The Green New Deal And A Universal Basic Income

The average rent for a one bedroom apartment is $1,405 a month, or $16,860 a year. Twenty percent (20%) of Americans declared income of less than that last year. America does some of the things needed to compensate for that–food stamps, HUD allowances, etc.–but few would argue we are doing enough.

The nature of work is set to change fairly dramatically over the next few decades, with AI, robotics and other forms of automation quite likely to take on the jobs that people are doing now. And although the care and feeding of these new systems will create new jobs, in all likelihood there will be a permanent net loss of positions, especially for lower income workers.

One of the primary premises of The Green New Deal is “Guaranteeing a job with a family-sustaining wage, adequate family and medical leave, paid vacations, and retirement security to all people of the United States.”

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The Green New Deal And Education

The Green New Deal proposes “Providing resources, training, and high-quality education, including higher education, to all people of the United States.”

At present there are about 5,300 universities and colleges in the U.S. In addition, there are about 1,132 community colleges and 8,063 trade or vocational schools. There are a bit more than 28,348,600 people aged 19-25 in the United States.

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The Green New Deal: Healthy and Affordable Food

Availability of good food is a problem for the poor in America. It is not a problem for middle class and richer Americans. However Americans of all incomes frequently make poor choices about food.

The Green New Deal proposes to make healthy and affordable food available to all Americans. There are a number of established programs to draw from, ranging from proposed changes to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), which helps get food to poor people, to templates for local planning departments trying to fight food insecurity and hunger.

People have been talking about getting more nutritious food into inner city grocery stores for a generation, though, without much in the way of results. As poverty is just as real and just as pervasive in rural counties, a different approach is warranted.

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Affordable, Safe and Adequate Housing

One element of the proposed Green New Deal is ‘affordable, safe and adequate housing.’ Our first post on this subject will concern those who have no homes.

According to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), there were roughly 554,000 homeless people living somewhere in the United States on a given night last year. A total of 193,000 of those people were “unsheltered,” meaning that they were living on the streets and had no access to emergency shelters, transitional housing, or Safe Havens.”

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The Green New Deal and High Quality Healthcare

A lot has been made in the media about the accelerated schedule of the Green New Deal–the sponsors of the Congressional resolution want us to get there in 12 years.

To us, what’s more interesting is the fusion of progressive economic and social goals with the environmental initiatives to get to zero emissions. And again, in the formative stages of all this, it’s easy to look at it as disconnected. We might even be permitted to speculate that a firm connection did not exist in the minds of the plan’s creators. But we think over the course of this blog’s existence that we will end up showing a very firm connection between the social, the economic and the environmental elements.

Progressives began labeling healthcare a human right about a decade or so before the Green New Deal. Old school opponents were quick to object–how can infrastructure and services painstakingly built up over centuries at great cost to companies and individuals be re-characterized as providing something (healthcare) that their customers (patients) all of a sudden have a right to?

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