A Letter to Henry Ford

John Dewey

[Reprinted from The Freeman, November, 1939]

The newspapers last month quoted Henry Ford as follows:

"Young men -- at least those fortunate enough to return physically whole -- come back from war to find there are no jobs. Naturally, they turn to the soil.

"I hope to see the day when all idle land will be taxed heavily enough to force it into use.

"There need .be no fear of overproduction. There can be no such thing as overproduction, if you measure production according to the needs of the earth's peoples."

Dr. John Dewey, honorary president of the Henry George School of Social Science, took occasion to write Mr. Ford this letter:

Mr. Henry Ford
Detroit, Mich.

I am very glad to see you quoted in the New York Sun of October 3rd in favor of such heavy taxation of idle land as will force it in use, and your clear conviction of the importance of such action in connection with useful employment, especially of young men.

Consequently I am writing to ask if you know about the activities of the Henry George School of Social Science. The head school is at 30 East 29th St., this City. There are many branch schools all through the United States. These schools are doing a moat valuable and much needed educational work in reaching a large and increasing number of persons regarding the importance of proper methods of taxation, and the relation of land to problems of industry, labor and the rights of capital as employed in production.

I wish you could become acquainted with the work of this school. Its Director, Mr. Frank Chodorov, at the address given above, would be most happy, I am sure, to give you all the information you might wish and answer any questions.

With sincere thanks for your interest in this important matter, I am,

Sincerely yours, John Dewey