Andrew Yang, the New York non-profit entrepreneur and 2020 Democratic presidential candidate who's a bull for bitcoin and ethereum - as well as Universal Basic Income (UBI) - owes 22 political activists $22,000 toward making UBI a reality - at least according to the activists themselves.
Universal Basic Income proponents want to create a social safety net that unconditionally and automatically pays every individual in society a certain amount of regular income to spend any way they choose. Some think of it as a reverse income tax.
But it's not a reverse income tax for the taxpayer who's paying for it out of their regular earnings. For them, it's just an income tax. Like other forms of socialism, Universal Basic Income must rob Peter to pay Paul. There's no getting around that.
Or is there?
Donation-Funded Universal Basic Income
The 22 budding social media entrepreneurs each sent 2020 Democratic presidential candidate and UBI socialist Andrew Yang a Facebook Payments request for $1,000 toward their currently due Universal Basic Income payment.
The ringleader of the troublemakers said:
"Let's see if he'll practice what he preaches."
He shared a screenshot of a payment request to Andrew Yang's Facebook account for $1,000.
"I'll vote for if youre serious, sir, (sic)" said a note to Andrew Yang in a screen cap of another request for $1,000 from a commenter on the original post. "Give yours, not others," another note said. Others said: "Money please." "I appreciate the kind offer!" "Universal payment." "Send me $1000/mo!
Hey, there's a good use case for Facebook's new cryptocurrency!
Andrew Yang and other Universal Basic Income supporters could use it to put their donations together every month and reach every person on Earth with a Universal Basic Income payment over Facebook.
Yang might view what these social media activists are doing as harassment (he might not - I don't know). Or he might retort that he obviously can't be responsible for $1,000 of anybody's UBI payment all by himself.
But there is an enormous number of very wealthy and powerful and influential people who are proponents of Universal Basic Income: Mark Zuckerberg, Elon Musk, Tim Berners-Lee, Robert Reich, Hank Paulson, Greg Mankiw, and George P. Shultz, to name a few.
With their combined fortunes, they could at least get the ball rolling.
What Andrew Yang Should Say
"Instead of donating to my campaign...
"What I want you to do is pledge to give your share of the UBI to a Kickstarter to just put the money together and just do UBI! Without asking for anybody's permission.
"And without recklessly debasing the dollar which is a big part of why cryptocurrency has become such a commodity so quickly in the first place.
"And without funding an ostensibly charitable goal for the improvement of the world using taxation, a system which is not voluntary for those who pay into it, a vast pool of money taken from people without their consent."
That's what Andrew Yang should say - but I won't hold my breath.
Taxation earns revenue not by enticing anyone to contribute, but by making people afraid of being treated like criminals and having their lives ruined if they don't pay.
And that's where I lose a lot of people, but that's where politicians like Andrew Yang lose me.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article are solely those of the author and do not represent those of, nor should they be attributed to, CCN.