Show Summary Details
Introducing Political PhilosophyA Policy-Driven Approach

Introducing Political Philosophy: A Policy-Driven Approach (1st edn)

Andrew Walton, William Abel, Elizabeth Kahn, and Tom Parr
Page of

Printed from Oxford Politics Trove. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a single article for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 23 April 2024

p. 937. Basic Income and Distributive Justicelocked

p. 937. Basic Income and Distributive Justicelocked

  • William Abel,
  • Elizabeth Kahn,
  • Tom Parr
  •  and Andrew Walton


This chapter defends basic income. This policy requires the state to make regular cash payments to each member of society, irrespective of their other income or wealth, or willingness to find employment. It starts by describing three effects of basic income. The first is that it will raise the incomes of the least advantaged. The second is that it will protect against the threats of exploitation and abuse. The third is that it will remove one obstacle to finding employment. The chapter then explains the significance of these effects by drawing on ideas about distributive justice, emphasizing the relevance of John Rawls’s justice as fairness and Elizabeth Anderson’s democratic equality. It also considers the claim that basic income should be rejected because it would require the state to interfere with the lives of those who would be taxed to fund it, arguing that it is a mistake to oppose taxation in such a wholesale way. The chapter concludes with a reflection on the economic sustainability of basic income.

You do not currently have access to this chapter

Sign in

Please sign in to access the full content.


Access to the full content requires a subscription