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If you were handed $1,100 a month, would you amount to anything?

SalveMaterSalveMater 407 replies18 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 425 Member


Here’s a question Germany seeks to answer—would the country be a better place if each citizen was given a check worth $1,100 by the government each month, with no strings attached? Would people still feel compelled to get up, go to work, and be productive with an unconditional basic income (which, by the way, is half the average monthly wage in Germany but twice the amount of those receiving welfare)?

These are the questions that the privately funded German experiment involving 26 people, “Mein Grundeinkommen” (My Basic Income) wants to answer. The project is financed through crowdfunded donations that raise issues about Germany’s utopian ideals given the rise of poverty in Europe.

A basic income paid out to everyone could unleash enormous amounts of creativity,” said Michael Bohmeyer, a 31 year old who launched “My Basic Income” project in 2014. “[So] to be able to work creatively, people need some security, they need to feel free. And they can get that with a basic income.”

The participants picked from a pool of 66,000 applicants, have been chosen at random and additional participants are chosen through drawings and are set to receive the money each month for a full year. Participants are free to use the money as they wish. Each new draw is held whenever enough donations have been collected. To date, 31,449 have made donations.

For most participants who have been chosen for the experiment, the guaranteed income is not enough to spur them to quit their jobs. “The one thing that everyone tells us is that they’re able to sleep much better,” Bohmeyer said. “But, ostensibly, not a lot changes: The students keep studying, the workers keep working, and the pensioners are still pensioners. But there is a big change that takes place in their minds. People feel liberated and they feel healthier.”

What do you think? Is this the way of the future?

Here's a link to the LA Times article

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Replies to: If you were handed $1,100 a month, would you amount to anything?

  • thumper1thumper1 73033 replies3180 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 76,213 Senior Member
    If someone gave me this money...I would put it to good use.

    And yes, my husband, my kids and I would,still get up in the morning to work.
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  • romanigypsyeyesromanigypsyeyes 33159 replies766 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 33,925 Senior Member
    I used to receive several hundred a month from SS because my father was disabled. Yes, I still worked from a very young age.

    I also received several hundred a month in government assistance in undergrad through food stamps and whatnot. Yes, I still worked my butt off going to school and working full time.

    So yes, I'd still work my butt off just like most people on government assistance do.

    For me, an extra 1.1k would go towards student loans- not an issue in Germany.
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  • SalveMaterSalveMater 407 replies18 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 425 Member
    Yup I'd put it to good use too. I like this bit in the article, "Bohmeyer said another winner, unable to work because of chronic ailments, wound up with less stress and fear than when he had to miss work. "For the last nine months he hasn't had any more episodes," said Bohmeyer. "For a meager 1,000 euros per month, a human being has got his health back. Is that unreal, or what?" Does that make me a leftist socialist lol :-O
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  • HImomHImom 33856 replies387 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 34,243 Senior Member
    We get a sum from rental income every month. It goes toward income taxes. In HI, you could not really pay all living expenses on $1100/month, probably not even monthly rent, but it would help.
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  • FallGirlFallGirl 7978 replies27 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 8,005 Senior Member
    The people who work hard now would still work hard. The people who don't want to work would still not want to work. ( I'm the former, BTW).
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  • anomanderanomander 1645 replies4 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 1,649 Senior Member
    Can't do a whole lot with $1.1k/month. You could put it towards your retirement and retire early, but just living on that amount would be pretty tough. I think it would make a nice college/car/vacation fund for a lot of people though.
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  • twoinanddonetwoinanddone 21937 replies14 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 21,951 Senior Member
    There are some Indian tribes where all members get a similar deal - a monthly check and most other needs (medical, dental, schooling) provided. Some do get up and go to work and some don't. Some take advantage of tuition and training programs, some don't.
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  • MaineLonghornMaineLonghorn 37373 replies2040 discussionsSuper Moderator Posts: 39,413 Super Moderator
    We would buy snowmobiles! :)
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  • busdriver11busdriver11 15144 replies28 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 15,172 Senior Member
    I don't think I'd even notice it, as almost half would disappear due to taxes, anyways. I'd say give it to those who truly need it, and nobody else.
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  • anomanderanomander 1645 replies4 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 1,649 Senior Member
    "And yet, 1.1k/month would put someone above the federal poverty level (which tens of millions of Americans live below)."

    That's my point, in a roundabout way. It's enough to subsist on by itself, but you'd have to work and supplement it if you wanted a more comfortable life. All by itself with no other income, 13k/year isn't enough to "unleash creativity".

    For people living on the edge it would be a godsend though, in terms of quality of life.
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  • eyemamomeyemamom 5343 replies78 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 5,421 Senior Member
    Where is this money coming from? There is usually a reason people are in poverty and sometimes a helping hand helps, sometimes it doesn't. It's too complex to say just give people money, what people need is a mile long, opportunity, education, expectations of success, a stable family, a home, nutritious food, good health. Then they also need the drive and determination to do more than survive and the discipline to manage their resources.

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  • GMTplus7GMTplus7 14270 replies297 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 14,567 Senior Member
    Where is this money coming from? 
    Probably from people like me, but not from people like these:

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