Too little too late: why an unconditional basic income is impossible

Too little too late: why an unconditional basic income is impossible
Opinion

27 June, 16:21
Михаил Чернышев
Экономист
In conditions of limited natural resources - that is, in real conditions - an unconditional basic income is impossible, and in conditions of unlimited resources, there will simply be no one to receive an unconditional basic income

Mikhail Chernyshov, economist

As you know, economic theory tells us that an unconditional basic income (UBI) is not a salvation for humanity, but its death (at least in a figurative sense). However, attempts to justify the usefulness of an unconditional basic income do not stop.

Recently, supporters of an unconditional basic income have used a completely unexpected device in their argument. They offered to imagine that we do not have any resource constraints (there is enough for everyone), and asked to prove that under such conditions, an unconditional basic income will not work.

The proponents of an unconditional basic income, of course, assumed that they had cornered their opponents. But, in fact, they simply showed their complete ignorance in economic matters.

What's wrong with the proposal by the proponents of an unconditional basic income to consider an unconditional basic income with unlimited resources?

First, our world - the world in which humanity lives - is a world of limited economic resources and unlimited human needs. And this cannot be changed. Because all this is determined by the very nature of man. In other words, humanity has never faced and never will face the absence of a shortage of resources. It turns out that the supporters of an unconditional basic income intend to justify the usefulness of an unconditional basic income not for people, but for aliens. But in this case, they should have such discussions not with people, but with aliens - proving to aliens the usefulness of an unconditional basic income for them.

Secondly, if the proponents of an unconditional basic income admit that their economic concept can only work in conditions of unlimited resources, then they thereby admit that nothing good can be obtained from the introduction of an unconditional basic income. Because, as we have already said, for humanity the state of unlimited resources is in principle unattainable, since this contradicts the very nature of man. In other words, the necessary (according to UBI supporters) conditions for the "operability" of an unconditional basic income will never arise on earth.

Thirdly. It is important to note that even if unlimited resources could be achieved (although this is impossible), then even in this case, no unconditional basic income would be earned. Because, despite the apparent attractiveness, the state of unlimited resources is death for humanity. The fact is that a person lives, i.e. constantly makes this or that choice and takes these or those actions only because it seeks to get rid of some of its worries and dissatisfaction, which are caused precisely by limited resources. If there is no lack of resources, then people will not have any worries and dissatisfaction. So there will be no human activity. And an inactive person is a dead person (in the truest sense of the word).

Thus, in conditions of limited resources - that is, in real conditions - an unconditional basic income is impossible (as its supporters admitted), and in conditions of unlimited resources - i.e. in conditions whose existence is impossible - there will be no one to receive an unconditional basic income (there will be no people).

As you can see, the attempt of supporters of an unconditional basic income to rely on economic science did not help them in any way. On the contrary, the untenability of the concept of an unconditional basic income has become even more obvious.

Found a typo in the text? Select it and press ctrl + enter