What if everyone got a guaranteed $2,500 check every month? How would society change? This referendum was held last weekend and did not pass, but it was the first attempt by a major European economy to try UBI. Get ready to hear and read a lot more about Universal Basic Income in the coming months and years.
In my opinion it’s almost inevitable for two reasons. First, automation is going to destroy the majority of jobs, so we need to decouple income from labor (McKinsey estimates that 44% of jobs today can be automated with existing technology, and another 11% are at risk as soon as computers achieve human-level voice recognition some time in the next two years).
Second, money is basically notional today anyway. It’s all just an idea, more or less just zeroes and ones on a computer, so if we can all agree to something like UBI there doesn’t necessarily have to be a hard landing.
In any case, this is something I’m watching and studying with great interest.