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Comment Re:Taxation (Score 2) 302

Actually, EU member countries do have limits on what their level of taxation is. Specific taxes have specific minimum and maximum values. That is all part of the EU treaties. In my opinion, one of EU:s main achievements is its work against tax competition of countries.

But, let's keep in mind that Ireland joined EU and those treaties willingly and they can also leave EU if they so choose.

Comment Re:Why is this legal in Finland? (Score 1) 161

Getting rid of employees here in Finland is actually quite easy. There is a process you are legally bound to follow, but it just takes 60 days and the end result is that you can let go any employees you have. If you just have a single employee and want to sack him, that can be more difficult, but these massive layoffs are easy. For long time employees, you have to give several months notice when getting rid of them, but OTOH if you want they will work for you during that time.

"The safety net" gives a person living alone about 10%-20% of the salary of a typical tech worker, so most people want to work.

This latest round of MS job cuts is not trimming, they are ending the design of phones completely. There will be nothing left of the Nokia phone division. (The rest of Nokia that was not sold to MS is actually doing pretty well nowadays.)

Comment How will they then migrate to south in summer? (Score 4, Informative) 423

A well known event that happens every year in Europe is when people from Belgium and the Netherlands pack their stuff in their cars and migrate through Germany to southern Europe. This pisses of the Germans as their autobahns are stock full of cars. .. how will they continue to do this with cars that only move a few hundred km between recharges?

Submission + - Genome Map of Zika-Carrying Mosquito In Tatters ( 1

biobricks writes: Withconventional methods of controlling the kind of mosquito that carries the Zika virus proving ineffective,some of the nation’s leading mosquitoresearchers are striving to fix a decade-old mapof the insect’s DNAthat they say will help them fight it with its own genetic code.

Comment Re:Islam is a Problem (Score 1) 1011

Obviously why? because percentages? Here's one for you: Muslims make up 23% of the worlds population. That's 1.6 BILLION. And here you are condemning them all because of statistics from a country that houses 64 million of the world's population.
It's ludicrous.

Can you please quote me the paragraph where he condemns all 1.6 BILLION Muslims?

"Then it is obvious that Islam has a real problem and is a real threat to the civilized world." is not condemning all 1.6 BILLION Muslims. The religion is not the same as the people. And further "Islam has a real problem" does not mean that Islam could not stop to have a problem.

Do you think 1.6 BILLION Muslims are unable to join us on the 21st century with equality and universal human values? As humans, they are fully capable of doing that.

Comment Re:They can't afford it - REALLY! (Score 1) 412

Because 80-90% of the amount is collected back in taxes, so the net expense for governament is 10-20%, or 30-60€ billion. Sounds like the amount you already use on welfare. The other 80-90% of the basic income goes to people with decent jobs and their tax rates are adjusted so that they only get about the same amount of money after taxes as they now get.

Currently an unemployed person in Finland can get about 500€/month in benefits and also aid for housing, something like 300€. If you add these together and we get a 500-800€ / month range that is the range proposed for the basic income here. The point of the experiment is to test some different amounts. Obviously, depending on the amount there may or may not be other benefits available and taxation also changes.

Like I said originally: the idea is not to give people more money, but to get rid of the inefficient and demoralising welfare bureaucracy that requires a lot of paperwork and does not allow the unemployed to take short term jobs.

Comment Re:They can't afford it (Score 1) 412

You do not ask for the basic income - it arrives automatically on your bank account every month. The trick is that taxation is modified so that people like me - with a decent salary - will end up the same as now after taxation.

To understand why this is useful, one thing to realize is that our taxation is a very clean and automated process, while the social benefits are a horrid mess that requires a lot of paperwork.

I live in Europe - Finland, and I'm commenting from the POV of our starting basic income experiment. I have no idea of how basic income would work in the US.

Comment Re:They can't afford it (Score 5, Insightful) 412

All of these basic income articles always get these "free moneys" comments, while the actual plan is not about giving unemployed people more money than what they now receive. The idea is to make taking any work always beneficial compared to unemployment. The current system - where you have to demonstrate that you have no work - has the problem that taking a short gig may you may end up losing money before you can again show that you are unemployed.

Also hopefully we will get less bureaucrazy etc.

Even now, every refugee that is granted refugee status will start receiving unemployment benefits.

Comment Re:Monitor (Score 1) 127

I don't know about Romania, but at least here in Finland, you cannot really fire a single employee for bad performance. If the guy cannot do his job at all, then maybe, but just for being the bottom of the barrel is not cause for firing. On the other hand, if the company does not need the employees work any more, they can fire him, but then they cannot immediate hire someone else to do it.

All this means is that when a company wants someone to leave, they 1) sometimes offer money if you resign or 2) try to find something actionable, like being at work drunk.

Submission + - Why Do Americans Work So Much?

An anonymous reader writes: writes

Rebecca Rosen has an interesting essay at The Atlantic on economist John Maynard Keynes' prediction in 1930 that with increased productivity, over the next 100 years the economy would become so productive that people would barely need to work at all. For a while, it looked like Keynes was right: In 1930 the average workweek was 47 hours. By 1970 it had fallen to slightly less than 39. But then something changed. Instead of continuing to decline, the duration of the workweek stayed put; it’s hovered just below 40 hours for nearly five decades. According to Rosen there would be no mystery in this if Keynes had been wrong about the economy’s increasing productivity, which he thought would lead to a standard of living “between four and eight times as high as it is today.” Keynes got that right: Technology has made the economy massively more productive.

Now a new paper Benjamin Friedman says that “the U.S. economy is right on track to reach Keynes’s eight-fold multiple” by 2029—100 years after the last data Keynes would have had. But according to Friedman, the key reason that Keynes prediction failed to come true is that Keynes failed to allow for the changing distribution of wealth. With widening inequality, median income (and therefore the income of most families) has risen, and is now rising, much more slowly than Keynes anticipated. The failure of the workweek to shrink as he predicted follows. Although Keynes’s eight-fold figure holds up for the economy in aggregate, it’s not at all the case for the median American worker. For them, output by 2029 is likely to be around 3.5 times what it was when Keynes was writing—a bit below his four- to-eight-fold predicted range. "What Keynes foretold was a very optimistic version of what economists call technological unemployment—the idea that less labor will be necessary because machines can do so much," writes Rosen. "The prosperity Keynes predicted is here. After all, the economy as a whole has grown even more brilliantly than he expected. But for most Americans, that prosperity is nowhere to be seen—and, as a result, neither are those shorter workweeks."

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