The Economics and Ethics of Land Reform
Land reform can be defined as the forced transfer of the ownership of land from one person to another. This must be distinguished from the voluntary transfer of land from one person to another, such as ordinary buying and selling. In the latter case, there can be no true third party. All those involved in land purchases—agents, insurers, lawyers—are mere agents of one party or the other to the agreement. But in the former there must be a third actor, the one who forces one party to give up his land to a second party. This third party is typically the government. Were this third party not involved in the process, there could be no land reform.