After hundreds of years, basic income seems to be finally catching on.
The general idea — that the government should give every citizen a regular infusion of free money with no strings attached — has been around since the 16th century. But it’s experienced a remarkable resurgence over the past few years, moving from the fringes into the mainstream.
Advocates ranging from tech billionaire Mark Zuckerberg to libertarian economist Milton Friedman have endorsed it. Andrew Yang popularized it on the Democratic debate stage. And around the world, countries are running pilot programs to test it.Read more
The PEI Working Group for a Livable Income, established in 2003, is receiving support from across Canada for its work toward establishing Basic Income Guarantee (BIG) in PEI. The Working Group had developed its campaign in 2013 and called it C-BIG PEI (https://cbigpei.wixsite.com/c-big-pei)
In late November a national initiative group on BIG was formed, made up of promoters representing nine provinces and one territory. The Kingston and Area Group for BIG were the original motivators, having previously identified PEI as an ideal place to start a Basic Income program. The understanding is that it would be a permanent, fully-funded, federal-provincial program. The promoters from across the country see the advantage of having BIG established in a complete provincial jurisdiction.The size of the PEI provides minimal complications.Read more
A New Hampshire family that received a $1,000-a-month “freedom dividend” for a year from the campaign of Democratic presidential contender Andrew Yang spent most of the money on college bills – but also on an improv class for the unemployed dad.
Chuck Fassi had lost his job as a manager for a company servicing chemical dispensing equipment when his family got the first check in January 2019.
He had never heard of Yang before his daughter, Janelle, mentioned the candidate’s universal basic income plan, or UBI, and nominated her family for it.Read more
Karl Widerquist - Basic Income Earth Network
Forty years ago today—February 7, 1980—was a small milestone for the Universal Basic Income (UBI) movement: Milton and Rose Friedman dedicated an episode of their television show to a form of basic income guarantee called the Negative Income Tax. This episode might have been the last gasp of the UBI movement’s second wave, which came very close to the centers of power in the United States and Canada in the 1960s and early 70s but had been declining for nearly a decade.
Although Friedman brought his fame and Nobel-Laureate credibility to UBI and related policies, that broadcast did little to stop the decline in UBI’s popularity. It gradually vanished from mainstream politics in the United States and in most countries. It remained an idea for academics, minor parties, fringe activists for decades, only to emerge—seemingly out of nowhere—as a growing worldwide movement over the last 10 years.Read more
A universal basic income, free public transport for students and light rail systems for Cork and Galway are amongst the promises being made by the Green Party in Ireland.
In its manifesto being launched in Dublin, the Green Party is proposing fundamental changes in energy generation, transport policy, industry, land use, taxation, planning and housing.Read more
If it weren't for the cats sometimes, I don't know if I'd bother rising to face the darkness of another day in this so-called happy new year. Apparently the days are getting longer but I'm not feeling it.
I'm usually more like the people in Newfoundland, recently extolled for their seemingly collective reply to the blizzard of blizzards, "Let's make beer fridges out of snow banks!"Read more
Basic Income Earth Network
A new report from the Basic Income Canada Network (BICN) details how Canada could improve income security for everyone, with three options for a basic income for adults, while maintaining current child benefits for those under 18.
“We’ve seen interest in basic income grow far beyond theoretical debates. BICN is now frequently asked what it would look like in Canada,” said Chandra Pasma, a member of the BICN Advisory Council and co-author of the report.
“Our report clearly shows there are multiple options Canadian governments could use to implement a successful basic income program.”Read more