Human Rights and Basic Income

What’s This Guff About Universalism?

Image of a sticker that says Every Human Has Rights.

Image by Markus Spiske.

Not long ago I was asked to speak about “minority” rights and basic income at a symposium in Barcelona leading up to the celebration of the 75th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Among the human rights professionals, who were also speaking, the gagged elephant in the room was ginormous because it is, in fact, immeasurable: the crime of ecocide—the result, in particular, of capitalism, imperialism, and neoliberalism—which is also universal because it affects everyone and everything that is alive now and also future generations. Well, it may be universal but it also affects some much more than others. The left criticizes its causes but without sufficiently considering the consequences or alternatives.

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