Here’s another article ruminating on the idea of a guaranteed basic income:
The idea of a universal basic income — monthly cash payments from the government to every individual, working or not, with no strings attached — is gaining traction, thanks in part to endorsements from Silicon Valley celebs.
Some see it as a way to compensate for the traditional jobs with benefits that will be wiped out by robotics, artificial intelligence, self-driving vehicles, globalization and the gig economy. Others see it as a way to reduce income inequality or to create a more efficient, less stigmatizing safety net than our current mishmash of welfare benefits.
“I think ultimately we will have to have some kind of universal basic income, I don’t think we are going to have a choice,” Tesla CEO Elon Musk said at the World Government Summit in Dubai in February.
In a commencement speech at Harvard University in May, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said, “We should explore ideas like universal basic income to give everyone a cushion to try new things.”…
It enjoyed a wave of U.S. popularity in the 1910s and ’20s and again in the ’60s and ’70s when it was championed by free-market economist Milton Friedman, Martin Luther King and, for a while, Richard Nixon.
Basic income has fans across the political spectrum, but for very different reasons. Libertarian backers would replace all or most welfare programs with a monthly cash payment as a way to prevent poverty, reduce government bureaucracy and let people decide for themselves how to use the money…
Charles Murray, a libertarian political scientist with the American Enterprise Institute, has proposed a basic income plan that would replace all transfer payments including welfare, food stamps, housing subsidies, the earned income tax credit, Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. It would also eliminate farm subsidies and “corporate welfare.”
In exchange, each American older than 21 would get a monthly payment totaling $13,000 a year, of which $3,000 would go to health insurance. After $30,000 in earned income, a graduated tax would “reimburse” some of the grant until it dropped to $6,500 at $60,000 in income. However, the grant would never drop below $6,500 to compensate for the loss of Social Security and Medicare.