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Scott Janzen

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Basic Income Guarantee

We need to have more up to date study like the Namibian Basic Income Grant Coalition for the Basic Income Guarantee in the developed world.
In Canada it work like this:
1. Each citizen receives $10,000/year once they are 18
2. A carbon tax is implemented and taxes for $80,000+ are increased to pay for the system
3. Minimum wage, Welfare, and any other social payments are eliminated.
4. The cost savings of eliminating bureaucracy are used to fund the system.

This would end poverty, end the welfare trap and support students and people who are caring for loved ones full time. It is time for a Basic Income Guarantee

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  • Oct 20 2011: Great questions! This seems to be the main obstacle in the implementation of a basic income is the notion that it will make people lazy. I encourage everyone to check out the results of one basic income pilot project here: http://www.bignam.org/BIG_pilot.html

    Now, the first thing to address is will people work? Well, there may be a portion of people that don't work under this system. They may be housewives/househusbands, elderly, students and of course we will have the people who are very satisfied with $10,000/yr. The fact is that we already have all these people in society and, in a large part, we have to pay for them through social programs like welfare. The cost to us for each person actually exceeds $10,000/yr because we also have to pay for the bureaucratic institutions that administer these programs. I do not think that a basic income will change human nature. What it will do is provide opportunities for people to leave their dead-end soul-destroying jobs that they are keeping just to make ends meet. These people could then get re-educated or start their own business in a field where they will be more productive.

    This leads me to answer the next question about how to eliminate the welfare trap. Right now, being on welfare is stigmatized and frowned upon, under a basic income, everyone receives the payment so it removes the stigma of taking "handouts" from the government. Also, right now a person who collects welfare will have their payments cutback once they find a job. After taxes have been assessed, a person earning minimum wage will have less money per year than a person receiving welfare, thus the incentive is to not work. Under a basic income, each dollar made through work will improve your situation, so there actually is a greater incentive to work under this system.

    I also mentioned that this system would replace minimum wage. Since everyone already receives a basic income, there is no point to having a minimum wage. This will great new jobs.
    • Oct 22 2011: "in a large part, we have to pay for them through social programs like welfare. "

      If these social programs were removed, we would not have to pay for them.

      "A person earning minimum wage will have less money per year than a person receiving welfare, thus the incentive is to not work."

      Elimination of welfare would force people to work to feed themselves. There is your incentive and society does not need to pay everyone a income. Plus you eliminate ALL welfare administration bureaucracy thus taxes can be lowered allowing people to retain more of their earnings.

      You are trying to switch one crutch with another. Forget about it and remove all crutches.
      • Oct 24 2011: How does having no social assistance address poverty? Can you actually support a government that looks the other way as people starve or die of exposure?

        We also have to realize that this basic income will largely be fully spent every year (not likely that someone would be able to save any of the $10K if that's what they were getting). This means that many businesses would benefit from this basic income spending.

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