Universal Basic Income: Utopian reaction to a Dystopian scenario
Vinnie Mirchandani

Harper Lee’s talent was obvious? Well… clearly it was obvious to her friend. Her friend? Who was her friend? I wanted to know her friend’s name so I checked Lee’s Wikipedia page and found this

In order to concentrate on her writing, she gave up her position at the airline and moved into a cold-water apartment with makeshift furniture. Her friends encouraged her to pursue her writing; and, in 1956, they gave her an extraordinary Christmas gift — a full year’s financial support so she could devote her time and attention to her novel. A year later, she had completed the first draft of To Kill a Mockingbird. The publishing firm of J.B. Lippincott, impressed with the manuscript, supported her through three years of revisions which were slowed by her periodic visits home to her ailing father. By the end of 1960, the book was a fixture on bestseller lists.

Lee’s talent wasn’t just obvious to one friend… it was obvious to her friends. Exactly how many friends?

Let’s juxtapose this

The Christopher Little Literary Agency receives 12 publishing rejections in a row for their new client, until the eight-year-old daughter of a Bloomsbury editor demands to read the rest of the book. The editor agrees to publish but advises the writer to get a day job since she has little chance of making money in children’s books. Yet Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by J.K. Rowling spawns a series where the last four novels consecutively set records as the fastest-selling books in history, on both sides of the Atlantic, with combined sales of 450 million.

Was Rowling’s talent obvious to her friends? Clearly it wasn’t obvious to 12 publishers in a row. But it was obvious to millions and millions of readers around the world.

With UBI nobody is required to vouch/vet/validate your talent. You get paid regardless of how much or how little talent you have. You get money entirely regardless of how much or how little value your behavior creates for other people. The premise of UBI is that it really doesn’t matter what you do with society’s limited resources. The premise of UBI is entirely stupid.

The goal should be to figure out how to quickly connect you with the people willing to pay for your behavior. With 7 billion people in the world… chances are pretty good that there are going to be at least a few people willing to pay some money for your behavior. If not, either you’re ahead of your time… and/or you might want to rethink your behavior.

Personally, I’m pretty sure that I’m at least a million years ahead of my time. Will I rethink my behavior? Maybe I should. But I probably won’t. I’ll just live from couch to couch until I die. It’s better than taking money that I haven’t actually earned.