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Open Letter

This is a letter I sent to the city council awhile back….of curse there was no reply…I did not expect one….this is a valid proposal and would do alot to raise the much needed funds of which the city is in desperate need……..

Open Letter To The City Council Of Gulfport, Mississippi

The city has been having its problems with the generation of much needed funds for programs that will benefit its citizens. There is a way to generate these funds and that course is called Land Value Tax. For years I have been advocating this form of taxation to no avail, but with the economic situation getting worse by the day, I believe this idea can save the city from massive cuts in services.

According to the Mississippi Economic Policy Center, any tax reform should conform to a 3 principle outline.  These are:  1—Be balanced and make work pay, 2—should create opportunity for economic growth and 3—be accountable to the taxpayer.  The Land Value Tax (LVT) addresses all three of the concerns put forth by the MEPC.

Land rent means taxing land. Not buildings, not work, not commerce, just bare land. Or if land has buildings (as most land has) then the equivalent value of the land if it had no buildings.

Land gets its value its improvements (buildings etc) and from its location. The improvements were made by the hard work of the owners. But the location has value because of what society does, because of roads and schools and good neighbors.

If society taxes buildings and improvements, it steals people’s hard work, their time and energy, their life. Most taxation is therefore theft. But if society taxes the location, then it simply claims back the value it creates. Land rent distinguishes between the individual’s property and society’s property.

Land rent creates fairness in the most basic of all issues: who controls the ground beneath our feet.

Land rent is the only rational tax, because it is based on a sound theory of property (you create it, you own it).

Land rent means an end to every other tax. So it becomes much cheaper to create additional jobs and manufacture goods. So wealth increases.

If you tax work, the amount of work goes down, because some work becomes less profitable. But if you tax land, the amount of land remains the same. So if you want to encourage work, you should tax land, not work.

Land rent is the only guarantee of fair property rights. If people can charge rent but they pay no rent themselves, eventually one person or one elite will own everything and nobody else can have any property unless it suits the elite. To see why, play the game Monopoly. Monopoly is based on “The Landlord’s Game,” invented by Lizzie Magie as a way to show why we need land rent.

Land rent is the most efficient way of creating wealth because it gives resources to those who can use them best (that is, those who can generate the most wealth from the land).

Land rent creates economic justice, by ensuring that everyone keeps the wealth they create, and any extra is given back to society. So nobody has unfair privileges, and everyone has an equal chance to succeed.

Land rent provides a fair system for all, because it generates wealth for society, yet it is so simple that corruption and inefficiency have nowhere to hide.

It is as simple as that….it would not take a massive bureaucracy to change the taxation of the city…

If further information is needed I may be contacted at:

CG Streuly

2605 Demaret Drive

Gulfport, MS 39507

Email: chuqalam@gmail.com

SB 2288–Speculator’s Dream

29 January 2010 2 comments

There are times when the state legislature does something that is a blatant disregard of the people it represents and SB2288 is such bill….which states:

AN ACT TO AUTHORIZE THE BOARD OF SUPERVISORS OF A COUNTY AND/OR THE GOVERNING AUTHORITIES OF A MUNICIPALITY TO GRANT A PARTIAL AD VALOREM TAX EXEMPTION FOR AGRICULTURAL PROPERTY THAT IS BEING CONVERTED TO A RESIDENTIAL USE IN AN AMOUNT EQUAL TO THE DIFFERENCE IN THE ASSESSED VALUE OF THE PROPERTY FOR AGRICULTURAL USE AND THE ASSESSED VALUE OF THE PROPERTY FOR RESIDENTIAL USE; TO PROVIDE THAT THE EXEMPTION SHALL END WHEN THE PROPERTY IS OCCUPIED BY A HOMEOWNER; TO PROVIDE THE MANNER IN WHICH A REQUEST FOR SUCH EXEMPTION MUST BE MADE; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.

This appears to be a boon for the purpose of land speculation….

A case could be made that land speculation is the cause of almost every major recession/depression that has occurred whether nationwide or statewide…..The 19th century economist Henry George describes it:

That land speculation is the true cause of industrial depression is, in the United States, clearly evident. In each period of industrial activity land values have steadily risen, culminating in speculation which carried them up in great jumps. This has been invariably followed by a partial cessation of production, and its correlative, a cessation of effective demand (dull trade), generally accompanied by a commercial crash; and then has succeeded a period of comparative stagnation, during which the equilibrium has been again slowly established, and the same round been run again. This relation is observable throughout the civilized world. Periods of industrial activity always culminate in a speculative advance of land values, followed by symptoms of checked production, generally shown at first by cessation of demand from the newer countries, where the advance in land values has been greatest.

This bill is just another attempt to help the land speculators while depriving the state of much needed tax revenue…in these days any reduction in revenue can only lead to a cut in needed services….

Once again, the state legislation is dealing the people of the state a bad hand, just as they do every session…the people need to stop sleeping through the day and wake up politically…they are paying these people to do nothing but screw them at every session….

Mississippi’s Legislative Session–2010

12 January 2010 Leave a comment

The guys and gals have returned to work in Jackson and that means the good, the bad and the ugly are far as bills go….I will be watching and ranting on the ones that hit me the most and then at the end of the session I will do my annual posts…..The Good….The Bad…..The Ugly….my analysis of bills and their effects on Mississippi….

As usual the Legislature will spend much time commending people and such…….it has started and now the rest of the session will be an exercise in futility….all it will do is pad some politicians resume for use in his/her re-election campaign……looks good…sounds good….but is NEVER intended on passage…..

look for bills on sex ed….radar for sheriff…..schools…..obesity……Medicaid….the usual suspects….

When Will Mississippians Ever Learn?

23 December 2009 2 comments

After a much needed time for ZEN…I am back and ready to report on the lunacy that is the government of the South…..we have the scores for the Senators from Mississippi as compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics….

Sen. Cochran has NEVER been a friend of the middle class his grades suck for the last several years:

2003–D

2004–F

2005–F

2006–F

2007–F

2008–D

2009–results to be released in March 2010

His overall rating on middle class issues is 40%…..I will repeat that 40%…..He has voted against the bankruptcy act of 2009, SCHIP, fair pay act, the stimulus, and those are for this year….to be fair he voted for…..unemployment extension, estate tax cut, the credit card act, among others…..

All in all, Mississippians need to pay attention…..it would help if they would stay in school….but that is for another post……they keep re-electing these people that are doing NOTHING to help the middle class…..

Mississippians get off your ass and learn all about these people that are representing you…they may not be doing all that is necessary for your and youyr family’s well being….

To Be Continued……..

There Is Always Bad News For Revenue

It constantly amazes me that the state and local administrations continue to have a difficult time finding the money to fund the needed programs.  Yet there is a way and a way that could lead to a self-sufficient community, but stupidity comes into the equation.

Year after year after year, funds are not available and year after year the legislature tries to find ways to come up with the cash.  Most times it involves the bulk of the responsibility falls on the shoulders of the working class in Mississippi.

It is time for the state and local entities to find a better way to raise funds that are needed.  As the economy keeps getting worse, funds become smaller and smaller, the people of the state become less and less safe and secure.

The only way to keep the much needed cash rolling into the coffers is by finally accepting the need for Land Value Taxation.  (read page on LVT)  Why?  Easy answer…it fits all the requirements of a perfect tax.  These are:  1–the distribution of the burden would be equitable, 2–tax should minimize the effect on economic activity, 3–the structure should facilitate stabilization and economic growth, 4–should be simple and easily understood by the taxpayer.

If you want the governmental services for your community then a new system of taxation must be found.  It can be done and the people can make it happen.  But as long as they depend on the stale thinking of the past then their community will suffer and possibly wither and die.

It is your choice.

Mississippi Moronocracy–The UGLY

This is part 3 and the finally part to my annual posts of Mississippi Moronocracy.  These are bills offered up in the 2009 legislature, some were passed while others died a death.  All in all these are just flippin’ ugly.

HB 349–exempt ad valorem tax on pollution control equipment.

HB 374–casteration for convict sex offenders–this is silly–what happens if the person is found not guilty after the preceedure–how do you repay that guy?

HB 540–phase out corporate income tax–anything for the corporations, but the people suffer.

HB 631–tax deduction for private school–helps only the wealthy.

HB 790–mandatory drug tests for students grade 6-12.

HB 800–good health video for recipients of assistence.SB 2378–state to compensate landowners for certain loss of value.

SB 2390–provide protection of doctors from lawsuits brought by Medicaid patients.

These were absolutely the ugliest of bills that could have been offered….no where was any of it good fopr the people of Mississippi.

I will be watching and reading and if the legislature returns for an emergency session I will write and bitch.  Until next session…peace out.

Mississippi Moronocracy–The Good

The yearly exercise in futility is nearly over, the legislative session, and time to rate it.  For those of us who actually watch this saga unfold day after day, it can either make you angry or so confused that you go out and talk to fire plugs.

This was the title of an opinion piece I wrote for a now defunct newspaper, the Gulfport Star-Journal, and I thought that it was worth a resurrection.  These are bills that the state legislature considered in the most recent session.  The bills that I considered the GOOD, the BAD and the UGLY.  Some made through the process, others did not.  Some were a complete waste of time, some had promise.   This will be a three part post.

THE GOOD:

HB 120– Create a Civil Rights Museum

HB345–Compensation for wrongful incarceration

HB351–Create Civil Rights Division within the AG’s office

HC 5–study of the state tax system–this never goes anywhere.

SB2309–compulsory school attendence–something desperately needed

SB2321–Prohibit texting and cel use while driving–another much needed law

SB2346–prohibit predatory mortgage practices

These were not all the measures taken up by the state legislature, but these were the ones that had a lot of promise to help the state move into the 21st century.  Sadly, many did not make it….and the state stays at the bottom of the pile.