Sunday, July 9, 2017
According to the Census Bureau, our welfare state spends four times more on trying to end poverty than it would actually cost to pay poor people enough to lift themselves out of poverty. Wouldn’t it be easier and cheaper then to simply cut a check for every poor person? The answer to that question, surprisingly enough, is yes.
Libertarian writer Charles Murray estimates that providing all un-incarcerated Americans over the age of 21 with a monthly check for $13,000 would not only be sufficient enough to provide for their basic needs and help raise the poorest among them above the poverty line, but would also be less expensive than our current welfare state, which includes agricultural and corporate subsidies.
While having the government give people money may sound counter-intuitive to conservatives and libertarians, the truth is that basic income is not only compatible with their belief in limited government and free markets, but has actually been promoted by prominent conservatives and libertarians like Milton Friedman and F.A. Hayek.
Basic income would be a much more viable alternative to our current welfare state, not only allowing the poorest among us to better experience social and economic mobility, but also helping to eliminate wasteful government spending and bureaucracy. It's high time to eliminate the welfare state: basic income now!
To learn more about why conservatives and libertarians should support basic income, please read my article on Medium.