Land reform could end Colombia’s guerilla war – TIME

3 January, 2011 by (comments)

Did you know? Colombia has the second-highest number of internally displaced people in the world, after Sudan.

This article in Time magazine takes a look at the Colombian government’s new land reform policy, which aims “to pacify the countryside and recharge the rural economy…to return ill-gotten acreage to small farmers and provide them with all-important land titles and loans.”

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Filed Under: Latin America and the Caribbean, Regions
  • http://www.cooperativeindividualism.org Edward J. Dodson

    Landlordism is a primary cause of much of the misery around the globe. Putting idle land back into the hands of working farmers is a step toward justice. However, all useful land can be brought into productive use and its price brought down by the simple fiscal measure of implementing a land-only property tax under which all buildings are exempt from taxation and those who hold deeds to land are required to compensate their community for what is inherently a privilege. Why is landownership a privilege? For the simple reason that not all land is of equal potential economic value. Some land provides to its owner very significant economic advantages over others. This is as true of locations in cities and towns as for agricultural land or land that contains minerals or forests. With a land-only property tax put into place, absentee landowners would no longer grow rich on the rents charged to actual farmers (i.e., those who produce the goods we need) or by speculation in land in cities and towns. Just like others, they would actually have to produce goods or provide some useful service to others in order to EARN a living.

    Edward J. Dodson, Director
    School of Cooperative Individualism
    http://www.cooperativeindividualism.org