Everywhere you look, it seems, people are talking about a Universal Basic Income (UBI)—a monthly cash benefit paid to every citizen that would replace the existing means-tested welfare system.
maintain that a UBI would not only provide income support to people in
need, but would also increase work incentives. That is because, unlike
the current welfare system, it would not claw back
50, 70, or even 100 percent of the earnings of low-income workers who
make the effort to get a job. Opponents are more skeptical. They fear
that if everyone were given a basic cash income with no requirement to
work, people would quit their jobs in droves and we would end up with a
nation of layabouts.
Who is right? This post examines the relevant economic theory. Part 2 will look at the evidence. >>>Read more