DISCUSSIONS: 4 – (Apr 28) Liberal govt proposing basic income plan

 The Liberal govt of Ontario is proposing a basic income plan.

Wow, another promise from Queen’s Park. You might think an election campaign is on with all the promises and new policies that are going on.

Is it simply the usual hot air before another election?

 Elections always bring out the political Santa Clauses promising all kinds of gifts. Donald Trump promises a ton of things to be enacted before his first 100 days. He is failing to deliver, terribly.

Kathleen Wynne has initiated hydro rate reform, real estate sales regulation, hinted at a pharmaceutical and now promises consideration of a basic income for Ontario workers.

The plan proposes that certain workers in Ontario, those below a certain income level, no-strings-attached subsidies to roughly 4,000 people selected randomly from three areas across the province provided current earning is less than $34,000 ($48,000 for a couple). These workers would receive subsidies ranging between $16,989 for singles and $24,027 for couples. However, give with one hand, take away with the other, workers receiving such subsidies would lose any welfare or provincial disability payments now received. Any income from Canada Pension or Employment Insurance would be deducted from their earnings.

The plan is a three-year proposed project subject to the will of the next provincial government.

The economy of today is fraught with upheavals and instability because of trade issues, technological revolution, artificial intelligence and robots invading the workplace. Workers’ incomes fluctuate widely. Worse, the workplace has in such great flux, almost no job is guaranteed. Hence, workers’ incomes are under constant threat of erosion if not outright decimation.

We live in revolutionary times but how deep can the public purse be?

Read Thomas Walkom’s column: Basic income plan: bread without circuses

What do you think?




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