The Intercept reports Chicago May be the Largest US City to Try Universal Basic Income.

Chicago Alderman Ameya Pawar is worried about the future.

He is concerned that a coming wave of automation could put millions of people out of work and result in more extreme politics.

Pointing to investments in autonomous vehicles by companies like Tesla, Amazon, and Uber, Pawar observed that long-haul trucking jobs, historically a source of middle-class employment, may become obsolete. More people out of work means more political polarization, says Pawar.”We have to start talking about race and class and geography, but also start talking about the future of work as it relates to automation. All of this stuff is intertwined.”

Pawar thinks that one way to battle racial resentment is to address the economic precarity that politicians have used to stoke it. He has decided to endorse the universal basic income — an idea that has been picking up steam across the world.

The UBI is based on a simple premise: People don’t have enough money to provide for their essential needs, so why not just give them more?

Yes Indeed, Why Not?

How about the simple fact there is no such thing as "free money". It has to come from productive members of society via taxation or the printing press.

Fortunately, Chicago does not have a printing press, so it has to come from taxation. And taxation is driving away both businesses and high wage earners Fed up will Illinois stupidity. But reality does not stop socialist nutcases like Pawar.

Pawar's Pilot Program

Pawar recently introduced a pilot for a UBI program in Chicago. Under his program, $500 a month would be delivered to 1,000 Chicago families — no strings attached. Additionally, the proposal would modify the Earned Income Tax Credit program for the same 1,000 families, so they’d receive payments on a monthly basis instead at the end of the year — a process known as “smoothing” that enables families to integrate the tax credit into their monthly budgets.

It always starts out small, but it can never scale. Will $500 make a difference to those families? Yes, $6,000 would help a lot of people, but at what cost?

$6,000 * 1,000 = $6,000,000

Can Chicago Afford 6 Million?

It would be just a tiny part of Chicago's budget, but it would also be $6,000,000 wasted.

The obvious problem, but not to economically illiterate socialist fools, is how to scale it up.


Poverty Rate and Population

The Cook County Poverty Rate from the latest census is 16.7%.

The population in Cook County is 5.2 million.

Free Money Math

  • If we gave "free money" to everyone in Cook County the socialists would need to come up with $31.2 billion in additional taxes.
  • If we gave "free money" to only those in Cook County living in poverty (not even close to "universal"), the socialists would have to raise $5.2 billion.
  • Cook County is a super-set of Chicago, so for Chicago alone the numbers would be a bit lower. Then again, the tax base would be lower too.

Anyone who thinks this is a good idea has mush for brains.

Mush in Chicago

Obama Mush

Mush for Brains Disease Running Rampant

Clearly, the mush for brains disease is running rampant in Chicago.

For further discussion of the absurdity of universal basic income, please see More Give Everybody "Free Money" Idiocy

Mike "Mish" Shedlock

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