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The Global Movement in Favor of the Universal Basic Income: Jan Dzierzgowski, The Imaginary Radicalism? Some Controversies around the Idea of Universal Basic Income
 
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Instytut Socjologii, Uniwersytet Warszawski
Publication date: 2020-06-05
 
Problemy Polityki Społecznej 2008;11:159–173
 
ABSTRACT
The question I try to answer in this text may be summarized like this: is universal basic income a radical idea? Certainly, paying a certain amount of money to everyone, regardless of gender, wealth, incomes, labour market status and age is treated by general public as a radical idea. Furthermore, it would require – according to A.B. Atkinson – a fl at-rate tax on all incomes (other than basic income) of at least 40 per cent, which in OECD countries would generally mean an increase of taxes. Universal basic income would also have profound effects on the functioning of labour markets. On the other hand, one can say that it is not that radical idea, since it is well adjusted to current era of individualization and elastic capitalism. Basic income would, according to its proponents, bring empowerment and real freedom to individuals and save capitalism (albeit not the capitalism as we know it) from possible self-destruction. Therefore I conclude that the idea has many radical aspects and roots, but seems to fi t in our epoch – an epoch, considered by many, as a time of individualization and triumph of free markets.
 
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ISSN:1640-1808