Category Archives: The Independentarian

The Independentarian

Four-hundred and ninety-two pages of anthropology notes

At the links below, you can find 492 pages of notes, mostly in anthropology, some in history and other disciplines. I accumulated them in the process of researching two books (Prehistoric Myths in Modern Political Philosophy and the Prehistory of Private Property), both of which use(d) sources from anthropology and other disciplines to criticize empirical claims philosophers and political theorists

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Voices on the basic income (II): Is it justified? [Política Entrevista Voces sobre la renta básica (II): ¿Está justificada?]

The website, Revista Libertalia, recently published an article in Spanish with extensive quotes from an interview conducted with me. The article is entitled, “Voces sobre la renta básica (II): ¿Está justificada? [Voices on basic income (II): Is it justified?].” It’s author is Pablo Magaña. The Spanish version was published on February 28, 2019. The author created, but did not publish

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The Pursuit of Accord

The hardest thing for any society to do is to avoid oppressing its least advantaged people. Politics everywhere is an insider game: people with political, economic, and social advantages make policy for their own benefit not just neglecting outsiders, but oppressing them. Most theories of justice understandably want to eliminate this insider-outsider problem by building a consensus around a true

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When people ask me where online to find empirical research on the effects of Basic Income….

When people ask me where to find empirical research on the effects of Basic Income online, I tend to recommend the following sources, both for the sources themselves and for the many more sources you’ll find in their bibliographies: Karl Widerquist A Critical Analysis of Basic Income Experiments for Researchers, Policymakers, and Citizens, Palgrave Macmillan, December 2018. In case you

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Erik Olin Wright, influential sociologist and long-term Basic Income advocate, announces he has only weeks to live (Update: Wright passed away on January 23)

Erik Olin Wright

Erik Olin Wright, a long-term advocate of Universal Basic Income and one of the most influential sociologists today, recently announced that his doctors have advised him that he has only a few weeks left to live. (Update: he passed away on January 23.) He is best know for his work on social stratification, egalitarian alternative futures to capitalism, deep democracy, and

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U.S. Elections: Wave and Counter-Wave

The Midterm elections in the United States were extremely interesting. There was a huge Blue Wave of people coming out to vote against Trump’s party, but unlike most midterm elections, there was also a Counter-Wave of enthusiastic Republicans coming out to support Trump’s party (not to mention strategic voter disenfranchisement and Gerrymandering). The Wave and Counter-Wave made for record-high voter

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Widerquist: Appearance on Al Jazeera

Mohammed Jamjoom (host), “Will the midterm results affect Trump’s foreign policy?” Panel Discussion with Karl Widerquist, Eli Clifton, and Rami G. Khouri, Inside Story on the Al Jazeera Network, 8 Nov 2018 Al Jazeera invited me to participate in a panel discussion (on of all things) U.S. foreign policy. It didn’t give me the chance to talk about basic income

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Tulane University Public Lecture: Karl Widerquist, “Why We Need a Universal Basic Income,” October 23, 2018

October 23, 2018 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM Tulane University Jones Hall, Room 108 Basic Income is an audacious idea—a regular, unconditional cash grant for everyone as a right of citizenship. Yet, growing numbers of people have come to support it, believing not only that welfare systems around the world are too stingy but also that they’re based on an

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Is the Natural Rights Justification of Private Property a Purely Normative Argument, or Does it Require Empirical Claims? And if it Does, What Are Those Claims?

My latest discussion paper is a draft of Chapter 2 of my forthcoming book, the Prehistory of Private Property (coauthored by Grant McCall, Tulane University and the Center for Human-Environmental Research) The paper addresses the natural-rights-based (“right-libertarian” or more descriptively “propertarian”) justification of private property to show that it is not a purely normative argument. The paper argues that propertarian

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The Devil’s in the Caveats: A Critical Analysis of Basic Income Experiments for Researchers, Policymakers, and Citizens

     My new short book, The Devil’s in the Caveats: A Critical Analysis of Basic Income Experiments for Researchers, Policymakers, and Citizens, will be out early in 2019. I’ve posted an early version of it on my Selected Works website. Here’s a summary:      “The devil’s in the details” is a common saying about policy proposals. Perhaps we need a

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