Labour’s international brains trust


David Farrar

Robert Reich

Who’s right about Labour's minimum basic income proposal?

Morgan: “An idea that’s time has come”
Farrar: “Fantasy land stuff”
Stephens: “Worth looking at in principle”
Total votes: 289

Look at what these international gurus  rely on are actually saying:

, who said he once dated Hillary Clinton before she married, told a Labour Party conference in Auckland today that a guaranteed minimum income for all was “the only way of dealing with where technology is taking us”.

“When technology is going to be replacing most jobs, how do we get the money back to people so they can buy the technology?” he asked.

He said technology was heading towards what he called an “i-everything” that would be able to use 3D printing to print out anything a consumer wanted.

“The problem is no one will be able to afford that, because nobody will have a job,” he said.

So Reich thinks the future is so bleak we’ll have 100% unemployment, and the government should just pay everyone $200 a week.

Professor Standing said a universal basic income should not be a policy for “the distant future”.

“We always have to act and speak as if it’s tomorrow, not say kick it into touch and we’ll deal with it later,” he said.

He said a basic income could be justified on the principle that most of our current wealth was created by our ancestors, and it was only fair to share some of that common wealth with everyone.

Oh, wealth belongs to our common ancestors. Right. In that case, I’d like Professor Standing’s house and car.

“You allow private inheritance, Mr Prime Minister,” he said. “They have done nothing for something, they are given the right to incomes and wealth. Can we have a modest social amount?”

Note the views of the hard left. Private inheritance is something the government allows! His view is all property belongs to the government, and we plebs are lucky enough to have a government allow us to keep some of it.

He regards private inheritance as getting something for nothing. Let’s have 100% death duties!

Finance spokesman Grant Robertson picked up a comment by Mr Reich that any national basic income scheme might be 10 or 15 years away.

“It’s some way away,” Mr Robertson said.

That is the sound of backing away as quickly as possible.

Mr Reich suggested that a basic income could be funded by “a small share of the revenues from intellectual property”.

If you profit from intellectual property, you pay income tax on it.

Is Reich saying that all intellectual property should belong to the state, and be split between the state and the creator?

Political commentator and pollster David Farrar posts at Kiwiblog.

Subscribe to NBR Radio’s Sunday Business with Andrew Patterson podcast for analysis and feature-length interviews each Sunday morning

4 · Got a question about this story? Leave it in Comments & Questions below.

This article is tagged with the following keywords. Find out more about MyNBR Tags

Post Comment

4 Comments & Questions

Commenter icon key: Subscriber Verified

A rather biased article

At least someone is exploring how the future might look and then will be able to respond accordingly if appropriate. At least it might protect our sovereignty and individual independence.

As opposed to the lack of research that went into the TPP and which we also steamrolled through even though the USA looks increasingly likely not to sign off on - once again NZ leads the way like with WTO world trade agreements, Kyoto agreements etc etc and no one else follows - meanwhile the NZ public pays the price

  • 0
  • 0

How will a universal basic income protect individual independence?
Surely it will increase ones reliance on the state? From there it is a small step to demand certain compliances or conduct from citizens in order for them to retain the dole. At the very least it fosters the debilitating belief that one is incapable of providing for oneself. I believe it is called welfare dependence, and it's a prison.
The lack of research into the TPP is entirely the point. It's a wealth transfer, a rent extraction. Eventually, a long, long way in the future, all New Zealand assets (including water) will be owned by foreign hands. Our Grandchildren will pay the rent (to the architects of TPPA) on things we once did for free.
National and Labour both support it because, like parasites, they see themselves as beneficiaries of these funds. The integrity of our sovereignty is something we should guard very judiciously, in my opinion.

  • 0
  • 0

I think potentially things may be much the same David. You and your rich mates will own lots of robots and the rest of us will have none

  • 0
  • 0

I hate the thought of being dependent on the State for my livelihood.

  • 0
  • 0

Post New comment or question

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.