Monday, December 02, 2013

Guaranteed Income?

Switzerland has apparently been contemplating a guaranteed income for every citizen. Such proposals, in various forms, would create a sort of an ultimate welfare state. Oddly enough, some of these proposals seem to come from the left as well as the right. It might be an interesting experiment for some small rich country to actually try this. The obvious fear, of course, is that a lot of people would just stop working, and coast on their freebie. With no job, they would make trouble and produce more troubled and unproductive children.

It might be an incentive for employers to offer more attractive wages or working conditions, or, on the other hand, free people up to work on low paying jobs that they find rewarding in other ways.

If we think about the increasingly plausible world in which robots do almost all the work the question of how to restructure society becomes a challenging one.