You may have recently read about Finland being the first country to pay a free basic income to some randomly-selected citizens across their nation.
For those unfamiliar with the terminology, think of basic income as a paycheck you get every month for free (in addition to your work paycheck (if you receive one)), just so you can afford the basic necessities. The notion is that it should provide security and inspire people to improve their lives.
The possible effects of implementing universal basic income is it could reduce poverty and crime, allow citizens to pursue educational goals, and encourage innovation. You will have the option of doing what you want to do rather than doing something just for the money. With the way innovation is moving, machines are taking over jobs because of automation. ING cut more than 5,000 jobs back in October because machines can do the job better than employees and for a smaller cost.
With basic income it would create a safety net for employees in case of structural unemployment.
Elon Musk mentioned in an interview, “There is a pretty good chance we end up with a universal basic income, or something like that, due to automation. Yeah, I am not sure what else one would do. I think that is what would happen.”
We are already moving to self-driving trucks and cars because they are starting to prove to be safer and cheaper. All of these constant innovations is just where the future is headed, and basic income is one of the steps forward. It will be interesting to see how successful Finland’s basic income scheme will turn out.
Apart from Finland, India and Canada are also looking into implementing basic income into their countries.
What is your opinion on universal basic income? Would anything in your life change (work-wise) if you received a monthly basic income?