There's No Time To Explain #14: Saul Of-Hearts
This week, I have a conversation with an advocate for Universal Basic Income (UBI), Saul Of-Hearts, author of Back to Basics: Why A Universal Basic Income Is The Ultimate Safety Net. We discuss UBI, a very progressive social program that provides an unconditional stipend given directly to each citizen, providing a baseline income. Over the last few years I've heard UBI championed as a potential solution for many social problems like disproportionate income distribution, poverty, hunger, the automation of the workforce, and as economic stimulus. I explain how I came to understand UBI and give Saul an opportunity to defend it while playing Devil's Advocate. We get into the particulars of how a social program like this might work and how it might get paid for. I mention two examples of UBI ideals on display in the middle of American's ultra-conservative bastion, Thomas Paine's Agrarian Justice and Alaska's oil dividends, the Alaska Permanent Fund. I suggest a realignment of our priorities and how we value life and labor in the emerging global tech economy. At the start of interview Saul mentions he lives in an ecovillage, an intentional community based on resource sharing and cooperation. He writes for the Fellowship of Intentional Community, a resource for those living in cooperative communities and discusses a bit about his day-to-day routine and how he be became interested in this way of life. Saul gives a review of science fiction author Ursula K. Le Guin's book, The Dispossessed. I rant about third party candidates and how they can split constituencies, giving the wins to less-preferred candidates. Looking into the idea of getting to choose a "second choice" vote to address this issue, I stumble across the Marquis de Condorcet, a French mathematician and Enlightenment Age thinker who is the namesake of the Condorcet Method, a way to vote by ordering candidates by preference, so the win given to the person with the most support of the voters, not a simple plurality. During the recording, I incorrectly refer to it as "second choice" voting, which is a term I must have invented myself in a fever dream. I see this as a way to allow third party candidates to participate without splitting majority constituencies and as a way to loosen the grip of the American two-party system.