In a 2018 poll, nearly half of all Americans supported the idea of a universal basic income (UBI) – where did this idea come from and what would it mean for today’s society? The idea of UBI has been around for many centuries and has been gaining popularity over time. In 1516, Thomas More’s ‘Utopia’ philosophizes on the benefits of a minimum income, Thomas Paine wrote of providing a basic income for all adults for all over the age of 21, and in 1967, Martin Luther King Jr. named guaranteed income as the income to poverty.
Today, many call for UBI with the threat of a new industrial revolution: automation. The idea may seem very utopian, but testing the reality of a UBI has recently begun. A possible way to pay for this idea is by value-added tax. This is a tax on the production of goods or services, usually paid by customers.
Find more about how UBI could change our way of life here.