Alan Watts was overzealous in his basic income prediction – but he wasn't wrong

A guaranteed basic income is an old solution to a new problem of labor automation.

Image: Big Think
  • Economist Robert Theobald coined the team 'basic living guarantee' in the 1960s.
  • He believed that we were going to suffer problems because of an overabundance of resources.
  • Philosopher Alan Watts spoke about the possibility of an economic utopia through a universal basic income.
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Is a Well-Paying Job the next Entitlement Program?

The Job Guarantee is a policy proposal that would have the state function as an employer of last resort.

George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress)

Here at Big Think we like to talk about the basic income guarantee. While the basic income is an interesting idea, objections to it abound. Also, it isn’t the only idea for ending poverty making the rounds. While the basic income gets a lot of press, there's another idea: the Job Guarantee.

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Is Universal Basic Income the Best or Worst Idea Ever?

It really depends on who you ask, as one European poll found out. 

Data visual by Dalia Research

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"Kids Born Today Will Never Get to Drive a Car," Says a Top Engineer

Robots and AI are going to become an everyday part of life, but will that take away other everyday parts of life?

Children jump from a driverless car during a photocall at the Science Museum, in London. (CARL DE SOUZA/AFP/Getty Images)

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47% of jobs will vanish in the next 25 years, say Oxford University researchers

“No government is prepared,” The Economist reports. 

 

British Musicians. Ms. Dynamite. Getty Images.

The Trump campaign ran on bringing jobs back to American shores, although mechanization has been the biggest reason for manufacturing jobs' disappearance. Similar losses have led to populist movements in several other countries. But instead of a pro-job growth future, economists across the board predict further losses as AI, robotics, and other technologies continue to be ushered in. What is up for debate is how quickly this is likely to occur.

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