On the Conditions of Successful Universal Basic Income

July 30, 2018

Whether universal basic income (UBI) is worthy of support depends on how it is implemented. The idea of BI is old, but one of its best-known recent supporters has been Milton Friedman. For many economists like Friedman, it is only a negative income tax that is intended to replace most or all forms of social security and public services. The result would be an ever-more privatised market-based society. This is in sharp contrast to classical social democracy, where especially health and education are seen as areas of social life that should be decommodified. [This text was originally published as a part of the One Question forum on Universal Basic Income on 30 July 2018.]

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Trump and Putin: After Helsinki

July 22, 2018

Former CIA Director John Brennan, numerous pundits and a large part of US public opinion are accusing Trump of treason on the basis of what happened in Helsinki. The accusation is that Trump betrayed his country by endorsing Putin’s denial of meddling over FBI’s and CIA’s view that Russia interfered in the US elections.

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The Capitalist Realism of ‘Seveneves’

July 6, 2018

Frederick Jameson has pointed out that nowadays it seems easier to imagine the end of the world than the end of capitalism.[1] Apocalyptic stories have become increasingly popular. In its original Christian meaning, however, apocalypse is laden with hope about a better world emerging. Neal Stephenson’s science fiction novel Seveneves (2015) is a work of capitalist realism, providing only a glimpse of hope – one of a reoccurrence of the US-style late 20th century capitalism in 7,000 ACE, on the New Earth. And even this glimpse of hope remains under threat. The reds are still out there trying to undermine the social system to which there is no real alternative.

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Crisis of Globalisation: From Its Causes to Emancipation

June 8, 2018

The assumption that we can continue with the current institutions of the world economy – leaving all the most important global problems and contradictions unresolved – seems hopelessly utopian. [This is the sixth in the series of Social Europe on the Crisis of Globalisation, following the contributions of Dani Rodrik, James K.Galbraith, Robert Kuttner and others. It was originally published on 6 June 2018 here and other contributions can be found here and here.]

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