If you’re new to the whole idea of Universal Basic Income, fear not. It is a constantly growing idea to combat wealth inequality. Allow me to break down the three words for you.

The first word is “universal”. This means that no matter who you are, you qualify. In the case of governmental programs, all citizens of a state qualify, your race, gender, sexuality, or anything else are irrelevant. If it was relevant, then it is no longer “universal”.

Now for the second word. “Basic”. This literally means basic in that everyone gets the same amount of “stuff”. Again, regardless of your physical and spiritual characteristics, everyone gets a flat amount of stuff. No administrative duties tasked to assign who gets what amount, a deal is made and everyone gets the same of it.

And for the last most critical word. “Income”. This is referring to the currency a state uses for its citizens to spend on in exchange for goods and services.

So to put the three words together, “Universal Basic Income”, it is a set amount of money given to all citizens of a state regardless of who you are. To put it simply, it’s free money.

Now I know what you’re thinking, “money doesn’t grow on trees.” I have heard that saying before, but have you ever wondered to take that saying a step further? What’s the tree’s equivalent to that saying? “Sunlight doesn’t come for free?” Of course it does! A tree grows on an unlimited supply of a set amount of things that help it grow. Sunlight, food, water, soil and nutrients.

So let’s turn it back to humans. If we cherish nature and fight to preserve it, why can’t we receive the same treatment any other biological animal gets? Monkeys don’t pay for bananas, they just live where they grow. Fish doesn’t pay tolls for the water it swims in.

The point I’m getting at here is that people, like fish and plants, have basic needs. Since money is currently largely not perceived as a basic need, we have to work for it. We work because we don’t want to die of poverty and that’s the only way to earn an income.

The bigger issue is automation which is a topic for another post down the line. Technology automates away jobs leaving many jobless. If you are unable to get a job simply because there are fewer jobs than there are people, then we have a big economic issue here.

UBI doesn’t solve everything but it makes it so that people can be able to afford basic things at a very low price. People often complain that UBI is a “handout” which is only the case if you substitute a livable salary for basic income. The point of UBI is so that you can work a job that’s meaningful to you and not die of poverty trying to find a job thats meaningful to another employer or the economy in general.

Over the next few weeks, I’ll be addressing more points about the whole idea of UBI itself, how it grew in popularity, the people who support it today, and what you can do to enact it.

Posted by Jack Burrows, filed under What is UBI?. Date: October 9, 2020, 9:52 pm | 3 Comments »

3 Responses

  1. Ashley Sherwood Says:

    You have an interesting way at looking at Universal Basic Income that I haven’t really thought of. I believe I agree with the concept of money being a basic need to survive because without it what can you do? Where could you live? Its basically impossible to function without an income. Another excellent point is there are fewer and fewer jobs being made available because of the technology advancements which is why there are so many that are homeless and that is just sad. Thanks for letting me see things a little differently. I liked you fish and monkey analogy.

  2. Jack Burrows Says:

    Thanks! Glad you liked it!

  3. Morgan Horn Says:

    Prior to reading your post I had not idea what UBI was. Your post was really informative and made me look at things differently. I also really liked your analogy using fish and monkeys. This analogy was a really effective way to illustrate your main points of your post.

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