The incredibly socialist idea making inroads globally - even with some U.S. Republicans

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The incredibly socialist idea making inroads globally - even with some U.S. Republicans Empty The incredibly socialist idea making inroads globally - even with some U.S. Republicans

Post by Ben Reilly on Thu Nov 14, 2013 4:09 pm

Every month, every Swiss person would receive a check from the government, no matter how rich or poor, how hardworking or lazy, how old or young. Poverty would disappear. Economists, needless to say, are sharply divided on what would reappear in its place — and whether such a basic-income scheme might have some appeal for other, less socialist countries too.
It's called something like "basic minimum income" and is the talk of the town not only in Switzerland, but Berlin, Cyprus and even some conservative circles in the U.S.:

The case from the right is one of expediency and efficacy. Let’s say that Congress decided to provide a basic income through the tax code or by expanding the Social Security program. Such a system might work better and be fairer than the current patchwork of programs, including welfare, food stamps and housing vouchers. A single father with two jobs and two children would no longer have to worry about the hassle of visiting a bunch of offices to receive benefits. And giving him a single lump sum might help him use his federal dollars better. Housing vouchers have to be spent on housing, food stamps on food. Those dollars would be more valuable — both to the recipient and the economy at large — if they were fungible.

Even better, conservatives think, such a program could significantly reduce the size of our federal bureaucracy. It could take the place of welfare, food stamps, housing vouchers and hundreds of other programs, all at once: Hello, basic income; goodbye, H.U.D. Charles Murray of the conservative American Enterprise Institute has proposed a minimum income for just that reason — feed the poor, and starve the beast. “Give the money to the people,” Murray wrote in his book “In Our Hands: A Plan to Replace the Welfare State.” He suggested guaranteeing $10,000 a year to anyone meeting the following conditions: be American, be over 21, stay out of jail and — as he once quipped — “have a pulse.”
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/17/magazine/switzerlands-proposal-to-pay-people-for-being-alive.html

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Post by veya_victaous on Thu Nov 14, 2013 9:12 pm

might be a good idea, of course we don't really need it here i think our system works pretty well.
one probelm with it (but this is coming for a nation with fairly plentyful social services) some of the biggest benifits of the public systems is that they can negotiate awesome deals. the current project I'm working on we have rolled out 1700 servers to primary(elementry) schools and I can assure you Every supplier was bending over backwards to get that order, so we could negotiate a deal far superiour than anything a single school could.

But Considering the dramatic social change that would be required to get the USA to our level of public services "basic minimum income" would be much easier to implement.

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Post by Ben Reilly on Thu Nov 14, 2013 10:30 pm

That's what I'm all about these days -- sure, Obamacare sucks compared to single-payer; waging the battle for marriage equality one state at a time sucks compared to a federal law. But there's a famous quote that "politics is the art of the possible," so if it's a choice between a small step forward and nothing (or backwards), I'll support taking the small step.

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