Universal Basic Landlord Subsidy

There’s quite a bit of chatter about so called “Universal Basic Income” again in some of the circles I frequent. It’s a simplistic policy, easy to understand but difficult to sell to the people who will feel like they are funding something for nothing for others. And it can do more harm than good if not coupled with wholesale reform of the tax system to stop fining people from doing economically beneficial things – such as working or investing to produce goods and services, or trading: things we want to encourage.

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Preserving Oxford…from itself

Preserving Oxford…from itself

I love Oxford. I have lived in bigger cities and I have lived in smaller cities and a few less urban places too, but, like baby bear's porridge, Oxford is, shall we say, "just right". I've been in or around Oxford for 26 years now, just over half my life. And though that scarcely makes…

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A wrong step in the right direction

A wrong step in the right direction

According to a "Guardian exclusive" the Labour party has plans to get land for housing on the cheap by making landowners sell it at a price before planning consent is given, eliminating most of the so-called "hope value" and enabling new council housing to be built at lower cost land: Labour plans to make landowners…

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OECD and Land Value Tax

OECD and Land Value Tax

The OECD has a Policy Highlight document out, summarising two forthcoming publications on the governance of land use. In it (page 17) it advocates for Land Value Tax: If governments aim to encourage efficient land use within urban areas, they may also consider the introduction of a pure land value tax, which provides particularly strong…

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The Great Brexit Opportunity

The Great Brexit Opportunity

So, barring some exceedingly unlikely extraordinary parliamentary gyrations that see a 380 odd majority at second reading overturned at third reading, it looks like Article 50 will be invoked to Theresa May's timetable in March and negotiations will begin in earnest to achieve whatever they mean by "Brexit". Whilst I was a remain voter, and would…

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2030: The Confederation of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

2030: The Confederation of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

Here my "fantasy politics" piece for the Liberal Britain "2030 Vision" competition which has now closed and been judged, though the results have not been announced yet. As I say, a bit of fun really. It's about "sovereign localism" and sharing the rents, and about how central government is a thing of the past, for…

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Rent: The Economic Relationship Between Humanity and Nature

Rent: The Economic Relationship Between Humanity and Nature

So, attached is a "final" version of the paper on which I shall be basing my presentation at Lib Dem conference next Monday. The whole event was initially envisaged as a joint affair between Green Lib Dems and ALTER, the land tax campaign within the party. But GLD are doing something of their own. But…

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Rapacious Rent

The thread that runs right through this paper requires readers to understand what we mean when we talk about rent. No doubt many people, if they think about “rent”, think of, predominantly, what people without a home of their own pay to live in someone else’s spare property, or, more broadly, a fee one pays…

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Democracy: All I need is the air that I breathe

Democracy: All I need is the air that I breathe

I’m sure everyone knows that I have what some would call an obsession with rent, of the economic kind rather than the Piccadilly kind frequented by politicians and the like :) It wasn’t always this way. I was once as ignorant as anyone else about the effects of rent on our economy and society. It…

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Back to the Future…

Wow, three posts in three days. My disdain for the political process is clearly not enough for me to ignore all its ramifications! Of course you decide how much of this, like so many post mortem/what next posts, to give any weight to. The best I can say is that I have never left the…

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