The usual inference from the mention of taxes is that something of a fiscal significance is intended. The fiscal aspects of the single tax are overshadowed to some extent by the contemplated social results of its adoption. A study of the underlying principles will elucidate this feature of the program. The fiscal part of the scheme ends by declaring for the abolition of all taxes except those on land values.

Social Vision of George. - The reasoning upon which George based his conclusion was somewhat as follows: Land is a gift of nature, and not the product of man's labor. Man has a right to possess only the products of his labor, and therefore private ownership in land cannot be justified. Man is not responsible for differences in land values, nor for increases in values, consequently these differences and increases should go to society in the form of taxes. The abolition of all other taxes naturally follows, since they are a burden upon the product of labor, and everyone has a natural right to the product of his labor. George believed that more revenue would be secured than under the existing system, which surplus could be applied to the common benefit. He said:

We could establish public baths, museums, libraries, gardens, lecture rooms, music and dancing halls, theaters, universities, technical schools, shooting galleries, playgrounds, gymnasiums, etc. Heat, light, and motive power, as well as water, might be conducted through our streets at public expense; our roads be lined with fruit trees; discoverers and inventors rewarded, scientific investigations supported; and in a thousand ways the public revenues made to foster efforts for the public benefit.1

Platform of Single Tax League. - That the advocates of the single tax claim that it is much more than a mere revenue system - in fact, that it approaches a panacea for all social miseries - is evidenced by the platform adopted by the National Conference of the Single Tax League of 1890. The part which sets forth the anticipated results of its adoption reads:

It would make the holding of land unprofitable to the mere owner, and profitable only to the user. It would thus make it impossible for speculators and monopolists to hold natural opportunities unused or only half used, and would throw open to labor the illimitable field of employment which the earth offers to man. It would thus solve the labor problem, do away with involuntary poverty, raise wages in all occupations to the full earnings of labor, make overproduction impossible until all human wants are satisfied, render labor-saving inventions a blessing to all, and cause such an enormous production and such an equitable distribution of wealth as would give to all comfort, leisure, and participation in the advantages of an advancing civilization.

Quasi Single Taxers. - If the principles upon which the single tax is based were recognized, generally, as sound, and if it were believed that such an economic Utopia as

1 Progress and Poverty, bk. ix, chap. iv.

the one pictured in the above paragraph would result from its adoption, a much wider use of the scheme would be found, doubtless, than exists at present, and a much larger number of ardent disciples would be seeking its universal adoption. As it is, many of the present followers have ceased to place emphasis upon the "Single" of the scheme, and are content to secure the adoption of fiscal principles which partake of the nature of the George proposal as a part of a tax system. These might be called quasi single taxers, and their proposals have been termed by some as the single tax limited. Because the single tax has been so extensively advocated, every citizen should know something of the proposal, the tactics of propaganda, and some of the economic effects of its adoption. A brief study of some of the outstanding features of the single tax principle will be undertaken in the following pages.