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Under the guise of compassion, UBI really just turns us from stakeholders or even citizens to mere consumers. Once the ability to create or exchange value is stripped from us, all we can do with every consumptive act is deliver more power to people who can finally, without any exaggeration, be called our corporate overlords.
No, income is nothing but a booby prize. If we’re going to get a handout, we should demand not an allowance but assets. That’s right: an ownership stake.
Touted as an elegant solution to the problem of poverty in America and the impending decimation of jobs by automation, UBI is a hot topic today in the “salons” hosted by tech and hedge-fund billionaires. The idea of UBI in fact is an old idea, older than me even: Either through direct cash payments or some sort of negative income tax, we should support people in need—or even everyone—to increase well-being and lift society overall.
Interestingly, this notion has had broad support from conservatives like Milton Friedman and progressives such as Martin Luther King Jr. On the other hand, UBI also has been criticized by conservatives as well as liberals.