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Occupy SMA

By Jim Carey

Meeting and Film
Occupy SMA presents A Paradigm Shift
Mon, Jul 17, 1pm
Quinta Loreto Hotel, TV Room
Loreto 15, Centro
Free

On Monday, July 17, Occupy SMA will continue our discussion on a Universal Basic IncomeA Paradigm Shift. We’ve heard the historian Rutger Bregman lay out his provocative case for a guaranteed basic income: “Things can be different. There is nothing inevitable about the way we structure our society and our economy… . It is abundantly clear that we cannot stick to the status quo. We need new ideas.” Even the conservative commentator David Brooks admits, “There is a structural flaw in modern capitalism. Tremendous income gains are going to those in the top 20 percent, and prospects are diminishing for those in the middle and working classes.”

Many are pessimistic about the future. Increased globalization, outsourcing, accelerating technology, stagnant wages, robots, artificial intelligence (AI), rising inequality, xenophobia—all of these exacerbate social segmentation and fuel distrust. Then we have climate change.

Globally and in the US, millions will be displaced. Mission 2020 is a collaborative scientific campaign to bend the greenhouse gas emissions curve downwards by 2020.They say, “Lowering emissions globally is a monumental task, but research tells us that it is necessary, desirable, and achievable. After roughly 1° C of global warming driven by human activity, ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica are already losing mass at an increasing rate. Summer sea ice is disappearing in the Arctic and coral reefs are dying from heat stress—entire ecosystems are starting to collapse. The social impacts of climate change from intensified heat waves; droughts, and sea level rise are inexorable and affect the poorest and weakest first.”

Bregman says, “However, it is not enough to know what we are against… . We need to be for something.” He believes in a future where the value of our work is not determined by the size of our pay check, but by the amount of happiness we have and the amount of meaning it gives us.

He believes in a future “where the point of education is not to prepare you for another useless job but for a life well lived…in a future where a life without poverty is not a privilege but a right that we all deserve.” In a transition to a green, renewable, sustainable economy—a universal basic income (UBI) can alleviate inequality, assure the dignity of each person, and create a society for “the many and not just the few.”

In December 1948, the nations of the world adopted a Universal Declaration of Human Rights that declared, “Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age, or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control.”

Like so many humane social advances in developing countries, UBI is a goal to be seriously considered. Join us Monday for a lively discussion. Our events are free.

 

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