Better libertarianism

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I'm surprised to say I somewhat agree with E.J. Dionne Jr.'s recent "Libertarianism's Achilles' Heel: Why Are There No Libertarian Countries?" (June 11). This may be why I'm a geolibertarian, rather than the current run-of-the-mill variety.

As Mr. Dionne rightly hinted at, in the United States toward the end of the 19th century began what is known as "the Progressive Movement." But I suspect Mr. Dionne is unaware that that movement began with the publication of a purely (geo)libertarian tract, in 1879, titled "Progress and Poverty." In it the author, Henry George, spelled out exactly why the great promise of wealth creation in the 19th century, due to the development of steam power and its consequent industrialization, had been subverted from its expected role of eliminating poverty to instead creating even deeper poverty in the inner city.

The key Mr. George identified was to make the uncreated value of the earth common property via the institution of "the single tax" (on unimproved land values), to be shared equally among all citizens. This would provide not only a minimum income for all, but eliminate all incentive for monopolization of natural resources, allowing more of us to become land users and entrepreneurs, thus creating more jobs, better pay and a bigger pie for all.

Unless and until everyone realizes this -- liberals, conservatives, libertarians and Tea Partiers alike -- the needed consensus for creating a free, fair and prosperous world will not be achieved.

HAROLD KYRIAZI
Schenley Heights


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