What good can someone who sits on the couch all day and watches TV do for the American economy? Well, they, or someone who acts in their stead, are paying rent. Someone had to buy the couch. Someone probably had to buy the food, which helps, too.
The poorest in America can have an economic purpose, as evidenced by our current welfare system. They could transform small businesses into thriving structures that develop talent. The poor could also use their own skills that may not be in demand in the workforce to build communities. They could have a more independent lifestyle that would help create more fulfilling relationships.
Even after the welfare system was created in 1935, not all Americans saw the need for it, at least, not until Martin Luther King Jr. promoted the idea of a basic income that would transform the poor into purchasers. His speech included the idea that dignity would flourish when a man is able to make decisions on his own, and many people agreed.
Yet, decades after Martin Luther King Jr.’s passing, we have yet to enact a payment system that would allow for those who live in poverty, not just the unemployed or disabled, to contribute to their economies. Why is that?
The main reason may be because few people have developed a plan of action to make this dream a reality.
American Union, a group of voters who have taken time to create a workable plan to bring political policy and impoverish needs together, has discovered that if all adult American citizens earned and properly handled $300 a week and received $100 per week for each child in their care, poverty could be a thing of the past.
Furthermore, if incarcerated individuals, as well as Americans living outside of the US, received a portion of this amount, the threat of poverty could diminish within years.
Ways to Pay
How could this idea work financially? Right now, many groups are taking action to improve the lives of the millions of Americans living in poverty.
Mainly, these ideals are creating fees, while others are working to provide incentives.
HR-763 is a bill that would create a fee rate for producers and importers of the carbon content of fuels, including crude oil, natural gas, coal, or any other product derived from those fuels that will be used to emit greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.
The rate would begin at $35 in 2021, then increase by $10 each year, depending on State regulations. This fee would help pay for healthcare costs, daily-living costs and other necessary costs to help Americans live more fulfilling lives.
Although once companies innovatively find solutions to carbon emissions and their fees would decrease, many hospital visits would expect to decrease, as well.
The Break Free from Pollution Act of 2020 would create a fee that would pass down from the government to the producers.
Producers would be charged a pre-decided rate for each single-use unit of any plastic product they create.
The fee would first go to help the environment, but it would also go to help Americans who are suffering because of pollution in our oceans.
The American economy has thrived because individuals were willing to contribute to causes that mattered to them.
The American Union knows that wealthy individuals would willingly contribute to the health of all Americans and could do so in the form of Treasury Bonds.
To help create more of an incentive, the government could maintain a publicly searchable database of business entities that have selected to volunteer value sharing (pay more into the fund to support Americans).
The government could also include an annual list of the top 200 companies that have made contributions, as well as 200 companies with the highest value sharing rate with categories of the gross profit margin of a million dollars.
Repealing of Some Credit Laws
As mentioned earlier, this income would bring many out of poverty and may wipe out the need for certain tax credits.
For instance, the Child Tax Credit, which reduces taxes for each child, would be repealed because the parents are getting that amount on a monthly basis. Another credit that would be repealed would be the personal tax credit for the very same reason as aforementioned.
Value Added Tax
A value-added tax on products and services, such as the sale of the property, games of chance, and in-kind receipts, would help fund this new way of life. Over 160 countries have adapted this form of taxation and have experienced both positive and negative results.
This would not be a tax on just the wealthy, nor the poor, but a tax that would reflect the amount of spending for each American.
Truth is, some wealthy people never spend more than they must, and some in poverty will purchase unnecessary items that will cause massive debt.
This is the only fair way to give the people the tax they have demanded: one where they can choose the amount they wish to spend by the items they wish to purchase.
Innovation Payment Solutions
America is the country of innovation, and someone probably already knows of a better way to pay for America’s needs. Innovative payment solutions would be necessary to improve health outcomes, reduce health disparities (racial, ethnic, etc.), provide efficient and affordable care, address geographic variation, and prevent or manage chronic illness.
The government could work with local organizations to discover new ways to end poverty. Ideally, accepted proposals could start out on a state level to determine if the idea is plausible and then work nationally. Just like a national healthcare system, which seemed implausible a hundred years ago, America could be a nation that sees every citizen provided for on a workable scale, even if that idea seems farfetched today.
How Would Americans Receive Financial Assistance
A lot of administrative costs come from the paper handling of welfare checks. What if a lot of those costs could be dismissed by creating a national bank in electronic form only?
Furthermore, administrative fees could be removed with much of this plan being automated. Also, because this would be a digitized system, overdraft fees could be eradicated, and an interest-free loan system could take its place.
Paid Family Act
Another way that Americans could be paid through a universal basic income would be through payments after providing care to committed partners or children.
Termed “caregiving days”, Americans could be reimbursed for up to 90 days off in a year after filling out a simple form.
All they would need to include was a statement that the person was engaged in healthcare activities, certification of health issue, and a written statement from work stating that they have been notified. If the person does not work but is insured for disability benefits, they could qualify for this type of income, too.
Wages would be 1/18th, or up to $4000 each month, of what the caregiver earns or self-employment income for the calendar year. This would depend on which income is calculated on the highest self-employment income for the past three years.
Legal Defense Fund
All Americans need legal help now and again, from criminal defense to civil matters. The American Union Legal Defense Fund would pay up to 15% of the claim for licensed legal professionals to help with any legal case. The fund would give one hour of consultation voucher to the offender and provide funding after that. Then, it would provide funding/vouchers to all citizens who need funding for civil court, small-claims court, etc.
An American Union works tirelessly to bridge the gap between political policy and poverty. Visit anamericanunion.com to find out more about how you can help America take a step closer to ending poverty.