First of all, like I said in the other thread, I am not going to argue about the policies of President-to-be Andrew Yang, the centerpiece being the Freedom Dividend. What I will do is to lay out arguments as to why it's not impossible and why it will work. As an aside, I will again say that having a can't-do type of attitude NOT the thing to have if you believe that universal basic income WILL help this nation. I understand that the concept is new to most of us, but it wasn't created by Andrew Yang, but was around before he was born. It's not some New Age concept. Moving beyond money as currency in reality would be a true new age concept, as anyone who is a Trekkie may know. Coming back down to earth, UBI is a totally sensible way to help society today as it transitions to a future where advanced automated machinery replace people in the workforce.
One of the main issues that is brought up about the Freedom Dividend by naysayers is that it will effectively be rendered to zero value by inflation. Rich people and corporations will raise prices to counteract all the good that could be accomplished by UBI! Nope! That's not what's going to happen. Capitalism doesn't automatically disappear because every adult receives $1000 per month. To simplify it, all it takes is one person or corporation in any given sector/field to buck price gouging, and everyone will flock to them. That's how capitalism works. That's what has helped Walmart become the historical retail monster that it is today and K-mart and Sears future roadkill. Businesses will still have to compete for your dollars!
Now, speaking of dollars, it's not like the Freedom Dividend is going to be made from newly printed money that is suddenly showered upon the economy. The money will be the same money that is in the economy now, it's just going to change hands.
"The money for a basic income guarantee would be already existing money circulated through the economic system. It would not be new money, just money shifted from one location to another. This means that the value of each dollar has not changed. The dollar itself has only changed hands."
Indeed, if money were to be printed and flushed upon the market, that would cause bad inflation, but that's not what's going to happen.
Getting back to my point about competition for dollars, which is essential to capitalism, as the article explains, housing plays a prominent role. Is hyperinflation in the housing market really going to be an issue when not only are there five times more homes than "homeless" in this country, but businesses will find ways to create cheaper homes due to technology and will still have to compete for those dollars.
"Technology represents a major factor in future housing prices, especially a future where everyone has a basic income. Everyone will receive a monthly check to afford rent, and will want to spend as little of it as possible on rent. Meanwhile, owners will want to compete for this money with other owners. Those offering the lowest rents will win. One example of this would be Google deciding to create Google Homes and leasing them out to people for a fraction of what people are paying now. Another example would be super affordable WikiHouses."
There is always someone looking at ways to produce products cheaper and more effectively in order to present their product to as large of a market as possible, and homes aren't going to be any different. So between what's already here and what's coming, competition will again rule the day.
There are a few other misperceptions and misconceptions about UBI discussed in the article, but it is very informative and should give anyone pause as to why arguments about inflation are likely overblown.
There is plenty of solid data, some of it right here in the U.S., sourced from the great state of Alaska. Moreover, Kuwait is a case study as well. I don't like to quote large parts of an article, but seeing is believing and educating:
"In 1982, Alaska began providing a partial basic income annually to all its residents. Until the first dividend, Alaska had a higher rate of inflation than the rest of the United States. But ever since the dividend was introduced, Alaska has had a lower rate of inflation than the rest of the United States.
"A partial basic income was also provided in Kuwait in 2011, when every citizen was given $4,000. Fears of increasing inflation were rampant, as Kuwait already had high inflation. Instead of bad inflation getting worse, it actually got better, decreasing from record highs to under 4 percent.
"Elsewhere, where basic income experiments have been actually tried and studied, the result in each case is increased entrepreneurship. People use their basic incomes to invest in themselves and their futures, creating new businesses and helping to drive the economy beyond what would be possible without it. This means more people competing for basic income dollars, with better goods and services and lower costs."
Suffice it to say that Andrew Yang has done his homework pertaining to the Freedom Dividend. It's not something that he has cast into the national conversation willy nilly. He knows way more than me on the subject. My wife has an econ degree specializing in quantitative macroeconomics. She tells me that UBI is sound, and she is not a dumb person. Basically, the Freedom Dividend will be a net positive to the economy and will most definitely happen if people get behind it and stop parroting excuses---excuses born of trying to divide the masses and keeping an economic foothold upon people's necks. It all starts with getting money in the hands of people that need it. Inflation will not thwart the positives that arise from strengthening the economy.