Yak, yak, yak! If we want to end poverty, then JUST DO IT!
Andy Stern, former president of SEIU, released a book today in which he argues for a universal basic income in the United States. Raising the Floor focuses on the impact of new technologies on the labor market, a subject we’ve been covering here at OnLabor. Barbara Ehrenreich, in her review of the book, writes that “[w]hen a veteran labor leader like Andy Stern argues that we’re not going to survive an increasingly jobless economy without a universal basic income, then it’s time for the rest of us to listen up.” I agree. Interested readers can learn more here. For those looking to get some background and history of the universal income concept, Phillipe Van Parijs’ Basic Income: A Simple and Powerful Idea for the Twenty-first Century provides an excellent primer.
COMMENT: The War on Drugs, The War on Crime, The War on Education, The War on Personal Choice, The War on Health, The War on Other Religions, The War on Defective Brains, The War on Mental Health, The War on Poverty – and on and on. These are, in practice, The War on People.
What is the point of all the superior technologies that we create, if not to provide for the basic needs of human beings? If we’re going to take away jobs that allow people to support themselves, by making most jobs obsolete through robotic automation and artificial intelligence, then don’t we ethically and morally need to provide for simple survival?
I can hear the Puritanical elite screaming: “But work (wage slavery) is the only behavior that gives inferior people value and dignity.” Go f*&^ yourselves! People have always worked for their survival – Why should ONE PERCENT reap all the benefits of an “advanced” economy? This is a battle that has been going on throughout history- it’s the “Pharaoh, King, Dictator” philosophy of human destiny as a Pyramid scheme of suffering and inequality; of master and slave; of Gods, demiGods and subhumans.
JUST END IT!