Universal Basic Income – What to do about wealthy people?

The idea of a Universal Basic Income seems pretty straight forward. Everyone gets a minimum payment to cover life’s costs. Sounds good, all things being equal.

But all things are not equal.

Rich people do NOT need universal basic income and indeed should not get it. Or should they?

Maybe the answer isn’t means testing the payment of UBI, it’s means-testing the ability to access it. Controlling access is not a new idea.

Take superannuation – everyone gets paid a regulated minimum amount of Super – but can only access it under certain conditions such as retirement, dire medical issues or potentially losing home due to non-payments.

Your UBI could be paid into a government-held bank account, which can be accessed dependent upon a few very simple conditions. Those conditions would need some smarter people to work out properly…

But lets ‘spitball’ some ideas to start with:

  • Your yearly income is less than 200% of the ‘average’ (median) income, or $200,000 per year (adjusted for inflation)
  • Your total asset value does not exceed 1000% of the ‘average’ (median) asset value, or $5 million (adjusted for inflation)

Continue reading Universal Basic Income – What to do about wealthy people?

Liberal Party policy setting is all wrong

AbetzUgh. The Liberal Party have screwed up the Australian Government’s policy setting again, as we who pay attention knew they would.

Palmer and his cohorts played along, happy to cut a tax which would save his business millions while costing the Australian public billions.

It’s appalling, and next (literally, tomorrow) they’ll be trying to roll back workplace rights for all Australian workers by essentially re-introducing the majority of their previous ‘WorkChoices’ policy.

There’s a pro-forma email to cross bench senators asking them not to support the changes, click here to see it.

Credit rating loss shows cuts not the answer

Western Australia lost it’s AAA credit rating at Moody’s today, the second agency to drop WA to the second highest credit standing Aa1.

This has primarily happened due to a structural budget deficit and growing debt under the Liberal Government here in WA.

The problem is less how we are spending tax, and more how we collect it.

Too many eggs in the one mining royalties basket was never a good idea, and nor are the many tax loop holes and subsidies for the ultra-rich. Our State Government is hamstrung in it’s revenue raising capacity because it gives up so much in subsidies.

For instances, Gina Rinehart receives over $4bn in tax breaks and subsidies per year.

Cutting funding to essential public services is not the answer to our governments budget woes, it’s short term thinking and bad economics.

Those services have multiplier effects, the people whose incomes they pay are working people, and spend their incomes quickly. This creates tax at point of sale then goes on to be spent by those it employs, with tax paid as income tax and business tax on profit too.

By the time this process is repeated a few times in the economy, each $1 of government spending in say schools or hospitals is likely to actually create tax income in the mid-term. The long term improvement of social outcomes also leads further tax generation.

If the Government are serious about balancing the budget, they need to start shovelling cash from the nearby truck that’s over-flowing with $100 bills, not shuffling budget papers and scraping out the last few coins from working peoples piggy banks.

 

 

 

Australia needs to create more jobs. #100daysofblogging #Day61

Unemployment + Participation Rate in AustraliaThere are not enough jobs to go around in Australia, and that is a serious problem if you are one of the 740,000+ people looking for work.

While Liberal Party MP’s are always on about ‘getting people into jobs’,  this is proving to be nothing more than ‘political rhetoric’ under the current government.

You simply can not reduce unemployment without creating new jobs. Instead they use victim-blaming as a way to win votes, without actually doing anything to create jobs or reduce unemployment.

In fact it seems the Liberal Party do not understand how to create jobs.

You do not create jobs by withholding unemployment payments. You do not create jobs by forcing unemployed people people to apply for 40 jobs per month. You do not create jobs by forcing government control over spending by unemployed people.

You do not create jobs by forcing mature, highly qualified or skilled workers to take on unskilled roles that could be filled by younger, unskilled workers.

You do not create jobs by forcing unemployed people to work for below minimum wage in ‘work for the dole’ schemes, in fact they destroy jobs.

You create jobs through investment, particularly in innovation and infrastructure.  Continue reading Australia needs to create more jobs. #100daysofblogging #Day61

Millionaires & Billionaires… What happened to the ‘fair go’? #100daysofblogging #Day39

Wipe your ass with $100I do not trust the ultra-wealthy. 

Not people earning $250,000/yr, that salary is within the realm of reality.

If your job requires you to be available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week; such as a sole owner of a medium sized business, that’s only a wage of $28.54/hr.

That is less than my hourly rate.

But if you have do so well out of OUR mutual society, that you have a disproportionate amount of wealth, then you definitely have a responsibility to give it back.

No person should have an asset value of hundreds of millions.  

We should put a 100% income tax on all income for people with an asset value > 100 times the median family asset value.

In Australia as of 2012, the median household asset value is $434,000.

As such, I firmly believe no person or household should have a personal asset value greater than $43.4 million. Even that number is greedy, from my perspective. Continue reading Millionaires & Billionaires… What happened to the ‘fair go’? #100daysofblogging #Day39