America's population is wealthier than any in history. Every year, the American government redistributes more than a trillion dollars of that wealth to provide for retirement, health care, and the alleviation of poverty. We still have millions of people without comfortable retirements, without adequate health care, and living in poverty. Only a government can spend so much money so ineffectually. The solution is to give the money to the people.
This is the Plan, a radical new approach to social policy that defies any partisan label. Murray suggests eliminating all welfare transfer programs at the federal, state, and local levels and substituting an annual $10,000 cash grant to everyone age twenty-one or older. In Our Hands describes the financial feasibility of the Plan and its effects on retirement, health care, poverty, marriage and family, work, neighborhoods and civil society.
Charles Murray is the W. H. Brady Scholar in Culture and Freedom at the American Enterprise Institute. His previous books include Losing Ground (1984), In Pursuit (1988), The Bell Curve (1994, with Richard J. Herrnstein), What It Means to Be a Libertarian (1997), and Human Accomplishment (2003).