIAL REVOLUTION
THE POST-CIVIL WAR YEARS in which George reached manhood witnessed
the intensified development, if not the birth, of a modern industrial
economy. All human beginnings are in some sense continuations and it
is easy to point out the origins of our industrialism in the
antebellum period. The larger truth, however, is that time is required
for new and improved techniques of manufacturing to make their way
from one firm to another and from one industry to the next. At some
indeterminate point these techniques sufficiently permeated the
economy to make possible an increase in the output of the individual
worker. Such increases in output play a large part in accelerating the
rate of growth of an economy. According to the latest scholarship on
the subject, the annual average rate of growth of per capita output
between 1790 and 1860 was 1.3 per cent. This figure rose to 1.8 per
cent in the decades following the Civil War (6). Thus, while the
American population doubled in size between 1860 and 1890, rising from
31 million to 63 million, the output of goods and services more than
kept pace with its increase. And since income and output are reverse
sides of the same coin, average income per capita also rose during the
Henry George was quite aware of the dynamic nature of the times in
which he lived. He didn't use our terminology, of course. He didn't
speak of economic growth. He spoke of progress. And he clearly saw the
role that technology played in making it possible.
The modern industrial economy, George knew, was built by steam and
machinery. Steam power was increasingly used to drive labor-saving
machines and the combination of the two greatly increased man's
ability to produce and distribute goods. As Alfred D. Chandler Jr. has
emphasized, the application of steam power to production and
transportation began to transform American economic organization and
institutions after 1850 (7). Steam-driven vessels, steam railroads,
and coal-powered factories all played basic roles in the shift of the
United States from an agrarian, commercial and essentially rural
nation to an urban and industrial one.
The role of the railroads was an especially important one in making
possible this transformation. In 1860, 30,000 miles of railroad track
were in operation, largely east of the Mississippi. By 1873, there
were 70,000, and by the end of the 1880s 160,000 miles. The continent
had first been spanned by rails in 1869. Other transcontinentals were
soon built, and as they were pushed to completion railroad
construction and integration went on elsewhere.
As Ross Robertson has pointed out, the two decades following the
Civil War witnessed the formation of the great trunk-line systems in
the middle Atlantic and north central states-extending from the
seaboard to Illinois and Wisconsin. From 1864 to 1900 the greatest
percentage of track was laid in the Great Plains states. Chicago
became the chief terminus of roads extending to the North, West, and
South, but a web of rails also surrounded such cities as St. Louis,
Kansas City, Minneapolis, Omaha, and Denver (8).
To summarize these developments in a financial nutshell, investment
in railroads doubled during the decade between the completion of the
first transcontinental railway and the appearance of
Progress and Poverty, rising from $1,741 million in 1869 to
$3,297 million in 1879. Ten years later investment had doubled once
again, rising to $6,474 million in 1889. These are not figures for
dollars of changing value. They represent capital in the form of
railroad track, bridges, stations, shops, locomotives, and freight and
passenger cars (9).
The rise of a national railroad network had important consequences
for both agriculture and manufacturing. Railroads help account for the
astonishing fact that farmers in the fifty years following the Civil
War occupied more land than in the previous 250-year-history of
America. Between 1860 and 1910 the number of farms in the nation more
than tripled, in- creasing from about 2 million to almost 61/2
million. In the same period farm acreage jumped from 407 million to
about 879 million. The increase in improved land quadrupled. In the
1890s, the final decade of George's life, some 200 million acres were
added to the agricultural domain -- an area larger than France and
Within 30 years after 1860 the area that lay between the frontier
line of that year and the west coast was completely overrun, and a
clearly marked frontier no longer existed-a fact to which George
called attention some years before Frederick Jackson Turner read his
celebrated paper on the significance of the frontier in American
history (10). A vast range cattle industry rose and flourished on the
Great Plains, and large commercial farms appeared on the rich soil of
the prairies. The annual production of corn increased between 1860 and
1915 from 800 million bushels to nearly 3 billion bushels, and the
yearly output of wheat rose from 173 million to more than a billion
bushels. For the most part what made these large increases in output
possible was technology-new machinery and equipment. Investment in the
form of mechanical reapers, harvesters, threshing machines, combines
and other equipment quintupled between 1845-1875, rising from an
average of $11 million a year to an annual average of $54 million,
only to quadruple once again between 1870 and 1900 (11). At the same
time, new methods of distribution based on the new transportation
network of the railroads, ocean-going steamships, and the telegraph
were developed to market the crops.
The new railroad network also encouraged the rapid spread of the
factory. Before 1850 the factory, with its power-driven machinery and
labor force performing routine tasks, was still a rarity outside the
textile and related industries. During the 1850s factory production
came to a wide variety of industries. By 1879, the year that saw the
publication of Progress and Poverty, four-fifths of the
3,000,000 workers in mechanized industry labored in factories. With
most of their horsepower generated by steam rather than by water,
factories could move from their older locations on the banks of rivers
to towns and cities where they could take advantage of better
transportation, wider markets, and a larger labor supply. The
resulting expansion of production was impressive. In the 1850s the
industrial output of the United States was below that of England. By
1894 the value of American products almost equalled the value of the
combined output of the United Kingdom, France and Germany. In his
lifetime Henry George had seen the Industrial Revolution transform the
face of America.
One of the most important effects of industrialization was the
integrating effect it had on the economy as a whole. Each of the major
sectors of the economy, agriculture, manufacturing, transportation and
trade, became increasingly dependent upon each other. If farmers
increased their output it was mainly because the manufacturing sector
had supplied them with the necessary equipment and machinery. If the
manufacturing sector expanded, and with it the size of cities, this
was in significant part because of the demand of farmers for
equipment, machinery, and other manufactured products.
What knit together the two sectors were the railroads and other forms
of transport, and the closer their degree of interdependence the
larger the volume of trade between the sectors, and between the
economy as a whole and the outside world. As we have seen, the
American population doubled between 1860 and 1890 while per capita
income more than kept pace with it. Rising per capita incomes made for
an effective demand for the products of agriculture and industry. This
demand was not merely local or regional; thanks to the railroads and
the growth of the cities it was increasingly national. In sum, it was
a mass demand that called into being mass production.
Mass production, in turn, required large units of production. Not the
craft shops of colonial times or the mills of the early 19th century.
But factories of larger and larger size, factories utilizing first
waterpower, then steampower, and then electricity to drive a widening
array of improved machines. Large-scale production and transport
required far larger sums of capital than before, and corporations
appeared in increasing numbers to tap small pools of savings by their
sales of stocks and bonds. Within the corporations themselves
administrative changes tightened the firm's control over its processes
of production, accounting, finance, and distribution. Such changes
helped in the bitterly sharp contest for survival that marked
intercorporate relations in a number of industries during those years.
The world of business became a jungle, and whether or not the largest
and financially most powerful were the fittest, it was they that
tended to survive, while smaller firms went under. More and more,
industry was becoming concentrated, and so too were capital, urban
centers, and even agriculture.
Henry George saw most of these developments with a clear eye. As men
of his time were prone to do when they believed they discerned
pervasive regularities or tendencies he framed his thought in terms of
law. "Social development," we find him writing in 1881, "is
in accordance with certain immutable laws," "and the law of
development . . . is the law of integration." "It is in
obedience to this law-a law evidently as all- compelling as the law of
gravitation-that industry tends to specialization and interdependence"
(12). It was in obedience to this law that one found "the
concentration of people in large cities, the concentration of
handicrafts in large factories, the concentration of transportation by
railroad and steamship lines, and of agricultural operations in large
fields" (13). It was in obedience to this law that "we have
already corporations whose revenues and pay-rolls belittle those of
the greatest States" (14). "Without a single exception that
I can think of, the effect of all modern industrial improvements is to
production on a large scale, to the minute division of labor, to the
giving to the possession of large capital an overpowering advantage"
(15). The tendency of steam and machinery was to concentrate wealth
and power. Indeed, all the tendencies of the time worked in this
direction. One found it not only in industry but in all other things
as well. Integration and interdependence were observable "wherever
modern influences reach." "To attempt to resist it is to
attempt to turn back the clock" (16). "All the currents of
the time run to concentration," he had written in Progress
and Poverty, and one must not oppose but rather swim with those
currents. "To successfully resist it we must throttle steam and
discharge electricity from human service" (17).
But while large commonly controlled aggregations of capital were "constructive"
in their nature, they facilitated combinations among great business
interests that led to oppressive monopoly power (18). Monopoly was "destructive."
"A railroad company approaches a small town as a highwayman his
victim." The great telegraph company crushes out newspapers which
offend it. When concentrated in large amounts capital was "frequently
wielded to corrupt, to rob, and Lo destroy" (19). George's
solution was government regulation of all businesses involving
monopoly, and government ownership and operation of such natural
monopolies as railroads, the telegraph and telephone, and the
supplying of cities with gas, water, heat and electricity. As he
expressed it in 1883:
The primary purpose and end of government being to secure
the natural rights and equal liberty of each, all businesses that
involve monopoly are within the necessary province of governmental
regulation, and businesses that are in their nature complete
monopolies become properly functions of the State (20).
"The line at which the State should come in," he writes in
Protection or Free Trade, "is that where free competition
becomes impossible .. ." (21).
GEORGE'S ESSENTIAL MESSAGE
YET WHILE THESE are his words I believe a close reading of George
makes it difficult to avoid the suspicion that he was profoundly
distrustful of government. He deplored the corrupting influence on
government of armed forces, railroads, banks, corporations seeking
tariff protection, and lobbying contractors seeking to induce Congress
to order armaments (22). In 1871 he called the State a "brainless
abstraction," adding, even more emphatically:
I do not mean to say we have not had enough government; I
mean to say that we have had too much. It is a truth that cannot be
too clearly kept in mind that the best government is that which
governs least, and that the more a republican government undertakes
to do, the less republican it becomes. Unhealthy social conditions
are but the result of interferences with natural rights (23).
He favored reducing the operations of the national government "to
the purposes for which it is alone fitted, the preservation of the
common peace, the maintenance of the common security and the promotion
of the common convenience. ..." Any regulation of industry and
capital accumulation so thorough-going as to be equivalent to
socialism, he writes in Progress and Poverty, would represent "the
substitution of governmental direction for the play of individual
action, and the attempt to secure by restriction what can better be
secured by freedom" (24).
While he acknowledged that the "natural progress of social
development is unmistakably toward cooperation, or, if the word be
preferred, toward socialism . .. ," and while he wrote of
America's destiny in terms of a "great cooperative association"
in which government would play the role of executive, it is clear that
many obstacles bestrode the path. So long as wealth was unequally
distributed government would be impure because men would be.
All schemes securing equality in the conditions of men by placing the
distribition of wealth in the hands of government [he writes in Protection
or Free Trade] have the fatal defect of beginning at the wrong
end. They presuppose pure government; but it is not government that
makes society; it is society that makes government; and until there is
something like substantial equality in the distribution of wealth, we
cannot expect pure government (26).
The field in which the State might beneficially operate would widen
only with the simplification and improvement of government and the
growth of public spirit. Both required bringing to the management of
social affairs "greater intelligence and higher moral sense"
(27). To be successful, Socialism required " strong and definite
religious faith." As an ideal, it was "grand and noble."
He was convinced it was "possible of realization, but such a
state of society cannot be manufactured -- it must grow (28).
Political progress "must be by short steps rather than by great
In a perceptive recent essay Reed R. Hansen has argued that the
central theme of George's voluminous writing "was a plea for a
competitive capitalism which would provide a suitable environment for
individual effort," and it is difficult not to agree with this
assessment. George's "primary objective," Hansen believes,
was the preservation of laissez-faire capitalism, with its freedom of
opportunity. "This objective," he adds, "was consistent
with his ever-present opposition to monopoly and his continual attack
upon monopoly restrictions" (30). According to Albert Jay Nock,
George was "the very best friend the capitalist ever had"
However, government was to play a very important role in George's
schema. As everybody knows, he believed that the only way in which a
just society could be achieved was by expropriating the rental value
of land. "The only true and just solution of the problem, the
only end worth aiming at, is to make all the land the common property
of all the people" (32). The landlord was the greatest of all
monopolists. Contributing nothing at all to the productive process he
reaped an unearned increment of values created by society. To George
land was a passive factor of production; labor and capital were active
factors. "There can be no labor until there is a man; there can
be no capital until man has worked and saved; but land was here before
man came. To the production of commodities the laborer furnishes human
exertion; the capitalist furnishes the results of human exertion
embodied in forms that may be used to aid further exertion; but the
landowner furnishes -- what? . . . The answer must be, nothing!"
(33). Yet land was necessary to all production regardless of its form:
'it is to the human being the only means by which he can obtain access
to the material universe or utilize its powers. Without land man
cannot exist" (34). It followed that land ought to be the common
property of the community as a whole, not the private property of any
Private persons might enjoy a possessory right to an "exclusive
use" of land in order to secure the value of their improvements.
Indeed, "safe possession" was "absolutely necessary to
the proper use and improvement of land." George would have land
in use remain in the secure possession of those using it, and leave
unused land to be taken possession of by those wishing to use it on
condition that they pay a fair rent to the community. The value of
improvements would have no effect on the rent for these were products
of labor and capital. In essence, the landlord would be the public,
rather than private persons. Possessors of land would pay to the
public a tax-the equivalent of rent-in an amount that would gradually
increase till it approximated as closely as possible "the full
annual value of the land" exclusive of improvements. When this "point
of theoretical perfection" was reached, the selling value of land
would "entirely disappear." And with its disappearance would
end the speculation in land that George believed played such an
important role in business cycles. To the fact that land was not "fully
used," being either "withheld . . . from the full use of
which it [was] capable," or held off the market altogether for
speculative rises in value, George attributed not only absurdly
irregular patterns of occupation of urban land, and unnecessarily high
costs of transportation and other social overhead, but also a
competition among workers that depressed wages to subsistence levels.
If private property in land were abolished "workmen . . . could
make a good living for them- selves without going into . . . [the]
employment [of a capitalist]." As it was, workers were "debarred
of the natural opportunities to employ themselves." Evidently
what George had in mind were multipled opportunities for workers in
small business or farming. "Abolish the monopoly that forbids men
to employ themselves, and capital could not possibly oppress labor,"
he writes (35). Income from self-employment would presumably set a
floor beneath which wages could not fall.
It is important to be clear that by "land" George meant not
only soil and the ores beneath it, but the entire material
universe-water, the "ocean of air," and the light and heat
of the sun (36). As he expresses it in his posthumously published Science
of Political Economy, "land means not merely the dry
superficies of the earth, but all that is above and all that may be
below it, from zenith to nadir." It comprises everything "having
material form that man has received or can receive from nature, that
is to say, from God" (37). To "put all men on a footing of
substantial equality, so that there could be no dearth of employment,
no 'overproduction,' no tendency of wages to the minimum of
subsistence, no monstrous fortunes on the one side and no army of
proletarians on the other," George argued, "it is necessary
only that the equal rights of all to that primary means of production
which is the source all other means of production are derived from,
should be asserted." The securing of these equal rights was the
fundamental thing. Trade unions could do something to help their
members, he acknowledged; "but it is after all very little. For a
trades- union can only artificially lessen competition within the
trade; it cannot affect the general conditions which force men into
bitter competition with each other for the opportunity to gain a
Nor was there hope in technological advance; without common ownership
of the land wages would still be pressed down. Competition for the use
of privately-owned land "ultimately determines what proportions
of the produce of his labor the laborer will get for himself. This is
the reason why modern progress does not tend to extirpate poverty;
this is the reason why, with all the inventions and improvements and
economies which so enormously increase productive power, wages
everywhere tend to the minimum of bare living" (39).
George did not maintain that all social problems would be solved by a
"recognition of the equal and inalienable right of each human
being to the natural elements from which life must be supported and
wants satisfied." Even after recognition of "the equal right
to land," he writes, "much will remain to do."
Nevertheless, so long as this recognition is withheld nothing will
avail to remedy that unnatural inequality in the distribution of
wealth which is fraught with so much evil and danger. Reform as we
may, until we make this fundamental reform our material progress can
but tend to differentiate our people into the monstrously rich and the
frightfully poor. Whatever be the increase of wealth, the masses will
still be ground toward the point of bare subsistence-we must still
have our great criminal classes, our paupers and our tramps, men and
women driven to degradation and desperation from inability to make an
honest living (40).
This was the essential message not only of Progress and Poverty,
but of all George's work. No matter what the subject under discussion,
to it he constantly returned. Inequality in the distribution of wealth
was his major preoccupation; nationalization of the value of land his
sovereign remedy. Nothing less would rid mankind of the paradox of
poverty in tandem with progress, of want in the midst of plenty.
Whether or not we agree with his remedy, Progress and Poverty, in the
words of a recent scholar, "was the first critical analysis of
the misery and desolation that hid in the shadows of the gilded age"
(41). George, to cite another study, "awakened journalists,
intellectuals, small capitalists, and young lawyers to a comprehension
of the grave economic and social problems of the rising urban world."
GEORGE AS SYSTEM BUILDER
THE QUESTION that now confronts us concerns the impact of George's
work on professional economists. Did George awaken them too? And if
not, why not? What is his present stature as an economist?
To answer first the last of these questions: that stature does not
appear to be very high. Perhaps the most friendly voice among academic
economists is that of Joseph Dorfman, but even Dorfman is obliged to
acknowledge that "George was not completely at ease in the realms
of economic theory... ." (43).
Paul A. Samuelson, himself a Nobel laureate in economics in 1970,
says that George "really was not much of an economics scholar."
Samuelson tells the story of how Frank W. Taussig, whom he calls the "dean
of venerable American economics" during the years before the
First World War, was "filled ... with despair" by John
Dewey's remark that George was the greatest economist America had ever
produced. According to Samuelson, George appeared to Taussig "like
a confused child" (44). In a recent thoughtful evaluation that is
far from unfriendly, Reed R. Hansen says of George: "He was a
printer, an editor-publisher, a world traveler, and a fluent,
persuasive journalist; he was also a politician and lecturer, but he
was not an economist" (45).
Defenders of George cite the deep admiration expressed by Philip M.
Wicksteed, but Dorfman reminds us that Wicksteed was then a Unitarian
minister and only later an outstanding British economist (46).
Defenders also point to the undoubted acknowledgement by J. B. Clark
that George's writings suggested to him a method by which the product
of labor might be disentangled from all other products and separately
measured (47). They neglect to add that Clark also referred to
George's theory "with all its absurdity" (48).
George himself was well aware of his low standing with professional
economists and was bitter about it. "How persistent is the manner
in which the professors and those who esteem themselves the learned
class ignore and slur me ... ," he complained (49). He had an
explanation for it. Political economy was "the simplest of the
sciences," whose laws required for their elucidation "not
long arrays of statistics nor the collocation of laboriously
ascertained facts," but rather a capacity for "clear
thinking" -- which was "possible for the unlearned as for
the learned." Despite that fact, it had been "warped by
institutions which, silenced objection, and ingrained themselves in
custom and habit of thought." "Its professors and teachers,"
he added, "have almost invariably belonged to or been dominated
by that class which tolerates no questioning of social adjustments
that give to those who do not labor fruits of labor's toil. They have
been like physicians employed to make a diagnosis on condition that
they shall discover no unpleasant truth." ". . . it is idle,"
he concluded, "to expect any enunciation of truths unwelcome to
the powers that be" (50). His explanation of the long dominance
of the Malthusian theory was much the same: the "great cause"
of its "triumph," he wrote in
Progress and Poverty, "is, that, instead of menacing any
vested right or antagonizing any powerful interest, it is eminently
soothing and reassuring to the classes who, wielding the power of
wealth, largely dominate thought" (51).
His explanation, I think, is an ungenerous one, and I am afraid it
does not constitute the only example of the genre. George had a
tendency to denigrate those who disagreed with him, to lay base
motives at their door, sometimes in scurrilous language. When Herbert
Spencer changed his mind about the desirability of nationalizing rent,
George accused him, too, of "interested motives,"
disqualified him as a sycophant to British landlords, and called him "a
fawning Vicar of Bray, clothing in pompous phraseology and arrogant
assumption logical conclusions so absurd as to be comical."
A. J. Nock rightly criticizes George's assumption that Bishop
Corrigan of New York and his vicar-general acted in bad faith in the
well- known matter of Father McGlynn. "His sin," George
wrote of McGlynn, was "in taking a side in politics which was
opposed to the rings that had the support of the Catholic hierarchy"
(52). There are heavy-handed passages, too, in his Open Letter to
Pope Leo XIII. ". . . blinded by one false assumption,"
George told him, "you do not see even fundamentals" (53). On
the other hand, his confidence in his own rightness was supreme. He
saw himself as "overthrowing some of [the] most highly elaborated
theories" of political economy (54). "Nor is what I say
capable of dispute," he told the Pope. His principles were "absolute"
laws. His law of rent was God's law of rent. "The justice of God
laughs at the attempts of men to substitute anything else for it"
(55). Old Henry had God in his pocket. Not all men who have believed
this have been right.
Is this all there is to say -- that George was no great shakes as an
economist, that he tended to be small when criticized, that there was
in his fanatical attachment to his own views an unpleasantly
absolutist cast of mind? By no means. Even in the realm of economics I
believe it is true that a student of the development of economic
thought will acknowledge after a patient reading of the eight volumes
of his published work that his insights are often suggestive and
sometimes incisive. While I am myself an historian rather than an
economist I would so characterize George's analysis of the way in
which complex industries may develop from simple beginnings in new
countries, an analysis which emphasizes the importance of "subsidiary
industries and of a large demand" (56). George called attention
to the importance of what we would now call external economies (57),
linkage effects (58), and factors making for the localization of
industry. He understood that a country increases in wealth when an
increase occurs in what we would call its gross national product per
capita (59); he understood the importance of economies of scale (60),
the principle of comparative advantage (61), and approached the
meaning of the terms of trade (62). He also comes close to seeing the
multiplier effect- not of an expenditure but of a reduction in
prices,-although he has no concept of the elasticities (63). And as
the following quotation shows, he clearly appreciated the part played
by counterfactual propositions in causal explanations:
And although in the domain of political economy we cannot
test our theories by artificially produced combinations or
conditions, yet we can apply tests no less conclusive, by comparing
societies in which different conditions exist, or by, in
imagination, separating, combining, adding or eliminating forces or
factors of known direction (64).
On the other hand, it seems to me significant that in George's
posthumously published Science of Political Economy, Henry
George Jr. is obliged to note of chapter 13 that "No more than
the title of this chapter was written." The title is "Of
Demand and Supply in Production." George's failure to write the
chapter may be symbolic of a more general failure -- or perhaps
unwillingness -- to come to terms with the role of supply and demand
in the determination of prices, interest, rents, and other factor
payments (65). Finally, no defender of George's expertise in economics
has to my knowledge confronted the devastating critique of George's
treatment of "Malthusianism and the laws of diminishing returns,
the relation of capital to wages, the law of wage and of interest and
the theory of crises" that was published by Edgar H. Johnson in
GEORGE'S KEY PRINCIPLE
WHILE GEORGE SOUGHT to elaborate a complete system of political
economy in defense of his key principle, the kernel of that principle
has survived his system. That principle-that land, especially
unproductive or underutilized land ought be taxed more heavily than
structures and other improvements-not only survives, but gives promise
of an even more flourishing future. In developed economies the
principal reason for this is the deterioration of urban centers; in
developing economies it is the need to encourage productive capital
formation. As George R. Geiger correctly noted in 1941, "Even the
most orthodox of economists do not scruple to pay their wholehearted
respect to the soundness of high taxes on land values and
correspondingly low taxes on land improvements." Geiger added,
however, that the fiscal experts drawing up schemes of taxation had
not yet seen the light (67).
They do now, and apparently in increasing numbers. One need hardly
expatiate on the reasons for this. American cities are often old,
dirty, crowded and unsafe; they are filled with neighborhood tensions
and conflicts between core and periphery. As was true in the days of
Henry George, it is in the great cities where extremes of wealth and
poverty are to be found. George was convinced that the "vice ...
crime and degradation that fester in great cities" were the
effects of poverty (68). To a large extent they still are. In
addition, the cities of today have not yet been able to meet
successfully the problems of school integration, mass transit,
welfare, deterioration, pollution and sanitation. Ever since the Civil
War, middle class whites have been abandoning the central city for
residences on the periphery. George observed the flight from the city
with a clear eye, and in
Progress and Poverty he stresses that the underutilization or
non-use of urban land was pushing the margin of the city farther from
the center (69). We are all familiar with one culmination: in 1970 the
Bureau of the Census reported that for the first time in our history
more people live in suburbs than in central cities.
That the phenomena we have been discussing are not peculiar to
America is clear from the following words, which are deserving of
City populations grow by leaps and bounds. The desire for
governmental services outstrips those which can be supplied with the
funds available. The quality of life for the hundreds of millions
who live in cities around the world suffers because funds are not
adequate for the facilities which governments are expected to
provide. Yet people pay "heavily" for living and working
space in the city. Their demand for room sends land prices up and
up. And in much of the world the increasing amounts which urban
residents pay for the use of city land, these payments go primarily
to private owners. Little, apparently, helps to meet the costs of
government and to provide better services ...
Obviously, the need to use land is universal. And almost as obvious
is the fact that nature rather than the owner created the land. . .
. Land is fixed. Tax it heavily, and it will not move to some other
place, or decide to take a vacation, or leave the inventory of
productive resources by going out of existence. Tax land lightly,
and the favorable tax situation will not create more space on the
surface of the earth. ...
Labor and capital are man-made. . . . The ethos which ties economic
justice to rewards based on accomplishment does not lead to
justification for large rewards because of ownership of land.
Differences, perhaps very big ones, in payments for human services
or for the use of capital can rest on what the recipient has done.
But for the owner of urban land the same kind of justification
cannot be found. The "moral" justification of private
ownership of property gets a bit thin and tenuous when related to
[large] increments in land prices. The owner's contribution to
production may have been nil or slightly positive in getting land
into somewhat better use from time to time.. . . Without any animus
at all against wealth, one may well question a source which remains
so far from any contribution to the well-being of society.... Land
ownership in much of the world has been concentrated in relatively
few hands. ... As rising population and purchasing power have raised
the demand for urban land, owners have gotten more, sometimes
fabulously more. Whatever the origin of a person's ownership of
land, perhaps inheritance, community growth has enabled him to
siphon off a growing amount from the stream of production and
income. Is it not both logical and just to rechannel some of this
flow to finance public services? . . How could the persons forced to
pay complain that they were being deprived of something of their own
To any student of Henry George these words have a familiar ring. They
are those of an economics professor who happens to be a distinguished
authority on public finance, C. Lowell Harriss, and they were written
not in the 1870s but at the beginning of the 1970s. Harriss explicitly
acknowledges his indebtedness to George and to others sharing his
views. "Henry George," he writes, "was only one of a
large group who over many decades has urged the heavy taxation of
land. Whatever the reasons for not doing so in the past, conditions
today call for new efforts. The propriety of drastic new burdens on
present land prices may be de- bated. As to the future, however, the
principle has convincing appeal" (70).
Georgist principles have clearly entered the mainstream of modern
thought. George E. Lent, Chief of the Tax Policy Division of the
United States Treasury Department, has recently noted that the
principle of taxing unearned increases in land value "has
considerably influenced property tax policies, especially in
English-speaking countries." Historically, taxes on unimproved
land have been applied in Australia, New Zealand, Canada, South
Africa, and East Africa, and more recently in Jamaica, Trinidad,
Tobago, and Barbados. "Most Latin American countries limit the
tax on agricultural properties to unimproved land values. Similar
practices are followed elsewhere, especially in Denmark" (71).
Authorities on real estate taxation widely agree that site value
taxation has no harmful effect of any sort on housing quality. Some,
however, have reservations about accepting it as an outright
substitute for the traditional American tax on two grounds: adequacy
of yield, and equity. According to recent estimates by James Heilbrun
"revenue from the real estate tax has reached such enormous
proportions that it may now almost equal or even exceed the rent of
land in some localities." If the whole burden of real estate
taxation were loaded on to the site value base the entire rent of land
might be expropriated. For Heilbrun this would raise the problem of
equity in an extreme and disturbing way. In addition, Heilbrun, as
well as others, stresses the difficulty in measuring land rent and
separating it from that of improvements. Administrative problems also
have to be confronted (72). All men, of course, are not of one mind.
In the case of underdeveloped countries economic theorists as well as
policy advocates agree in recommending high taxation of land values.
Donald A. Nichols points out that numerous observers have noted that
in underdeveloped countries savings motives are satisfied by land
holdings and by increases in land prices rather than by capital
accumulation. It follows from this that the larger the size of
holdings the greater the yield in capital gains from price changes and
the lower the level of the capital formation that is so essential to
economic growth. Indeed, Nichols reminds us of Keynes' observation
that the desire to hold land may often in history have played the same
role in keeping up the rate of interest which money has played in more
recent times. One policy implication of Nichols' analysis is that "attempts
to increase rates of capital accumulation in countries with large
quantities of rents are more likely to be successful if rents are
taxed than otherwise. Taxing rents should lower the price of land and
therefore the amount of capital gains on land which result from
economic growth. To satisfy the same saving motives as before the tax
was imposed will require an increase in the rate of capital
accumulation" (73). The words may be different but the music is
that of Henry George.
The same may be said of some recent fiscal recommendations by
Professors Carl S. Shoup, C. Lowell Harriss and William S. Vickrey to
the Governor of the Federal District of Venezuela.
In a growing area [these advisers point out], the case of
discriminatory taxes on land values, and especially on increases in
land values, is convincing in principle. The limited stock of land
becomes increasingly valuable as a result of the growth of the
country. Even if the owners do nothing constructive, they will become
richer as the need for their land grows. A very high tax on the
increases in value (or on the full value of the land itself) will not
reduce the amount of land in existence. Such a tax can fall 'on a true
economic surplus. Furthermore, the costs of holding land idle would
rise relative to the advantages of developing it. Any given amount of
revenue could then be raised with lower rates on improvements,
increasing somewhat the attractiveness of investment in building.
As does James Heilbrun, the authors call attention to the difficulty
of "distinguishing pure land value from the value which
represents investment by the owner in grading, etc." and make it
clear that the administration of a special tax on land would present a
problem, especially that of developing the necessary administrative
capacity for making accurate assessments (74).
GEORGE AS MORAL PHILOSOPHER
THE INCREASING FISCAL UTILITY of Georgist principles seems perfectly
plain. But the principles of Henry George embrace worlds far larger
than those of taxation and finance. Fundamentally, George was a moral
philosopher, a deeply religious man with a passionate commitment to
ideals of social justice. He was concerned about the values of men.
Although economic behavior was the focal center of his life's work, he
yet deplored "the greed of gain" and the "worship of
wealth," attributing both to a fear of want which men would no
longer know under improved social and economic arrangements (75).
Essentially classical economist though he was in his approach, he did
not subscribe to Adam Smith's belief in an invisible hand that somehow
transformed individual selfishness into social good. The hand was all
too visible to George: it separated the fortunes of men most
unequally, arranging progress for the few and poverty for the many. It
was a hand that ordained that women and children should work hard
hours in mill and factory, that tramps should people the highways, and
that the emaciated, the derelict and the criminal should crowd the
slums. He did not blame the individual employer, for competition
compelled him to lower his wages as much as he could. He blamed "the
system." He blamed competition, at least as it was conducted
under the ground rules of his day-and by ground rules I do mean
ground! Unlike a large number of his contemporary economists, men who
were pleased to call business concentrations "the new
competition," (76) and who made no secret of their distrust of
real competition, George believed that once the value of land was
expropriated by the community competition could be relied upon to pave
the way to higher levels of civilized living. Meanwhile he distrusted
the effects of what he called "mere business transactions,"
or "calculations of cold interest." Rack rent he defined as "full
competition rent." The American land system was worse on the
tenant than the Irish system. "For with us," he said, "there
is neither sentiment nor custom to check the force of competition or
mitigate the natural desire of the landlord to get all he can"
As we have seen, it was the competition of worker with worker that
led, in George's system of thought, to subsistence wages. How long,
George wanted to know, were "the masses of mankind ... to remain
mere hewers of wood and drawers of water for the benefits of the
fortunate few?" Was modern society, after having escaped from
feudalism, destined to pass into an industrial organization that was
even "more grinding and oppressive, more heartless and hopeless?"
New York was "a most Christian city," with all sorts of
churches, where all sorts of religions were preached expect one which
once in Galilee taught that it is easier for a camel to pass through
the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God
(78). Yet George did not disapprove riches honestly won (79). Rather,
he deplored what he called the "maxim of business intercourse
among the most highly respectable classes," viz., swindle or be
swindled. He thought such things "inconsistent with civilization,"
"incompatible with Christianity." Civilization must be based
on justice and acknowledge the equal rights of all to natural
opportunities. In true Christianity was the power to regenerate the
In all probability economists and other social scientists would sneer
at such views. After all, they would probably reply, one either trusts
the market and the price system to allocate productive factors in an
optimum way or else one advocates decision-making by government. To
which George, were he alive to do so, might well reply in turn that,
textbook theory aside, the dominant structure of American industry
today is that of oligopoly, so that it is not the market, but rather a
handful of top executives of corporations of vast size who make the
decisions, the essential function of the antitrust laws being to
prevent these corporations from slipping over a thin line into
monopoly. Taking a page from the work of John Kenneth Galbraith (80)
or Charles O. Reich (81) he might add that the line between the
private and public sectors is so thin that for all intents and
purposes Americans live under the aegis of a corporate State. And just
as Reich, Galbraith, Daniel Bell and an increasing number of others
now do, George called for nothing less than a revolution in the
structure of values of a hard-driving commercial civilization.
In thinking of the possibilities of social organization [George
Progress and Poverty], we are apt to assume that greed is the
strongest of human motives, and that systems of administration can
only be safely based upon the idea that the fear of punishment is
necessary to keep men honest-that selfish interests are always
stronger than general interests. Nothing could be further from the
He believed that in regard to public affairs "we too easily
accept the dictum that faithful and efficient work can be secured only
by the hopes of pecuniary profit, or the fear of pecuniary loss"
(84). "Short-sighted is the philosophy which counts on
selfishness as the master motive of human action." "Call it
religion, patriotism, sympathy, the enthusiasm for humanity, or the
love of God-give it what name you will; there is yet a force which
overcomes and drives out selfishness; a force which is the electricity
of the moral universe; a force beside which all others are weak"
(85). Nothing was more essential than to call fully upon the resources
of that force. For "To adjust our institutions to growing needs
and changing conditions," George wrote in 1883, "is the task
which devolves upon us" (86).
Are such views as these relevant to the world of the 1970s? The
answer is that no views are more so. A basic shift in the structure of
our values, a reordering of priorities, a turning from militaristic
adventurism, from private indifference to the anemia of the public
sector, from words and law to a full embrace in brotherhood of black
men, to equality of opportunity for both sexes -- or should I say all
three? -- these and other unnegotiable demands are precisely the
demands of the age in which we live. In their realization, in a
turning from the conformity of corporate little boxism to the promise
of free men, from the grindstone that noses out dollars that buy no
man's material security to an humanism that embraces the concerns of
everyman, in these things lie the hope of what Reich calls the "greening
Henry George condemned as "iniquitous" a "system which
makes the common birthright of all the exclusive property of some"
(87). So do we. He deplored "our neglect to assume social
functions which material progress forces upon us" (88). So do we.
George attributed the deterioration of our institutions and of the
quality of our political leadership to the power of concentrated
corporations. Why was such intellectual greatness gathered round the
cradle of the Republic? he asked. "You will hardly find a man of
that time, of high character and talent, who was not in some way in
public service. This certainly cannot be said now" (89). To which
we say: nor now either. "I yield to nobody in my respect for law
and order and my hatred of disorder," George said, "but
there is something more important even than law and order, and that is
the principle of liberty" (90). Nixon and Agnew, please copy.
George attacked the influence of "great corporate interests"
on the legal machinery and law courts of the Federal Government"
(91) Today we would translate that into the charge that law is the
servant not of the individual but of the corporate State. According to
Reich, in recent years the law has fallen "into line with the
requirements of organization and technology, and supported the demands
of administration instead of protecting the individual. Once law had
assumed this role, there began a vast proliferation of laws, statutes,
regulations and decisions. For the law began to be employed to aid all
of the work of the corporate State by compelling obedience to the
State's constantly increasing demands" (92). To which George, in
the colloquy I have been maintaining between past and present, might
have replied: "The history of mankind everywhere shows the power
that special interests, capable of organization and action, may exert
in securing the acceptance of the most monstrous doctrines" (93).
In Progress and Poverty he warned that the growth and
development of society gave rise to "a collective power that is
distinguishable from the sum of individual powers" and lessened
the influence of individuals, even over their own conditions, as
compared with the influence of society" (94). Later he issued a
warning of a different kind: "A civilization which tends to
concentrate wealth and power in the hands of a fortunate few, and to
make of others mere human machines, must inevitably evolve anarchy and
bring destruction" (95). "It is the delusion which precedes
destruction that sees in the popular unrest with which the civilized
world is feverishly pulsing, only the passing effect of ephemeral
George had little hope that the mechanisms of politics could bring
change. "Our two great political parties have really nothing more
to propose than the keeping or the taking of offices from the other
party." In recently organizing "Common Cause," John W.
Gardner said much the same thing. Nor did George place his hopes for
reform in intelligence alone. As he wrote in Social Problems,
The intelligence required for the solving of social
problems is not a thing of the mere intellect. It must be animated
with the religious sentiment and warm with sympathy for human
suffering. It must stretch out beyond self-interest, whether it be
the self-interest of the few or of the many. It must seek justice.
For at the bottom of every social problem we will find a social
The social question, he reminds Leo XIII, "is at bottom a
religious question" (98). Like Edward Bellamy, who believed any
economic proposition that could not be stated in ethical terms was
false (99), George was "willing to submit every question of
political economy to the test of ethics" (100). All "true
reforms" had "both an ethical and an economic side"
(101). Indeed, George was convinced that both intellectual and
material advance required "corresponding moral advance"
(102), that the attainment of pure government was "merely a
matter of conforming social institutions to moral law" (103).
With George these were more than words. As A. J. Nock has said, his
course of public conduct never swerved from the pursuit of ethical
ends (104). Believing in the goodness of man he was himself a man of
In the end, therefore, something more than the rightness of Henry
George's fiscal ideas must weigh in the balance of our judgment of
him; something more is called for than our response to his landed
panacea for social wrong. This is the more true because of our need to
acknowledge that if progress has brought poverty, it has probably
brought lesser amounts of it than obtained before progress began to
quicken. It is well to remember, in the words of Richard A. Easterlin,
that "It seems safe to say that in those economies now
characterized as 'developed,' most of the population has experienced
in the last 100 years a greater advance in material well- being and a
more sweeping change in way of life than occurred in any previous
century of human history" (105). It is well to remember that
employee compensation as a proportion of total national income has
risen from 55 per cent in 1900-1909 to 70.7 per cent in 1960-1965
(106), even if, contrary to a widely held belief that the gap between
the rich and the poor has recently been narrowing in the United
States, available statistics "show no appreciable change in
income shares" between the end of World War II and the
mid-sixties (107). Yet men may be better off than they were and more
discontent because of the failure of their levels of living to rise as
high as those of other men. George was right to remind us that "It
is in vain" to tell people that "their situation has been
much improved" (108).
In what I have said here I have tried to convey the impression that
some of the economic intuitions of Henry George were more right than
his system of political economy as a whole, and that his ethical
insights in particular have high relevance to the mood and needs of
our times. His conception of land as consisting of the totality of
man's material universe, and his warning against the effects of its
monopolization, are useful to us now in ways he could not have grasped
so clearly in his day. Keenly aware as we are of the despoliation of
our environment we may now see that business enterprise has long been
the recipient of an unearned increment in its rent-free use of an
environment that is no longer a free economic good, but rather one
which is beginning to develop alarming properties of scarcity,
especially of pure air and water, to say nothing of many forms of
animal life. We will do well to remember George's admonition that "the
earth is an entailed estate-entailed upon all the generations of the
children of men, by a deed written in the constitution of Nature"
and that "Each succeeding generation has but a tenancy for life"
(109). And we will do well to take unto our hearts the words with
which he began his concluding chapter on Social Problems
Here, it seems to me, is the gist and meaning of the
great social problems of our time: More is given to us than to any
people at any time before; and therefore, more is required of us. We
have made, and still are making, enormous advances on material
lines. It is necessary that we commensurately advance on moral
lines. Civilization, as it progresses, requires a higher conscience,
a wider, truer public spirit. Failing these, civilization must pass
If anything, his words are more true now than when he uttered them.
But there are grounds for hope. According to one of the great
benefactors of mankind in our day, Dr. Jonas E. Salk, "mankind is
in the midst of a transition from an epoch of competition to an epoch
of cooperation and interdependence." Until now, mankind has "grown
like a cancer -- proliferating unchecked like malignant cells,
heedless of the good of the whole. Dominated by such values as pursuit
of self-interest and survival of the fittest, this 'cancer of man' now
threatens to destroy its host." Happily, Dr. Salk "foresees
an era in which 'that which survives is that which fits best' for the
good of the species as well as the individual." He believes that
man is undergoing an evolutionary change "toward a new value
system and way of life" (111). How prophetic indeed were the
gifts of Henry George!
NOTES AND REFERENCES
- George R. Geiger, "The
Forgotten Man: Henry George," Antioch Review 1 (Fall, 1941),
pp. 291-307; Edward J. Rose, Henry George (New York:
1968), p. 171.
- Samuel Eliot Morison, Henry
Steele Commager and William E. Leuchtenburg, The Growth of the
American Republic, 2 vols., 6th ed. (New York: 1969), Vol. 2,
- Chester M. Destler, American
Radicalism, 1865-1901 (Chicago: 1966), p. 13.
- Carl N. Degler, The Age of
the Economic Revolution, 1876-1900 (New York: n.d.), p. 16.
- Charles Albro Barker, Henry
George (New York: 1965), pp. ix, 621, 635; Oscar Handlin,
America, a History (New York, 1968), p. 615n.
- Paul David, "The Growth
of Real Product in the U.S. Before 1840: New Evidence, Controlled
Conjectures," Journal of Economic History 37 (June
1967), pp. 151-97.
- Alfred D. Chandler Jr., "The
Industrializing Economy, 1850-1914," in Alfred D. Chandler
Jr., Stuart Bruchey and Louis Galambos, eds., The Changing
Economic Order (New York: 1968), pp. 199ff.
- Ross Robertson, History of
the American Economy, 2d ed. (New York: 1955), pp. 280-82.
- Albert Fishlow, "Productivity
and Technological Change in the Railroad Sector, 1840-1910,"
National Bureau of Economic Research Studies in Income and
Wealth, Vol. 30, Output, Employment, and Productivity in the
United States After 1840 (New York: 1966), p. 606.
- Henry George, Social
Problems (Garden City and New York: The Complete Works of
Henry George, 10 vols., 1911), Vol. 2, pp. 21, 25-6, 43, 208, 210.
(Cited hereafter, Complete Works, Vol. --).
- Marvin W. Towne and Wayne D.
Rasmussen, "Farm Gross Product and Gross Investment in the
Nineteenth Century," NBER Studies in Income and Wealth,
Vol. 24, Trends in the American Economy in the Nineteenth Century
(Princeton: 1960), pp. 261, 263. The $11 million average is for
the decade 1845-1855; the $54 million average is for the decade
- Henry George, The Land
Question (Garden City and New York: 1930), p. 103.
- Henry George, Progress and
Poverty (New York: 1887), p. 294.
- Complete Works, Vol. 2, p. 13.
- Ibid., p. 35.
- The Land Question, p.
- Ibid., p. 294.
- Complete Works, Vol. 2, p. 13.
- Progress and Poverty,
pp. 173-4, 294.
- Complete Works, Vol. 2, pp.
- Ibid., Vol. 4, p. 308.
- Ibid., Vol. 2, pp. 172,
181ff., 178, 186.
- Ibid., Vol. 8, pp. 153, 172,
- Ibid., p. 287.
- Complete Works, Vol. 2, pp.
- Ibid., Vol. 4, p. 305.
- Ibid., Vol. 2, pp. 189, 184.
- Progress and Poverty,
- The Land Question, p.
- Reed R. Hansen, "Henry
George: Economics or Theology?", in Richard W. Lindholm, ed.,
Property Taxation, U.S.A. (Madison, Wis.: 1967), p. 65.
- A. J. Nock, Henry George
(New York: 1939), p. 215.
- The Land Question, p.
- Complete Works, Vol. 4, p.
173. Strictly speaking, George was not altogether correct in his
allegation that the contribution of the landowner is entirely
negative. Some landowners, for example John Jacob Astor and James
J. Hill, successfully guided settlers to their particular plots of
land, and some part of their resultant profits ought be regarded
as entrepreneurial wages. In addition, numerous landowners have
graded their properties and otherwise added to their
attractiveness. One might with equal fairness ask wherein the
productive contribution of the speculator in securities differs
from that of the land speculator.
- The Land Question, p.
- Complete Works, Vol. 4, pp.
280-1, 279, 283, 231, 285, 306, 268, 306-7.
- Ibid., p. 270. See also p. 5
of "Open Letter to Pope Leo XIII", in The Land
- Complete Works, Vol.7, pp.
- Ibid., Vol. 4, pp. 305-6, 301.
- The Land Question, p.
- Complete Works, Vol. 2, p.
- C. Howard Hopkins, The Rise of
the Social Gospel in American Protestantism, 1865-1915 (New Haven:
1940), p. 59.
- Destler, American Radicalism,
- Joseph Dorfman, The Economic
Mind in American Civilization (New York: 1954), Vol. III, p. 141.
- Paul A. Samuelson, "Economic
Thought and the New Industrialism," in Arthur M. Schlesinger
Jr. and Morton White, eds., Paths of American Thought
(Boston: 1963), p. 233.
- In Lindholm, Property
Taxation, U.S.A., p. 65.
- Economic Mind, Vol.
III, pp. 147-8.
- Geiger, "The Forgotten
Man: Henry George", p. 302.
- Edgar H. Johnson, "The
Economics of 'Progress and Poverty' ", Journal of
Political Economy, 18 (1910), p. 729.
- Quoted in Charles A. Madison, "Henry
George, Prophet of Human Rights", South Atlantic
Quarterly, Vol. 43 (Oct. 1944), p. 353.
- Complete Works, Vol. 4, pp.
- Ibid., p. 87.
- A. J. Nock, Henry George,
pp. 152, 206-7.
- The Land Question, p. 81.
- Progress and Poverty,
- The Land Question, pp. 79,
- Complete Works, Vol. 4, ch.
16, esp. p. 160.
- Ibid., Vol. 4, p. 159; Vol.
2, p. 141.
- Ibid., Vol. 4, p. 169.
- Ibid., Vol. 4, p. 112.
- Ibid., Vol. 4, p. 161.
- Ibid., Vol. 4, p. 160.
- Ibid., Vol. 2, p. 120.
- Ibid., Vol. 2, p. 19.
- Progress and Poverty, p. 11.
- Ibid., Book III, ch. XIII, p.
404n. It is true that Henry George Jr. adds that "The reader
will find the subject of demand and supply in production treated
in Progress and Poverty and in Social Problems ".
What I have in mind is the way in which they are "treated"
-- or rather, mistreated. See, for example, his discussion in
Progress and Poverty, p. 188.
- "The Economics of
'Progress and Poverty'", Journal of Political Economy,
18 (1910), pp. 714-35.
- "The Forgotten Man:
Henry George", p. 297.
- Complete Works, Vol. 8, p.
- Ibid., pp. 231-2.
- C. Lowell Harriss, "Land
Taxation in Cities of a Developing World," United Malayan
Banking Review (Spring 1969), pp. 30-3.
- George E. Lent, "The
Taxation of Land Value," Staff Papers, International Monetary
Fund, March 1967, pp. 89, 91.
- James Heilbrun, "Reforming
the Real Estate Tax to Encourage Housing Maintenance and
Rehabilitation," in Arthur P. Becker, ed., Land and
Building Taxes: Their Effect on Economic Development (Madison,
Wis.: 1969), pp. 78-9.
- Donald A. Nichols, "Land
and Economic Growth," American Economic Review, 40 (June
1970), pp. 332-7.
- Carl S. Shoup, C. Lowell
Harriss, and William S. Vickrey, The Fiscal System of the Federal
District of Venezuela: A Report (New York: 1960), pp. 63-4.
- Progress and Poverty,
- Arthur Jerome Eddy, The
New Competition (New York: 1912); William Letwin, Law and
Economic Policy in America (New York: 1965), p. 71ff.
- The Land Question,
- Ibid., pp. 21-2, 94-5.
- Complete Works, Vol. 2, p.
- The Land Question,
- The New Industrial State
- The Greening of America
(New York: 1970).
- Ibid., pp. 410-11.
- Complete Works, Vol. 2, p.
- Progress and Poverty,
- Complete Works, Vol. 2, p. 7.
- The Land Question, p.
- Complete Works, Vol. 2, p.
- Ibid., Vol. 8, p. 167.
- Ibid., Vol. 8, p. 337.
- Ibid., Vol. 8, p. 341.
- Charles O. Reich, "The
Greening of America," New Yorker Magazine, Sept. 26, 1970, p.
- Complete Works, Vol. 4, p.
- Ibid., p. 463.
- Complete Works, Vol. 2, p. 8.
- Progress and Poverty,
- Complete Works, Vol. 2, p. 9.
- "Open Letter to Pope Leo
XIII," in The Land Question, p. 67.
- Daniel Aaron, Men of Good
Hope (New York: 1951), p. 111.
- "Reduction to Iniquity",
in The Land Question, p. 45.
- "Open Letter to Pope Leo
XIII," in The Land Question, p. 21.
- Ibid., p. 89.
- "Reduction to Iniquity,"
in The Land Question, p. 59.
- Henry George, p. 215.
- "Economic Growth:
Overview", International Encyclopaedia of the Social
Sciences, Vol. IV, pp. 395-407.
- U. S. Dept. of Commerce,
Bureau of Census, Long Term Economic Growth, 1860-1965
(Washington, D. C.: Oct. 1966), p. 22.
- Herman P. Miller, Income
Distribution in the United States (Washington, D.C.: 1966), p.
- Complete Works, Vol. 2, p.
- The Land Question,
- Complete Works, Vol. 2, p.
- New York Times, Nov. 3, 1970,