1. What is BI?
Basic income is an income that is distributed to all citizens unconditionally. The introduction of BI would replace large parts of other allowances (like A-kassa, supply support, student allowance and child allowance).
2. What are the advantages of BI?
Everybody gets a basic financial security. That makes it possible to spend more time with family, starting up projects and businesses, engage in voluntary work or in the democratic development of society. Other positive effects include less stress which leads to better physical and mental health and decreasing healthcare costs. Positive environmental effects have also been observed.
3. Are people going to continue working?
Would you stop working? The idea of a BI is based on the belief that humans are active and want to contribute to society and want to work, be it payed work or volunteering. The introduction of BI does not imply that one has to stop wage working. It is a reform which give financial basic security and it is up to each individual to choose how much (or how little) one want to wage work. In the current system, those who are employed work more than they can manage, while those who lack employment are forced into degrading and pointless programs.
4. How will it be financed?
They are several different propositions. The current welfare system is financed from work revenues, but because there is less and less wage work, we will need other sources of income for the state. There is money, it only needs to get redistributed. It is possible to finance a basic income by grouping the existing allowances, benefits and the costs currently needed to administer them. Other sources of income can be financial taxes, production taxes, consumption taxes and the reintroduction of the wealth tax.
5. Has it been tested somewhere?
Yes, the Alaska Permanent Fund is a dividend paid to all Alaskan residents. In Brazil, the ”Bolsa familia” is a direct cash transfer for families that is distributed on the condition that children are attending school. Iran is the first country in the world to introduce a national basic income in 2012. There have been numerous pilot projects too in Canada, India, Namibia and the USA. All show positive results such as reduced inequality and criminality, better health, more businesses, an increasing empowerment of women etc...Finland and Holland currently have pilot projects.