Monday, December 7, 2015

Ideas To Ponder

Finland is considering giving every citizen €800 a month.

Authorities in Finland are considering giving every citizen a tax-free payout of €800 (£576) each month.
Under proposals being draw up by the Finnish Social Insurance Institution (Kela), this national basic income would replace all other benefit payments, and would be paid to all adults regardless of whether or not they receive any other income.
Unemployment in Finland is currently at record levels, and the basic income is intended to encourage more people back to work. At present, many unemployed people would be worse off if they took on low-paid temporary jobs due to loss of welfare payments.

Working Americans already pay a ridiculous amount in subsidies for people who don't work, plus the salaries of all the gov't employees to manage these programs. What if we did this here? The amount would need to be closer to $2000 to cover the essentials. Let's kick this can around the Table for a few minutes.

Basically, we're talking about doing away with social security, welfare, food stamps, housing/health subsidies. All of it, down the "social experiment" crapper.

Give every citizen $2000 per month. EVERYONE from skid row bums to billionaires. Everyone.

It would recharge the 50% of our population who are pulling the ever-crowded wagon. A couple could use their $4000 windfall to fund retirement, or education for their kids. Inner city blacks, reservation Natives, West Virginia poor whites, and others would once again have a reason to get married and create stable households, as there would be no financial penalty for an intact family. People who can't afford to work because of the loss in benefits could not only obtain/create employment, but thrive. Well-off citizens could donate the windfall to schools, churches, clinics. Could you imagine if people who donate their portion to schools were automatically given a seat on the school board, to vote on where the money is spent and demand accountability from teachers and administrators? It would be epic.

How could we pay for this simplified system? Disband the IRS. Begone a$$holes! Levy a 10% tax on all purchases and services, with no caps and no exceptions other than maybe rent, food, and medical expense. No income tax, no death tax, just ONE tax. Let the individual states be in charge of collecting it and remitting Ceasar's portion to Ceasar, while keeping their own portion for state business and projects.

If you buy a $100,000 home? Please pay a 10% tax, or $10,000, into the tax kitty. Purchase a $250,000 boat? Pony up $25,000. No caps. If a business buys a million dollar piece of equipment, remit $100,000. Simple. Punish fraud with lengthy prison sentences, and make them forfeit their $2000/month stipend for life.

There might be a way to throw public sector worker pensions into this mix. I know it would send the progressives into howling fits for touching their sacred, taxpayer-funded golden stash, but that's the breaks.

In a perfect world everyone would work and support themselves, but it's not a perfect world, and unless something catastrophic happens the libs are not going to relinquish their giveaway bonanza. Maybe the best we can do right now is to simplify and control it, and in the process reinvigorate the middle class and jump-start innovation.

Think long term strategy. Think Overton Window.

Okay friends. Fire away!


  1. Admittedly, there are plenty of problems with this system, such as what to do with a millionaire/billionaire who hordes his money instead of spending it, or citizens who send big chunks of their money to Mexico (or wherever) instead of spending it here.

    1. I have to challenge the assumption that rich people "hoard" their "money".

      As if they go swimming in vaults of gold coins like Scrooge McDuck.

      The average person who is "worth ten million dollars" (given that one million isn't what it used to be) - where are those "dollars", do you suppose, and why is it that they aren't "spent"?

    2. I meant it as an unusual case lewy, although I'd sure like to try swimming in vaults of gold coins! Yee haw! :))

    3. Everybody to Lady Red's for skinny dipping in her vault of gold coins!

  2. So, was there any word on how the Finns are going to fund it?

    1. No, not really. I'm not sure what their idea is to cover the shortfall.

    2. Google the term "helicopter money". It's being considered at the highest levels.

      "Monetization of state spending".

      (They'll just print the money.)

      The theory being: the problem with the economies these days is not too much inflation, but too little.

  3. I agree with this much lady red - it wouldn't be a bad thing for the economy to put some money in people's pockets.

    I look forward to seeing the results of the Finns experiment.

    I'm queasy about printing another trillion dollars. But if it is going to be done, I'd rather it be sprinkled into the ground level of the economy, not poured in the top (to be siphoned off by those already holding financial assets).


    Doesn't this strike you as a kind of socio-economic political program conjured up by Wile E. Coyote?

    Let's just fire up the Acme money printer and strap the stimulus rocket to our back... we'll achieve Roadrunner like growth levels in no time?

    What could possibly go wrong? :D

    1. Hey, I said nothing about printing money! And ALL of our socio-economic programs are conjured up by Wile E. Coyote these days. I'm just floating a possible way to begin to reel things back in. I never claimed it was a GOOD idea. Beep beep. :)

  4. Don't know what to think if this idea...but as Lewy says, if it is to be, sprinkle the largess on the ground not pour it in from the top.

    The main point you make, IMO, is this: ... unless something catastrophic happens the libs are not going to relinquish their giveaway bonanza.

    Given that, maybe the only way to defeat the crazies is to adopt their tactics?

    1. Exactly. It could be one front, one avenue of attack.

  5. A couple of years ago, my son, Gus floated a similar idea to me.

    His idea was to use all the money borrowed in a single year and divide it among the public, one time.

    I forget the amount each adult would receive, (he had done the math) but it was well above what a frugal person would require to live on for a few years.

    Like Finland's proposal, this would be in place of all other welfare programs. Without those, the government could operate on only what it takes in in taxes, and possibly even have a surplus.

    His idea was that this would be a one-time program, after which, for healthy adults, the system would be "root, hog, or die". So of course such a thing would never fly. After all, how would Democrats bribe people to vote for them?

    1. The "one-time" thing would never work here; too many whiners and malingerers.

  6. Do away with Social Security? I put a bunch of money in there. Do I just forget about it?

    1. I know I will have to probably forget about it.

    2. I realize that most people get more out of Social Secirity than they put in. I just want what I put in And perhaps a little return for letting the government have my money all these years.

    1. You would get $2000/month. The MAX social security payout is $2600. The average benefit is half that. :)