Most economists and fiscal authorities condemn the theoretical and practical principles of the single tax, yet none will deny that the agitation has served to emphasize some of the defects of our fiscal system. The evils and discrepancies of general property taxes have been forcefully portrayed. Examples are not infrequent of where the low assessment of unoccupied lands and sites has been a factor in stimulating speculation. It has been shown, too, that increased values and abilities have arisen, and that they have not been made to bear their fair share of the tax burden. Such portrayals should inspire the authorities to reach these sources through more accurate valuations, and to make exactions from property when its ability to bear tax burdens because of the action of society can be actually measured. Much can be done to eliminate the evils which the single taxers portray, however, without the confiscation of land values.

Additional Reading

Seligman, Essays in Taxation, chap. iii. Young, Single Tax Movement in the United States. Carver, Essays in Social Justice, chap. xi. Proceedings of the National Tax Association, 1914, pp. 405-465; 1917, pp. 375-381.