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COVID-19 is accelerating the pace of automation and the need for UBI

The pandemic has given us an early glimpse at how truly disruptive the fourth industrial revolution may be, and the measures we'll need to support human dignity.

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  • The coronavirus crisis has acted as a catalyst for two powerful transformative forces: automation and universal basic income.
  • These two intertwined forces will undoubtedly gain steam, writes Frederick Kuo, and the pandemic will hasten the acceptance of them from a scale of decades to years or mere months.
  • This crisis has ushered in a glimpse of what a dystopian future could look like as a rapidly advancing fourth industrial revolution inevitably causes severe disruption in our economy and labor structure.
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#7: The colossal problem with universal basic income | Top 10 2019

Continuing the countdown, Big Think's seventh most popular video of 2019 explains why universal basic income will hurt the 99%, and make the 1% even richer.

  • Big Think's #7 most popular video of 2019 features Douglas Rushkoff, who says universal basic income is a band-aid solution that will not solve wealth inequality.
  • Funneling money to the 99% perpetuates their roles as consumers, pumping money straight back up to the 1% at the top of the pyramid.
  • Rushkoff suggests universal basic assets instead, so that the people at the bottom of the pyramid can own some means of production and participate in the profits of mega-rich companies.
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The right-wing case for basic income

How does the largest welfare program imaginable have libertarian supporters?

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  • The idea for a universal basic income, or UBI, is increasingly popular.
  • While it seems like a left-wing handout, many prominent right wing thinkers have endorsed the idea.
  • The libertarian version of UBI does have a few key differences from the more standard version.
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Andrew Yang wants to tax Silicon Valley to fund universal basic income plan

The 2020 presidential candidate said companies like Amazon should "pay their fair share" as automation begins to displace human workers.

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  • Andrew Yang is a 2020 Democratic presidential candidate whose key campaign promise is to give every American adult $12,000, regardless of their current income.
  • Yang said his universal basic income plan could be funded by a value-added tax levied on tech companies.
  • Yang's proposal has no shortage of critics, but he maintains that his UBI program would grow the economy by trillions of dollars.
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Universal basic income: The plan to give $12,000 to every American adult

Tax megacorps like Amazon to fund universal basic income, says 2020 presidential candidate Andrew Yang.

  • The Freedom Dividend is a universal basic income proposal initiated by 2020 presidential candidate Andrew Yang.
  • Yang's plan would give $1,000 a month, or $12,000 per year, to every American over the age of 18, every year. This would get every U.S. adult just below the poverty line which is currently $12,770 a year.
  • How would it be funded? Yang suggests a value added tax on megacorps like Amazon (which paid zero tax last year). Funnel that money back into the American's people's hands to boost the economy, improve mental health, increase education and lower violence.
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