Radical Markets: Uprooting Capitalism and Democracy for a Just Society. By Eric Posner and E. Glen Weyl. Princeton University Press; 368 pages
Do the rich world’s problems stem from an overdose of liberal principles, or their insufficiently bold application? Glen Weyl and Eric Posner argue that the ideals of thinkers such as Adam Smith, John Stuart Mill and Henry George can still inspire radical change. Such luminaries were unafraid of challenging the status quo. Following suit, the pair suggest expanding and refining markets, putting them to work for society as a whole. Property may not be theft, for example, but it is monopoly. Every individual should put a value on each item she owns, down to the last pencil, and be taxed on her total declared wealth. The twist: she must stand ready to sell any item at its declared value, should a buyer emerge. Such policies are so radical that they are unlikely ever to be adopted. But they may help jolt liberals out of their hand-wringing.
This is certainly an intriguing way of doing taxes. Reminiscent of the way that claiming races are done in horse racing.