The moral and practical case for implementing a basic income guarantee is well made—but what are the prospects for finally achieving this inspiring idea of ‘freedom from want’ for every person on Earth?
A UN report it reveals that in 2016 the number of chronically undernourished people in the world is estimated to have increased to 815 million, up from 777 million in 2015, although still down from about 900 million in 2000.
Fifty years ago, at New York’s Riverside Church, Martin Luther King made a passionate plea for a more equal, more just, more peaceful and more dignified world. Calling for “a radical revolution of values”, King concluded: “We must rapidly begin … the shift from a thing-oriented society to a person-oriented society.
A truly universal and unconditional basic income is ultimately feasible within each nation, coordinated under the auspices of the United Nations. Yet this will initially depend on an unparalleled degree of public support for the cause of ending hunger and needless deprivation, based on a fairer sharing of the world’s resources, writes Mohammed Mesbahi.
Following the 2007-2008 global financial crisis and the Great Recession in its wake, the ‘new normal’ in monetary policy has been abnormal.
At the heart of the unconventional monetary policies adopted have been ‘asset purchase’ or ‘quantitative easing’ (QE) programmes. Ostensibly needed for economic revival, QE has redistributed wealth – regressively, in favour of the rich.