To the victor go the spoils. A meritocracy is a system which rewards superior skill or ability. Great wealth inequality is often defended by those who claim that winners should take all, that superior performance deserves superior gains.
But as Scott Santens writes for Futurism, the main factor in where we end up in life is where we start in life. Using the Olympic games as an analogy, Santens shows how, from wealthy parents to performance enhancing drugs, what we call meritocracy actually rewards those who are given the best chance to succeed. A UBI would make meritocracy less of a fiction, supplying everyone with a decent starting point, so that winners don’t win just because the competition lacks the basic resources needed to even play the game.
For full article:
Scott Santens, “Universal Basic Income Will Help Us Level the Economic Playing Field” (March 24, 2017)
A cash-transfer experiment in was initiated in Finland at the beginning of 2017. In the experiment, the country’s social security agency, Kela, will pay €560 ($600) a month guaranteed for two years to 2,000 Finns, unemployed when the program began.
Chris Weller, profiles five participants in the program in an article for BUSINESS INSIDER. In this “modified version of Basic Income” participants are not told how to spend the funds they receive, nor will the payments be reduced if they get a job or start trading online currencies with a Bitcoin Trader mit Risiken verbunden?
For the full article:
Chris Weller, “Finland just launched a radical experiment in giving people free money — here’s how 5 residents are using their extra cash”, (March 7, 2017)
Basic Income News Features Editor Tyler Prochazka makes a second appearance in a series of interviews by NYU Wagner’s Students for Criminal Justice Reform. SCJR’s Thurston Powers leads the interview, which appears on their YouTube channel.
It follows a conversation three months prior between Powers and Prochazka introducing the concept of Basic Income, and goes into greater depth regarding the feasibility of BI, and its potential effects on social behavior. It lasts about 33 minutes.
For full audio:
Thurston Powers, Tyler Prochazka, “WSCJR EP 14: Basic Income part. 2” (February 27, 2017)
Retired judge and 2012 Libertarian Vice Presidential candidate Jim Gray proposes in his blog 2 Paragraphs 4 Liberty to replace “things like welfare, minimum wages, etc.” with a monthly stipend for those with no income, similar to a Universal Basic Income, except in Gray’s plan, the stipend would be would gradually withdraw as individual income increased.
He also encourages the implementation of a “graduated flat tax” that would cap out at 25% in the highest tax bracket and eliminate all income tax deductions, suggesting that replacing the current tax system with his proposal would provide the funding source needed for the monthly stipend.
See the full article:
Jim Gray, “Liberty Can Create A Safety Net” (February 28, 2017)
Charlie Wood, writer for the Christian Science Monitor, presents evidence from “cash transfer” programs showing that assigning monetary payments to citizens regardless of employment seems not to encourage retirement, alcohol use, or “laziness”, as some suspect it would.
In fact, results of cash transfer programs conducted by several NGOs show guaranteed cash reduces poverty and increases personal income and savings. Wood’s article, which appears on the CSM website, recognizes the difference between UBI and targeted charity, though the results of a UBI will likely come soon from studies in Finland and other places.
See the full article:
Charlie Wood, “Guaranteed paycheck: Does a ‘basic income’ encourage laziness?” (March 1, 2017)