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Thread: “Capitals has a problem - is free money the answer?”

  1. #1
    Senior Member bae's Avatar
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    “Capitals has a problem - is free money the answer?”

    Interesting NYT discussion of universal basic income experiments:

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/15/b...ic-income.html

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    Senior Member flowerseverywhere's Avatar
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    Interesting Article. In the Stockton California the example was 500 per month. Not exactly earth shattering. And I think in this currrent republican Congress and presidency a snowball has a way better chance in hell than UBI. And I think work gives a sense of self worth and purpose, whether it is for a salary or for the betterment of the community.

    I think the exact opposite of what they are doing now will be the answer to economic woes. Such as :

    First, unlimited access to birth control and abortion for free. Every state, every county.
    Tax churches and all their property.


    Control political donations so our representatives in Washington vote for their constituents, not their donors interest.

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    Senior Member catherine's Avatar
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    I think the UBI is a very interesting idea--but then again, I think all alternatives or at least "tweaks" to capitalism are interesting to think about.

    And I think work gives a sense of self worth and purpose, whether it is for a salary or for the betterment of the community.
    The idea of UBI is not to discourage work--as it said in the article, it's simply to provide a safety net that actually supports business owners as well as their employees.

    I personally feel that small, local governments run as cooperatives hold a lot of promise.

    There's a town in Spain that's described as a "utopia"--the people work cooperatively in mostly one business.

    And, just tonight on 60 Minutes there was a segment on the island of Eigg in Scotland, previously owned by a lord who was not popular with the 67 townspeople, and he left. The whole town was able to then raise money to collectively buy the island. It works extremely well.

    But getting back to the UBI, I do agree that there's a snowball's chance in hell of the universal basic income gaining any traction at all unless 3/4s of the population drank Bernie Sanders' KoolAid. And even so.. it does seem that the math would not add up with our current budget, population, and higher priorities like maintaining a very expensive military.
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    Senior Member Rogar's Avatar
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    There may come a time when unemployment is high and wages are generally low due to job automation or other reasons, and then it might make sense. For the time being it seems like there are plenty of jobs for those trained, and willing and able to work. It makes more sense to me to put the trillions of dollars into job training, education, and public works programs. At least in my area there are plenty of jobs for electricians, instrument technicians, and other trades. There are not enough trained people. I've always liked the concept of the Civilian Conservation Core for infrastructure and and other public works projects, although it would need updating to work.

    I'd say universal health care first, then maybe a universal income some day.

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    Senior Member flowerseverywhere's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rogar View Post
    There may come a time when unemployment is high and wages are generally low due to job automation or other reasons, and then it might make sense. For the time being it seems like there are plenty of jobs for those trained, and willing and able to work. It makes more sense to me to put the trillions of dollars into job training, education, and public works programs. At least in my area there are plenty of jobs for electricians, instrument technicians, and other trades. There are not enough trained people. I've always liked the concept of the Civilian Conservation Core for infrastructure and and other public works projects, although it would need updating to work.

    I'd say universal health care first, then maybe a universal income some day.
    i love the CCC. In our national park travels, we have seen much of their lasting and beautiful work. Back then they were allowed to keep a small amount of their pay, but most was sent home. The all male camps were made up of young men who worked hard. Perhaps some of our military could be diverted to this cause instead of being ordered to make more orphans and widows around the world.

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    I think the idea has some merit in theory; but in practice it's hard to see how governments would resist the urge to regulate people's actions rather than just cut a check once a month.

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    I have a hard time imagining a universal basic income in a country where legislators have a hard time with doling out things like WIC and SNAP.

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    Basic income probably will eventually happen somewhere and I look forward to seeing the results, but probably somewhere like Switzerland or the Netherlands. It's more needed in the U.S. perhaps as there might be greater degrees of desperation, however it's also more likely to be 1) a bad implementation in the U.S. as actually helping people is pretty much never the goal of legislation here 2) see the money too easily eaten up in increasing costs in the U.S. (like healthcare costs). But this doesn't mean I think it will do zero good in the U.S. in some situations of desperation it will do good. It just won't do as much good as people think it will across the board.

    Because in the U.S. they have a hard time even continuing to fund Social Security and Medicare for the older folks even though they are very popular (they keep trying to sneak stealth cuts in now AND under Obama). Even older retired folks barely get enough of a basic income now (less than most places) and I fear there will be almost nothing left in the future. And the U.S. is a country without a particularly viable healthcare system ... so anyone who wants to have any sort of healthcare coverage will probably just see all their basic income money go to that.

    However there are levels of desperation for a *healthy* (not an already very sick) person far beyond worrying about whether or not one has healthcare coverage in case they get sick. If you are stuck in a coal town being poisoned by coal dust and having to make a choice to blow up mountains to survive or not, some money would go a long way. If you are homeless college student living in your car and trying to put yourself through college some money would go a long way (although it may be available now via student loans to some degree but surely only at the cost of debt). Actually if you are any type of homeless money would help although ever increasing housing costs would still be a very real problem. There are situations of frank and utter desperation in this country that even a little money would help.
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    Interesting income about basic income and finland:

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/20...for-unemployed

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    Flowers: you have some great ideas. If a basic income is going to replace SS it won't work because many older people rely on that alone and they have earned more then 500/month and can't survive on it. Men control women by not having free birth control, abortions etc and they are not about to give up that control. My Mom used to say that if men got pregnant abortion would be a god given right.

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