– by the Bard of the Baw Baws

“I am a wealthy gentleman
My name is Samuel Burke
And I grow richer every day
Although I do not work

I am no thief nor highwayman
I keep within the law
But as the blotter sucks the ink
So I, my riches draw.

I don’t possess the Midas touch;
Nor would I stoop to beg,
Yet legally I have amassed
A mammoth golden egg.

I started when my uncle died –
My bachelor Uncle Sid;
He left his cat a thousand notes
And me but fifty quid.

I thought I would inherit more;
I thought he loved me well
But when his cat gained more than I,
It needled me like hell.

By chance our politician came
And asked why I was glum.
I told him of my legacy –
The meagre paltry sum.”

“Cheer up my lad”, our member said
“You must take my advice
You must invest the lot in land
’Twill soon increase in price.

Jump in my car and come with me”
(He took me to the coast)
“It’s here that values will advance;
It’s here they’ll rise the most.

Now here are tidings that you must
Not breathe to any man;
It’s here that money will be spent;
It’s on our secret plan.

It’s here the government intends
To make a thriving port
This is the place to speculate;
The best that could be sought. 

It’s here that roads and railway tracks
Are going to converge,
All these will lift the price of land
And force the upward surge”.

He said he’d purchased all he could
And prospects were so bright,
Asserting that within a year
He would come out all right.

I bought a block and very soon
The public works began,
Up went the value of my lot,
I was a prosperous man.

As time went on, I sold my patch,
For just two thousand quid.
I wanted cash to spend elsewhere
And this – I surely did.

I bought more land where I perceived
Would rapidly progress.
I sold it all more readily –
With even more success.

And ever since those early days
I keep upon the scent,
I nose it from the governments
Where money will be spent.

And there I buy what land I can
And have the titles set;
And wait until it’s right for sale;
And thus great profits net.

Just as the spider sets its web
To catch the flies and lice;
I, too, can catch what others earn
As lots advance in price.


[Part two continues below]


What need is there for me to work?
I buy and then relax;
By merely owning land I reap
What others pay in tax. 

Now I have many millions worth
Of land and real estate
Enriching me with increments
While I but rest and wait.”

So that’s the tale of Samuel Burke
Which he himself unfurled,
Its stench ascends to Heavens heights
And reeks throughout the world.

Some half our earnings goes in tax
Which governments demand
And much of it’s presented free
To owners of the land.

To owners, such as Samuel Burke,
Whose estates are far flung;
Who reaps the earnings of us all
Which by imposts are wrung.

No wonder we have millionaires
And needy folks galore;
When some can reap what others earn
And keep within the law.

The truth about all taxes must
No longer be ignored;
Our present taxes are
Deception, theft and fraud. 

We must collect a charge on land
For government’s finance,
And untax toil and industry
So all may have a chance

I plead with all tax-burdened folk
To join us in the fight;
And introduce these great reforms
Of justice truth and right.


Leave a Reply