Universal Basic Income


#1

In the ‘Scanning homeless people’ thread I suggested that UBI was the only possible end solution to which I was greeted with

Which seems to be the main argument against UBI but as far as I can tell this argument is nonsense isn’t it? I mean, UBI won’t suddenly make everyone money rich it’ll just make a lot of poor people suddenly able to feed and clothe & house themselves & their kids, plus a bunch of other people time rich in that they can go part time or reduce their hours thus taking care of their health better & generally being more productive over the long term instead of getting burnt out. Will probably be a huge relief on the NHS & other institutions too.

I get that there’s likely to be some inflation because lol capitalism but really this idea that there’d be no gain because prices would double is a red herring isn’t it? Or have I missed something?

(This is not personal against @Im_On_Safari of course, I’ve heard this argument a lot just want to explore the logic behind it)

Anyway. I’m totally for UBI as a sort of economic vaccination to prevent mass poverty sickness & all of its symptoms

I’m I being naïve?
Let’s talk Universal Basic Income


#2

Seems to me like literally the only feasible way of dealing with the impending obsoletion of our species as a result of automation and AI


#3

Huge topic this. I don’t think we’re close to understanding the implications and benefits of it, and I don’t understand how at time of writing it’s possible to posit that it’s either definitely good, or bad, idea. Especially with assumptions about how technological progress might play out on top. It’s impossible.

I mean if you were starting with a black piece of paper, you absolutely would not design our benefits system as it’s currently constructed. So some concept of Basic Income sounds preferable to that, at least in theory. It’s the Universal element which seems more contentious in my mind.


#4

Rent prices in poor areas would shoot up.


#5

i’ve never understood how it would work tbh. free money for everyone sounds great, like but i can’t see how the price of everything wouldn’t just increase and we’d be back to where we started


#6

Why? (I don’t understand this stuff)


#7

there’s the possibility that it will ‘coincide’ with the sudden disappearance of all other government spending or whatever, and every single service etc. will be privatised, people having to spend all their universal basic income on schools, healthcare and shit
I kinda see it as a potential tool of a kind of hypercapitalism in that sense, but lord knows I don’t know what I’m on about


#8

should have universal basic services for everyone, why bother giving people money to give to landlords.


#9

There’s too much demand for cheap housing and not enough supply, so without some form of intervention the market price will naturally increase to the point that demand reduces.


#10

But why would UBI affect that?


#11

It’s a ruddy wonderful idea that I just can’t ever see working. But maybe that’s just what The Man wants me to think. Genuinely no idea tbh.


#12

^this


#13

My main problem with UBI is that quite a few people who advocate for it, are entirely fine with leaving the current economic system in place, so the various areas that are privatized would potentially be able to respond accordingly by, for example, raising the cost of certain goods or services.

That said based off existing research it’s had a positive effect on everything from mental health to education standards.


#14

It will make the poorest more affluent and therefore able to bear a higher level of rent. In theory.

(In practice, as Geoff says, we can’t know for sure what would happen, only that there would be a lot of side effects, some expected, some unexpected, and the government would probably need to be willing to intervene where markets try and take advantage of the vulnerable.)


#15

I don’t really know how it would work, but it seems to me that it’s something which would have to come in after a lot of things in society are restructured in preparation - I don’t think it would work as something introduced to instigate positive change.

Also, would tax rates rise so that this isn’t effectively a tax cut for the rich? And if so, does that affect the universal nature of it?


#16

Right I get it, thanks.


#17

actually, just criminalise landlords.


#18

This is why policies shouldn’t be enforced in isolation.

Put in rent controls before bringing in the UBI


#19

Nationalise all second homes and then introduce ubi.
Make all public transport free too


#20

Bearing in mind I generally do t know what I’m talking about with regards to politics/economics and I’m happy to be told why I’m wrong, UBI sounds like a terrible idea to me. Wouldn’t it be far better to spend this money on providing cheaper childcare and better facilities to help people get back on their feet after redundancy/being homeless rather than just giving people a wad of cash? Or am I missing the point?