Seeds of Thought – Basic Income

This past weekend, I sat down to put some of my thoughts about basic income in to words, and to share my proposal for a basic income plan that might work in a country like Canada.

I made a video (embedded below) that discusses my idea in some detail, as well as going through some of the reasons I think it’s a good idea. The spreadsheet shown in the video can be found at this link* (cleaned up for ease of use compared to the one in the video): Basic Income Tax Plan.

*The only cell you can adjust in the sheet is the green one at the top to adjust the basic income tax rate.

I’d love to hear some thoughts or counter-arguments to the idea, or the concept of these brainstorming sessions in general. I really found it a useful way to crystallize what I was thinking on the topic, even though it may not make for the most exciting listening.

(More) Thoughts on Society

If the government raised my taxes 1% per year to give an increasing basic income until such a time that social programs and poverty improved until the point that the system supported everybody, we could fix this thing in 15-20 years, tops.

Anything else is just irresponsible.

Civilized society has to provide the basic needs for all its citizens to exist and develop. Education, health care, shelter, food, these should not be things anybody goes without.

Anything else is second-rate.

Retirees get a fixed income and many continue to work as long as they are able. Why is it so damaging for all of us to enjoy that same opportunity throughout our lives? Why do you have to work for 30 years before society deems you worthy of that respect?

These problems have solutions *if* we can start worrying about money, power and status AFTER we have taken care of the poor, weak, and forgotten.

If these are radical ideas to you, it may be worth considering what you value in life.

The Problem with Homelessness is Poverty

I attended college pay-as-you-go for a couple years while working, then left because I couldn’t afford to continue and knew better than to take on student debt. My moderate savings was destroyed in my 30s by health care costs that insurance wouldn’t cover. Within the past several years, full-time work that pays a subsistence wage has been hard to come by.

Another great reason why basic income would be super useful. There are plenty of jobs that don’t pay that much but are vital to the world continuing to run. And with a basic income and solid universal health care, so many of the issues that put people on the streets just don’t come up. This is a long piece but it’s well worth your time.

> I’ve been homeless 3 times. The problem isn’t drugs or mental illness — it’s poverty. – Vox