The relief programs supporting Americans through the pandemic are also demonstrating the viability of a bold proposal for reducing poverty: basic income.
The idea of basic income -- paying a monthly fixed amount to each person in the country -- has been around for a long time. Recently it has gained more attention and support. It has the advantages of simplicity and universality, but one big question has always loomed: What if it stopped people from working? Ultimately, society’s wealth is based on human beings producing things, and if people feel that a basic income means they don’t need to work, they might stop producing altogether, leaving society poorer.