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The Catholic Case For Basic Income

On Thursday night, a Zoom meeting was held by Catholic Voices, which was set up in the UK in 2010; it is a registered charity. It came about after the Pope endorsed the concept of Universal Basic Income; also  known by its initials UBI, as simply basic income, and, for Major Douglas fans, as Social Credit, this is an idea whose time has come. The speakers included Michael Pugh, Ruth Kelly, and Alessandra Smerilli.

Pugh runs the Basic Income Conversation. He started out by advocating for the so-called living wage but soon realised UBI was the real solution to poverty in this age of plenty.

Ruth Kelly is a former Labour MP who held various ministerial positions. Unlike most of the Labour elite she is sound on homosexuality; she is also a practising Catholic. In her address she stressed the difference between UBI and guaranteed minimum income, the former being an  income of first resort rather than a top-up. Sadly, she falls into the trap of suggesting UBI can be funded from taxation and only from taxation.

Alessandra Smerilli isn’t simply a practising Catholic but a real, live nun, or to give her her full title, Sister Alessandra Smerilli. The trap she falls into is believing work is a moral obligation rather than a painful duty, but altogether the speakers and the following question and answer session provided a good grounding for those not familiar with the concept of UBI, and some discussion for those who are.

This short video gives a good introduction to the concept of UBI, and this slightly longer one covers all the angles.

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The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.

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February 20, 2021

Work IS a moral obligation in that those who don’t work don’t contribute to society, either materially or financially, but comprise a burden on the state. The government has NO MONEY OF ITS OWN. 1. It has the capacity to borrow (which burdens future generations with debt they didn’t incur and which creates inflation – which constitutes theft since it reduces the value of savings and wages in real terms) 2. It has revenue from taxes paid by people who do work. Those who believe that work is optional must be funded by others who do work. That is IMMORAL.… Read more »

John Carlisle
Reply to  Greg
February 21, 2021

You are wrong on the economics and you are wrong on inhumane views of those at the bottom of our very unequal society. Nothing in social research supports your unevidenced view, e.g. The Spirit Level, the Marmot Commission etc. Have you read either of those. The Welfare State is not burgeoning, it is shrinking – ask George Osborne and his austerity drive. Who suffered the most? I am assuming you are a right wing Catholic? Just where did th Economics: have you studied Modern Monetary Theory? The state has all the money it needs. It is called the Bank of… Read more »

February 20, 2021

Laborare est orare….a basic Christian tenet, which is rendered in the original Greek first of all.
Perhaps Dark Man confuses ‘make work’ with real work.

John Carlisle
Reply to  Tsigantes
February 21, 2021

And it was a tenet given to monastic religious who did not work for a wage. Do conflate this with jobs. Have you read about Major Douglas, a Catholic economic visionary?

February 20, 2021

I am making 10,000 Dollars at home own laptop. Just do work online 2 to 4 hour properly. so i make my family happy and u can do check it out what i do………

John Carlisle
Reply to  Hope
February 21, 2021


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