Reply to post: Re: fast forward.

Universal basic income is a great idea, which is also why it won't happen

Anonymous Coward
Anonymous Coward

Re: fast forward.

Not really. Almost everyone can get a basic income of various levels at the moment through benefits as long as they jump through sufficient hoops. However if you wish to work then there are certain significant issues which affect your benefits and mean that you need to work a certain sweet spot of hours to make it work.

the idea with UBI is you can work any extra hours right through to being a CEO of a multi-million currency company and you'll still get the UBI. So even if you worked 2 hours a month it would still be extra income without having to cause issues with the benefits agency that may mean you lose all your benefits. Similarly with voluntary work - you could become a full time volunteer (for genuine charities not as an intern/cheap labour) and get your UBI if you are 'between jobs' and want some more work experience.

The incentive to work will be that it will be much easier to get some extra money to top up your UBI, you don't have to worry about officialdom and red tape.

As for families knowing nothing other than getting money from the state - I'm afraid that for some families that is already the case. This trying to stigmatise, it's just a fact that in areas with very high unemployment and very few job prospects and a lack of opportunities to mobilise then this can happen.

As far as paying for it - This just needs some juggling of the figures. It shouldn't end up costing much more than it does now. The tax bands and rates will change so that for instance someone like me in a normal job doesn't get any benefit for the UBI even though I still get it (heck might even lose a little bit in tax). The benefits cuts as mentioned in the article will also pay for large sum. removing a lot of the bureaucracy (job centres for instance) and other departments (I know the article mentions this but hell, that can be dealt with in the revolution).

As robots/ai start to take over jobs then company tax, company owners etc pay more tax which covers the UBI of the people they replace.

I don't think UBI would work if everyone who go it felt 'well off'. However if it is at a level to make sure people keep their head above water and by working even minimal amounts they get a tangible supplement then it could help society as a whole.

The major issues will be around extra benefits like housing benefit etc and how they are handled as it might end up being used in the same way jobseekers allowance is now and negating some of the pros of UBI.

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