Universal basic income versus a job guarantee

  •   2 min reads
Universal basic income versus a job guarantee

It might seem like a row over detail to some, but the rationale behind universal basic income and a job guarantee is quite different.

If anything, universal basic income is compatible with the free market ideal — it just hands the worker a stronger negotiating card because it makes it easier to say no.

Universal basic income makes it more viable for people to re-train, get new qualifications, and even provide a safety net for would-be entrepreneurs.

See our latest video: universal basic income versus a guaranteed job

What universal basic income or UBI means for taxation and the minimum wage?

Some say it is money for nothing, others say it is payment for the collective achievements of humanity. Few people think we should pay for breathing air, but supposing several thousand years of technological advances have improved our ability to create food and clothing, shouldn’t we all benefit from that?

But let’s suppose we have UBI. What then? What would that mean for taxes? What would it mean for the minimum wage?

Opinions vary, but one popular idea is that UBI may replace personal allowances and that it may allow for a flat taxation system.

See our video and see what the experts think.

In our video series we talk to:

Alex Howlett, Co-Host of the Boston Basic Income podcast
Geoff Crocker; Author Basic Income and Sovereign Money
Karl Widerquist, Professor of Philosophy at Georgetown University-Qatar.
Professor Louise Haagh, Department of Politics, University of York
Evelyn Forget, professor in the Department of Community Health Sciences at the University of Manitoba and Academic Director of the Manitoba Research Data Centre.
Jamie Cooke, Head of RSA Scotland.
Loriana Luccioni, PhD student, The University of Queensland
Austin Mackell, Australian Journalist.

Other videos in this series are:

What is universal basic income?

Why is universal basic income a good idea?

Is universal basic income a better way to inject money into the economy than the method we have at present using interest rates and borrowing to create money?

Would universal basic income suck from us the dignity that comes from working?

Universal basic income; what would it mean for taxes and minimum wage

Some advocate the calibration level — set it at a modest level at first and start tweaking. Others suggest it should be calculated using a formulae which is a function of automation. If automation accounts for 100 per cent of GDP and machines do all the productive work, then universal basic income should be 100 per cent of GDP, says Geoff Crocker; Author Basic Income and Sovereign Money.

Others suggest it should be set at a ratio to the poverty level — 150 per cent of poverty as Karl Widerquist, Professor of Philosophy at Georgetown University-Qatar says.

As for funding it, some recommend funding it from taxes others via the money printing press;  “Consumer monetary theory,” as Alex Howlett calls it.

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