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Old 09-12-2019, 10:16 AM
Shodan is online now
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Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Milky Way Galaxy
Posts: 40,213
UBI in its purest form is economic policy based on the broken windows fallacy, AKA paying people to dig holes and fill them up, except without the holes.

Government gets revenue from
  1. Taxing current taxpayers
  2. Borrowing from future taxpayers, or
  3. Inflating the currency.
Most people understand why inflating the currency is counterproductive. Taxing current taxpayers means that one group of people have money, which they spend or invest as they see fit, the government takes the money, and gives it to another group for them to spend or invest as they see fit. (Borrowing means the same thing, except the future taxpayers have to be taxed more to pay the interest, and future taxpayers are less likely to be present to object because they don't exist yet, or haven't seen the bill yet.)

You aren't adding anything - just transferring money from one set of people to another. Total spending+investment remains the same.

The idea that spending is always better than investing is wrong. (So is the idea that investing is always better than spending.) So the idea that UBI is good because it stimulates spending is misguided, because
  1. People spend their own money differently from money they are given, and
  2. spending is not always better than investing, and
  3. Implementing a program now because we want people to spend more runs into trouble when we want people to invest more.
There is approximately 0% chance that the government will stop doing UBI when the advantages of investing outweigh the advantages of spending, and cannot parse a UBI program finely enough to only apply it to situations now where people should invest rather than spend. Because the government cannot predict those situations. Nobody can - markets are emergent.

We do not live in a post-scarcity society. We will never live in a post-scarcity society - the Law of Entropy is not going to be repealed any time soon, and Star Trek is fiction.

On average, members of a society have to produce at least as much as they consume. People don't necessarily want to do that, but they have to. So, either set the UBI low enough that people have to work, on average, and that rather defeats the purpose of UBI, or high enough so that the average person doesn't produce more than he consumes, and hope the productive ones don't realize they are being played for suckers.