Economics Article II

Topics: Basic income, Poverty, Minimum wage Pages: 3 (880 words) Published: January 29, 2014

Article II

The article I chose as the second part of my project, it is called “Switzerland’s Proposal to Pay People for Being Alive” By Annie Lowrey. In this article, Ms. Lowrey talks about the idea of paying each and every citizen in Switzerland. The payment would not have stipulations on it such as for being poor or because a person is old, simply for being alive is what the activists of Switzerland are proposing. The activists had a truck dump eight million coins outside the Parliament building in Bern. This was part of a publicity stunt; each one of the coins represented a Swiss citizen. The activists also delivered a petition with 125,000 signatures, which requires a Swiss public referendum. What the activists are requesting is that a monthly income be allotted to each and every citizen with no strings attached. They are requesting that a monthly check be sent from the government to every Swiss person. As far as limitations, there would be none. It wouldn’t matter how rich or poor, young or old a person would be to receive this monthly allowance. The thought is that by providing this income, it would end poverty, but what would reappear in its place. The proposal is from the German-born artist named Enno Schmidt, a leader in the basic-income movement. “I tell people not to think about it for others, but think about it for themselves,” said Schimdt. “What would you do if you had that income? What if you were taking care of a child or an elderly person?” Schmidt believes that the basic income would give the poor some dignity and security. He also believes that it would help Switzerland’s workers to feel empowered to work the way they want to and not work because they have to just to get by. This would lead to more entrepreneurs and creativity. If this plan were to be implemented, the thought is that it would take the place of welfare, food stamps, housing vouchers and hundreds of other programs, all at once. Vouchers and...
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