There is a lot of talk about the idea of governments around the world giving people money for nothing – or the more palatable term – a ‘universal basic income’.
For those of you who just spat a mouthful of your morning coffee back into the cup, universal basic income is indeed a real thing.
With the impending doom of most jobs thanks to artificial intelligence and machines that are smarter than humans – the proposed idea to counter this is to give everyone, rich and poor, a basic monthly allowance…no questions asked, and you get it whether you want it or not.
But what happens to a society and its people when you eliminate the fear of poverty? Do they sit around and play video games all day or do they use the freedom to create new innovations?
Finland is one country where they’re testing the theory on a large scale, and this is what Vice news is reporting on one family’s experience of the experiment.
Personally we have wildly conflicting options about the idea.
At first it seemed like a good thing, but the more we deeply consider the implications and the causal relationships that gave rise to this situation, the more we are asking questions around the conditions themselves, which are forcing society to consider this measure as a viable tool to ensure society’s future.
Elon Musk likes the idea – but he would wouldn’t he?
So far we don’t hold a firm position either way.