With government intervention now becoming the only viable solution being touted for everything from individual health care and the economy to our personal safety and how we educate our children, it would only make sense that officials in Washington also figure out a way to use their power of confiscation and redistribution to equalize the income playing field.
It’s no secret that 48 million Americans require nutritional assistance just to put food on the table, or that over 100 million of us are living in or at the very edge of poverty, or that nearly one in three of us is currently without any meaningful labor.
This is a major problem, and if we stay on our current trajectory those numbers are going to continue to rise. The American people are broke, and so are the businesses that employ them, which means that we’ll continue to shed jobs, decrease wages and further impoverish an already dwindling middle class.
Enter the idea of a Universal Basic Income, to be distributed by the Federal government on a monthly basis to every adult in America.
You read that right.
It’s a proposal being floated by members of the establishment media at The Atlantic, the New York Times, and Business Insider, and based on their research, would put a decisive end to poverty and income inequality in America.
According to the “experts,” this is how it would work:
A simple idea for eliminating poverty is garnering greater attention in recent weeks: automatically have the government give every adult a basic income.
It’s exactly how it sounds. The government would mail every American over the age of 21 a check each month. That’s it. Everyone is free to do what they like with it.
Giving each working-age American a basic income equal to the poverty line would cost $2.14 trillion. For some comparison, U.S. GDP was almost $16 trillion in 2012 and the defense budget was $700 billion.
But a minimum income would also allow us to eliminate every government benefit as well. Get rid of SNAP, TANF, housing vouchers, the Earned Income tax credit and many others.
The clear [benefit] is that no American would live below the poverty line. The U.S. has been waging the War on Poverty for a generation now and still nearly 50 million Americans are below the line. This would end that war with a decisive victory.
First, the assumption being made here is that when you send every person in America a paycheck, they will then use that money to purchase food and the basic essentials they need for survival. They wouldn’t spend that money on new smart phones, or vacations, or home upgrades, or any of that stuff that drove our consumer-based society into a mountain of debt to begin with. Once the government starts doling out the checks, everyone is going to be responsible with their newly found wealth and use it on the things they really need.
Second, injecting $2.1 trillion dollars of cash into the U.S. economy on a yearly basis is only going to be positive for the consumer, right? Are we to assume that when more money is chasing the same amount of goods that the price of those goods will remain the same? That there will be no direct inflationary impact as consumers race to spend their monthly stipend on goods they couldn’t have bought before? Prices are already rising at a rate of nearly 10% a year. What do you think will happen when two trillion new dollars are introduced into the economy on an annual basis?
Third, and probably the most important aspect of all this is how, exactly, are we going to fund this?
To spread the wealth around we have one of two choices.
We can either increase taxes on working Americans to offset the payments going to those who make less than them, or we can borrow it from our creditors by raising our debt ceiling an additional $2.1 trillion on a yearly basis (on top of the existing increase requirements).
Raising taxes isn’t going to work simply because those who generate an income in this country just had their financial futures destroyed by the Patient Affordable Care Act, which promises to triple their monthly mandated health payments. They’ve got nothin’ left after mortgage, car payment, food, utilities and forced health insurance at the barrel of a gun.
Printing money, we suppose will work. For a short while, at least, until our foreign creditors realize there is absolutely no way our country can pay back the trillions of dollars we’re adding to our balance on a yearly basis.
Thus, in the end, we either go broke through taxation, rendering all of us to living on the edge of poverty or below it, or, the Federal Reserve will be forced to make up the difference by printing trillions upon trillions of dollars that will have the effect of rising prices for goods that people will no longer be able to afford, like food, electricity, and other essentials.
Both options lead to essentially the same result.
Margaret Thatcher once warned that socialism only works until you run out of other peoples’ money
We’re just about out.
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