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(72,631 posts)
Wed Jan 22, 2014, 08:57 PM Jan 2014

In Case You Missed This... 'Swiss Voters Consider Guaranteed Income For All'

Swiss Voters Consider Guaranteed Income For All
Wednesday, November 27, 2013


Swiss residents will soon vote on a referendum that would provide an unconditional monthly income to every adult. If passed, each citizen will be guaranteed $2,800 per month — that’s $33,600 a year.

The guaranteed income concept is gaining steam in many parts of the world: there are pilot projects in India, Brazil and Namibia.

Both liberals and conservatives find merit in providing basic incomes to individuals — for different reasons. Progressives see it as an anti-poverty measure; conservatives believe it will reduce the size of government by getting rid of food stamps and welfare programs.

There are concerns about whether it would create a disincentive to work, but some experts say the effect might be smaller than expected.

A study by economist Evelyn Forget of the University of Manitoba examined a small rural town in Canada, where...


Link: http://hereandnow.wbur.org/2013/11/27/swiss-guaranteed-income

In Case You Missed This... 'Swiss Voters Consider Guaranteed Income For All' (Original Post) WillyT Jan 2014 OP
didn't this referendum narrowly fail? yodermon Jan 2014 #1
And I'm Rooting For It... WillyT Jan 2014 #2
amazing to contemplate marions ghost Jan 2014 #3
Many people "work" in jobs that destroy the natural environment and their communities. hunter Jan 2014 #4
Someone still has to do the dirty work seveneyes Jan 2014 #5
And they would have to be paid well to do it. That's sure not a bad thing. pampango Jan 2014 #6
Yes, extra pay to those who do the dirty work seveneyes Jan 2014 #7
All kinds of work will still need to be done. People will have to be paid well to do it. pampango Jan 2014 #9
What's "dirty work?" hunter Jan 2014 #12
It will inspire entrepreneurship SoCalDem Jan 2014 #8
question on the specifics forthemiddle Jan 2014 #10
For those that actually want some numbers- snooper2 Jan 2014 #11


(6,143 posts)
1. didn't this referendum narrowly fail?
Wed Jan 22, 2014, 09:20 PM
Jan 2014

Off to Google it
On edit:
Nope, what failed was the CEO salary cap. Guaranteed income vote is later this year.


(37,976 posts)
4. Many people "work" in jobs that destroy the natural environment and their communities.
Wed Jan 22, 2014, 11:03 PM
Jan 2014

A disincentive to "work" combined with incentives to do interesting satisfying activities that actually restore the environment and strengthen communities might be a very good thing.


(24,692 posts)
6. And they would have to be paid well to do it. That's sure not a bad thing.
Thu Jan 23, 2014, 09:16 AM
Jan 2014

Apparently many Swiss are not worried that the country's economy would grind to a halt if a guaranteed income were introduced.



(4,631 posts)
7. Yes, extra pay to those who do the dirty work
Thu Jan 23, 2014, 09:30 AM
Jan 2014

Otherwise, why would anyone do anything other than enjoy the benefits and spend their time doing what they desire.


(24,692 posts)
9. All kinds of work will still need to be done. People will have to be paid well to do it.
Thu Jan 23, 2014, 09:34 AM
Jan 2014

A balance will be worked out but it will not be based on exploitation and low pay.


(37,976 posts)
12. What's "dirty work?"
Thu Jan 23, 2014, 11:22 AM
Jan 2014

Why should an economy have "dirty work?"

Jobs with "dirt" can be satisfying if the pay is good and the working conditions are friendly.

Keeping hospitals and patients clean might be very satisfying work for someone who wants to work in medicine but is not academically inclined. Repairing plumbing is often filthy work, same with all sorts of agricultural work.

The worst jobs I've ever had were never "dirty" because of dirt, they were dirty because the employer or work culture was utterly rotten. Being a cop is a necessary job, but nobody wants "dirty" cops, right? Farm labor is necessary work, but nobody wants "dirty" labor bosses who tolerate dangerous working conditions, short people's pay, sexually harass, or otherwise threaten and abuse workers, right?

With a strong social safety net rotten employers will not be able to find workers they can abuse, and that's a good thing. Anyone will feel safe to tell a dirty boss "Take this job and shove it!"

There will be no "dirty" work.

Most people are not inclined to stay at home and do nothing, and if they are, so what? Their impact on the economy and environment is minimal, and they are probably not employable anyways. So many people want to work and can't find jobs why should they have to compete with those who are reluctant to participate? Society ought to, in fact, be paying someone to check up on the non-participants and offer social services to those who are not doing well and figure out why. It might be mental or physical illness, drug addiction, etc... If it really is just plain dull "would rather watch television," then does anyone want to work with a person like that? That kind of dullardness is probably the only true disability, most everyone else has some kind of sparkle within that they will contribute something positive to the community so long as their basic needs are met.

I don't believe "the devil finds work for idle hands" so much as he finds work for those who are hungry for power over other people.


(103,856 posts)
8. It will inspire entrepreneurship
Thu Jan 23, 2014, 09:32 AM
Jan 2014

and they already have a universal medical plan in place, so there will be no impediment..


(1,362 posts)
10. question on the specifics
Thu Jan 23, 2014, 09:38 AM
Jan 2014

The conservatives seem to like it because it will eliminate food stamps and welfare, is that in total? Because if it is, what happens to the few people that truly will spend through there guaranteed income?
This is where this topic always scares me. We all know that there are people with drug, alcohol, or even gambling addictions that will spend through there entire check as soon as it is given to them. At least with food stamps (theoretically) they must be used specifically for food, same with rent subsidies, and other directed aid. If a person spends through all of there money, and have dependent children, do we then let them starve?

I know there are ways to work around every problem, but if the end ALL other benefits what happens to the irresponsible few that will fall through the cracks?



(30,151 posts)
11. For those that actually want some numbers-
Thu Jan 23, 2014, 09:49 AM
Jan 2014

I guess if you are pretty frugal you could live there on what is proposed. The bill said EVERY adult so two folks should actually be able to get by pretty good living together, in theory. I found a site with apartments/homes etc for rent and they have underground "hobby rooms" for rent running CHF100-CHF550 so space is a premium

Not like you would have to worry about retirement though LOL

Today $2800 US would equal CHF2526

In Zurich expect to pay from CHF 1,500 for a 2 room apartment in a central location (prices are lower further out), and in the region of CHF 2,000-2,500 for 4 room accommodation.

Switzerland has for a long time had a high cost of living, relative to its European neighbours. This does not seem set to change. In the 2011 Mercer Cost of Living survey, Geneva was ranked 5th in the world's top 5 most expensive cities

CHF 2.00 Loaf of sliced bread
CHF 1.30 Litre of milk (supermarket own-brand)
CHF 4.70 180g Pack of sliced ham (supermarket own-brand)
CHF 4.10 200g Pack of inexpensive sliced cheese
CHF 5.80 Chilled ready-made pizza (4 Seasons)
CHF 4.80 500g branded cereal (Kelloggs Frosties)
CHF 1.60 500g Cornflakes (supermarket value brand)
CHF 1.15 Litre orange juice (supermarket own-brand)
CHF 1.80 500g Penne pasta (branded)
CHF 0.95 1kg Spaghetti (supermarket value brand)
CHF 1.25 500g Onions
CHF 4.50 100g Prawns (supermarket own brand)
CHF 5.80 200g Vegetarian sausages (branded)
CHF 1.80 125g Jar baby food
CHF 16.10 56 Midi (4-9kg) Nappies/Diapers (supermarket own brand)
CHF 7.40 12 Rolls toilet paper (supermarket own brand)
CHF 5.85 1kg Dry cat food (Whiskas)
CHF 8.00 5l Cat litter (Catsan)
CHF 6.95 4 x 300g Moist dog food (Pedigree)

Expect to spend anywhere between 100 to 300 CHF per week on groceries for 2 adults, depending on your lifestyle, alcohol consumption, and how much time you are prepared to spend in the kitchen. Shopping at Aldi, Lidl or Denner will cost less than shopping at Coop or Migros.

Heating and electricity may be included in the rent as part of the additional 'Nebenkosten' (utilities and common charges). Nebenkosten will vary depending on the size of the property. As a rough guide, expect to pay between 12% and 20% of the monthly rent as an additional Nebenkosten charge. If your personal expenditure for your own apartment is included in the Nebenkosten, you should expect a further bill at the end of the year (Nebenkostenabrechnung) over and above your monthly payments. Expats in rental properties have in recent years received annual bills in the region of CHF 1,500 to 3,000 from their landlords. For the monthly payments plus end of year bill (Nebenkostenabrechnung) for an average size apartment, allow for CHF 250 to CHF 300 a month.

Here is what CHF800 a month gets you-

Somebody else can convert 14 m2 to square feet

MITBEWOHNERIN in Terassenwohnung zwecks Kostenteilung-fully furnished

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Roosstrasse 72
8105 Regensdorf

Terrace flat
Number of rooms: 1
Floor: 3. Floor
Living space: 14 m2
Year built : 2004
Available: immediately

Rent/month: CHF 800.--
Net rent: CHF 700.--
Add'l expenses: CHF 100.--


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