Once again, Switzerland leads the developed world in demonstrating how civilized nations are supposed to live. Via Reuters:
A grassroots committee is calling for all adults in Switzerland to receive an unconditional income of 2,500 Swiss francs ($2,800) per month from the state, with the aim of providing a financial safety net for the population.
Organizers submitted more than the 100,000 signatures needed to call a referendum on Friday and tipped a truckload of 8 million five-rappen coins outside the parliament building in Berne, one for each person living in Switzerland.Another high-minded Swiss proposal restricts monthly executive pay to no more than what the lowest paid employee earns in a year. Now termed the 1:12 Initiative, that too quickly garnered the requisite signatures, and will now be voted on in November.
Reuters reports that the vote on a guaranteed liveable income will similarly be scheduled by the government, and in accordance with Swiss laws on popular referendums usually held several times a year in this forward-reaching nation.
Guaranteed income is not a new idea, though this appears to be the first time the proposed amount is a truly liveable figure available to every citizen and relative to the actual cost of living, and the first time it may soon be a reality.
The visionary Swiss inspire me so with their courageous and ethical economic standards, I'm reposting 1936 friend Felix, though again (from Mr. Napoleon to Mr. Nixon and to many others), he is by no means the first.
In the U.S. currently, the bottom 40% of the population reportedly has only 0.3% of the wealth, and the top 20% has 84%, with most Americans wishing to live in an economy that has a much more equal distribution of the proverbial pie.
Don't you think it's time we took our minds out of the mud, and started thinking and acting more like the Swiss? Here they are peacefully signing petitions for an unconditional basic income while standing in line at a train station in Bern:
Coupled with the Swiss universal health care system, this referendum would sensibly abolish poverty and economic insecurity in their nation right away.
Yes, indeed, let's get on board that train. Let's do that in the United States.
Photo credit/top, via MSN, photographer: Denis Balibouse, "A truck dumps five cent coins in the centre of the Federal Square during a an event organised by the Committee for the initiative 'CHF 2,500 monthly for everyone" in Bern October 4, 2013.'" There is a coin for every single Swiss citizen, a symbolic gesture on behalf of a unconditional basic income for all./Bottom, via Irving in Rhetoric and Civil Life, U.S. poverty protester, "This sign does an excellent job of not only highlighting one issue but criticizing another."