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The enews of Prosper & Earthsharing Australia
august 2014

Prof. John Freebairn will present on state taxation

Wednesday September 3rd
Royal Society of Victoria, 8 Latrobe St, Melbourne
From 6pm
RSVP & Tickets

Prof John Freebairn is one of the nation’s most prominent economists. He will be joining us for our 123rd annual occasion where we meet to investigate the economic forces driving incredible progress alongside despairing poverty. In the runup to the state election, Professor John Freebairn will present on taxation in Victoria and the pressing need for reform. Listen to Prof Freebairn reveal the missing ingredient on the Renegade Economists.

The event meets in the stunning historical setting of the Burke & Wills room at the Royal Society of Victoria. The night starts at 6pm, with a buffet meal to be served from 6.15 onwards. Drinks are pay-as-you-go. Dress code: smart casual. Tickets and more information available here.

Special announcement: on the night we will be awarding the inaugural EJ Craigie writing award for the best Georgist piece over the last 12 months. The Prosper Australia Executive Committee will adjudge the best piece of writing according to clarity, insightfulness and inspiration.

EJ Craigie was an inspiring independent MP from South Australia and long-time Georgist proponent. He was a powerful writer and longtime Progress Magazine editor. His cutting debating manner was arresting for vested interests. Such was the fear that the Labor and Liberal Party switched preferences for the first time in order to defeat him. We hope you can contribute to our growing writing stable and be in the running for the second annual EJ Craigie award.

Why be penalised for moving?

Compounding this is that we also reward lazy landowners under the same system. Stamp Duty is a penalty to those who want to move closer to their workplace or downsize. The state government preference to raising revenue on transactions, rather than a holding charge over time, gives a free pass to land speculators. They can simply pass on the costs to buyers whilst enjoying lucrative capital gains.

The recent combination of a $4500 Victorian and a $900 Melbourne City Council apartment levy (AFR, paywalled) are examples of transaction based costs passed straight through to the buyer.

With that in mind, please sign this exciting new petition to remove stamp duty and replace it with a fairer Land Tax. This was inspired by independent Senator Nick Xenophon’s clunky call for first-time owners to be permitted to access their superannuation for a home deposit. Senator Xenophon is a significant property owner and would benefit from the rising demand caused by such a policy switch. The Housing Industry of Australia and other property lobbies have pushed this barrow for a long time. Be wary. The senator was shot down in flames by a past Canadian advocate of such a policy, Garth Turner, reticent about the damage such a policy placed on Canada’s long-running land bubble.



New members night

Tuesday 26th August
Level 2, 22 Punch Lane, Melbourne
Facilitator: David Collyer

Bring those burning Georgist questions to a relaxed roundtable discussion with our policy director, David Collyer. These nights are small and designed as a fireside chat on Georgist theory or current events. Don’t forget to join in the conversation at the Facebook Don’t Buy Now page which is always alive with conversation about the news stories that matter.

The new members night is open to all members and supporters, and anyone else interested in economic issues. RSVP to assist our plans.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics wants your feedback

The system of national accounts is an international standardised measure of key data sets. For the last decade the ABS has been working on a new frontier in terms of national accounts. It is the world leading System of Environmental Economic Accounting (SEEA). The ABS is seeking feedback on this discussion paper, on how an environmental expenditure account might be used by policy and research agencies.

Land has always played a dominant role in measuring environmental expenditure. This new SEEA takes resource rents into greater detail as revealed on past Renegade Economists interviews with former director Dr Michael Vardon.

Please read the discussion paper as an insight into how the ABS is accounting for environmental expenditures. The most recent SEEA report went into great detail to quantify the value of resource rents, alongside environmental expenses.

Vote with your feedback to keep this economic frontier evolving.

Meetup with The Next Economy

We have established a new event group on the exciting MeetUp platform entitled The Next Economy.

All sorts of interesting economics students and people interested in economics have joined. This platform is a fantastic way to meet and keep up with exciting new developments in the 2014 year. Please join this free group to keep our numbers growing and discover other insightful groups operating in your city.

MJS Photography

Monday September 8th
8.30 – 9.30pm

Join Karl Fitzgerald for another insight into the collaborative economy on Google+. There is so much activity related to the tech sector via peer-to-peer platforms, the feedback from the recent collaborative California event calls for a hangout. In the process, find out the latest Prosper campaign developments by registering here – limited to ten places. Learn about google hangouts as a collaborative tool with this handy post on the incredible flexivity possible.

Rounding off

We have been inspired by the number of 16, 17 and 18-year-olds enquiring into the Georgist remedy. Check out WA’s Three Card Trick by 16-year-old Frederick, who visited our office a few months ago.

And Watch out! A 17 year old is promising to attend our 123rd annual dinner (and write for us following his exams).

With that in mind, we need more content for our website and Progress Magazine. So please send in your interpretations of how rentier economics are undermining your freedoms!

And don’t forget to join us on Twitter @earthsharing and @dontbuynow.

Thanks for your support, we look forward to seeing you at the dinner,

Karl Fitzgerald
Project Director

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