How Land Speculation and Credit Expansion Create Boom/Bust Cycles

Zoom Interview: Richard Vague and Polly Cleveland

Sunday, May 17, 1: PM Eastern, 10 AM Pacific, 6 PM Greenwich

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Richard Vague
Richard Vague

Dan Sullivan Council of Georgist Organizations
Dan Sullivan Council of Georgist Organizations
Polly Cleveland
Polly Cleveland

Richard Vague is the author of A Brief History of Doom and The Next Economic Disaster. He is currently the Acting Secretary of Banking and Securities of the State of Pennsylvania. His writings focus on how the expansion and contraction of credit fuel boom/bust cycles and create crises.

He was co-founder and CEO of two credit card companies – First USA, which grew to be the largest Visa issuer in the industry and which was sold to Bank One in 1997, and Juniper Financial, the fastest growing credit card in its era, which was sold to Barclays PLC in 2004. He has an inside perspective on structural problems that destabilize economies.


Polly Cleveland was Adjunct Professor of Environmental Economics at the Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA), from 2007 through 2016, and Inow Adjunct Senior Research Scholar at SIPA. She writes a blog, “Econamici: A land economist’s view,” for the online magazine, Dollars & Sense.

She has been involved in studying land monopoly since 1969, when she worked as a researcher in a Ralph Nader project investigating the power of large landholders in California. The project result was Politics of land;: Ralph Nader’s study group report on land use in California, Richard Fellmuth, project director. Polly is also a former board member of the Robert Schalkenbach Foundation,

She has a Ph.D. in Agricultural and Resource Economics from the University of California, Berkeley in 1984. Her dissertation, Consequences and Causes of Unequal Distribution of Wealth, was largely based on Georgist theory.



Dan Sullivan (host) is the director of Saving Communities and president of the Council of Georgist Organizations. Since 1978, he has led successful campaigns that resulted in several shifts to land value tax in Pittsburgh and in other Pennsylvania cities. He has been called to testify on tax economics by state legislative committees, Congressional sub-committees, and economic reform organizations in multiple countries, and his work has been featured in many publications, from The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and Pittsburgh Press to Fortune Magazine.

The event is finished.


May 17 2020


1:00 pm

Local Time

  • Timezone: America/New_York
  • Date: May 17 2020
  • Time: 1:00 pm


Council of Georgist Organizations