b&b208: What is universal basic income? with Stockton Mayor Michael Tubbs
Universal Basic Income is the idea that people (sometimes everyone, sometimes only the poorer ones) should receive a basic, minimum amount of money each month, or every couple of weeks, in cash. Rather than giving people foodstamps, or Medicaid or other social programs which provide individuals with credits to be used only in a specific way, Universal Basic Income gives people money which they can then choose how to use.
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Pam: Essentially, Universal Basic Income is taking taxpayer dollars, so raising taxes potentially, or re-allocating taxpayer dollars, to give everyone a basic income.
Pam: the main argument for universal basic income in general is people inherently have an understanding of what they need to buy. By you giving somebody food stamps, by you giving somebody medicaid, you’re saying “You can only buy food with these dollars. You can only buy medical insurance.” Or, we’re gonna just give you medical insurance, right? ….It’s another way to control how people think poor people should spend their money.
Pam: the first thing people always say is “People are just gonna not work,” and that theory has been disproven multiple times. One thing, there was a study that has been done that showed that this is really only true with school-age children who tend to continue their education longer. People end up actually using the money to invest in their futures by gaining skills, starting businesses, buying items that would improve their standard of living
Pam: We have a lot of wealthy white billionaires in Silicon Valley who made their money in Silicon Valley seeing that they made that money by eliminating jobs and not having wages that could support a liveable lifestyle…They are the guys who said, “Hey, we realize that we are eliminating jobs faster than we did in previous economic revolutions.” So, the industrial revolution replaced farm work, but the industrial revolution also created jobs, whereas this technological revolution is eliminating jobs and automating a lot of the jobs that people were once getting paid for. And so there whole thing is what do we do? Do we have a moral obligation to make sure that people are still able to live?