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The colossal problem with universal basic income | Douglas Rushkoff

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Published on Mar 22, 2019

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• Universal basic income is a band-aid solution that will not solve wealth inequality, says Douglas Rushkoff.
• Funneling money to the 99% perpetuates their roles as consumers, pumping money straight back up to the 1% at the top of the pyramid.
• Rushkoff suggests universal basic assets instead, so that the people at the bottom of the pyramid can own some means of production and participate in the profits of mega-rich companies.

Douglas Rushkoff is the host of the Team Human podcast and a professor of digital economics at CUNY/Queens. He is also the author of a dozen bestselling books on media, technology, and culture, including, Present Shock, Program or Be Programmed, Media Virus, and Team Human, the last of which is his latest work. (Buy it here: https://amzn.to/2Jy3w4C)

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TRANSCRIPT

DOUGLAS RUSHKOFF: For a long time I was a fan of universal basic income. And the logic I had was that I always hear politicians talking about, 'Let's create jobs for people. That's what we need is jobs, more jobs,' as if that's what's going to solve the economic problem. So the government is supposed to lend money to a bank, who can then lend money to a corporation, who will then build a factory in order for people to have jobs. Do we really need more jobs? In California, they're tearing down houses as we speak, because the houses are in foreclosure, and they want to keep market values high. The US Department of Agriculture burns food every week in order to keep the prices of that food high, even though there's people who are starving and people who need homes. We can't just let people have those homes. Why? Because they don't have jobs. So now we're supposed to create jobs for people to make useless stuff for other people to buy plastic crap that we're going to throw away or stick in storage units or end up in landfill just so those people can have jobs so that we can justify letting them participate in the abundance. And that's kind of ass backwards...

Read more at https://bigthink.com/videos/the-colos...

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