Universal basic income


After years spent on the political fringes, the notion of UBI (or “minimum income,” or “guaranteed income”) may be coming into its time not through the front door of political or ideological revolution but via a backdoor opened wide by an epidemiological crisis compounded by technological disruption. Those suffering through economic uncertainty unprecedented in our lifetimes likely won’t care how it gets here or how it’s marketed to voters if and when it arrives. “Whether we call it a guaranteed income, an income floor, whatever you want to call it,” says Stockton’s Mayor Tubbs. “I’m agnostic as long as people get what they need as part of a new social contract so they have some foundation to stand on.”