An unconditional basic income will not solve the really important problems
Translated from the original Dutch by Pierre Madden

Click on the links to see the full text of the objection

 

   50. People with a lot of debt are no better off with a small basic income

   51. The scourge of growing inequality will not be resolved

   52. Introduction of an UBI is not good for the environment

   53. It is a solution from the world of systems, problems in the real world will not be solved

 

50. People with a lot of debt are no better off with a small basic income

Explanation

 

People with a lot of debt are not helped with a basic income, which although enough to live on, leaves little room for other things, including paying off old debts.


When people 'abuse' their basic income to, for example, drink or gamble, and thus end up in a dire situation, the government can hardly justify helping these people. The question is also whether the government should.

Refutation

Basic income provides a reasonable degree of financial security. That is a good basis for not acting irresponsibly. This will prevent many people from ending up in a situation with a lot of debt.

Of course, even on a basic income, some people cannot be prevented from doing unwise things (drugs, gambling, expensive purchases), and it is also to be expected that when the basic income is introduced, a number of people will have debts from the past.

Basic income provides them with a starting point above which they themselves, either alone or with the help of others, can find solutions. 


Whether the government should help in these cases is a political/social choice that is not part of the discussion on basic income.
 

 

51. The scourge of growing inequality will not be resolved

Explanation

 

The growing inequality (see e.g. Piketty) will not be remedied.

 
Basic income does not solve the problem that under the current system poor people work to create capital that goes to the richest.

Refutation:

The purpose of basic income is not to achieve equality.


The Basic Income provides a sufficient basis for everyone to be assured of a living. That is already quite something!


This means that the better off have to give up a little. This will reduce disparities to some extent, but it is not enough to really tackle major inequalities.


Everyone is free to work towards greater levelling out, but that is not part of the discussion about basic income per se.

52. Introduction of a UBI is not good for the environment

Explanation

Many see the threat to the environment as the most pressing problem that needs to be solved. Whether or not to introduce a basic income is irrelevant and, in their view, distracts attention from the most important problem!


Bringing everyone to a minimum level of existence can even give more people room for behaviour that is more harmful to the environment than is currently the case.

 

Refutation

 

The fact that a basic income gives people the assurance of a living also means that they can pay more attention to other matters than surviving on a daily basis. For some, this can lead to more environmentally conscious behaviour.


Many supporters of the Basic Income are at the same time very concerned about the environment. They would therefore like to see the additional costs of introducing a basic income go largely towards taxing consumption and, above all, consumption that pollutes the environment or consumes raw materials.

The discussion about basic income therefore offers ample scope for a discussion about caring for the environment, without everyone making the same link.


See also this article by Gijs Custers: Today, a basic income is not as green as ever. (in Dutch)

53. It is a solution from the world of systems, problems in the real world will not be solved

Explanation

In Verdraaide ("twisted") organisations it is argued that the problems in the "system world" are increasingly focused on while problems in the real world are ignored. Basic income is typically such a system solution that can easily go wrong when it comes to the world in which people live.

Refutation 

In the book mentioned above and on the website it is stated that there must be a good balance between the system world and the living environment. We must bear in mind that the main objectives of basic income in the real world are to increase the security and freedom of everyone's existence. If the Basic Income system, which is finally in action, brings this about, the living conditions will also be a lot better!

 
 
 

Pierre Madden: cell: 514 238-0044

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