Gilbert Index

Basic Income

Imagine you were to receive a direct deposit into your bank account for an extra $2,000 per month. And you receive this sum for no other reason than the good fortune of being a U.S. resident. What would your life be like?

Would you create something? Would it give you more freedom? Would you invest it and save for retirement? Would it allow you to quit your job and start a business? Would it go towards education? Would it go towards necessities like food or transportation? Would it help you raise your children?

Just imagine all the productive ways you could put an extra $2,000 to use.

If this sounds like a fantasy—receiving money from the government with no strings attached—it’s not. It’s called Basic Income, and the concept is catching hold in countries across the world, including the United States:

  • Y Combinator, a Bay Area-based startup incubator and one of the most prestigious in the world, is conducting a Basic Income pilot project.
  • Finland is running a Basic Income experiment with 2,000 Finns.
  • The Canadian province of Ontario will soon launch a pilot study in spring 2017.
  • Four cities in the Netherlands—Groningen, Tilburg, Utrecht and Wageningen—will run a trial project and give selected residents a Basic Income.

For all intents and purposes, Basic Income has arrived to the United States. It’s a done deal. We’re just working out the final kinks to get the policy right. I predict you’ll start to see candidates—both Republican and Democrat—running on platforms in support of Basic Income within five years. And within ten years, you’ll start to receive a check in the mail or a direct deposit into your bank account.

The reason why you see Basic Income making waves in the United States is because, amazingly, both Democrats and Republicans and the business community support Basic Income. Republicans support Basic Income because it can reduce the size of government and make the welfare system more efficient and moral. Democrats support Basic Income because it can create a fairer, more equal social safety net. And businesses support Basic Income because they know technology is displacing workers and Basic Income is a way to help people build up their savings.

Basic Income is like the military. You might disagree about what the military budget should be, but no matter what you support our soldiers. Americans will support Basic Income like they support the troops.

And just like we’re creative in finding money to invest in the military budget, you’ll realize there’s money to invest in the Basic Income budget too. Which means, you’ll soon find yourself $2,000 dollars wealthier per month.


If you’d like to learn more about Basic Income, you can find a wealth of information at the Basic Income Earth Network.

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