Sunday, 8 May 2016

Bloomberg View: A Basic Income Is Smarter Than a Minimum Wage

Bloomberg View: A Basic Income Is Smarter Than a Minimum Wage

by Leonid Bershidsky

"The immigrant problem is just one illustration of why it may not be a good idea for governments to try to regulate the labor market instead of pursuing their ultimate goal -- that of making sure people aren't "dying on the street," as Donald Trump likes to put it. It's dawning on politicians in some countries that tying basic subsistence to work through the minimum wage is not the most logical way to achieve social justice.

These countries are experimenting with a universal basic income that will be paid to all, whether they work or not. A Finnish government working group tasked with trying out the scheme proposed parameters for a pilot project on Wednesday: Up to 10,000 people are to start receiving 550 euros ($627) per month next year. Finland's economy is struggling -- it's still smaller than it was in 2008 -- but the government calculates it can provide a basic, secure income to its entire population by cutting up the current benefit system."

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