The main value aspect for my arguments here is the efficiency factor of using small amount of public resources to reduce poverty in the 20% poorest quintile.

We’re not using “value” in the same context. I’m speaking of the actual monetary value provided to an entity by labor.

Is it wise to reduce productivity growth because a value says ‘we must work to get money to survive’? This is where we disagree substantially.

Such values are subjective; my argument is more based on human psychology. Obviously we don’t have much data on how UBIs specifically impact individuals, but we can extrapolate from other datapoints; specifically, I’d point out the increases in substance abuse in US communities who have been hard-hit by loss of jobs due to offshoring.

My contention is that psychologically and historically, humans do not respond well to being unproductive. There is a fanciful dream out there (I’ve seen it expressed on Medium) that UBI is somehow going to “free people to pursue their avocations and creativity”; I think a more realistic expectation is that UBI ends up a huge boon to the liquor, weed, and illegal drug market as people try to come to grips with their own uselessness.

The capital flight factor is marginal or non-existing if only the 1% is affected. The 99% of economic agents would profit, more or less, on a UBI/BIG system financed by the top 1%.

If the capital flight factor is marginal or non-existent, so is the revenue obtainable from them in taxation.

The Obama/Boehner tax deal raised taxes on the top 1% by 4.6% marginal, back to the Clinton rate. That increase took in 60B to Treasury, which is less than what it cost to clean up after Superstorm Sandy.

Do the math. There are about 125M families in the US. Obviously, that means that there are 25M in the lowest quintile. Even if you only wanted to provide UBI for those alone, that 60B would only give those families $2,400 a year in basic income. I don’t think that’s what the UBI proponents have in mind. So, you need to find a lot more money from someplace else, and it’s not going to come from the upper 1%.

But, that’s besides the point. If you define welfare as a program for which the government provides financial support in return for no labor value, then UBI is welfare. It’s a political non starter in the US.

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Data Driven Econophile. Muslim, USA born. Been “woke” 2x: 1st, when I realized the world isn’t fair; 2nd, when I realized the “woke” people are full of shit.

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