What’s wrong with free money?


Join us for this talk and discussion!

7.00-9.00pm, Friday, May 17, 2017 

Free – Tickets here
Critisticuffs and Variant (magazine)
In the Cinema, Ground Floor, CCA, Glasgow

After a forever of austerity and the violence of the benefits system the prospect of a Universal Basic Income – a.k.a. free money for (not quite) everyone – seems too good to pass up. But those calling for UBI come from radically different political perspectives, so why do they share an interest in the policy? And in any case, why would the state, a key agent in austerity, give us free money? Caught Learning invite Critisticuffs (London) and Variant magazine (Glasgow) to explain their critique of the proposals.

Critisticuffs: “What’s wrong with free money?”

“We want to discuss what the different visions of a UBI share and why those with different politics can share an interest in the policy… Our claim is that, on the one hand, these proponents want to achieve opposing aims under the same name. On the other hand, despite these opposing aims they share more than just the name: they are not interested in why in this society productivity gains produce poverty and why the capitalist state attaches conditionality to its welfare regime.”

Variant magazine: “Concretising UBI”

Leigh French and Neil Gray add further themes for discussion, grounding UBI proposals in actually existing conditions rather than idealist fantasies: UBI as a ‘mobile policy’ script (just like the discredited ‘creative city’ mantra) and instrumental social security/economic ‘fix’ for capitalist produced austerity; UBI as a process designed to foster acceptance of precarious labour conditions and cultivate the formation of the entrepreneurial subject; UBI and the problems of ‘recognition’ under a statist framework of bourgeois rights and citizenship; UBI and the absence of political struggle.

The Venue has level access from the street.

Critisticuff’s text ‘What’s wrong with free money’, on which their talk will be based, can be found here: https://antinational.org/en/what-wrong-free-money/

Variant magazine’s archive can be found here: http://www.variant.org.uk