Jack Saturday

Monday, August 01, 2016

Anti Wage-Slavery Pro-Freedom Quotations Of The Week 1488-1490

In a recent Gallup poll, 70 percent of American workers said they were not engaged with their jobs, or were actively disengaged.
New York Times
APRIL 19, 2014

 Essentially we’re just asking people to think about the world they live in. We would hope that people would question a system that can land a spacecraft on a comet millions of miles away but can’t figure out the three-day week or eradicating poverty on this planet. We don’t want to tell people they have to feel bad about these things, we just want people to realize that everyone’s in the same boat, and we want to ask people to act collectively, to demand better things.
   spokesperson from STRIKE!    
    [emphasis JS]

Paul Solman: What was the most trenchant objection you heard when you came out with that book 10 years ago?

Charles Murray: The ordinary objection to the guaranteed basic income is first, work disincentives. There are answers to that. You have a very high cutoff point, whereby people have to start losing their stipend. So I made the cutoff point $25,000 in income that you get to make or keep.

It could be higher. This is a matter of the details. It’s absolutely essential that you allow people to get jobs and keep hold of their money for a substantial amount of money. Another important objection is that you’re just going to have people go out and use the money for a get-together and rent a house on a remote beach in California and surf their lives away.

Paul Solman: And smoke dope.

Charles Murray: My reaction to that is, so what? We have a huge problem with people dropping out of the workforce right now. It’s not going to be any worse [with a guaranteed income]. And in fact, it’ll be better because I think we’re going to make it much more visible to people that they can have a middle class life if they combine some work with the basic income.

So there are lots of reasonable objections to a guaranteed basic income. There are lots of ways you can do it wrong, where it’ll make matters much, much worse than they are now. My argument is that you can do it right and avoid all the obvious pitfalls.

What’s Wrong with the Current System?

Paul Solman: What’s an example of doing it wrong?

Charles Murray: Doing it wrong would be to add a guaranteed basic income onto the current system. Then you have all of the defects of the current system, all the ways the government stage manages people’s lives, all the ways in which they have incentives to game the system, and you add on just a whole bundle of cash to that.

Paul Solman: And I know, having read you for years, that part of your objection to the current system is the sprawl of the bureaucracy and costs that don’t actually benefit anybody but the people who have the jobs.

Charles Murray: In a sense, I’ve always taken the view that saving money isn’t a big deal with this. It’s nice if we don’t pay bureaucrats that aren’t doing anything useful. It’s nice if we save some of that money.

But what I’m talking about is going to be expensive. It’s actually now not going to be as expensive as the current system. When I wrote “In Our Hands” in 2004, I calculated the cost of that system would cross with the costs of the existing system in 2011, and I was right.
Libertarian Charles Murray: The welfare state has denuded our civic culture
BY CHARLES MURRAY  April 10, 2014

[emphasis JS]


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