- First and foremost, "It's payback time for Women". Recently, a Woman named Judith Shulevitz wrote an op-ed titled thusly, arguing in favor of a Universal Basic Income Guarantee for all. Her feminist argument for a UBI, which I agree 100% with, was that such a thing would provide long-overdue compensation for Women's unpaid work (i.e. housework and caregiving) that society currently takes for granted and considers a "free resource" for the taking. As the saying goes, there are two kinds of work that Women do: underpaid, and unpaid. While that is true for some men as well, it is overwhelmingly true for Women. Thus, her argument makes a great deal of sense overall, and I agree. It is indeed LONG overdue.
- Men are becoming increasingly redundant in the long run due to technology, globalization, and the overall ascendancy of Women. When men are no longer artificially propped up, they will fall--and the bigger they are, the harder they fall. And this will only increase in the near future. This is a potential ticking time-bomb that must be defused sooner rather than later. Men become extremely dangerous creatures under either of two conditions: 1) when they have too much power relative to Women, and/or 2) when they are desperate for money. Ever see the 1996 film Fargo? Indeed, a Universal Basic Income is one of the best ways to tackle the second one.
- A UBI is far more efficient in theory and practice than much of what currently passes for a social safety net these days, and would have far less bureaucracy. No means tests, no discrimination, no playing God. It's simply a basic human right, period. And it would be far less costly in the long run.
- As Buckminster Fuller famously noted, there are more than enough resources for everyone to live like a millionaire with today's technology. And he said this back in the 1970s, mind you. And the specious notion that everybody and their mother must "work for a living" is not only outdated, but is also seriously classist, ableist, and ageist, and by extension indirectly sexist and racist as well.
- Poverty is a razor-sharp, double-edged sword, spiritually speaking. Being attached to riches is clearly counter to spirituality, but then again, so is being attached to poverty. Either way, it's the *attachment* that is the problem. And poverty today is largely if not entirely man-made via artificial scarcity.
- We would all be better off on balance, spiritually and otherwise, if material poverty were eradicated--and a UBI is the most efficient way to do so. As William Bond (and others) noted, with today's technology that is certainly doable, but for the greed of the oligarchs at the top who control the system. And that in turn is a result of patriarchy, given how men tend to see war and scarcity as inevitable, so they create a self-fulfilling prophecy as a result.
- With an unconditional UBI instead of means testing or other conditions, gone will be the perverse incentives that exist under the current system that trap too many people in poverty today.
- Negative liberty and positive liberty are NOT opposites, but rather two sides of the same coin. Indeed, one cannot be truly free if one is systematically denied the basic necessities of life. And truly no one is free when others are oppressed in any way.
- Inequality, at least when it is as extreme as it is today, is profoundly toxic to society and makes the looming problems/crises of climate change and ecological overshoot that much more difficult to solve. This is over and above the effects of poverty alone. And a UBI can dramatically reduce both socio-economic inequality as well as absolute material poverty. (And when funded by an Alaska-style tax on fossil fuels, it can also double as a Steve Stoft or James Hansen-style carbon tax-and-dividend as well.)
- We consume and waste a ludicrous amount of (mostly fossil-fuel) energy in the so-called "developed" world, and much of that wasteful consumption can be curtailed simply by making it so no one has to "work for a living" unless one really wants to. Just think of all the energy spent (and commuting to and from) unnecessary work at a job you hate, to buy stuff you don't need, to impress people you don't even like. A UBI could thus greatly reduce our carbon and overall ecological footprint in the long run.
- And finally, one should keep in mind that, as Carol Brouillet has noted, the literal and original meaning of the word "community" is "free sharing of gifts". What we currently have now under patriarchy/kyriarchy is more of a pseudo-community in that regard. And that needs to change. Yesterday. The exchange economy of capitialist patriarchy has failed us, and we need to rediscover and re-create the gift economy in its place. A UBI will make the transition much smoother and peaceful.
We should do away with the absolutely specious notion that everybody has to earn a living. It is a fact today that one in ten thousand of us can make a technological breakthrough capable of supporting all the rest. The youth of today are absolutely right in recognizing this nonsense of earning a living. We keep inventing jobs because of this false idea that everybody has to be employed at some kind of drudgery because, according to Malthusian Darwinian theory he must justify his right to exist. So we have inspectors of inspectors and people making instruments for inspectors to inspect inspectors. The true business of people should be to go back to school and think about whatever it was they were thinking about before somebody came along and told them they had to earn a living.In fact, one could argue that two of the most toxic, outdated, and specious ideas ever conceived by the patriarchy (aside from the central doctrine of male supremacy itself and the entire "dominator" model, of course) are that "everybody and their mother must work for a living" and that "everybody must procreate." And both are now literally KILLING this very planet that gives us life. Thus, on balance, a Universal Basic Income Guarantee for all is a good idea regardless. Again, it's a win-win-win situation for everyone but the oligarchs. And the only real arguments against it are paternalistic and/or sadistic ones, which really means there are no good arguments against it in a free and civilized society. So what are we waiting for?
Perhaps Bucky's other prediction, that Women would take over the world, is a prerequisite for his vision to be fulfilled? Honestly, it can't happen soon enough!