January 13, 2015

From Landlords to Monopolists

Mary Pilon examines the strange and hidden origins of America's favorite game.

Elliot Magruder

William S. Burroughs once observed that "there may be other universes based on all sorts of other principles, but ours seems to be based on war and games." Wars abound, on every continent and for every reason, but let's leave further discussion on that for those more well-versed in the subject. Games likewise have proliferated. They've not only made their way into innumerable living rooms, they've also taken up residence in our psyches, as they serve as safe battlefields to satiate our competitive desires and as a way to indulge our escapist inclinations. Who doesn't want to mobilize armies and take over the world and in doing so, manifest his superiority over some of his closest rivals in the world: family members. (For example, this writer remains ensnared in a bitter fraternal dispute over the ethics of a particular Scattergories approach.)

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- Books
- posted on Jan 14, 15
J. B. Valley

Interesting, enlightening take on the game we all play.
Kudos to the subject and the author.

- Books
- posted on Feb 15, 15
Wyn Achenbaum

Missing from this article is any reference to the author and speaker whose ideas Lizzie Magie was seeking to demonstrate when she designed The Landlord's Game. He was Henry George, and his first book "Progress and Poverty" sold an amazing 2 million books -- in the 1880s and 1890s when that was a *huge* readership. Everyone knew his ideas, and they were widely discussed and embraced.

Read P&P, or a companion book of essays entitled "Social Problems" -- both online.

Still important and relevant, particularly as the question of how and why wealth flows to the 1% seems not to be asked much, despite all the bemoaning of the results.

George's analysis, and most particularly his remedy, would put us on the road to solving a number of problems many people despair of ever seeing solved. Check them out!

Article by Elliot Magruder

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