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SWITERLAND: Government reacts negatively to UBI proposal

The Swiss Federal Council has released its evaluation of the popular initiative for an unconditional basic income (UBI), which received enough signatures last fall to trigger a nationwide referendum on it. The Federal Council evaluates all people’s initiatives in Switzerland making one of three recommendations: it could accept, reject, or no recommendation. The council chose [...]

Toni Pickard, “Thinking BIG about welfare, inequality.”

Toni Pickard, “Thinking BIG about welfare, inequality.” Ottawa Citizen, August 15, 2014

David Evans, “Do the Poor Waste Transfers on Booze and Cigarettes? No”

[Josh Martin] In this blog Evans tackles the age-old assumption that giving cash to the poor would result in an uptick in alcohol and tobacco consumption.  Evans cites 19 studies and comes to the conclusion that cash transfer programs (both conditional and unconditional) do not lead to significant increases in alcohol and tobacco consumption. David [...]

Larry Elliot, “Would a citizen’s income be better than our benefits system?”

[Josh Martin] In this opinion piece Elliot discusses the complexity of the United Kingdom’s benefits system as well as the confusing state of the economy and labor market.  Elliot claims that one possible way to cut through the complexity and confusion is to reform the benefits system into a basic income. Larry Elliot, “Would a [...]

Gaura Rader, “Basic Income vs. Negative Income Tax: Why supporters of basic income should be in favor of a negative income tax”

[Josh Martin] In Rader’s latest post on the basic income, he discuesses the two policies broadly referred to as basic income guarantees: the universal basic income (UBI) and the negative income tax (NIT).  Rader admits to preferring a UBI, but in this post calls on UBI supporters to also support an NIT because of its [...]

Siraj Ravel, “A Cryptocurrency for a Global Basic Income”

Siraj Ravel, “A Cryptocurrency for a Global Basic Income” Svbtl. July 14, 2014.

Jesse Spafford, “Reconciling Basic Income and Immigration”

Spafford tackles a largely untouched question in basic income studies: How will a basic income change immigration patterns?  Spafford believes that a basic income will lead to a significant influx of new immigrants and thus the country will likely have to implement tougher immigration laws.  Looking at Europe, those countries with large welfare states often [...]

Mark Blyth and Eric Lonergan, “Print Less but Transfer More: Why Central Banks Should Give Money Directly to the People.”

SUMMARY: Without using any familiar terms for Basic Income Guarantee, this article argues for a temporary BIG as a response to the Great Recession (or recessions generally). The U.S. Federal Reserve usually tries to stimulate the economy during recessions through monetary policies (such as reducing interest rates or increasing the money supply). These policies favor [...]

Noah Gordon, “The Conservative Case for a Guaranteed Basic Income”

[Josh Martin] Gordon provides a wonderful, in-depth introduction to the universal basic income from a conservative perspective.  He provides real world examples of basic incomes, academics that have supported it, and possible funding options.  He also discusses current conservative welfare ideas from Marco Rubio and Paul Ryan that seem to be a step on the [...]

Ed Dolan, “Universal Basic Income: An Idea Whose Time Has Come”

[Josh Martin] Dolan’s post focuses on Representative Paul Ryan’s recently proposed welfare reform, which would consolidate many individual welfare programs into one grouped “Opportunity Grant” for each applicable citizen.  While Ryan should be praised for trying to cut back on the bureaucracy in welfare, Dolan believes that Ryan’s biggest error was continuing to impose work [...]

The BI Literature page has summaries of books and articles on basic income published elsewhere. Whenever possible we include links to the full article.

Books on Basic Income

Image of Healing Politics
Image of Ireland in Crisis: A Study in Capitalist Colonial Undevelopment
Image of Global Labour Flexibility: Seeking Distributive Justice