A couple of articles reinforce the point that a basic income guarantee, once a radical idea discussed only by a few, has entered mainstream discussion.
John Higgs, who has been writing pieces on British politics for UsVsTh3m, has a piece on "Why ‘unconditional basic income for all’ fails the ‘splutter test’ but would liberate the world." John notes, "Variations on the idea have received support from people as different as Thomas Paine, Bertrand Russell and Robert Anton Wilson." Good job of slipping his name in there, John!
Nathan Schneider weighs in with a piece at Vice, "Why the Tech Elite Is Getting Behind Universal Basic Income." Nathan does a good job of naming some of the folks who are interested in the idea and I agree with Nathan that the details matter, although I disagree on whether it is a good idea to take the money from existing welfare programs. I think it is, because it is the only way to have a reasonably generous basic income -- I don't see how it's feasible, in an era of big deficits, to afford a basic income AND the existing welfare system. I do think, though, that a basic income would have to be combined with some sort of national health insurance program.