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View Full Version : Switzerland’s Proposal to Pay People for Being Alive



wardd
11-12-2013, 05:04 PM
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/17/magazine/switzerlands-proposal-to-pay-people-for-being-alive.html?pagewanted=1&_r=1&smid=tw-share&

TomF
11-12-2013, 05:09 PM
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/17/magazine/switzerlands-proposal-to-pay-people-for-being-alive.html?pagewanted=1&_r=1&smid=tw-share&Would be far less expensive than paying people who're dead.

slug
11-12-2013, 05:29 PM
The swiss have been talking about it for some time. I dont believe its been enacted.

the concept is good.

The same goes for. 12 to 1. The attack on executive pay. Good concept, but i believe it was defeated

Captain Intrepid
11-12-2013, 06:07 PM
Sounds a bit like the Social Credit philosophy. Be interesting for a country to try it.

slug
11-13-2013, 12:55 AM
Too many people in the modern economy are made redundant due to destructive technology. You cant retrain a 50 something year old worker...

this situation will only get worse. I salute the Swiss for thinking of strategies to cope with it

epoxyboy
11-13-2013, 03:24 AM
Too many people in the modern economy are made redundant due to destructive technology. You cant retrain a 50 something year old worker
Well that's OK then, I still have six months to learn something new before my brain turns to mush, and I start drooling. What a load of bs!

Pete

slug
11-13-2013, 03:43 AM
Oh well....Perhaps your brain has already gone a bit mushy !!

with life expectance always rising , while automation is constantly displacing workers, techniques to promote social cohesion will be needed.

a social living wage is an attempt to address this and give workers that cant and never will fit back into the labour pool a dignified life

epoxyboy
11-13-2013, 04:25 AM
Oh well....Perhaps your brain has already gone a bit mushy !!

with life expectance always rising , while automation is constantly displacing workers, techniques to promote social cohesion will be needed.

a social living wage is an attempt to address this and give workers that cant and never will fit back into the labour pool a dignified life
I was referring to the bit about not being able to retrain workers over the age of 50. How countries address the imbalance between jobs and workers, and the resulting social fallout, has nothing to do with the trainability or otherwise the people concerned. Check out the stats for youth unemployment in many countries - if they are the most trainable on account of their youth and beauty, why are so many of them unemployed? I am surprised that the resident republicans haven't savaged this idea, given the frothing at the mouth over Obamacare ;)

Pete

slug
11-13-2013, 04:41 AM
The youth have no training and don't want training.

the average age of a skilled American tradesman, manufacturing worker is 52 years old. This is why the american manufacturing sector can never rebound without imported labour.

besides, think of the reality. I Can introduce you to a highly skilled boatbuilding carpenter. At 48 years old his body is broken. Hands are jumpy from power tools, back is broken from working on his hands and knees.....he is unemployable .

what will happen to my friend Alex ?

in the perfect world he throws in the towel then goes home to build little wooden skiffs. While building these little wooden skiffs he trains young people and remains a productive person with pride . He will never make enough money with this activity...any worker who leaves work or pursues public service will live in poverty.

Why not just eliminate this poverty, this stress and let the broken or displaced worker get on with life as he chooses it to be.

McMike
11-13-2013, 06:58 AM
Too many people in the modern economy are made redundant due to destructive technology. You cant retrain a 50 something year old worker...

this situation will only get worse. I salute the Swiss for thinking of strategies to cope with it

Load of BS; if a 55 year old worker can't be retrained its because he won't be retrained.... I'm all for safety nets and welfare for the children, sick and, elderly, I'm all for helping a person who's down on their luck, but at some point we have to have an expectation that a perfectly able citizen will grow the eff up and work.

TomF
11-13-2013, 07:06 AM
A 55 year old worker can certainly be re-trained; what's twitchy is will he be re-hired. That's less his choice than someone else's calculation of his benefit to them.

Reality is that the economy doesn't much like hiring people at either end of the working age bell curve.

Reynard38
11-13-2013, 07:13 AM
Oh well....Perhaps your brain has already gone a bit mushy !!

with life expectance always rising , while automation is constantly displacing workers, techniques to promote social cohesion will be needed.

a social living wage is an attempt to address this and give workers that cant and never will fit back into the labour pool a dignified life

At 51 I learned to loft and am building a traditional plank on frame lapstrake boat. In a few years I'll probably move from my antiquated MD-88 to a highly automated Airbus A-321.
My 50 something year old brain is working just fine, thank you.
And if you want to open your wallet for the sake of "social cohesion" (whatever the hell that is) have at it. But please don't expect the rest of us to pay for it. I'm all for social programs to give folks a helping hand when things go wrong, but if you aren't willing to learn to help yourself that's just lazy.

slug
11-13-2013, 07:30 AM
A 55 year old worker can certainly be re-trained; what's twitchy is will he be re-hired. That's less his choice than someone else's calculation of his benefit to them.

Reality is that the economy doesn't much like hiring people at either end of the working age bell curve.

studies tell us that it takes five years before a retrained worker can reenter the workforce with his new skill.

during these 5 years the worker has gone broke.


this retrained , financialy exhausted, older worker will now be competing toe to toe with youth and enter the workforce at minimium wage.

not a happy outcome for the senoir worker and not a good outcome for the young equally trained worker attempting to establish a career.

slug
11-13-2013, 07:39 AM
Load of BS; if a 55 year old worker can't be retrained its because he won't be retrained.... I'm all for safety nets and welfare for the children, sick and, elderly, I'm all for helping a person who's down on their luck, but at some point we have to have an expectation that a perfectly able citizen will grow the eff up and work.
Something to consider is that Switzerland easily outcompetes America and is considered the best managed country with the most competitive economy in the world.

A proposal by the Swiss will always carry more weight than a proposal by an American.

It would be worthwhile to study the proposal.

.

slug
11-13-2013, 08:13 AM
I believe that you should be encouraged to use your life to pursue studies or training that makes you a better citizen.

these studies may not be financialy viable .

If you recieved a guaranteed living wage, you will be better equipped to make desicions for your future.

for some workers, particulaly highly skilled older workers, part time contract work in your proffesion wont pay the bills .

with a guaranteed living wage , part time work becomes more attractive and benifits society by making the labour force flexible.

TomZ
11-13-2013, 09:06 AM
After reading the article, I think I would actually support this. Our current welfare system seems to de-motivate the recipients.
If you were guaranteed a basic life, you would be freed up to improve it - and after lounging around for a little while, I think most people start looking around for some way to make it better, except that the current system only continues that safety net as long as you are doing nothing.

I totally reject the idea that a community where basic needs are met, will just give up and live on the couch. I think this only happens were your inactivity is a requirement of your current survival plan.

wardd
11-13-2013, 10:31 AM
At 51 I learned to loft and am building a traditional plank on frame lapstrake boat. In a few years I'll probably move from my antiquated MD-88 to a highly automated Airbus A-321.
My 50 something year old brain is working just fine, thank you.
And if you want to open your wallet for the sake of "social cohesion" (whatever the hell that is) have at it. But please don't expect the rest of us to pay for it. I'm all for social programs to give folks a helping hand when things go wrong, but if you aren't willing to learn to help yourself that's just lazy.

how many crew on a trans atlantic dc-7 compared to the a-231?

how many ground crew for each?

TomF
11-13-2013, 10:41 AM
The more effective re-trainings occur when a laid off worker has a passion they've wanted to follow up anyway ... becomes an entrepreneur working for themselves, and their passion finds a good niche. Lee Valley Tools was started by bureaucrats whose jobs were affected by Government cutbacks, for instance.

So long as you're developing new skills to market to some other employer though, they'll weigh how long you'll be useful to them, compared with a younger person with the same skill set. Makes it a much tougher market.

slug
11-13-2013, 11:01 AM
I suspect that most people on this forum are baby boomers like myself. Our generation escaped destructive technology .

no young person can follow my footsteps..the path is gone. For my generation work, money. ....Everything just fell on our laps.

I live in a small regional city..25 thousand. When i walk thru town i can see that retail has been devastated...i cant purchase a camera, a laptop... all the shops have been run out of business by the internet.....the trusted general hardware store has been affected so badly by internet shopping that they turn the lights off during the day to save money. i must shop with a flashlight.

all these jobs are permanently gone. Technology has destroyed them.

Youth unemployment is a fact of life. Part time work for moms with kids is gone.

the state payroll is bloated in an attempt to deal with the problem. Make work jobs in an era in which the real jobs will never return are not sustainable.

thinking minds will have to come up with a social system that deals with this new world.


this new world is coming to your town very soon...

i just read the Starbucks will be replacing staff with coffee making robots....its true.

peb
11-13-2013, 11:21 AM
A couple of thoughts come to mind:

1) I do believe there is a long term trend in place such that we just don't need the amount of overall labor to support society as we used to. If we compare how many people it took to feed us all 100 years ago relative to now, we see a really good example. But none of this is new, it has been going on for quite a while. Now, since labor is traditionally the primary means of distribution of wealth, and that should not change. We have a time-tested, workable strategy to deal with this trend. It is not just giving money to people, there is no dignity in that, regardless of what the article says. It is actually extremely simple, and I continue to be shocked it is not being debated to a great extent, as it currently has potentially very good short term benefits.
Reduce the standard number of hours in a workweek!!!


2) I am more and more convinced quantitative easing is a very bad monetary policy. But if our economic experts feel it must be done, why are we doing it in such a way. If we must inject such large amounts of money into the system, why do in in such a concentrated area. We would be better off just sending a check to everyone, every so often, from the federal reserve. It would not have much positive impact on the economy, but neither does QE as it is being executed, but at least it would be more fair.

slug
11-13-2013, 11:37 AM
A couple of thoughts come to mind:

1) I do believe there is a long term trend in place such that we just don't need the amount of overall labor to support society as we used to. If we compare how many people it took to feed us all 100 years ago relative to now, we see a really good example. But none of this is new, it has been going on for quite a while. Now, since labor is traditionally the primary means of distribution of wealth, and that should not change. We have a time-tested, workable strategy to deal with this trend. It is not just giving money to people, there is no dignity in that, regardless of what the article says. It is actually extremely simple, and I continue to be shocked it is not being debated to a great extent, as it currently has potentially very good short term benefits.
Reduce the standard number of hours in a workweek!!!


2) I am more and more convinced quantitative easing is a very bad monetary policy. But if our economic experts feel it must be done, why are we doing it in such a way. If we must inject such large amounts of money into the system, why do in in such a concentrated area. We would be better off just sending a check to everyone, every so often, from the federal reserve. It would not have much positive impact on the economy, but neither does QE as it is being executed, but at least it would be more fair.


the French tried that...short work week. Completion from outside states, countries made it look wanky.

Monetary policy is being used to create full employment. Sounds like a good idea.

is the sustainable ?

dont know.

Low interest rates do nothing for me...my pension looks terrible. Future inflation makes it look even worse.

perhaps the next generation will benefit..i dont know anything about economics.

peb
11-13-2013, 11:44 AM
the French tried that...short work week. Completion from outside states, countries made it look wanky.

Monetary policy is being used to create full employment. Sounds like a good idea.

is the sustainable ?

dont know.

Low interest rates do nothing for me...my pension looks terrible. Future inflation makes it look even worse.

perhaps the next generation will benefit..i dont know anything about economics.

Low interest rates di nothing for you? That is one of the reasons why QE is such bad policy.

I do not believe the French example is really applicable. First of all advance economies have to be able to compete with emerging economies at a macro level despite the disparity of labor costs. By and large, this has been done in the past, and it should be easier to do in the future. As to competing with other advanced economies, there are already enough disparities as to economic structures, that I cannot believe you have to select one variable, ie the work week, and say it must be equal or we will loose.
France has problems competing because of lots of other structural issues, not because they tried a short work week.

slug
11-13-2013, 11:48 AM
Again..study Switzerland. Switzerland is a manufacturing powerhouse...its has the highest industrial output per person in the world. Standard work week.

wardd
11-13-2013, 11:50 AM
who will benefit from completely automated work places?

slug
11-13-2013, 11:58 AM
This is what the future of Swiss manufacturing senses.

what will be done with the people.

the swiss already pay farmers 1500 dollars in subsidy per cow , per year in a effort to presevre a way of life and protect country people. swiss farmers still harvest crops by hand.

Normal working folks will soon be treated the same

McMike
11-13-2013, 04:44 PM
Something to consider is that Switzerland easily outcompetes America and is considered the best managed country with the most competitive economy in the world.

A proposal by the Swiss will always carry more weight than a proposal by an American.

It would be worthwhile to study the proposal.

.

Let me be clear; I'm all for giving a leg up to folks for whom the market has left behind, I'm not all for giving excuses and handouts to folks who simply don't want to learn because they feel it's their right to be doing things the same old way because they're too lazy and/or stubborn to keep up to date with newest/best practices. I'm talking from experience in the millwork industry, manufacturing is becoming more automated, like it or not. If the government has the money to train/retrain folks then lets do it but I'm self taught in CNC manufacturing techniques and I'm self taught in the software that feeds the information that these machines need to operate. I didn't wait to become obsolete and it didn't cost the government anything. I read the writing on the walls and took the initiative. Don't you think there is a middle ground between holding adults hands and letting them fall into the abyss of obsolescence?

As for Sweden; what's their population? How good is their primary school education compared to ours? What is the culture like? We have a lot of work to do to catch up with true first world countries before we worry about perfectly able bodied adults. We need to start with the children, provide a good safety net, and take care of our sick and elderly first. Then we can aspire to creating an ideal labor support system. We need to start by raising adults instead of allowing our children to exist as children into their thirties. Our country club universities are the laughing stock of the world with a few exceptions. Kids should be learning much of what they learn in university before they graduate from high school.

wardd
11-13-2013, 05:02 PM
in the not too far distant future there won't be jobs for every body no matter how much they may want one

slug
11-14-2013, 12:24 AM
in the not too far distant future there won't be jobs for every body no matter how much they may want one
And this should be celebrated.

The automated machines have taken over labour and they are pumping out so many Gizmos that we are all rich

The tricky part is taking all the money that machines made producing the Gizmos and redirecting it back into society.

someone needs. to start thinking of this ...it will happen.