Reciprocity and the Guaranteed Income
AbstractThis paper argues that a guaranteed income is not only consistent with the principle of reciprocity but is required for reciprocity. This conclusion follows from a three-part argument. First, if a guaranteed income is in place, all individuals have the same opportunity to live without working. Therefore, those who choose not to work do not take advantage of a privilege that is unavailable to everyone else. Second, in the absence of an unconditional income, society is, in effect, applying the principle, "(S)he who does not work, will not eat." If the application of this principle is to be consistent with reciprocity, it must be applied to everyone. Most modern industrial societies exempt many citizens from that choice. For example, the owners of external assets do not face the work-or-starve choice and do take advantage of a privilege that is not available to others. An unconditional guaranteed income is one way to eliminate that violation of reciprocity. Third, this paper addresses the criticism that the guaranteed income exploits middle-class workers by demonstrating that a basic income will have a positive effect on wages, which will at least partially counteract the effect of the taxes needed to pay for it.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by EconWPA in its series Macroeconomics with number 9808009.
Length: 25 pages
Date of creation: 18 Aug 1998
Date of revision:
Note: Type of Document - Acrobat PDF; prepared on IBM PC; to print on PostScript; pages: 25; figures: included
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://188.8.131.52
Other versions of this item:
- E - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-1998-10-02 (All new papers)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Jason L. Saving, 1997. ""Tough Love": implications for redistributive policy," Economic and Financial Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, issue Q III, pages 25-29.
- Marlene Kim, 1997. "The Working Poor: Lousy Jobs or Lazy Workers?," Economics Working Paper Archive wp_194, Levy Economics Institute.
- Karl Widerquist & Michael A. Lewis, 1998.
"An Efficiency Argument for the Guaranteed Income,"
- Marlene Kim & Thanos Mergoupis, 1998.
"The Working Poor and Welfare Recipiency,"
- Marlene Kim, 1997. "The Working Poor: Lousy Jobs or Lazy Workers?," Macroeconomics 9712002, EconWPA.
- Stuart White, 1997. "Liberal Equality, Exploitation, and the Case for an Unconditional Basic Income," Political Studies, Political Studies Association, vol. 45(2), pages 312-326, 06.
- Pavlina R. Tcherneva, 2012. "What Do Poor Women Want? Public Employment or Cash Transfers? Lessons from Argentina," Economics Working Paper Archive wp_705, Levy Economics Institute.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (EconWPA).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.