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Re: Software companies etc would pay little tax with lvt

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  • mattbieker
    ... Roy kinda stole my thunder here, but I d like to add that I ve also encountered this argument frequently, especially from people with some economic
    Message 1 of 142 , Dec 4, 2012
      --- In LandCafe@yahoogroups.com, Dave Wetzel <davewetzel42@...> wrote:
      > Just received this from an economics academic in USA.
      > It is a common argument I face.
      > A recent example is Amazon paying no corporation tax (company profits tax)
      > in UK but do pay vat (UK sales tax) on all sales (under the current
      > system!).
      > It is argued that with lvt they'd pay no vat nor profits tax and only pay
      > lvt for 4 warehouses in he UK.
      > What is the definitive argument?
      > -- Hi Dave: Well, land tax used to be almost the only tax. But it would
      > leave land-light entities, like software companies, insurance, real estate,
      > etc., etc., not taxed at all --esp if there is no income tax. And how about
      > retirees and other who own land but must live in pensions or investments
      > subject to a tax which woul be hefty if it were the govt's only source of
      > revenue...
      > You've probably thought about all these issues. But I agree taxing
      > something productive, like labor, is a dangerous thing...But if you want as
      > much money as possible, that's what you have to do..
      > Dave Wetzel

      Roy kinda stole my thunder here, but I'd like to add that I've also encountered this argument frequently, especially from people with some economic training. A problem with people who have training in economics is they tend to substitute repeating what they've been taught to actually thinking the thing through, and as Roy points out, they've been taught that you just have to tax all productive enterprise, in as many different ways as possible.

      Roy nailed the first response: why WOULD we want to make sure all productive activity is taxed? If someone is able to add value to the economy while at the same time consuming few resources, we would be wise to avoid disincentivizing that.

      The other thing is, this is an issue of not seeing the forest for the trees. Ask your academic to consider the economy as a whole. If you look at society as one great machine, yeah, there are parts which will not rely DIRECTLY on use of land, but as a whole, the reliance on land is obviously inescapable. Lower the taxes on production and you get more production; more production means more wealth; more wealth means land gets bid up. It doesn't matter that you're collecting tax in the form of land rent, except of course that it's a hell of a lot more efficient to do so.
    • roy_langston
      ... So you are in fact being paid multiple times for the same work, just as Shaw said. ... No, it is being produced by a publisher and sold by booksellers.
      Message 142 of 142 , Dec 10, 2012
        --- In LandCafe@yahoogroups.com, "John" <burns-john@...> wrote:

        > --- In LandCafe@yahoogroups.com, "roy_langston" <roy_langston@> wrote:
        > >
        > > --- In LandCafe@yahoogroups.com, "John" <burns-john@> wrote:
        > >
        > > > --- In LandCafe@yahoogroups.com, "roy_langston" <roy_langston@> wrote:
        > > > > > If I write a book and it sells well for
        > > > > > 5 years, where am I being paid many times?
        > > > >
        > > > > You are being paid each time someone buys one.
        > > > > Surely this is obvious.
        > > >
        > > > I am not. Over 5 years if the book
        > > > makes say £100,000 and then publication halts,
        > > > then I have been paid once for that book run.
        > >
        > > No. If you had been paid a flat fee,
        > > that would be one payment.
        > Roy, so what!

        So you are in fact being paid multiple times for the same work, just as Shaw said.

        > If I get paid one fee at the end of a book run or drip fed each time a book is sold, it doesn't matter. One thing that is clear, it is MY book and MY work.

        No, it is being produced by a publisher and sold by booksellers. For whose work YOU are being paid multiple times.

        > The most recorded song in history, by countless artists, is "Yesterday" written by Paul McCartney. He gets a royalty for each record sold, or played on air, by those who copy.

        Getting paid millions of times for the same work, just as Shaw said.

        > Those who copy still make money as well.

        Some do, some don't. How would that be relevant?

        > I see nothing wrong with that. Paul McCartney has never stopped any of them recording his song.

        Then why would they pay him for doing nothing?

        > All the proceeds of his original go to him and rightly so..

        No, it is not just "his original," but all the other arrangements and versions as well.

        > > > He took someone else's effort.
        > >
        > > What do you mean, "took"? He made his
        > > OWN effort, creating a new product which
        > > others did not create.
        > He did not.

        He indisputably did.

        > He took the efforts of other authors R&D and rolled it into one book.

        No, he did his own R&D, making one better book using ideas from worse books.

        > I have always thought of doing the same myself. Within a few weeks a "new" book can be knocked up by using other people's efforts. I am sure it happens all the time.

        And there is nothing wrong with it.

        > > > > > What about the case of a large company
        > > > > > making millions using your work and you get nothing?
        > > > >
        > > > > Good for them: it means they are more productive
        > > > > and efficient than their competitors, who have
        > > > > access to the same knowledge and ideas. If you
        > > > > want to get paid for your work, make an arrangement
        > > > > to get paid before it enters the public domain.
        > > >
        > > > That is pure naivety.
        > >
        > > It is fact.
        > Many Socialists claim all the free market does is allow most money to gather with a few percent of the population.

        Because they refuse to know the facts about how land titles and other privileges, which are no part of a free market, steal from the productive and give to the privileged.

        > They claim a free for all does this so control, or state ownership is needed. We see it now with powerful corporations.

        I see powerful corporations enriching themselves through privilege, not the free market.

        > The right never thought through their ideal - the repercussions of when the free-market is rigged or monopolized.

        The right thinks freedom consists in the privileged being free to remove others' freedom with government's help.

        > Roy, you have this ideal of a free for all re: patents and copyright. I agree with it in principle. But when thought through it falls apart.

        No, it does not.

        > The money will rise to the top.

        <sigh> How much money do Paul McCartney, DisneyCorp, etc. have under the CURRENT system, John?

        > I know it is not right. I do not know the solution to the problem - because I have never thought it through.

        That's OK. I have.

        -- Roy Langston
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