Universal Basic Income: A Fad or The Future?

Saturday, July 16, 2016 - 18:30

The idea of a Universal Basic Income has been making serious waves lately, and despite the strong vote against it in the recent Swiss referendum, it still has every sign of being an "idea whose time has come".

Or has it? I am inviting you to a public dissection of every pro and con I can dig up.

Would it representative a utopian leap into a new, more creative, egalitarian society? Would it eradicate both poverty and managerial micropolicing of welfare bureaucracies forever? Is it a harebrained recipe for economic disaster? Or, is it a hypercapitalist Trojan horse? A disguised solvent perfect for simultaneously dissolving the welfare state and the unions while providing bosses with wage subsidies and allowing the full privatisation of everything? Is it the only real solution to a coming wave of automation, or an enabling enthusiasm before dehumanisation?

Why is it that such a motley collection of radical leftists, civil rights leaders, libertarians, ecologists and Silicone Valley billionaires have all embraced the Universal Basic Income over the years?

Could it be that there is in fact more than one basic income, and that everything depends on who fights for it, and why, and in what political context?

I honestly don't know. By Saturday the 16th, however, I will not know in an incredible amount of detail.

As, what we think we know about this issue could be decisive for our collective futures.

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