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Libertarianism and the Justice of a Basic Income


  • Vallentyne Peter

    (University of Missouri at Columbia)


Whether justice requires, or even permits, a basic income depends on two issues: 1. Does justice permit taxation to generate revenues for distribution to others? 2. If so, does justice require, or even permit, equal and unconditional distribution for some portion of the tax revenues? I claim the following: 1. although all forms of libertarianism reject the nonconsensual taxation of labor and the products of labor, all but radical right-libertarianism allow a kind of wealth taxation for rights over natural resources, and 2. some versions of libertarianism allow the equal and unconditional distribution of such revenues and some do not.

Suggested Citation

  • Vallentyne Peter, 2012. "Libertarianism and the Justice of a Basic Income," Basic Income Studies, De Gruyter, vol. 6(2), pages 1-11, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:bpj:bistud:v:6:y:2012:i:2:n:4

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Brennan, Geoffrey & Walsh, Cliff, 1977. "Pareto-Desirable Redistribution in Kind: An Impossibility Theorem," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 67(5), pages 987-990, December.
    2. Brennan, Geoffrey & Walsh, Cliff, 1980. "Pareto-Desirable Redistribution in Kind: Reply," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(5), pages 1032-1036, December.
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