In the quest by big-government Republicans and Democrats to leverage coronavirus hysteria into the perfect “never let a crisis go to waste” opportunity to push their dystopian agenda, Universal Basic Income has been one of the agenda items gaining traction over the past year. Unfortunately, UBI continues to be touted as socialism’s panacea to ending coronavirus and poverty.
Universal Basic Income (UBI) is a program that would provide a government-guaranteed minimum income check for every citizen. This Marxist dream is so popular with the Far-Left that Andrew Yang made it a part of his platform during his 2020 run for the Democrat nomination for president.
Former Senator and current Vice President, Kamala Harris, saw coronavirus as an opportunity to do something similar to what Yang was proposing when she co-sponsored the Monthly Economic Support Act (MESA), a plan that would have given $2000/mo. to people until the COVID-19 “crisis” was over. Families with children would receive even more. Proponents of Universal Basic Income considered MESA the first step to making it a permanent entitlement.
By the way, Democrats weren’t alone on this at the time. During his 2020 campaign for re-election, Sen. Tom Cotton (R) — he’s been mentioned as a possible presidential candidate — proposed a UBI-lite version of Harris’ bill.
Recently, former-Stockton California Mayor Michael Tubbs — whose previous claim to socialist fame was giving residents deemed most likely to shoot somebody $1,000 a month to not to shoot somebody — was interviewed by Yahoo Finance’s Kristin Myers to discuss the effectiveness of his Universal Basic Income pilot program launched in 2018.
Calling the program “a complete success,” Myers asked Tubbs how his program might be launched nationally. He replied that a federal level UBI could be another “New Deal” opportunity for Marxists everywhere.
“Well, first, thank you so much for that question. Because I think the evidence is convincing to me that point to the fact that now we need a guaranteed-income policy. And an easy way to do that in the interim would be sort of reoccurring stimulus checks. We already have 40 mayors through Mayors for a Guaranteed Income who have signed on to try a guaranteed income locally while we wait for the federal government.
“But people’s bills, people’s expenses, people’s well-being and mental health can’t wait. And that’s why I think the data shows, again, that everything that folks said would happen was false. They said folks would use the money on drugs and alcohol. 99% of the money wasn’t. They said folks are going to stop working. Folks actually were able to work more and harder and get better jobs.
“They said folks were going to stop being entrepreneurial and start taking a risks, and the opposite is true. So we have data that confirms [INAUDIBLE] done across the world, and now it’s time for a policy at the federal level, almost as our 2020 New Deal, if you will.” (emphasis mine)
Stockton’s Universal Basic Income pilot program was supposed to expire in early 2020, but was extended when coronavirus arrived in the U.S. Myers asked Tubbs if he thought coronavirus might have “changed the tone” of the conversation around UBI and if it had “perhaps paved the way for it to become a countrywide policy.” Tubbs answered to the affirmative.
“A million percent. And I say that because we know that we live in a time of pandemics. That’s not a question of if a pandemic happens, but when. In the last two years, we’ve been suffering with COVID-19. But we also had the wildfires throughout this country. We’ve had earthquakes. We’ve had power outages in Texas just last week. And we know that, based off this data and the further data to come, particularly around the impacts during COVID-19, that a guaranteed income represents smart pandemic response and gives people the chance to build economically resilience.
“And we know through polling that the vast majority of Americans, Democrats, Republicans, and independents, I think about 6 out of 10, support reoccurring stimulus checks as a first step. And you mentioned sort of the political moment. And again, I would hearken back to 100 years ago when we had a Great Depression, when we had another global economic pandemic.
“And FDR looked out and created the New Deal, which included something very radical at the time, unemployment insurance. It is now 2021. A 2021 pandemic cannot just be based off 1935 models. And that’s why I think there’s a precedent for this country thinking bigger, and bolder, and, I would argue, more humane about what we owe to each other, what kind of country we deserve to live in.
“It’s a long answer to say, absolutely, COVID-19 has made it very clear that folks were struggling before this pandemic, you can’t deny the economic devastation, and also the weak foundations of our economy, particularly as it pertains to working people.” (emphasis mine)
As is typically the case when it comes to socialism, Tubbs was pretty vague on how the national program would be paid for, but this genius was certain that a federal Universal Basic Income could cure poverty.
Why? Because “the root cause of poverty is a lack of cash.”
“The research from our pilot and a lot of more brilliant people have said that at the root of poverty is lack of cash. It’s lack of capital, and that some of the dysfunction that we see associated with poverty are the effect and not the cause. So, yes, folks should learn how to manage money. But folks need money to manage first.” (emphasis mine)
Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) once referred to Tubbs as “the UBI mayor,” and she told him in a Facebook Live during his 2020 campaign that his success “is talked about quite a lot, not just in the corners where mayors exist, but … in the Beltway, where policy decisions are being made.”
Omar is right about “the Beltway.” With the 2020 election in the rearview mirror and Democrats running the show — with help from “moderate” (politispeak for faux conservative) — Republicans, leveraging coronavirus to forge ahead with Universal Basic Income is receiving new life as the solution to the economic hardships caused by government’s overreaction to coronavirus, and as a cure for poverty.
One of the faux conservatives helping the Democrats’ Universal Basic Income ambitions is Sen. Mitt Romney, who teamed up with Joe Biden to “reform” federal welfare programs. Romney proposed a bill known as the Family Security Act (FSA) and it’s nothing but Universal Basic Income in disguise. According to Romney, “The Family Security Act would provide a monthly cash benefit for families, amounting to $350 a month for each young child, and $250 a month for each school-aged child.”
Republicans and Democrats alike support the objectives of Romney’s proposal because they believe in the concept of Universal Basic Income as a means to redistribute money toward families and subsidize children.
Big-government spending and the spread of socialism has been standard operating procedure for far-left Democrats for decades, and Republicans have proven to be just as far-left in this department. And when it comes coronavirus and Universal Basic Income, allow me to paraphrase Ayn Rand, “Government help is just as disastrous as government persecution. … The only way a government can be of service to national prosperity is by keeping its hands off.”
Something tells me government isn’t listening.
David Leach is the owner of the Strident Conservative. He holds people of every political stripe accountable for their failure to uphold conservative values, and he promotes those values instead of political parties.