We need to be careful of thinking in terms of utopian outcomes — they are never actually realized and always have hidden social and economic pitfalls. This is simply history speaking. And a universal basic income is, at its core, a utopian ideal that ignores human psychology and just focuses on financial outcomes instead the basic principles that go into the creation and maintenance of wealth in society. You can’t redistribute something that no one is creating in the first place.
This same “whatever will people do for work?!?!” scare tactic was used by the pundits of the day during the the textile revolution, the industrial revolution, the advent of the automobile and countless other truly disruptive technologies throughout the ages. And every time, we noble humans simply come up with new jobs that didn’t exist before, and usually were ones no one saw coming. A very recent example is the millions upon millions of jobs the internet has created. No one saw any of that coming.
While I also caution against the blind belief that “everything will be okay this time because it was okay last time” we should at least be looking to the future with pragmatic optimism that the enduring creativity and industriousness of humanity will overcome this latest mass worker-displacing technology. What we should definitely not do is panic and run to the government immediately without seeing what ingenious solution humanity will come up with. We invented the problem, we’re damn well capable of inventing the solution.