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RS
RS
Joined: Feb 11, 2014
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May 31st, 2018 at 1:40:29 PM permalink
The whole UBI thing is kinda ridiculous. Redistribution of wealth? Yeah, no thanks. Gut a majority of the govt programs like welfare, SS, etc. and now weíre talking.

IF IF IF UBI were ever introduced, it should be something like $500/month. It shouldnít be a thing where everyone just gets a free ride (IE: $1500/mo) sucking the teet of the people who are actually working. Make it so you still have to work but you get a little extra, because bottom-tier jobs donít pay much.

Although the entire idea of UBI disgusts me, other than the idea it could be a start to gutting welfare and whatnot.
TumblingBones
TumblingBones
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May 31st, 2018 at 3:44:07 PM permalink
Quote: gamerfreak

Many economists smarter than myself have said that something akin to universal basic income will become absolutely necessary as automation continues to advance and replace many jobs that exist today. Iím talking long term, 30-50 years+ down the road.


As a former AI researcher, I think the 30-50 year window is too long. We've already seen an impact on jobs from automation and its only going to get much much worse. The question is when do we reach a tipping point where permanent unemployment levels impact the social fabric. Anything north of 20% probably (Great Depression was 10 to 25% range). UBI has been proposed as a defense against massive unemployment due to AI.

Quote: Wizard

I think this would be one of our few points of departure. The way I would do it, even Mark Zuckerberg would get paid. If you phase it out by income level, you incentivize* people to work less or falsely report income. Vegas is full of $500/hr prostitutes who are are also on welfare. Why not be, free money and health care for them, as they don't report income anyway. My point being that the current system punishes honest taxpayers and rewards the cheats. Give everyone the same amount and you eliminate the moral hazards.


Exactly! I've heard this is supposed to be the big improvement of UBI over welfare. As soon as you set a cut-off threshold, folks are disincentivised to seek employment when it is available. UBI also avoids introducing an "us vs them" mindset by being universal.

Quote: RS

Make it so you still have to work but you get a little extra, because bottom-tier jobs donít pay much.


The point of UBI is it is intended to deal with a world in which the jobs don't exist. Think of a permanent Great Depression as the background.
My goal of being well informed conflicts with my goal of remaining sane.
gordonm888
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gordonm888
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May 31st, 2018 at 3:54:13 PM permalink
I have a relative who is in a government program in which he gets > $1000/month worth of benefits because he is "emotionally disabled."

Believe me, the last thing any government does in these kind of programs is give people a check or cash payment.

1. My relative get food stamps to buy food -and certain items in the grocery store (like booze and junk food) are not eligible for food stamps.

2. My relative gets a housing voucher -and the landlord that he rents from is the one who gets the payment for the rent -not my relative.

3. He gets a certain amount of money each month intended for electricity and utilities -but I believe the government program makes those payments directly to the utility. A social worker helps him with the paperwork.

I am actually glad for all of these government controls -because my relative would blow the money on booze, video games and other stuff and would be homeless in a month or two. Believe me, it has happened before.

ANYWAY, I doubt a UBI would be given to people as a monthly check to spend on whatever you want. Too many recipients would spend it on drugs, booze, hookers and casinos and would live in poverty anyway. The government would instead give you a voucher and require that it be spent on approved housing or officially-approved food items or on officially approved clothing.
So many better men, a few of them friends, are dead. And a thousand thousand slimy things live on, and so do I.
Dalex64
Dalex64
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May 31st, 2018 at 4:05:12 PM permalink
Quote: gamerfreak

Many economists smarter than myself have said that something akin to universal basic income will become absolutely necessary as automation continues to advance and replace many jobs that exist today. Iím talking long term, 30-50 years+ down the road.



This.

As automation continues to increase, decreasing the number of available jobs, and the population increases, increasing the number of people looking for work, there simply will not be enough jobs available, no matter how menial.

At that point, people will need to figure out how to support even the able-bodied who are willing to work.
AZDuffman
AZDuffman
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May 31st, 2018 at 4:07:08 PM permalink
Quote: TumblingBones

As a former AI researcher, I think the 30-50 year window is too long. We've already seen an impact on jobs from automation and its only going to get much much worse. The question is when do we reach a tipping point where permanent unemployment levels impact the social fabric. Anything north of 20% probably (Great Depression was 10 to 25% range). UBI has been proposed as a defense against massive unemployment due to AI.



I hear this so much, but I do not buy it. I heard in the 1980s that we would soon have "dark factories" of just robots with no need for lighting. Hasn't happened yet. There will be displacement and people working at the call center not the MCD counter. But work is going to need to be done. New kinds of work will be found.

Quote: gordonm888

ANYWAY, I doubt a UBI would be given to people as a monthly check to spend on whatever you want. Too many recipients would spend it on drugs, booze, hookers and casinos and would live in poverty anyway. The government would instead give you a voucher and require that it be spent on approved housing or officially-approved food items or on officially approved clothing.



This is the dark side of UBI. But it is the libertarian side (as much as there is one.)

"It is the second of the month and I dropped it all at the casino and strip joint. I got no food!"
"That's gonna be rough!"

IMHO, the people who would blow UBI on meth are today selling their food stamps at a discount to buy meth. Those who budget right will still budget right. Smart ones of us would just drop it into an investment account, forget it even exists. The poverty-industrial complex would mostly remain, it would just run more efficient.
All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others
TomG
TomG
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May 31st, 2018 at 4:18:09 PM permalink
Quote: RS

Redistribution of wealth? Yeah, no thanks.



All government spending is a redistribution of wealth. Redistributing it by giving people cash instead of our current system would be far less wasteful. In our current system, the free ride goes to those who don't work. Changing that to giving more to everyone regardless of their work status would benefit everyone
TomG
TomG
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May 31st, 2018 at 4:22:07 PM permalink
Quote: gordonm888

The government would instead give you a voucher and require that it be spent on approved housing or officially-approved food items or on officially approved clothing.



That defeats the entire purpose. I want to spend only $400 per month on housing so I can have some left over for other things, which could be an investment, charity, or my own personal "entertainment." Now the government is going to insist I find a place with a $1000 per month rent or I get a lower benefit than someone else
Paradigm
Paradigm
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May 31st, 2018 at 4:33:58 PM permalink
Quote: TomG

All government spending is a redistribution of wealth.


I am not sure I agree with this statement. Spending on items for the collective good doesn't feel like a redistribution of wealth. As an example, infrastructure spending to ensure we have public roads for everyone to use isn't wealth redistribution in my opinion. Neither is spending on national defense. In my book, redistribution of wealth is limited taking tax dollars collected from many and spending it on individuals normally through entitlement programs. But I am open for a discussion on why you believe all government spending is wealth redistribution. How do you get to that definition for government dollars spent on common benefit types of items?
jml24
jml24
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May 31st, 2018 at 4:42:11 PM permalink
Quote: Wizard

I think this would be one of our few points of departure. The way I would do it, even Mark Zuckerberg would get paid. If you phase it out by income level, you incentivize* people to work less or falsely report income. Vegas is full of $500/hr prostitutes who are are also on welfare. Why not be, free money and health care for them, as they don't report income anyway. My point being that the current system punishes honest taxpayers and rewards the cheats. Give everyone the same amount and you eliminate the moral hazards.

* Why does my spell checker not like that spelling?



I don't think I was arguing for a cutoff. I think the payments should be for everyone. I was trying to say there could be a cutoff to appease those who would complain about the rich getting the benefit, but it would be simpler to just tax rich people slightly more instead. That said, I don't think someone accustomed to a rich person's lifestyle would start working less due to the prospect of losing extra subsistence-level income. I would be strongly against any cutoff at an income level where the UBI amounts to a substantial portion of total income, because of the moral hazard you cite.
TomG
TomG
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May 31st, 2018 at 4:47:55 PM permalink
Quote: Paradigm

I am not sure I agree with this statement. Spending on items for the collective good doesn't feel like a redistribution of wealth.



The collective good is the goal of all government spending. Some are forced to pay much more than others to be a part of this collective good; and some people people get much more value out of this collective good than others. Given those two inequalities. there must always be some sort of redistributing effect

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