Breathing Space

Living a Citizen's Income



Citizens Basic Income Network Scotland Fife Pilot Meeting

The second CBINS meeting was another sell out, held in the beautiful new Kelty Community Centre on Saturday 28th January. A central focus was Fife Council’s intention to carry out a local pilot in a small central/West Fife village in the next three years.  One of the aims of this meeting was to open up discussion early on,  to flag up perceived benefits and potential pitfalls. It felt like a real treat to be sitting listening to political philosopher Professor Karl Widerquist as he set the scene so passionately.  We are the only species alive he said, who  don’t have direct  access to the resources to fulfil our basic needs of food, shelter and connection. Continue reading “Citizens Basic Income Network Scotland Fife Pilot Meeting”


Robin McAlpine from Common Weal @ Yes Dunfermline

Went with Jane from Inverkeithing Arts Initiative to hear Robin McAlpine from Common Weal on indyref 2.  He is passionate and pragmatic about winning this time round, saying we need a campaign that:

  • has the capacity to target campaigning materials more effectively
  • uses personal stories rather than statistics
  • has a strong narrative that a majority can buy into e.g. independence will give us a safe haven to start building a better Scotland
  • gives clear, concise, confident answers to questions on currency, banking, pensions, borders
  • proposes we use the necessity of designing a separate digital information system with individual identifiers –   to  make it work for citizens,  a system for the 21st century where we are in  control over who gets access to our information, apart from Inland Revenue which would be compulsory.

Continue reading “Robin McAlpine from Common Weal @ Yes Dunfermline”

A Reflection on Ellie Harrison’s Artist Talk

What can an artist/activist achieve in a place, given a year of not having to worry about money?

Livestream video of Ellie Harrison’s Talk

Even though she only revealed the tip of the iceberg of her research and activism  in her year of living within the boundary of Glasgow, I was impressed by the scope and scale of Ellie Harrison’s  investigations of the Glasgow Effect  She was inspired by   New Economics Foundation approach: Economics as if People and the Planet Mattered.  One of her themes was transport and the twin irritations of a city carved up by motorways and the sorry state of public transport, particularly the buses.  This in a city which has a lower than average car ownership.  Sometimes it takes a fresh eye to re-view what everyone else has stopped seeing,  just got used to. Pavel Buchler once said that one function of art is to stop and look after everyone else has moved on – wait a minute folks, look at this!  Not only had she looked – through her investigations, she had discovered that the monthly board meetings of SPT (Strathclyde Partnership Transport) are open to the public! She set herself up as undercover artist in residence at SPT and attended six Board meetings to learn and to lobby.

Continue reading “A Reflection on Ellie Harrison’s Artist Talk”

Launch – Citizens Basic Income Network Scotland Sat 26th Nov, Pearce Institute, Govan

Article 25 of the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights:

(1) Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control.
(2) Motherhood and childhood are entitled to special care and assistance. All children, whether born in or out of wedlock, shall enjoy the same social protection.

It’s a great feeling to be in at the beginning of something – the launch of Citizens Basic Income Network Scotland – however unwieldy the title is! One young turk,  alluding to the clunkiness of the nomenclature, proposed we cut to the chase, get radical and call it the ef-off payment.  All credit to the panel, some of whom have been trailblazing the radical notion of citizens income for forty years, for  accepting the suggestion of a foff payment with grace and humour. Glasgow  and Govan rise to the occasion once more.

The keynote speaker was Guy Standing who in May this year gave the RSA SCOTLAND: ANGUS MILLAR LECTURE 2016 on Basic Income in relation to Scotland.   Continue reading “Launch – Citizens Basic Income Network Scotland Sat 26th Nov, Pearce Institute, Govan”

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