Both from The Guardian:
• The latest Labour pledge to abolish stamp duty for first-time buyers is not the policy it should adopt to help people to buy or rent their homes.
This latest subsidy proposal will push up house prices. History shows that all government subsidies ultimately capitalise into land value and go into the pockets of landowners. Enterprise zones, common agricultural policy payments, rate-free periods for new businesses, housing benefit payments for private tenants, wind farm subsidies – all have ended up as unintended subsidies for landowners paid for by all of us as taxpayers, with the poorest of people subsidising the richest.
It is shameful that politicians and their economic advisers do not understand how land wealth arises and how a shift in taxes off earned incomes on to land value and other natural resource wealth will not only right the historic wrong of our land being held by a minority but will return land wealth to the public purse to use to maintain and develop our public services.
Land value is not created from owning land. It is created from our public and private investments that benefit all residents and businesses in the immediate and wider areas and thus raise the rent and price of land which private landowners collect as an unearned income. Land speculation and monopoly land ownership is actually what makes homes unaffordable to rent or to buy.
Heather Wetzel, London.
• Contrary to your leader (Editorial, 28 April), we do not have a choice about our corrupt housing system, which degrades the whole economy by not allowing people to move where there’s work; or leave them enough to spend in the shops after the rent or mortgage has been paid. All the major parties subscribe to home ownerism, the name given by radical land taxers to the policy of deliberately encouraging house price inflation to secure elections by bribing homeowners with unearned capital gains in house prices (while wages can go hang).
There has already been something of a riot about house price inflation in Brixton. Only a return to an era like the 1950s to 1970s when the house price graph was flat in the UK can defuse a potentially revolutionary conflict between the interests of the housing haves and have nots.
As the cause of the evil of house-price inflation (so much worse than wage inflation) is land price inflation, it is merely a matter of introducing the age-old land value tax to keep land prices and house prices flat forever.
DBC Reed, Northampton.
Tuesday, 5 May 2015
Both from The Guardian:
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