Everyone Should Have A Guaranteed Basic Income for Life

I’ve been thinking about this sort of thing for a while, ever since i first came across the notion who knows when. In fact, i always wondered, even as a child, why this was considered so impossible and the answer given was that “people would become lazy…” to which i had not enough life experience to respond adequately or knowledgeably. Now, however, my own life has given my a tiny hint of whether that answer was correct or not. And my answer comes from a life in which i was provided, by virtue of being “on disability” for decades, a poverty-level income, plus shelter and varying levels of food support. I did not become lazy at all. In contrast, as soon as my life stabilized when i no longer was in constant search for housing and had enough to eat for “the forseeable future” at any given time, i could settle down into my life of low but livable income and i taught myself to write poetry. This was a goal that i could accomplish given that it required very little extras in the way of expenditures, beyond a pen and a notebook and eventually an electric tyoewriter, paper, and a few envelopes and stamps. For 25 years i lived and breathed only to read and write poetry, and became an accomplished poet, with hundreds of poems under my belt.

The one thing that my stable if low income did not do was make me lazy, it did deprive me of many other things, but the basic “security” it provided to me of shelter and food and medical care, however basic level they were, permitted me the freedom at least to write my heart out.

Later, when my income doubled due to a a tragedy in the family that had a positive effect on my social security benefit, once again freedom from penury permitted me to become an artist, because i could buy the art supplies that before that time i could never have afforded.

The point is that people will always do what they do, and want to do, when the chains of utter compulsion are taken off. There is plenty of money in this world, enough to fund a system that takes care of all, if we have heart and soul to do this. The question is, Do we dare?

 

2 thoughts on “Everyone Should Have A Guaranteed Basic Income for Life”

  1. I just wrote a blog post trying to address this false idea that a basic income would lead to everyone leaving their jobs and becoming lazy.
    This is so obviously untrue, nobody wants to just sit around doing nothing and a basic income would just give people the ability and freedom to pursue the things they are passionate about. This should be obvious just thinking about it but clearly some people don’t get it so people sharing their experiences like you have done here is great.
    In answer to your last question the answer is I hope. It seems almost inevitable that it will happen eventually, I guess the question is how much longer it’s going to take, how long are we as a society going to keep people from achieving all they can?
    If you (or any of your readers) wanted to know a bit more about the idea of a basic income, feel free to read my blog on acertainsmallincome.wordpress.com
    JD

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