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General News

USBIG NewsFlash Vol. 15, No. 72, March-April 2014

By Karl Widerquist  Posted by Scott Baker (about the submitter)     Permalink
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USBIG NewsFlash Vol. 15, No. 72, March-April 2014

The USBIG NewsFlash is both the newsletter of the U.S. Basic Income Guarantee (USBIG) Network and the U.S. edition of the Basic Income Earth Network's NewsFlash. The USBIG Network ( promotes the discussion of the Basic Income Guarantee (BIG) in the United States. BIG is a policy that would unconditionally guarantee at least a subsistence-level income for everyone. If you would like to be added to or removed from this list please go to:
For questions, contact the editor, Karl Widerquist>.

Table of Contents

1. Editorial: The Goals of BI News

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2. Volunteers needed for BI News

3. Former Treasury Secretary Endorses BIG calling it "almost inevitable"

4. Basic Housing Grant in Utah shows promise

5. BIG news from around the world

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6. Events

7. Recent Features on BI News

8. Recent BI literature around the world

9. Audio-Video

10. New links

11. More news, links, and other info

1. Editorial: The Goals of BI News

Basic Income is suddenly the subject of much more discussion around the world. Political movements are growing. The media, social networks, and blogs have suddenly devoted more attention to basic income. Basic Income News (BI News) suddenly has much more news to report. The website is running two-to-five stories a day, and its accompanying NewsFlashes have news than they can fit. This is a good time to talk about the goals of BI News and the accompanying NewsFlashes.

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BI News has three main goals. Most importantly, it keeps readers informed about all the news directly relevant to the Basic Income Guarantee (BIG) around the word. Secondly, it keeps readers informed about events organized about BIG and publications written about BIG. Thirdly, it includes features providing a mouthpiece for members of BIEN and its affiliates to write blogs, opinion pieces, and book reviews about BIG.

The first goal of BI News is important because activists, researchers, and anyone interested in BIG need a place where they can find out what is happening around the world that is relevant to BIG. No one other website is doing it, and no others are likely to start. You can't just search Google News for "basic income" and expect to find all the news about BIG. There are more than a dozen, perhaps dozens, of terms for BIG in English alone. There are policies and programs that are forms of BIG or that share some of the characteristics of BIG but that are not discussed in terms of BIG: the Alaska Dividend, some cash transfers, the Earned Income Tax Credit, dividends from casino revenue on U.S. Indian Reservations, the Bolsa Familia in Brazil, GiveDirectly in Uganda, and many, many more. There are also policies that are described in the words "basic income" or words very similar to term for BIG but that aren't BIG or aren't very closely related to it. The news section of BI News shows readers what proposals, policies, and social activism around the world relate to BIG and explains that connection.

This effort requires consistent monitoring of mainstream news, social media, blogs, and other sources of information. It involves original reporting to make the necessary connections to BIG as well as meta-reporting--reporting about reporting. Articles in this section of BI News are written from a neutral perspective, because the goal of this section is not to persuade but to inform. There are many arguments going around about BIG, but only one news source dedicated to informing people about BIG. This service is valuable to activists, researchers, and anyone interested in BIG.

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