Universal Health Care, Childcare and a Guaranteed Minimum Income in the United States

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Universal Health Care, Childcare and a Guaranteed Minimum Income in the United States Guaranteed minimum income is advocated by some as a solution to the problems of welfare, poverty and homelessness. Others argue that a guaranteed annual income should be a right provided to everyone without strings. Since everyone or at least their parents and grand parents shared in the creation of the wealth of today's society, they should now receive a share of that wealth. The guarantee income idea, found ground in the 1960's, two extremes were opposed. Milton Freidman wrote in "Capitalism and Freedom", that a negative income tax should be extended to low income families. Unfortunately Friedman's proposal would have provided only about half the income needed to exceed half the poverty level. Another economist, Robert Theobald proposed a universal guaranteed income that would not be tied to acceptance of work. In the 1960's Theobald predicted that automation would continue to eliminate jobs and therefor, income should be separated from employment. He was attacked from suggesting a jobless future. (http://coss.net.au/library/cat/2638.html) Martin Luther King Jr. explained in 1967 why he supported a guaranteed annual income: " A host of positive psychological changes inevitably will result from widespread economic security. The dignity of the individual will flourish when the decisions concerning his life and in his won hands, when he has the assurance that his income is stable and certain, and when he knows that he has the means to seek self-improvement." Nearly thirty years later, this year's welfare "reform" threatens the guaranteed income for the poor. (http://www.progress.org/dividend/cdking.html) In 1996, Robert Theobald returned to the subject of a guaranteed income. Theobald believes "people would spend most of their lives on self-development, on relationships, on the arts, on finding purpose and meaning. Sufficient goods would be available and the quality of life would just be better. One would agree with Mr. Theobald when it comes to a guaranteed income. (http://www.indra.com/transform/tlc/rtpage.html) Another big issue is Universal HealthCare. Over 42 million Americans are uninsured and millions more are at risk of losing their healthcare. The US is the only industrialized nation without a national guarantee of health care for all. The recent World Health Organization report ranked the US Health system 37th in the world based on what experts estimate could be accomplished with the resources available in the country, and only 55th in fairness.

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