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To Improve Quality of LIfe and Economy, Finland Champions Universal Basic Income


#1

To Improve Quality of LIfe and Economy, Finland Champions Universal Basic Income

Jon Queally, staff writer

As a way to improve living standards and boosts its economy, the nation of Finland is moving closer towards offering all of its adult citizens a basic permanent income of approximately 800 euros per month.


#3

Need an apple? Civilized society shall help.
Want an Apple? Earn it.
Not a bad model at all.


#4

My... what planet is Finland on anyway? Certainly not the one devoted to feeding the Beast (MIC), the biggest welfare scheme on Earth.


#5

Having just read it with no time yet to think it really through, I see one big frog in the soup, in terms of cancellation of child benefits.
Since the payments go only to adults, families with multiple children would suffer a double whammy: They need more time investment in raising the children, cutting into their time spent earning an additional income and having more unsupported mouths to feed


#6

Compassionate Intelligent Government


#7

This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.


#8

Obviously your objection isn't an inherent flaw in the idea, but one of implementation. Do you think it reasonable that people would receive UBIs that include amounts to raise children?


#9

"Under the current welfare system, a person gets less in benefits if they take up temporary, low paying or part-time work – which can result in an overall loss of income.

However, a basic rate of pay would allow people to take up these jobs with no personal cost".

I can see how this idea would spur their economy with money to buy goods and services and also help small business- BUT, what cost is their standard of living? How inflated is their economy as far as purchasing power of this monthly stipend?


#10

We have Universal Basic Income here in the US .. for anyone with large enough an investment in the Crony Capitalist Casino. They get a monthly check for doing nothing, and it sets them free to do whatever .. or nothing. Many (most?) of them did absolutely nothing to earn that money. They were simply born into the right family. And in many (most?) cases that family money came from the labors or addictions of others - the slave trade, the opium trade, underpaid Walmart employees, etc.

It's not "income inequality" that makes the difference, it's wealth inequality. Recipients of even a modest trust fund are free to take a year off, or stop working and go back to school, or stay unemployed for a while waiting for the right job to come along - unlike the rest of us who have to take whatever employment we can find out of necessity.


#12

Wonderful news. If this comes of it is the beginning of the great transformation our societies need, away from profit driven consumer capitilism that's destroying both us and the planet and a movement to egalitarian sustainability. When I was a child we were told in the future most work would be done my machines and humans would have lots of leisure time. It partly came true, most work is done by machines, yet instead of the promised leisure time, the flawed capitalist system saw the wealthy simply create mass unemployment whilst hoarding all the wealth generated for themselves and then create rampant pointless consumerism to create necessary but ultimately pointless jobs (as far as existing sustainabily is concerned) to employ these disenfranchised hoards. Here begins the new soclalism. This is the future.


#16

Plans for a Guaranteed Minimum Income (GMI) in the US go back decades and, like universal healthcare, have never passed. These plans are eminently affordable and that's without cuts in war spending. With cuts in war spending and corporate welfare, we could have a very civilized polity and could virtually eliminate the idea of poverty.

But that's not what power desires. The rich absolutely detest any arrangement--from unions to any section of a safety net--that diminishes by even a fraction their control over lbor and their "right" to maximally exploit other human beings for profits.

GMI is more than just eeking out an existence without stress. It's about a fundamental shift in the power of labor relations in capitalism. A worker who didn't need to take a job would have leverage over the terms of that job. GMI raises wages and benefits in addition to eliminating the reality of grinding poverty. But it also erodes the dictatorial power of capital, and on that basis the fight over a GI would be easily as vicious as over any union movement, probably more so.

Frankly, to get anything like this in the US (that was at least a livable amount, not a deliberate sabotage of the program) would require near revolutionary conditions.


#17

No, it is not, as you pointed out. I am not even sure, that this article is comprehensive. It may not get into the details, which cover that aspect. However Finland has a child birth rate of 1.8/woman. in order to keep the population stable (and the social security viable) a birth rate of 2.1 to 2.2/woman is required in western cultures. The program as presented in this article appears to depress the birth rate further.


#18

Amazing when government works for everyone instead of just for the rich.


#20

"GMI is more than just eking out an existence without stress. It's about a fundamental shift in the power of labor relations in capitalism. A worker who didn't need to take a job would have leverage over the terms of that job."

BINGO! The goal of the establishment is NOT social welfare, but enforced economic insecurity.


#21

I notice there is zero in the article about how this is paid for.... Then, there is the 70% approve...well who would not approve of receiving free money? I'm betting the 30% are the ones footing the bills??? How about helping the economy by cutting all working people's taxes by 800+ a month before attempting to tank the economy ?


#23

Something I never understood is the way European countries can put all these "socialistic" things in place and the USA continues to get along with them and does not try to invade them or covertly overthrow them or anything. They trust that European governments know what they are doing and leave them alone. Even the European capitalist businesses and "chambers of commerce" go along and don't go ape-shit over such measures - or even support them!

But when a leftist Latin American government gets elected and tries to to put in place even just a fraction of the sort of wealth redistribution programs that Norway or Finland or Sweden put in place without any controversy at all, the US State Department goes positively ape shit! The local Latin American business bosses go positively apoplectic! Covert action - from phoney impeachments to contra wars to assassinations, to coups d'etat, to (in recent history) murderous Juntas to "making their economy scream" are urgently put in place.

Why is this???

Surely, it can't be just becasue of some mindless following of the Monroe Doctrine; something else is going on. is it simply anti-Latino racism ("stupid spicks cannot be trusted to govern themselves")? What?


#24

You also need to point out that the funding for this program comes from the steeply graduated progressive income taxes and luxury taxes imposed on rich Finlanders. But, believe it or not, unlike the USA, where the rich would go ape-shit and state a coup d'etat if such measures were proposed, rich Finlanders, for the most part actually support paying steep tax rates to fund such programs.

So much for the axiomatic "all humans are innately selfish" that informs people - especially rich people, in this hemisphere.


#25

Of course Finland, like everywhere except the USA, has mandated paid family leave - a year or more for each child.


#26

True, but as I surmised in my previous post, the article, we have been reading, is condensed and most likely does not cover all the details of the program. I would look it all up on a Government of Finland website, but my knowledge of Finnish is somewhere between zilch and zero :smile:


#27

I like the idea of a basic guaranteed income for all, but here's one complication. If the workers are going to be paid money by the state, the capitalists are going to tell the workers they don't need to pay them as much, and lower their wages. If the state is going to prohibit that, then the state is in the business of controlling wages. Besides, the capitalists can always just change the names and descriptions of the jobs, and say these "new" jobs pay lower wages. How do we get around this?