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Basic Income Earth Network, 2010 PDF Print E-mail
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Thursday, 02 December 2010 19:07
A BRIEF REPORT ON BIEN my Impressions of the 13th International Congress of the "Basic Income Earth Network", JUNE 30-JULY 2, SAO PAULO, BRAZIL

I am back from Sao Paulo, Brazil, after presenting "Meet The Minimum Needs of All" 2030, MMNA2030, at the 13th International Congress of "Basic Income Earth Network" (BIEN) 2010, and enjoying an education in the Basic Income (BI) Initiative in Brazil, and elsewhere: South Africa, Namibia, South Korea.

Sao Paulo is one of the most beautiful cities I have had the opportunity to visit.

Brazil, pop: 192 million, has 50 million men, women, and children on BI. Brazil is an highly inequitable society on wealth distribution, with a regressive tax structure.

On the same negative indicators, USA stands first, followed by Israel in second place; Southern neighbor, Mexico, has moved to the third position.

The goals of both BI and MMNA2030 are positive and constructive:

BI takes a broadened approach to WORK-- defining that human articulation as,

1. work for wages,
2. work for the self, and
3. work for society (citizenship, that the Greeks acknowledged, with a grant to each individual),

assigning all components recognition and reward.

BI calls upon society and employers (corporations, businesses) to adopt the above viewpoint, and is grounded in Karl Polanyi's "The Great Transformation", 1944, articulated into BI by the elders of the 'Basic Income Movement'.

BI wants to advance material support for every worker / citizen by expanding the codifications made by the dominant capitalistic labor market.

There are various sub-themes within the BI approach, on how this may be done, including : "Just Give Money to the Poor" with no conditionalities, based on the affirmation that they will use it appropriately.

These extremes, represent broadening the concept of 'work' to achieve some inclusion while maintaining exclusion from access to resources as desired by capitalism on the one hand, and outright 'inclusion' (they will use it appropriately, an admission and acknowledgment of human rights and human status), on the other, reflective of the stand that the 'Poor with no material collateral are credit worthy' , taken by the Grameen Bank (Prof.Yunus), SEWA, India, etc..

MMNA2030 calls for granting the unacknowledged freedoms and rights for all human children born to the biosphere. Acknowledgment and defence by society of relationship with one's mother, father, brothers, sisters, and other immediate genetic relatives are necessary, but not sufficient:

"Every child and its central nervous system arrived here through the hospitality of the biosphere and its capabilities, resources, and is heir to the same.

We acknowledge that the history of human civilization has been one of 'rape and pillage' of the earth and its inhabitants, and we seek a relationship in consciousness to address the implications and a resolution of the inequties, while affirming our original rights in all future engagements.

One theme that has been accepted over the past century is that human rights are universal within the idea of the human, and they are worthy of respect, pursuit, and enforcement.

We need no longer be apologetic to a new born with the refrain: "you arrived a little late; most of the resources of the biosphere have been taken by a few (the global 5%, and their Bankers) and are held as their own. If you are lucky, you may be able to work for wages, and when the Bankers fail you are required to subsidize them much more than you would normally do.

All that is written into law and if the law is found to be not strong enough, independent of legislative intent, rest assured that Judges will strengthen it"

Given the above, the politics of these two approaches, Basic Income and MMNA2030, is of necessity, different.

The struggle and organization for MMNA2030 to make its genuine contribution to consciousness, would be more demanding, as outlined in the Paper * presented.

So at this writing, MMNA2030 has to enter a new phase relating to:

globalization of 'work as defined by BI' and

globalization of 'consciousness on human rights' as aspired to by MMNA2030, resulting in 'Inclusion Morality'.

In Peace,
M. Radh Achuthan

Professor of Physics,
Long Island University, 1 University Plaza, Brooklyn, New York, 11201
Ph: 631-834-4781 (cell); 631-283-5010 (land); 718-246-6368 (work)
* "Consciousness seeking Relationship to 'Meet The Minimum Needs fo All' through Non-violent Action: The path to practical, universal, 'Inclusion Morality' on Human Identity" .
(Available at BIEN 2010 site for download)

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