Thursday, December 29, 2011

Peter Cooper on the BIG and the JG

The JG seems to be hot topic on some MMT blogs at the moment. Peter Cooper asks whether a job guarantee or a basic income guarantee is preferable.

Read it at The
The Transition to a Freer Society: BIG or JG?
by Peter Cooper
(h/t Clonal in the comments)

Good comments, too.


Anonymous said...

A JG would be viewed as less radical than a guaranteed income. I basically agree with Neil. Bill Mitchell also wrote a comparative between the two and why he preferred the JG.

If you're doing reform, the process involves transition through 'baby steps'.

Tom Hickey said...

My comment at Peter C.'s

A big plus for a BIG, in the US at least, is the very convenient fact that Milton Friedman and other prominent conservative and Libertarian economists have already proposed one, in addition to a bevy of liberal economists. A “negative income tax” is an economic policy idea that has legs in the US, whereas a JG is anathema to the right, who absolutely hate FDR’s New Deal programs like the WPA and CCC.

Winners of the Nobel Prize in Economics who fully support a basic income include Herbert Simon[30], Friedrich Hayek[31][32], James Meade, Robert Solow[33], and Milton Friedman[34]. [Wikipedia-Basic Income Guarantee]

beowulf said...


Most conservatives are fairly indifferent to policy, they just know they're against whatever liberals are for. Conservatives were against Job Guarantee and in favor of a NIT (inefficient bureaucracy vs efficient tax system) when the New Dealers were providing "make work" WPA jobs. But when liberals (or moderate Republicans like Nixon) suggest using an NIT to provide a basic income guarantee, then they switch arguments from efficiency to equity, advocating the value of earned wages vs unearned welfare.

That same dynamic is playing out with Republicans like Romney and Gingrich who once advocated "conservative solutions" like a payroll tax holiday or an individual mandate for health insurance having to sheepishly eat their own words once our Kenyan, socialist Democratic President adopting Republican proposals.

Anonymous said...

Why did Friedman support this?

I could see conservatives supporting this as a way to reduce the administrative costs of traditional welfare programs.