The Right to Income
AbstractThis paper argues for a right to income based on a conception of the integrity of the individual. It first justifies the argument through the notion of social need developed by Hegel, contrasting that idea with the notion of subsistence in classical political economy and of needs and wants in the neoclassical economics. It then reexamines Locke’s labor theory of property and argues that its intuitive strength actually relies on a similar notion of individual integrity, not on labor pre se. The paper concludes by applying this notion of rightful acquisition of property to the situation of production by capital and explores some policy implications of a right to income.