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Universal Basic Income Video Geoff Crocker TV Interview

Universal Basic Income Video Geoff Crocker German TV Interview in ILO Centenary

Transcript of Video of Geoff Crocker on UBI

Interviewer: Well will there be enough jobs in the future will full employment even be realistic perhaps those are the wrong questions to pose tonight we'd like to look at the future of work through the lens of a future with not problematic employment but rather guaranteed income my next guest says that a guaranteed basic income for everyone would solve many of the problems that are being created by today's disruptors Geoff Crocker is editor at the universal basic income forum he joins me tonight from Bristol in the United Kingdom he joins me tonight on the phone and Jeb is good to have him on the day you say that if we do not change the way we think about work and income we will never be able to get out of what has become a vicious circle what do you mean by that?


Geoff Crocker: Well there are several dimensions to that question and one is that income labour income has become insufficient to purchase the things that people need so I've got a graph running from 1948 to 2016 for the UK economy and that shows very conclusively that over the whole 70 year period we start off with earned income enough to fund consumer expenditure but now we're in a position where consumer expenditure is consistently higher than earned income so in a modern technology economy earned income is insufficient to buy the things that we need and indeed that income is being supplemented by household debt that household debt becomes unrepairable from the same wages that have been inadequate and we get economic crisis as we had in 2007 so our failure to think creatively about the nature of work and income and the macroeconomy is what has led us to crisis


Interviewer: a couple of months ago you tweeted this we want to show our viewers did you know that basic income can help you rethink how and why you work with the basic income you can reconsider owed choices and retrain safe in the knowledge that you'll have enough money to maintain a decent standard of living I mean that's a big promised to make is it a realistic promise


Geoff Crocker: In my view it certainly is so on our website which your viewers might like to look at we've set out the fundamental cases for basic income there are several brief ones one is social justice one is administrated cost one is the macroeconomy that I just mentioned but another is human flourishing in other words if people have a secure income they will able to be able to make life decisions in a much freer way whether that summer that is to take more leisure and why not because the hours worked per week have gone down from 70 hours many years ago to 40 hours a week now so you know work has changed

from the days when we were labouring and feels to the days in the factory to the days on the computer and the number of hours a week has changed so a basic income would allow human flourishing and choices


Interviewer: What about the notion of why we work there has to be a rethink there - doesn't there


Geoff Crocker: Yes I think so I mean work is classically of course being a source of income but we now see that certainly many economies work is not a source of sufficient income so we've got the phenomenon of poverty in work and in-work benefits being paid to people there that work is no longer sufficient for income there are as you're implying other reasons for work of course people have a sense of identity and ability for creativity self-fulfilment social socialisation and so all of those things are very important but work is not necessarily the only place the only way to get those those benefits of identity and socialisation there are other ways once we begin to realise that we can be free and in fact the nine-to-five factory or the nine-to-five obvious is not necessarily the best way to help us flourish if the technology is making other options available to us


Interviewer: would the start of a basic guaranteed income would that signal the end of capitalism as we know it


Geoff Crocker: well on the contrary actually I think it will signal the survival of the market economy as we know it I think that without some basic income the present capitalist system will go through repetitive crisis as it did in 2007 2008 because in high-technology economies the wage is no longer sufficient to buy the output so output is growing faster than the wage component there's not sufficient aggregate demand in the economy that's what's leading to increasing debt and that's what's leading into the collapse so basic income would actually overcome that crisis problem that capitalism faces


Interviewer: and Jeff I can imagine that organisations such as the ILO the International Labour Organisation they may not like this idea of a basic guaranteed income am I right


Geoff Crocker: yes you are in one sense I mean I I don't know the whole card or within higher though it's an organisation I greatly respect of course but I think you'll find a range of opinion there certainly within the trade union movements there is a tendency not to like a basic inc and because they feel that it no longer regards the wage over which they negotiate and where they have a role as an important factor and the argument from the basic income advocates including myself is that like it or not the wage is becoming less of a tool for livelihood than it used to be and technology is causing that it's not replacing all of us by robots instantaneously but it is meaning that the wage component of the output we produce is decreasing


Interviewer: Geoff Crocker with the universal basic income forum from joining us tonight from Bristol in the United Kingdom yeah it's a fascinating topic and it's a brave new future for sure Geoff thank you we appreciate your insights


Geoff Crocker: thank you too


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