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Basic Income movement
Old 05-19-2015, 09:07 AM   #1
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Basic Income movement

Basic income = guaranteed stipend ($1,000 or euros per month) to cover basic living expenses to allow people to more freely pursue their passions. One guy is crowdfunding his basic income while a group in Germany is funding 11 people so far.

What If Everybody Didn't Have to Work to Get Paid? - The Atlantic

It's not really a new idea, but I'm surprised some people are actually benefiting from it already.

And here, like an idiot, I'm saving and investing to generate my eventual "stipend." I should've been crowdsourcing my retirement basic income so I could "pursue my passion" instead.

What, me bitter? Nah, I enjoy my little goatpen in cubicle-land (that's sarcasm). Good for them if they can pull it off long-term, though I don't expect that movement to make much progress, especially in the US.
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Old 05-19-2015, 10:39 AM   #2
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I'm surprised the article didn't reference the Canadian experiment, which was actually quite successful.
The Town Where Everyone Got Free Money | Motherboard

Between 1974 and 1979, the Canadian government tested the idea of a basic income guarantee (BIG) across an entire town, giving people enough money to survive in a way that no other place in North America has before or since. For those four years—until the project was cancelled and its findings packed away—the town's poorest residents were given monthly checks that supplemented what modest earnings they had and rewarded them for working more. And for that time, it seemed that the effects of poverty began to melt away. Doctor and hospital visits declined, mental health appeared to improve, and more teenagers completed high school.
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Old 05-19-2015, 12:37 PM   #3
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I thought the Family Services (Welfare) did exactly that with taxpayers' (our) money.
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Old 05-19-2015, 01:38 PM   #4
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Basic income = minimum wage x 2000 hours per year.
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Old 05-19-2015, 01:49 PM   #5
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Uh...so where will the "crowd" with $$$ come from to fund this idiotic idea?
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Old 05-19-2015, 01:59 PM   #6
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Uh...so where will the "crowd" with $$$ come from to fund this idiotic idea?
I'm guessing Portland
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Old 05-19-2015, 02:06 PM   #7
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I'm guessing Portland
Portland OR? Why Portland?
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Old 05-19-2015, 02:15 PM   #8
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Portland OR? Why Portland?
that's where you go to retire in your 20s
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Old 05-19-2015, 02:19 PM   #9
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Old 05-19-2015, 02:20 PM   #10
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Actually, Portland is fairly prosperous, comparatively speaking...

Portland (city) QuickFacts from the US Census Bureau

Portland : Western Information Office : U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
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Old 05-19-2015, 04:03 PM   #11
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Uh...so where will the "crowd" with $$$ come from to fund this . . . idea?
Just make the contributions voluntary. Anyone who thinks it's a super idea can back it with their own money --sent as a separate check with their tax return. That's the best way to gauge its true support (instead of "I think this is a good idea--and should be funded by taking money from other people").
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Old 05-19-2015, 05:16 PM   #12
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This is an old, old idea. Thomas Paine wrote about it in "Agrarian Justice". The writer Robert Heinlein was active in a "social dividend" movement in the 1930s, and wrote about the idea incidentally in "For Us, The Living", and "Beyond This Horizon."

We currently have something analogous to the social dividend in the US, in the form of refundable tax credits such as the Earned Income Credit. The implementations are spotty, complex, and prone to errors and fraud, however, and the funding mechanism is also an issue.

In many of the late 19th and early 20th century proposals, the social dividend was to be paid out as a result of economic growth. (So, yes, it really was a dividend!) As economic activity grew, deflation of a fixed currency reserve could occur as a fixed number of dollars tied to a 'hard' standard, for example, chased an ever-expanding supply of goods and services. The goods produced would have to be cheap enough to be bought with the available cash in the economy, forcing prices downward with more goods for the same amount of cash.

The fix to prevent deflation was to increase the money supply to match economic growth. The social dividend folks suggested that any increase in the money supply be implemented as a payment to the citizens made as part of an annual adjustment.

Instead of this approach, the US used a fractional reserve system combined with deficit spending, to match the money supply with economic activity and address a similar imbalance problem with international trade. The benefits of this system tend to accrue to a different group than the citizenry at large.
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Old 05-19-2015, 05:34 PM   #13
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A mouse in a goat pen? That sounds like lots of room to me...
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Old 05-19-2015, 09:48 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Sarah in SC View Post
I'm surprised the article didn't reference the Canadian experiment, which was actually quite successful.
The Town Where Everyone Got Free Money | Motherboard

Between 1974 and 1979, the Canadian government tested the idea of a basic income guarantee (BIG) across an entire town, giving people enough money to survive in a way that no other place in North America has before or since. For those four years—until the project was cancelled and its findings packed away—the town's poorest residents were given monthly checks that supplemented what modest earnings they had and rewarded them for working more. And for that time, it seemed that the effects of poverty began to melt away. Doctor and hospital visits declined, mental health appeared to improve, and more teenagers completed high school.

My college daughter who is so far Left she makes President Obama appear as a Reagan Conservative sent me that about a month ago (not a political dig on either president). I had never heard of this experiment.
Just to get her going (which I love to do and its easy) I countered with. The Pilgrims tried to share everything equally and almost starved to death because the "young abled bodied" people wouldn't work and lived off others. The colony didn't flourish until they adopted a "feed yourself with your own piece of land" mentality. She didn't like that history lesson as much as the one she sent me.


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Old 05-20-2015, 06:00 AM   #15
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It seems to me that young adults have a tendency to be relatively liberal until they start working and making money and paying taxes, and then they become less liberal once they realize that government benefits are not free and someone has to pay for them. Not always, but more often than not.
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Old 05-20-2015, 08:51 AM   #16
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It seems to me that young adults have a tendency to be relatively liberal until they start working and making money and paying taxes, and then they become less liberal once they realize that government benefits are not free and someone has to pay for them. Not always, but more often than not.
You'd be surprised, I have friends in their early 30s who work and pay taxes but still think "the rich" can pay for all the social programs we "need." However, these friends are not high earners.
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Basic Income movement
Old 05-20-2015, 08:53 AM   #17
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Basic Income movement

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Originally Posted by pb4uski View Post
It seems to me that young adults have a tendency to be relatively liberal until they start working and making money and paying taxes, and then they become less liberal once they realize that government benefits are not free and someone has to pay for them. Not always, but more often than not.

I agree. I told her "Listen if Bill Gates wants to talk to me about the need to confiscate the rich peoples wealth and redistribute it, he has some street cred that I would respect. But I am not listening to it from someone who has had their first four years of schooling paid for (by Bank of Mom and Dad) and still is trying to avoid working a part time job. Complain to me once society has screwed you over, not before you even attempt to stand on your own two feet."


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Old 05-20-2015, 09:05 AM   #18
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While it is not enough to live on (unless you have an amazing budget), the checks every Alaskan receive from the permanent fund are sort of a basic income supplement.
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Old 05-20-2015, 09:09 AM   #19
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It seems to me that young adults have a tendency to be relatively liberal until they start working and making money and paying taxes, and then they become less liberal once they realize that government benefits are not free and someone has to pay for them. Not always, but more often than not.
It's always easier to spend someone else's money...
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Old 05-20-2015, 10:40 AM   #20
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While it is not enough to live on (unless you have an amazing budget), the checks every Alaskan receive from the permanent fund are sort of a basic income supplement.
That's about the closest I could think of to a basic income supplement too. The experiment in Canada that was linked to wasn't really a guaranteed basic income since it was only available to people below a certain income level and was phased out with higher incomes. In that respect it's more like a reverse progressive tax than a guaranteed income (GI) that EVERYONE received.

Whether any country would actually implement a GI or whether it's good or not is besides the point. What I found interesting from the Atlantic article was that this guy is making it happen for himself through crowdsourcing. In effect getting people to give him $12k a year and getting nothing in return.

I thought that was an interesting way to approach the FIRE problem. Why spend years toiling away at job(s) you don't particularly enjoy to build up a portfolio when you can just get people to fund your basic living expenses so you can do what you want.

It skips over the unpleasant part of "working to accumulate assets" and goes straight to the "do what I want with my life" part.

Of course the best thing would be if the "do what I want" generates huge sums of money, but not many are lucky like that.
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