posted on 2020-10-04


All my friends know that I'm a huge fan of Universal Basic Income for a variety of reasons. I'll outline here a collection of my main arguments for UBI.

First things first, I'll define UBI: it has to be Universal, it has to be Basic, and it has to be an Income.

Universal means that everyone (this can be reasonably restricted to every adult citizen of the country one is talking about implementing UBI in) must get it, regardless of employment situation. This is a very critical part: if you get a minimum wage job, you still get the UBI on top, so that it doesn't disincentivize work. It can make work less incentivized than before, but it can't disincentivize it the way many welfare programs work and create poverty traps.

Basic means that it must be at least enough to reasonably live, whatever that number is. If you think someone needs 1500$/mo to live, then it must be at least that. However, there is a caveat here: I don't think it's unreasonable to expect people on UBI to make more reasonable living decisions, notably such as living somewhere cheaper than they'd like.

Income means that it must be money, not coupons or food stamps or whatever. This is a crucial part, and is the part I consider most important to weird people and marginized groups: the less the Standard Majority Needs correspond to your needs, the less you'll get value out of being provided those; with money, instead, you're free to decide what it is you need and value.

Here are some of my favorite UBI arguments:

But, really, these are all somehow related to the least practical but, in my opinion, most important argument:

Edit 2021-02-24: Another, more complete list of argument can be found here.

posted on 2020-10-04

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