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Beware of the Universal Basic Income

By       (Page 1 of 3 pages)   49 comments, In Series: No Rich and No Poor
Message John Spritzler

As discussed in great detail with lots of online links here, the ruling class is starting to promote the idea of a Universal Basic Income (UBI). UBI would mean that every adult citizen, without exception, would receive a certain sum of money (the same for everybody) from the government each month.

UBI is a trap! Many people who want our society to be more equal economically view UBI positively (at first). They very rightly want people who work but who aren't paid for their work, or who aren't paid enough, to get more pay, and they hope UBI will do that. They also worry that robots are replacing all sorts of jobs and pretty soon, they fear, there won't be enough jobs for everybody and those without a job should receive money to live on, as UBI--they hope--will ensure.

The problem is that what good people hope UBI will do and what the ruling class intends to do with the UBI idea are two entirely different things.


There are several Big-Money-connected pundits who love UBI because they want to eliminate all other entitlements (such as Social Security disability payments or payments for specific needs that were formerly called "welfare") and replace them with the UBI check, which, they argue, will cost the government less. Also, as some have pointed out, many people who need substantial government assistance would end up getting less money with UBI than they now get, and these are the poorest among us. Furthermore, giving the same amount of money to everybody clearly does nothing to create greater economic equality.

As bad as the above problems with UBI are, there is an even greater problem with it. The ruling class is using the UBI idea to stigmatize a good idea (economic equality) as a bad idea (freeloading.)

UBI strikes many people as being a freeloader's paradise, because it means that the people who work are taxed to pay money to people who could work but who refuse to work. Most people think freeloading (i.e., taking from others but refusing to contribute back anything despite being perfectly capable of doing so) is morally wrong. Recently the Swiss voted against UBI in a referendum 77% to 23%. The opposition argued that if UBI passed it would make Switzerland a magnet for freeloaders from all over Europe.

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I am the editor of www.PDRBoston.org and www.NewDemocracyWorld.org, the author of No Rich and No Poor: The Populist Goal We CAN and Must Win, Divide and Rule: The "Left vs. Right" Trap, The People as Enemy: The Leaders' Hidden Agenda in World (more...)

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