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SOCIETY.-The Fabian Society consists of Socialists
its Rules, etc., and the following publications can be obtained from the Secretary, at the Fabian Office, 276 Strand, London, W.C. FABIAN ESSAYS IN SOCIALISM.
(30th Thousand.) Library Edition, 6/-; or, direct from the Secretary for Cash, 4/6 (postage, 45d.). Cheap Edition, Paper cover, 1/-; plain cloth, 2/-. At all booksellers, or post free from the Secretary for 1/- and 2/- respectively.
FABIAN TRACTS. 1.-Why are the Many Poor? 100th thous. 4 pp., 6 for 1d.; 1/- per 100. 5.–Facts for Socialists. A survey of the distribution of income and the con
dition of classes in England, gathered from official returns, and from the works of economists and statisticians. 6th edition; revised 1893. 55th
thousand. 16 pp., 1d. ; or 9d. per doz. 7.–Capital and Land. A similar survey of the distribution of property, with
a criticism of the distinction sometimes set up between Land and Capital
as instruments of production. 4th ed.; revised 1893. 16 pp., 1d.; or 9d. doz. 8.-Facts for Londoners. 5th thousand. 56 pp., 60.; or 4/6 per doz. 10.-Figures for Londoners. 20th thous. 4 pp., 6 for 1d.; 1/- per 100. 11.—The Workers' Political Program. 20th thous. 20 pp., là.; 9d. per doz. 12.—Practicable Land Nationalization. 4 pp., 6 for 1d.; or 1/- per 100. 13.-What Socialism Is. 80th thous. 4 pp., 6 for 1d.; or 1/- per 100. 14.—The New Reform Bill. A draft Act of Parliament providing for Adult
Suffrage, Payment of Members and their election expenses, Second Ballot,
and a thorough system of Registration. 15th thous. 20 pp., 1d.; 9d. doz. 15.—English Progress towards Social Democracy. 1d.; 9d. per doz. 16.-A Plea for an Eight Hours Bill. 4 pp., 6 for 1d.; 1/- per 100. 17.-Reform of the Poor Law. 20 pp., 1d.; 9d. per
doz. 18.–Facts for Bristol. 16 pp., 1d.; or 9d. per doz. 19.-What the Farm Laborer Wants. 4 pp., 6 for 1d.; or 1/- per 100.
Questions for Poor Law Guardians. 4 pp., 6 for 1d.; or 1/- per 100. 21.- Questions for London Vestrymen. 4 pp., 6 for 1d.; or 1/- per 100. 22.—The Truth about Leasehold Enfranchisement, gives reasons why Soci
alists oppose the proposal. 4 pp., 6 for 1d.; or 1/- per 100. 23.—The Case for an Eight Hours Bill. 16 pp., 1d.; or 9d. per doz. 24.- Questions for Parliamentary Candidates. 6 for 1d.; or 1/- per 100. 25.- Questions for School Board Candidates. 6 for 1d.; or 1/- per 100. 26.- Questions for London County Councillors. 6 for 1d.; or 1/- per 100. 27.-Questions for Town Councillors. 4 pp., 6 for 1d.; or 1/- per 100. 28.-Questions for County Councillors (Rural). 6 for 1d.; or 1/- per 100. 29.—What to Read. A List of Books for Social Reformers. Contains the best
books and blue-books relating to Economics, Socialism, Labor Movements,
Poverty, etc. 2nd ed.; revised 1893. Paper cover, 3d. each; or 2/3 per doz. 38.- A Welsh Translation of No. 1. 4 pp., 6 for 1d.; or 1/- per 100. 39.-A Democratic Budget. 16, pp., 1d.; or 9d. per doz. 40.—The Fabian Manifesto for the General Election of 1892. 16 pp., 1d.
each; or 9d. per doz. 41.–The Fabian Society: What it has done and how it has done it.
32 pp., 1d. each ; or 9d. per doz. 42.—Christian Socialism. By the Rev. STEWART D. HEADLAM.
16 pp., 1d. each; or 9d. per doz. 43.-Vote, Vote, Vote. 2 pp. leaflet; 5/- per 1,000. 44.-A Plea for Poor Law Reform. 4 pp. 6 for 1d. ; or 1/- per 100. 45.-The Impossibilities of Anarchism. By G. BERNARD SHAW. 28 pp., 2d.
each; or 1/6 per doz.
FABIAN MUNICIPAL PROGRAM (Tracts Nos. 30 to 37). 1. The Unearned Increment. 2. London's Heritage in the City Guilds. 3. Municipalization of the Gas Supply. 4. Municipal Tramways. 5. London's Water Tribute. 6. Municipalization of the London Docks. 7. The Scandal of London's Markets. 8. A Labor Policy for Public Authorities. Each 4 pp. The eight in a red cover for 1d. (9d. per doz.); or separately 1/- per 100.
S The set post free for 2s. 3d.; Bound in Buckram, post free for 3s. Id. Manifesto of English Socialists. Issued by the Joint Committee of Socialist Bodies. In red cover. 8 pp., 1d. each; or 9d. per doz.
Parcels to the value of 10/- and upwards, fost free.
CAPITAL AND LAND.
THE FABIAN SOCIETY.
“For the right moment you must wait, as FABIUS did most patiently when warring against HANNIBAL, though many censured his delays ; but when the time comes you must strike hard, as Fabius did, or your waiting will be in vain, and fruitless.”
FOURTH EDITION, REVISED.
PRICE ONE PENNY.
LONDON: TO BE OBTAINED OF THE FABIAN SOCIETY, 276 STRAND, W.C.
The practical aim of Socialists with regard to the materials of wealth is* "the emancipation of land and industrial capital from individual and class ownership, and the vesting of them in the community for the general benefit. Land and capital are instruments with which man works for the production of wealth, material for the maintenance of his existence and comfort. Now it is important to notice that, though in common talk we separate the two, and though political economists have given a scientific dignity to this rough classification of the instruments of production, distinguishing as “land” that which has been provided by "Nature," and as "capital" that which has been made by human industry, the distinction is not one which can be clearly traced in dealing with the actual things which are the instruments of production, because most of these are compounded of the gifts of Nature and the results of human activity.
• Land.” The only instruments given to us by Nature are climate, physical forces, and virgin soil. The use of these passes with legal “property" in the land to which they belong, and they are consequently classed with “land." Those virgin soils are called good or fertile which contain in abundance elements which the chemistry of animal or vegetable life can convert into the materials of human food, clothing, &c. Other mineral elements of particular patches of soil are convertible, by the arts of the mining, meta lurgic, building, and engineering industries, into a thousand forms of wealth.
How “ Land” gets Value. But even these qualities of virgin soil are of no use or value unless they are found in accessible positions ; and their advantage to the proprietor of the land increases rapidly as human society develops in their neighborhood ; whilst in all advanced societies we find large areas of town lands whose usefulness and value have nothing to do with their soils, but are due entirely to the social existence and activity of man. Land in Cornhill, worth a million pounds an acre, owes its value to the world-wide industry and commerce whose threads are brought together there, not to its natural fertility or to the attractions of its climate. is Prairie value” is a fiction. Unpopulated land has only a value through the expectation that it will be peopled.
The “natural” capabilities of land are thus increased, and, indeed, even called into existence, by the mere development of society. But, further, every foot of agricultural and mining land in England has been improved as an instrument of production by the exercise of human labor.
First, of human labor not on that land itself ; by the improvement of the general climate, through clearing of forest and draining
See the “ Pasis” of the Fabian Scciety, to be ottained at 276 Strand, W.C.
of marsh ; by the making of canals, roads, railways, rendering every part of the country accessible ; by the growth of villages and towns, by the improvement of agricultural science; and still more by the development of manufactures and foreign commerce. Of all this human labor, no man can say which part has made the value of his land, and none can prove his title to monopolise the value it has made.
Secondly, all our land has been improved by labor bestowed especially upon it. Indeed, the land itself, as as instrument of production, may be quite as truly said to be the work of man as the gift of Nature. Every farm or garden, every
mine or quarry,
is saturated with the effects of human labor. . Capital is everywhere infused into and intermixed with land. Who distinguishes from the mine the plant by which it exists ? Who distinguishes from the farm the lanes, the hedges, the gates, the drains, the buildings, the farm-house ? Certainly not the English man of business, be he landlord, farmer, auctioneer, or income tax commissioner. Only the bold bad economist attempts it, and, we must add, some few amongst our allies, the Land Nationalisers. It may be worth while to digress for a while in the company of these latter.
A Word to " Land Nationalisers." The arguments revived in our generation by John Stuart Mill and Henry George, and the activity of the various societies that have taken in hand the work of diffusing them, have now converted an immense body of public opinion to the Socialist view of the justice of, and urgent necessity for, Nationalisation of the Land ; or, at least, the confiscation of ground rents, mining royalties, and similar unearned profits from the soil. Land Nationalisers go, generally, so far with Socialists that in the words of the Fabian
Basis '') they "work for the extinction of private property in land, and of the consequent individual appropriation, in the form of rent, of the price paid for permission to use the earth, as well as for the advantages of superior soils and sites."
But some, who are thus far Land Nationalisers, still shrink from any interference with the legal powers enjoyed by the holders of capital. Hence a most unfortunate separation exists between them and the Socialists, whose design of nationalising the industrial capital with the land appears to them unjustifiable and unessential.
Capitalist and Landlord in One Boat. They use the argument that capital, unlike land, is created by labor, and is therefore a proper subject of private ownership, while land is not. Socialists do not overlook the facts on which this argument rests, but they deny, on the grounds already partly stated, that any distinction can be founded on them sufficiently clear and important to justify the conclusion drawn. But, supposing we assume it true that land is not the product of labor, and that capital is ; it is not by any means true that the rent of land is not the product of labor, and that the interest on capital is. Nor is it true, as Land Nationalisers frequently seem to assume, that capital necessarily becomes the property of those whose labor produces it ;
whereas land is undeniably in many cases owned by persons who have got it in exchange for capital, which may, according to our premisses, have been produced by their own labor. Now since private ownership, whether of land or capital, simply means the right to draw and dispose of a revenue from the property, why should the landowner be forbidden to do that which is allowed to the capitalist, in a society in which land and capital are commercially equivalent ? Virgin soil, without labor upon or about it, can yield no revenue, and all capital has been produced by labor working on land. The landlord receives the revenue which labor produces on his land in the form of food, clothing, books, pictures, yachts
, racehorses, and command of industrial capital, in whatever proportions he thinks best. The ownership of land enables the landlord to take capital for nothing from the laborers as fast as their labor creates it, exactly as it enables him to squander idly other portions of its product in the manner that so scandalises the land nationalisers. When his tenants improve their holdings by their own labor, the landlord, on the expiration of the lease, remorselessly appropriates the capital so created, by raising the rent. In the case of poor tenants holding farms from year to year in Ireland, the incessant stealing of capital by this method so outraged the moral sense of the community, that the legislature interfered to prevent it long before land nationalisation was commonly talked of in this country. Yet land nationalisers seem to be prepared to treat as sacred the landlords' claim to private property in capital acquired by thefts of this kind, although they will not hear of their claim to property in land. Capital serves as an instrument for robbing in a precisely identical manner. In England industrial capital is mainly created by wage workers—who get nothing for it but permission to create in addition enough subsistence to keep each other alive in a poor way. Its immediate appropriation by idle proprietors and shareholders, whose economic relation to the workers is exactly the same in principle as that of the landlords, goes on every day under our eyes.
The landlord compels the worker to convert his land into a railway, his fen into a drained level, his barren seaside waste into a fashionable watering place, his mountain into a tunnel, his manor park into a suburb full of houses let, on repairing leases; and lo ! he has escaped the land nationalisers: his land is now become capital, and is sacred.
The position is so glaringly absurd, and the proposed attempt to discriminate between the capital value and the land value of estates is so futile, that it seems almost certain that the land nationalisers will go as far as the Socialists, as soon as they understand that the Socialists admit that labor has contributed to capital, and that labor gives some claim to ownership. The Socialists, however, must contend that only an insignificant part of our capital is now in the hands of those by whom the labor has been performed, or even of their descendants. How it was taken from them, none should know better than the land nationalisers.
It is scarcely necessary to enlarge on or illustrate the obvious truth that, whatever the origin of land and capital, the source of the revenues drawn from them is contemporary labor. The remainder