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Guaranteed Minimum Income, Negative Income Tax

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posted on Apr, 14 2014 @ 09:05 AM
I read this @ in the Opinion section:

What are your thoughts? I would like to begin an open-minded debate and support it with factual examples, such as the systems in Brazil and India.

I have more research to do, but I encourage anyone else to weigh in on feasibility and/or implementation in the States, plus economic impact and potential adverse effects. I am skeptical, but willing to debate the pros and cons.

posted on Apr, 14 2014 @ 09:17 AM
reply to post by Boscov

This is one solution to the problem that is coming in 20-30 years out if the current paradigm holds up.

Basically, a declining need for human labor coupled with an increasing population. China and India should be impacted first.

As with most things, Governments and citizens can't or won't respond to a problem until it's an existential threat. Depopulation is an other solution to the problem and depopulation through profitable enterprises such as war are the default.

Killing people for memes or profit -- equally immoral.

posted on Apr, 14 2014 @ 09:43 AM
reply to post by Boscov

I think the idea is great in theory but as with everything else the devil would be in the details. Something like this should eliminate the need for much of the safety net as pointed out in the article you linked to but I can't help but think that politics would get in the way and this good idea would be turned into a monster instead.

I'd also be worried about price gouging, especially as far as rental housing is concerned. If landlords know that everyone has X amount of dollars to spend in addition to whatever they earn on the job then watch rent skyrocket. There'd have to be caps and then that brings up the certainty that other things would be capped.

I think this is a good idea, in theory, but I have trouble believing that America is mature enough to pull this off. I also don't believe the money would be "no strings attached".

posted on Apr, 14 2014 @ 02:39 PM
reply to post by Goteborg

Giving money to people who are either unable or refuse to manage it properly won't solve society's problems. Children still go hungry despite food stamps, welfare, school meals, and hundreds of other govt assistance programs. Handing out money does not address the root cause of these issues.

posted on Apr, 14 2014 @ 02:56 PM
We already have something close to that - Earned Income Tax Credit and Additional Child Tax Credit. Both are refundable credits, which means the federal government will give you way more money than you had withheld. Now you do have to have some earned income - the credit maximizes at the amount (federal hourly minimum wage) x (2080 hours).

Tax Year 2013 maximum credit: (from the site - 2013 information)

$6,044 with three or more qualifying children
$5,372 with two qualifying children
$3,250 with one qualifying child
$487 with no qualifying children

Additional Child Tax Credit is up to $1,000 per child, dependent on income for refundable portion.

EITC is one of, if not THE, biggest source of income tax fraud in the nation.

I prepared taxes for 10 years, most of that time near San Bernardino, CA. I can tell you that by the time mid-February came around, I was ready to slap the next person who sat at my desk looking at a $6-7k refund (tax giveaway) and whined "Is that ALL?".

posted on Apr, 14 2014 @ 06:38 PM
reply to post by jjkenobi

I agree. That's part of what I meant when I said that I didn't think the nation was mature enough and that politics would get in the way. I think the idea could work if done the right way but let's face it, politicians would still play the class warfare game and advocacy groups would still point out that there are starving children. Drug addicts and alcoholics would just have that much more money to spend. And, there is going to be a large part of the population who would have an objection to the program on moral grounds regardless of whether or not it would work.

This isn't an idea for right now but we should at least start thinking about it because if we don't get a handle on globalization good jobs will continue to dwindle and more and more people will go on some kind of assistance and that's why I'm glad the OP brought this topic up.

posted on Apr, 15 2014 @ 09:46 PM
reply to post by Boscov

What is good for the goose might not always be good for the gander though in this high-level question regarding income. As another poster alluded to, the devil would be in the details for on the surface, the notion of a guaranteed income sounds utopian.

Let us assume though, for the sake of argument and open debate as you have called for that any Government, especially one that is derived upon the continued contract that their mere existence is because they have been delegated the political authority to operate via the People, can force an individual(s) to provide for another an income of some arbitrary number. We cannot call it a wage, as it being guaranteed, means that regardless of useful work (or lack thereof), you receive this stipend from the Government.

Examining the question, it is really odd that it is asked, because the Government already guarantees an income level; they just don't guarantee the source. Once an employment contract is obtained though, we are guaranteed at minimum a certain income. It seems the question is above what we obtain through exchange of services though and the real question is "What if the government guarantees a subsidized stipend of X amount of dollars above that which they receive via labor exchanges?"

The author from the OP's link states the following:

A monthly cash payment to every American, no questions asked, would solve several of our most daunting challenges. It's called a basic income, and it's cheaper and much more effective than our current malfunctioning safety net, which costs nearly $1 trillion per year.

This is already in effect; at the Local, State and Federal levels via unemployment "insurance".

The question for me is, who gets to decide who gets what and why? If I am exchanging my time and labor for X amount of currency -- and let us say it is the arbitrary number the Government has determined to be minimum -- what is keeping me from just stopping my labor and accepting the same amount from the Government because it is guaranteed; regardless if I am exchanging time and labor for it and rather getting it because I merely exist?

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