Ideally I believe in the principle that, if you are not working, you should be given welfare/benefits by the government so you can live (defined as: have a roof over your head, eat enough, and raise a family), and that there should be rights such as, right to free education, right to free university, and right to free healthcare. this is how it works in my country right now, and is probably the reason why we are the region with the second least poverty in the UK.
In this graphic you can also see our poverty decreased much faster because of this more socialistic government, as of 1999, devolution kicking in, and we have more control to lower poverty. We overtook SouthEast, SouthWest, and EastMidlands in decreasing poverty.
In this graphic you can see Scotland obviously being the least poor part of the UK, with not a single county having more than 20% households below the poverty line.http://www.gov.scot/Publications/2012/06/7976/3
And from this document, you can see that since devolution, our poverty rates have decreased rapidly, with the only recent increase being from the 2009 financial crash, which hit us rather lightly.
So what is with all this bragging about the abundant wealth of my country? It is because, that if people are provided enough money to live
, then you have people who do not have the struggles of a society where you can get into poverty easily from not being able to get into work, but there is still a huge incentive to work, because you will be able to have loads of luxuries if you do work.
Because of our benefits, you have enough to live, but not much else. If you work, you can go on holidays, buy nice houses, buy drink, get nice cars etc. ; basically enjoy the luxuries of life, through contributing to society.
However, the reason why I called this proposal "madness", is not because I disagree with a basic income, but it is because the amount of money that they proposed was ridiculous. This would give very little incentive to work, because people will have enough money to live, and
This is bad, because in our current time-frame, this is not achievable. Perhaps sometime in the future, but if people who only have enough money to live, are suddenly given all this money, who knows what they will do with it? Remember we are talking about unemployed people. And the people that do work, they perhaps will stop it; particularly the ones that earn less than the amount of benefits that are being proposed (well above lots of jobs).
There are cases like social workers, which must have 2 jobs to get what somebody else gets out of 1, but a basic income is not the correct solution. Instead, job growth should be promoted in this field. Problem and solution is the foundation to government, and this is the incorrect solution to this problem.
Ultimately, I don't think that a basic income is a bad idea, I just think this proposal was too much
for our current time-frame. They need to be gradually increased, not dished out in wads bigger than loads of jobs' salaries.