[lbo-talk] Basic Income (was Re: Comment on Henwood's radio interview of James Livingston 3/23/17)

Shane Mage shmage at pipeline.com
Thu Mar 23 15:00:33 PDT 2017

I haven't heard the interview or read the book. But as a Libertarian Marxian Communist I must emphasize as strongly as possible that a Universal Basic Income is the proper form of the most important principle of communism: from each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs. The UBI guarantees to everybody, as a right, an income sufficient to satisfy all basic needs: nutrition, shelter, clothing, education, health care. The latter two provided socially outside any market, the first three purchasable. Beyond basic human needs there are human desires, especially the desire to participate in the social process of collective labor. The objects and services to satisfy those needs and desires have to be produced, produced by human labor. Modern forces of production are sufficient to supply all needs and most material desires with much less labor time than is currently wasted in nonproductive capitalist activities. But work is still necessary and that social labor needed for both the desire and need components has to be compensated by sufficient purchasing power in the form of income, basic income for needs and after-tax earned income for desires. The index of the transitional (socialist) economy moving toward full communism is precisely the ratio of basic to total income, with 100% representing full communism.

Shane Mage

This cosmos did none of gods or men make, but it always was and is and shall be: an everlasting fire, kindling in measures and going out in measures.

The Herakleitos of Ephesos

On Mar 23, 2017, at 4:43 PM, Doug Henwood wrote:

> I’m trying to recall an occasion when you had something interesting to say and coming up blank. But thank you so much for your comments.
> I have no disdain for Jim at all. I disagree with him on some things.
> Doug
>> On Mar 23, 2017, at 4:36 PM, Eugene Coyle <e.coyle at me.com> wrote:
>> I just listened to “Behind The News” on KPFA. The second half of the program was an
>> interview with James Livingston, the author of “No More Work.” I gathered from the program that Livingston’s book
>> advocates a Universal Basic Income, to free people from unneeded, useless, and poorly paid work.
>> If there is more in the book I didn’t hear about it.

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