about this site

replace all taxation with rent
(on land, not buildings, and everyone will pay less)

"Perfect" means "having all the required or desirable elements, qualities, or characteristics;".
[see OxfordDictionaries.com, result 1, retrieved 10th December 2014]

Land rent creates all the desired elements, qualities and characteristics of a world:


Property laws

Moral laws exist to create the most resources for society and the individual. [to be continued]

So correct (i.e. moral) property laws can be measured as those that create the most resources.

New words
"Property": resources a person (the property owner) can use.
Philosophers on property
For the historic thinking behind property, see the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy on property and ownership.
In short, all great philosophers agree that economic property laws exist in order to benefit society.

What is the right pay?

If someone is paid more resources than they add, there is a net loss. [by definition]

The worker wants resources, so if they are paid less then they add, they will tend to withhold work until paid more.

So for maximum resources, the worker should be paid what they add.

The buyer gains no resources simply by spending money: instead they change the form of their resources into something they can then work on and sell. Only work creates resources.

How to measure property

Correct property laws are those that create the most wealth for society. [see 'property laws']

The most wealth is created if you are paid what you add. [see 'optimal price']

So your economic property equals whatever you add to society.

Your property can of course be negative if you harm society.

Paying for intellectual property

Intellectual property has a very small physical presence so can be easily copied. [by definition]

So it is harder to track the value added.

So it requires a more efficient and more trusted government. [see 'deal government' below]

New words
"Intellectual property": created resources in the form of information.
The current way of paying for intellectual property is to limit its use. This limits its benefit, thus weakening society.

Why government?

Government create laws. [by definition]

These laws exist to increase resources. [see 'property laws']

So the value of a government is the monetary value added to resources. [see 'optimal-price']

New word
"Government": any entity that governs (i.e. makes rules that are followed)
"Government" refers to any entity that makes rules. It could even be an individual governing herself, or a temporary voluntary anarchist cooperative.

Why a government should charge land rent.

Land value is increased by the presence of nearby roads, markets, services, etc. [by definition]

So that added value is created by society, and is therefore the property of society. [see 'measuring property']

For maximum wealth creation the value of a thing should be paid to the one who creates it. [see 'optimal price']

New words
"Land": any natural resource: mainly space on the ground, but also the sky, the electromagnetic spectrum, etc.
"Rent": regular payment for work.
"Land rent": rent for land's natural value: value before any buildings, planting, etc. Also called "land value tax".

Objections to land rent

Why a government should not tax work

Tax increases prices. [by definition]

So work was barely affordable becomes unaffordable.

So less work is done.

So land rent creates jobs
The numbers

More efficient land use

To avoid land rent [see 'land rent'], idle land will be sold to those who can use it.

So land (in total) will be used more efficiently.


Cheaper mortgages

Land rent cannot increase the total cost of land, as it is already at its maximum (for a given economy). [see notes]

Meanwhile interest rates cannot go higher, as they are already at their maximum (for a given economy). [see notes]

But more land will enter the market, so the land price will go down. [see 'land use']


Lower costs for business

Land rent requires less paperwork (as it only measures one thing, and that thing does not change often). [by definition]

Land rent does not subsidise a dead weight of non-payers (as land cannot be hidden).

Making tax avoiders pay will not harm efficiency. In all but the least efficient nations, tax payers outnumber tax avoiders. So tax payers compete and often win against non-tax payers. So these tax payers are more efficient at business. So by replacing non payer with payers there is a net increase in efficiency.

More stability

Rent makes simply owning land less profitable. [see 'land rent']

So land speculation will go down.

So land prices will be more stable.

Historically, land prices have been a major factor in the boom and bust economic cycle.
So land rent will tend to make the economy more stable and predictable. This improves decision making.

Many times more wealth

Each of the above effects increases economic efficiency. [see previous points]

So the economy will grow faster each year.

So absolute wealth under land rent will be far more than under tax.

compound growth
Economists can debate the exact numbers but the big picture is clear.
Later proofs will show how land rent leads to better information and better government, leading to even faster growth.

Everyone will benefit

Land rent is a big change, and big changes can be difficult. [by definition]

So it will be easy for those who lose out to stop it.

So any introduction of land rent must ensure nobody loses out (or it will not happen).

There are several ways to bring in land rent so that everyone benefits. For example:
  1. Very slowly, by gradually reforming current taxes
  2. All at once, with a system of compensation (temporary redistribution)
  3. In small geographical areas, and let them grow.

...even land owners

If rent makes land unprofitable then its selling price (and thus rent) go down until it is profitable again. [by definition]

Prices will eventually recover due to the faster growing economy. [see 'more wealth']

So governments can compensate owners using bonds based on expected future value. [see notes]

A government can issue notes that promise to buy land in 30 years. The faster growing land rent economy means the price offered can be higher than under tax. Those notes can then be sold right now, like any other government bond. This provides immediate compensation for the temporary fall in land price. Once the date arrives the government can buy the land at the agreed rate, then immediately sell it at a profit due to the expanding economy.

Land rent is an extremely sensitive measure

Land rent is simple: just one thing to measure (not thousands of taxes). [see 'land rent']

Land has a very high value, so even a very small change is worth measuring.

There are millions of plots of lands to compare, so even tiny influences can be identified statistically.

A single bad neighbour will reduce the price of many houses by thousands of dollars. Good neighbours raise house values. A tiny change in government behaviour adds or takes thousands. So all are worth measuring.

Land rent allows deals with government

Land rent makes it easy to see exactly what each person pays. [see 'sensitive measure']

The improved economy means workers will be in more demand. [see 'tax' for why land rent increase employment]

So it becomes easy to make a deal.

A Christina or Libertarian group might say "let us do X and we will guarantee your rent", or "let us do Y and we will empty our own trash, thus saving you money." Once it is shown to work others will come up with ideas.

Land rent leads to your ideal government

Land rent creates a constantly improving economy [see 'more wealth'] and demand for workers. [see 'tax' for why removing tax creates jobs]

So deal making will become an industry. [see 'deals']

... with be an ever increasing choice of rules.

A government's minimum role is to represent the people. That is, to gather the rent that is created by society as a whole. What they do with that rent is up for negotiation. This creates infinite potential for doing things better.

Why land rent measures a government's value

Governments should get all their money from land rent. [see 'land-rent' and 'tax']

As government improves [see 'ideal government'], income equals the value created. [see 'optimal price']

So land rent equals the value created by government.

Land rent measures everything of value [see 'ideal government'], so it becomes very easy to see which governments are better. This accelerates improvement in all areas. [see 'better decisions' below]

Scientific government

Land rent allows many variant governments. [see 'ideal government']

The value of each can be accurately measured. [see 'sensitive measure']

So we can scientifically determine which are best.

More sharing of information

Choosing a government implies greater agreement. [see 'ideal government']

Hence greater trust.

Hence more willingness to share information.

Land rent creates more jobs [see 'ending tax'], so if a land-rent government mis-uses data the people can simply leave and encourage others to do the same. Such a government loses rent and risks bankruptcy.

Current governments obtain data against our will, so the data has a high proportion of noise, and serious gaps.

Better decisions in every area

Land rent creates and shares better information. [see 'sharing information']

Every decision contributes to land values. [see 'sensitive measure']

Governments will compete for land rent. [see 'ideal government']

So there will be better decisions in all areas.

End crime

Better decisions imply few opportunities for crime. [see 'better decisions']

More trust implies that the police have far better information. [see 'sharing information']

More jobs means nobody sees crime as their only choice. [see 'ending tax']

If a person especially hates crime they can just join a government where ending crime is a priority. [see 'government value'] That is, where people share even more information and the penalties are even higher. Scientific government will show exactly what works best. [see 'scientific government']

More happiness

Rent is a measure of how much you want to live in an area. [by definition]

Or in other words, your overall happiness.

By creating more jobs, land rent creates competition for workers. [see 'ending tax']

So if governments only have land rent, they must compete to make people happier.

No stress

Land rent only charges per unit land. [by definition]

So if you don't use much land you can live extremely cheaply.

So with low rent added to the previous advantages (plenty of jobs, low prices, ideal government, general happiness) you have no cause for stress.

If you don't want to work much: choose a tall building on cheap land, so your share of land rent is very low. Live simply. Land rent drives down prices, so you will only need to work a few hours per week. Spend the rest of the week in bed, or walking in nature, or with friends.

End global poverty

As the need for workers exceeds supply, governments that allow more workers will out-compete those that do not. [see 'competitive advantage']

So economic migration will be encouraged.

So the poor can simply move to better nations.

The most able workers will be in most demand [by definition]. As poor nations lose their best workers they will become ever weaker, and more open to adopting land rent themselves in order to survive. Likewise, corrupt nations will lose workers, so they must improve in order to survive.

A beautiful world

Anything that makes land more attractive to workers will raise the rent a government can claim. [see 'happiness']

So competition between nations will force them to make land more beautiful. [see 'ideal government']

End war

If the value of land is owed as rent, then nobody benefits from simply grabbing land. [see 'land rent']

With an end to poverty, and a wide choice of government, there can be are no desperate people. [see 'poverty']

So there are fewer causes for wars.

End tyranny

Compound growth means any fixed cost soon becomes trivial. [see 'more wealth']

So faster compound growth means any previously expected income soon becomes trivial. [see 'more wealth']

So a tyrant can be offered much more money if he allows change.

The tyrant can keep his position as a loved figurehead. It worked with many European monarchs.
Since enemies benefit there is no need for conflict. We can have peace on earth, good will to all.

Environmental improvement

Land rent measures everything more accurately. [see 'sensitive measure']

So environmental costs will be clear

A more efficient economy will [by definition] charge those who cause the problem.

Saving the planet (and the species)

Catastrophic scenarios can destroy everything that matters. [by definition]

A stronger, more flexible civilisation can prevent or reduce the damage. [by definition]

Land rent creates a stronger, more flexible civilisation. [see 'a perfect world']

So land rent can save the human race.

Death on a catastrophic scale could be caused by Asteroid impact, Nuclear war, Plague, etc. Land rent creates more wealth and better government, so there will be more research to be ready for disasters, and more wealth and cooperation to solve them.

about this site