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Tuesday, December 23, 2008

What To Tax

Kevin Bjornson wrote:  "Objecting to tax-financing is one thing; surely, libertarians can all agree on that (except for Brian and his land taxes)."

To be precise, I favor taxing only aggression: monopolizing, consuming, polluting, or congesting the commons.  If you're a non-aggressor, and thus do not violate the Lockean proviso to leave "as much and as good", then you should not be taxed.

More details at

The idea of taxing site value is not original to me.  Advocates and sympathizers of such a tax include:

Political Theorists

  • Adam Smith
  • Thomas Jefferson
  • Tom Paine
  • William Penn
  • Ben Franklin
  • Frederic Bastiat
  • John Stuart Mill
  • David Ricardo
  • Henry George
  • John Locke
  • William Lloyd Garrison
  • John Dewey
  • Lysander Spooner
  • Benjamin Tucker
  • Robert LeFevre
  • Frank Chodorov
  • Albert J. Nock

Academic Economists

  • Milton Friedman
  • James Buchanan
  • Robert Solow
  • Fred Foldvary
  • Franco Modigliani
  • Paul Samuelson
  • Herbert Simon
  • James Tobin
  • William Vickrey
  • Tyler Cowan


  • David Nolan (AZ) - founder of the LP
    • "What kind of taxation is least harmful?….My own preference is for a single tax on land, with landholders doing their own valuation."
  • John Hospers (CA) - first LP presidential nominee (1972)
  • Karl Hess - LP News editor, 1986-1990
  • Russell Means - runner-up for 1988 LP presidential nomination, losing by 3 votes to Ron Paul
  • Steve Dasbach (VA) - former Chair, LPUS; member of multiple LPUS Platform Committees
  • Fred Foldvary (CA) - geolibertarian economist, 2000 LP candidate for Congress
  • Carl Milsted (NC) - LNC member c. 2002
  • Dan Sullivan (PA) - past chair, LP of Allegheny County
  • Lorenzo Gaztanaga (MD) - LPMD Chair c. 1994; LNC member c. 2002
  • Lois Kaneshiki (PA) - LPPA Chair and LNC member, c. 2002
  • Wayne Parker (MS) - LPLA Chair c. 1996; LPMS ex-Chair; 2002 LP candidate for Congress MS-4
  • Paul Gagnon (VA) - founder, LP of Fairfax County
  • Henry Haller (PA) - multiple LPUS Platform Committees
  • Mik Robertson (PA) - 2006 LPUS Platform Committee
  • Guy McLendon (TX) - 2006,2008 LPUS Platform Committee
  • Brian Holtz (CA) - 2006,2008 LPUS Platform Committee
  • Robert Capozzi - 2008 LPUS Platform Committee
  • Starchild - former Chair, LP of San Francisco
  • Ron Rosenberger (PA) - 1998 LP candidate for PA Senate
  • Chris Toto (NJ) - former chair, LP of Mercer County