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This is being pushed hard in the U.S:

Twitter’s Jack Dorsey Is Giving Andrew Yang $5 Million to Build the Case for a Universal Basic Income

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Jack Dorsey, the billionaire CEO of Twitter and mobile-payment company Square, is giving $5 million to Humanity Forward, a group launched by former Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang, to build the case for a universal basic income.

Dorsey, who plans to give away $1 billion of his wealth through a fund called Start Small, announced the seven-figure donation on the newest episode of Yang’s podcast, Yang Speaks. Dorsey told Yang that a universal basic income, or UBI, was a “long overdue” idea and “the only way we can change policy is by experimenting and showing case studies of why this works.”

Yang says Humanity Forward plans to immediately distribute Dorsey’s contribution in the form of small cash grants of $250 to nearly 20,000 people who’ve lost their jobs or taken an economic hit as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Yang’s group has already given away nearly $2 million in direct cash assistance to help communities reeling from the coronavirus pandemic.

“Not only will Jack’s donation directly impact tens of thousands of people in need during the current economic downturn, it will help Humanity Forward and our movement continue to make a case for universal basic income in the United States,” Yang said in a statement. “We know UBI for every American is possible, and this $5 million from Start Small is going to help demonstrate what is possible for families across the country.”

As a presidential candidate, Yang made universal basic income — what he called a “Freedom Dividend” — the centerpiece of his campaign. He told voters that the U.S. was “in the third inning of the greatest economic and technological transformation in the history of our country,” with advances in automation and artificial intelligence poised to radically reshape the global economy. “If you’re dealing with an economic shift this historic, then you need to bring real solutions to bear that are going to help people manage the transition,” he told Rolling Stone in 2019. “And the most efficient way to do that is a universal basic income.”

Yang’s message and his refreshingly unpolished approach as a candidate helped him amass a fervent online following and raise tens of millions of dollars. His tech-centric vision also drew praise from Dorsey, Y-combinator President Sam Altman, and Tesla’s Elon Musk, to name a few.
 

More;

https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/politics-news/twitter-jack-dorsey-andrew-yang-coronavirus-covid-universal-basic-income-1003365/

UBI is really expensive. If you take the furlough scheme for example that is costing £8bn a month currently and has 7 million claimants.

That's more than we spend on  the NHS every year!  

If every adult got a monthly cheque for say £1.5k what would THAT cost? Has anyone actually bothered to cost it? I'd appreciate if anyone has any links, data or research..

We do have a form of UBI in terms of child benefit. I  believe there are now limits on this universal program if you  earn over £50k:

https://www.gov.uk/child-benefit/what-youll-get

Anyone got any thoughts?

 

 

 

Edited by Warlord
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A better alternative would be to provide everyone in UK with free healthcare / dental / schooling / university / broadband / affordable housing.

Paying an arbitrary sum of money a month to majority of people who lack financial education will just end bad.

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2 minutes ago, Voltron said:

Paying an arbitrary sum of money a month to majority of people who lack financial education will just end bad.

Ah-herm.  "End badly" I think you mean... But, even then, it begs the question: badly for whom?

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4 minutes ago, Voltron said:

A better alternative would be to provide everyone in UK with free healthcare / dental / schooling / university / broadband / affordable housing.

Paying an arbitrary sum of money a month to majority of people who lack financial education will just end bad.

We already do most of that...  Have you costed the other bits?

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Total UK annual spending on pensions and welfare - £287.4 billion (ref 1)

Total UK Population - 63,200,000 (ref 2), approximately 21% are under 18

So, dividing one by the other gives a weekly income of £87 per person, which would raise to £111 if under 18s did not receive it (or their parents on their behalf). Would children be eligible for it?

No matter how much you try and make the sums add up, it would be hard for a single person to survive on £87pw if you have to pay for accommodation (renting a room in the cheapest part of the country), but maybe just about on £111?

A family of four receiving £87 per week each would take home £1,500 per month though... Starting to look tempting - maybe the same as a £24,000 salary (pre tax).

 

Ref 1 - https://www.ukpublicspending.co.uk/

Ref 2 - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demography_of_the_United_Kingdom

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I cannot see a way around this that does not end in dystopia, if anything UBI will free up technological innovation, the majority of jobs will soon not “need” humans to do them, so you have few options, stifle innovation arbitrarily, create a dystopia in which jobs are slowly automated away and no social safety net, allow a universal basic income where technological innovation will be a benefit to society without a disruptive effect on people’s lives.

In my career I have had numerous times were I could have automated my entire job but chose not to because, I still wanted a job. If I could have went back to universal basic income and watch movies and make creative things I would have automated my role in a month.

The Finland experiment was fairly robust and showed that it did not deter people from working, nor have any particular negative effects, during covid 19 UBI would have allowed people to be free to choose when they felt safe to work again, rather than being forced by circumstance.

Full disclaimer cards on the table, I will vote for (almost) anyone if they will Meng a universal basic income funded by a land value tax.

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6 hours ago, Dean said:

, I will vote for (almost) anyone if they will Meng a universal basic income funded by a land value tax.

How much does a land  value tax raise?

Just a quick calculation: If you have a UBI of say £1k/month and it was only for those who pay the basic rate of income tax (25 million people) that would cost £300 billion/year.

So as you can see it is very costly...

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, A17 said:

Total UK annual spending on pensions and welfare - £287.4 billion (ref 1)

Total UK Population - 63,200,000 (ref 2), approximately 21% are under 18

So, dividing one by the other gives a weekly income of £87 per person, which would raise to £111 if under 18s did not receive it (or their parents on their behalf). Would children be eligible for it?

No matter how much you try and make the sums add up, it would be hard for a single person to survive on £87pw if you have to pay for accommodation (renting a room in the cheapest part of the country), but maybe just about on £111?

A family of four receiving £87 per week each would take home £1,500 per month though... Starting to look tempting - maybe the same as a £24,000 salary (pre tax).

 

Ref 1 - https://www.ukpublicspending.co.uk/

Ref 2 - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demography_of_the_United_Kingdom

Good post...

The problem is It think with your calculation you would halve the state pension,.  That would be suicidal... No politician could do that!

Edited by Warlord
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8 hours ago, A17 said:

No matter how much you try and make the sums add up, it would be hard for a single person to survive on £87pw if you have to pay for accommodation (renting a room in the cheapest part of the country), but maybe just about on £111?

4k a year isn't much. It is an amount that's been proposed before by UBI trials, but those have assumed housing benefit and disability benefits aren't removed. 

That's lower figure is barely half the state pension. So you'll have difficulty taking half that income from pensioners currently suffering already suffering increasing levels of 'pensioner poverty

You've also got some obligations you can't avoid in that spend

- Everyone has the human right to a home, or at least shelter or accommodation of some kind, so you can switch off housing benefit but you still have to find some way to provide, and presumably pay for, housing. 

- Some disability benefits are also a human right having been taken through the courts by disabilities charities. So you can't switch those off either. 

In my informal conversations with the 'man in the pub' people seem to think 20k is the right kind of annual limit. Not sure that's achievable, but if you describe UBI as giving people a life free of stress, where they can enjoy a simple life and work is a nice to have where you'd work to do rewarding things only that's the kind of level people reckon works. 

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The backers of ubi, never seem to explain why we need it, or how it would work or be paid for. 

Most of the backers seem to say automation is making jobs not exist anymore, thats not happening, unemployment was at its lowest ever, when companies automate a process they generally repurpose staff

It seems to be pushed exclusively by single millennial men. 

If was so such a good idea and would look to so much innovation, I'm sure we'll see similar from the 7m people currently furloughed.  

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Posted (edited)
4 minutes ago, cbathpc said:

Most of the backers seem to say automation is making jobs not exist anymore, thats not happening, unemployment was at its lowest ever, when companies automate a process they generally repurpose staff

Bar jobs soon to go?

https://news.yahoo.com/spain-bar-bot-serves-contact-free-beers-084950516.html

Agree with the rest of your post. I think its very costly if paying a liveable sum of money and no politician can halve the state pension to accommodate it.

In the US backers are calling for $2k/month UBI which is about £1600.

 

Edited by Warlord
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48 minutes ago, cbathpc said:

Most of the backers seem to say automation is making jobs not exist anymore, thats not happening, unemployment was at its lowest ever, when companies automate a process they generally repurpose staff

It's all a slow erosion really.

I've worked a team of 24 cut to 4, through a combination of Offshoring and automation. 20 days fairly boring work for one person was automated to one script which ran overnight. 

I worked for a bank, they are frequently cutting 5000 jobs here, 10000 jobs there, I think they've cut 70000 UK jobs since 2008. Primarily through Offshoring and automation. However they are still employing around 80000 staff, and are competing with banks like revolut, starling etc who you might consider 'fully automated' and who can provide a similar service with 200-2000 staff. 

Some jobs get automated, but far more are in companies that go bust because they can't keep up with companies built from the ground up to do everything in an automated way. Those jobs have been automated, just not at the same employer.

In fact that's what we are talking about with UBI - saving money by closing the benefits system, including the DWP, and replacing it with a simple to administer BACS payment of the same amount to everyone in the UK once a month. Thats 85000 staff at the DWP you could probably replace with a couple of hundred to administer a largely automated built from the ground up UBI. 

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The big American tech companies all want this as they can see how the world of work is going.  We are still flogging the dead horse of forcing non jobs on people so that they can consume.

Just cut out the non job bit and give them money directly to consume.

The virus outbreak will be the change that's been coming for years.  Furlough is showing the way.

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11 hours ago, Warlord said:

If every adult got a monthly cheque for say £1.5k what would THAT cost? Has anyone actually bothered to cost it? I'd appreciate if anyone has any links, data or research..

We do have a form of UBI in terms of child benefit. I  believe there are now limits on this universal program if you  earn over £50k

Child benefit isn't even close to being universal, given that it is only paid to people with children, and even then not to high earners!

£1,500 pm is WAY higher than a UBI would be.  That would cost nearly a trillion pounds a year.

However, remember that the cost of UBI is offset by all of the benefits that it would replace.  Assuming it replaced around half of government expenditure you're probably looking at a UBI of around £500 per month.  In reality you'd probably have to set it slightly higher than that, and raise taxes to meet the rest (such as getting rid of tax relief personal allowance etc).

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3 minutes ago, Social Justice League said:

Furlough is showing the way.

Is it though?  Or is furlough ingraining in the public's mind that if you pay people to stay at home the economy collapses?

Really it's not comparable, because furlough is much more generous than UBI would be - but people won't necessarily get that.  I feel it may harm the concept not help it.

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1 minute ago, scottbeard said:

Is it though?  Or is furlough ingraining in the public's mind that if you pay people to stay at home the economy collapses?

Really it's not comparable, because furlough is much more generous than UBI would be - but people won't necessarily get that.  I feel it may harm the concept not help it.

Yeah you're 100% correct about this.  I think to begin with UBI would be no more than £400/£500 a month, but it would be a start.

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5 minutes ago, scottbeard said:

Child benefit isn't even close to being universal, given that it is only paid to people with children, and even then not to high earners!

£1,500 pm is WAY higher than a UBI would be.  That would cost nearly a trillion pounds a year.

However, remember that the cost of UBI is offset by all of the benefits that it would replace.  Assuming it replaced around half of government expenditure you're probably looking at a UBI of around £500 per month.  In reality you'd probably have to set it slightly higher than that, and raise taxes to meet the rest (such as getting rid of tax relief personal allowance etc).

I meant it's similar to the child benefit in terms of being a direct cash payment. I think that's unique in our system as to obtain other benefits you need to fill  in numerous forms and be assessed and processed..

 

Edited by Warlord
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9 minutes ago, scottbeard said:

Child benefit isn't even close to being universal, given that it is only paid to people with children, and even then not to high earners!

£1,500 pm is WAY higher than a UBI would be.  That would cost nearly a trillion pounds a year.

However, remember that the cost of UBI is offset by all of the benefits that it would replace.  Assuming it replaced around half of government expenditure you're probably looking at a UBI of around £500 per month.  In reality you'd probably have to set it slightly higher than that, and raise taxes to meet the rest (such as getting rid of tax relief personal allowance etc).

£100 of that £500 would most probably be clawed back by tax anyway. 

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28 minutes ago, Social Justice League said:

The big American tech companies all want this as they can see how the world of work is going.  We are still flogging the dead horse of forcing non jobs on people so that they can consume.

Just cut out the non job bit and give them money directly to consume.

The virus outbreak will be the change that's been coming for years.  Furlough is showing the way.

Is that the way work is going, or the way big American tech companies are forcing it to go. 

Most of the big American tech companies only want you to be able to afford their 9.99 a month subscription (apple wants to sell hardware as well) 

I wouldn't want to live in their world. I've said before that Google structure their work as piece work. Like many big tech companies they have a fairly small 'core' (WhatsApp for example only employs 75 people) but they do everything else using contractors and 'self employed' staff. The people who check and review websites have to log on and check for work and are allocated work tasks in 8/12 minute increments, these work tasks quite often get loaded at 3am and are gone to people who claim those task to do in minutes. If you aren't fast enough, accurate enough or are just having a bad day their work allocation algorithm simply stops allocating you work...thats not a world I want to live in. 

Edited by regprentice
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17 minutes ago, longgone said:

£100 of that £500 would most probably be clawed back by tax anyway. 

Most UBI proposals effectively do away with the tax free allowance but don't apply tax to the UBI itself. So from the first 'extra' pound you make over UBI by working you start paying tax at a flat national rate of 40% say. 

Scotland are currently trialling UBI in Glasgow. Their proposal is to taper the tax evenly so that tax starts above the UBI threshold (which is only £6k Iirc, but retains disability and housing benefits) , but by the time you get to £40k a year you see no benefit from the UBI whatsoever. In effect largely swapping UBI for the tax free allowance. 

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I skimmed the original article in the OP... But going back and reading it again im lost as to what's happening here. Reading the first paragraph I'd assumed that this $5mn would go into studies, surveys, fund trials, like it says 'to build the case for a UBI' ... But actually they are just splitting it up into chunks of $250 and giving it away?! 

'Jack Dorsey, the billionaire CEO of Twitter and mobile-payment company Square, is giving $5 million to Humanity Forward, a group launched by former Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang, to build the case for a universal basic income.

Yang says Humanity Forward plans to immediately distribute Dorsey’s contribution in the form of small cash grants of $250 to nearly 20,000 people who’ve lost their jobs or taken an economic hit as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. '

In what way is giving 20,000 people a single payment of $250 going to build the case for a UBI? That's closer to the arguing something like PPI refunds were positive for low earners than making a sensible case for a UBI. 

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Posted (edited)
6 minutes ago, regprentice said:

In what way is giving 20,000 people a single payment of $250 going to build the case for a UBI? That's closer to the arguing something like PPI refunds were positive for low earners than making a sensible case for a UBI. 

The bloke Yang has done it before. He gets a lot of publicity and says that it advances the cause. I think he;s a bit of a nutter...

Democrats in America have been demanding a few things: Universal Healthcare , Green New Deal and UBI.  These are very costly programs and I have no idea how they intend to pay for them.  If Biden (Democrat presidential nominee) wins the presidency in November then these aspirations  maybe implemented.

Edited by Warlord
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51 minutes ago, regprentice said:

Is that the way work is going, or the way big American tech companies are forcing it to go. 

Most of the big American tech companies only want you to be able to afford their 9.99 a month subscription (apple wants to sell hardware as well) 

I wouldn't want to live in their world. I've said before that Google structure their work as piece work. Like many big tech companies they have a fairly small 'core' (WhatsApp for example only employs 75 people) but they do everything else using contractors and 'self employed' staff. The people who check and review websites have to log on and check for work and are allocated work tasks in 8/12 minute increments, these work tasks quite often get loaded at 3am and are gone to people who claim those task to do in minutes. If you aren't fast enough, accurate enough or are just having a bad day their work allocation algorithm simply stops allocating you work...thats not a world I want to live in. 

Agree 100%. Sounds horrendous.

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10 minutes ago, Warlord said:

The bloke Yang has done it before. He gets a lot of publicity and says that it advances the cause. I think he;s a bit of a nutter...

Democrats in America have been demanding a few things: Universal Healthcare , Green New Deal and UBI.  These are very costly programs and I have no idea how they intend to pay for them.  If Biden (Democrat presidential nominee) wins the presidency in November then these aspirations  maybe implemented.

Biden will implement UBI? I can't find anything to suggest that... 

Biden completely ignores question on UBI - Youtube

Joe Biden slams UBI - 'a job is about more than a paycheck'

Biden said - Americans don’t want a no-strings-attached check from the government, like the universal basic income proposal pushed by some leaders in Silicon Valley. They want work that provides dignity and a sense of community as well as a good paycheck. To deliver on that, we need policies that support work and ensure workers can succeed in a changing economy.

I'm not seeing any evidence from the US that suggest their parties policies influence their president at all. Certainly recently. 

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  • 417 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
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