These two developments mean we won't need to worry about money in the future

(system) #1

Originally published at:

We regularly read about how artificial intelligence and robotics are going to do all the work, threatening our livelihoods and leaving us with no source of income.

We hear that jobs aren’t safe and some very obvious questions present themselves.

Such as: how will companies survive if consumers have no way to pay for their products and services? Or put the same question another way: how are consumers going to pay for the products and services companies offer?

Universal basic income

Fortunately, it’s not only you and me that have been plagued by this technology induced conundrum. Several prominent leaders like Bill Gates and others have suggested that governments provide citizens with a universal basic income -- a basic sum of money -- to support their livelihood.

Finland is the first country to experiment with this idea. Finland has piloted a universal basic income scheme to pay its unemployed citizens an unconditional monthly sum and Scotland is also considering the idea as governments around the world are coming under the impression of the major industrial and commercial changes AI and robotics will herald.

That’s the first sign that we won’t need to worry about money in the future. This scenario is some years off in the future, but the second is already happening.

Rapid demonetization

Dr. Peter Diamandis, Co-founder and Chairman of Singularity University, says demonetization, the ability of technology to take a product or service that was previously expensive and make it substantially cheaper or potentially free, will cause the cost of living to drop dramatically.

In his blog he reminds readers of the demonetization of photography. Remember? You had to buy the camera and film and pay for the development. Today the camera comes with your phone and no film or developing is involved.

The same goes for international phone calls that have been replaced by Skype and other apps; Netflix has replaced the cinema; YouTube has replaced music videos and all sorts of entertainment; Google has become a huge research library; Expedia has demonetized travel agencies and the list goes on.

Just look at what comes free with our smartphones: a camera; a video camera; a CD player, a stereo, a video game console, a cellphone, a watch, an alarm clock, a set of encyclopedias, a world atlas, a Thomas guide, which if you had to buy them, would add up to thousands of dollars.

This is just the small stuff; there is more.

Diamandis breaks down how consumers spend their money into these seven categories: transportation, food, healthcare, housing, energy, education and entertainment and shows how each of these will experience rapid demonetization.

Take transportation for instance. Once autonomous cars take to the roads, we won’t have to buy cars, insure them, pay for fuel or to have them serviced and parking tickets and traffic fines will be something of the past.

Diamandis has co-authored the New York Times bestseller Abundance: The Future Is Better Than You Think, which provides a positive peek into an exciting future.

He calls this new area where technology takes care of our lives and demonetize living costs, “technological socialism”.

It’s probably a while yet, but it looks like eventually we won’t need to work in order to earn an income in order to buy things and services ad infinitum.

NOW READ: Does the Rothschild family control the world’s money supply? Here’s the truth OR The past, present and future exist simultaneously: Controversial new theory

(Barry McCormack) #2

The idea of a universal basic income as a solution to extreme poverty is a progressive step but many appear to be against the idea.
The main arguments I’ve heard are - Who is going to pay for it? Will taxes have to be raised? etc.
On the other side, will people who have no limits on what they purchase, limit what the recipients can purchase as in the case of some Australian states presently providing welfare cards that can’t be used for drugs like alcohol for instance.
I believe that these are both valid arguments that need to be addressed to avoid conflict.
We’ve all heard the term Dole Bludger. I enjoy seeing people participating in healthy fun activities like surfing but I also understand someone driving home from work every day, getting annoyed at the thought that their taxes are supporting people doing this all day long.
I believe my Automatic Money Earning Machine idea will one day provide a different alternative. Instead of just looking at the universal basic income and leaving the conversation there, I’m hoping my idea will steer the discussion in another direction.

(Bill Ames) #3

It will not be a question of a basic income. The problem will be, “what is there to buy?” Any economy depends on a match between producers and consumers. If everyone is a consumer, who will be the providers. Unless the world economy is run like North Korea, there will be many people looking for their place on the planet. You cannot discuss future problems in the current world situation. Look to the past, say 1900, how did older people manage? Now, 119 years later, they have different tools to help them survive. If you asked the people in 1900 to describe how the senior citizen would live 119 years from then the answers would probably not reflect our reality.

You talk about AI and universal income but these elements need to be addressed in light of what the world will be like in 120 years. What will the world’s societies be like 120 years from now? We have no idea. Everyone here now will be dead. What do the 7 billion people here now want for their grandchildren 120 years from now? They can only, on the average, imagine what they have now but somewhat better. It is likely to be so different that they would not recognize it. I know very well what it was like to be a 6 year old in 1949, very different.

(ACD) #4

This is a preposterous idea. An economy is the exchange of value for value. Money merely facilitates that exchange. We have lost touch with the fact that money, in and of itself, can have no value unless it represents valuable exchange. If you have nothing of value to exchange, you get nothing.

(Bill Ames) #5

There is a way. If all labor results in a credit (unknown to the worker) and the credits are based on the value of the work (unknown to the worker) and these credits can be exchanged for products (value unknown to the worker and the value of their credits can be adjusted (unknown to the worker or product provider) then the worker will only get what they need or desire if they deserve a reward. This is a version of to each… but managed by AI money managers working with the AI managing the planet it will all work itself out. No more poor or rich. Just 100 percent middle class. 100 percent employment. Now, is that good enough for you?

(ACD) #6

No. This is simply another version of the experiments which failed in Soviet Russia and Mao’s China. Technology makes people more productive but there is no escaping human nature which is an inclination to want as much as possible for as little as possible. This nature creates competition which in turn creates an efficient economy based upon exchange of value for value in the marketplace of competition.

(Bill Ames) #7

In those old days they did not have the technology to control “EVERYTHING” and so as they control food and heat and light they control everything. Every human will have a personal AI monitor to tell them what to do next and ensure they do it. Like having a parent with you 24/7. All for the good of the planet. There is no human nature when you can not make a decision. It will not be an experiment as it will not be allowed to fail. All will be done in the name of the planet. Without a perfect planet there is no place to live. Eventually they will modify the human DNA to eliminate the need for the monitor AI. That will also increase the productivity of strong minds and strong backs. There will be no disagreement as no negative thoughts will be likely as all will have access to the same data and will be educated to know how to use the data. A perfect world.

(ACD) #8

This has been attempted throughout human history. It has never succeeded. It will never succeed.

(ACD) #9

The idea that one may live without effort is a pipedream. Automation merely makes us more productive - all of us, in competition with each other, to supply the most possible with the least effort possible.

(Bill Ames) #10

We limit humanity when we use the word “never”. That is a long time.

(ACD) #11

Never say never. Human existence is a blink of the eye.

(Bill Ames) #12

The eye will be witness to the last stars as cold dark rocks. Do not underestimate the purpose of the maker.

(ACD) #13

Agree. Also do not presume to understand.

(Mel Saint) #14

According to Andrew Yang, the UBI will come from the VAT imposed on goods purchased by the people. I don’t think that AI will eradicate all the jobs, it will just transform the nature of jobs, and lessen it. But not to the point of total eradication. It is written in the Bible: “The lazy shall not eat”. So it goes against Biblical principles that we should work with our hands. Remember when Adam and Eve were expelled from the Garden of Eden, Adam was cursed to work forever while Eve was cursed for childbirth pain.

According to Andrew Yang as well, if you are currently receiving welfare assistance, you will have to choose between the $1k freedom dividend or the existing welfare or food stamps that you have. America has a lot of illegal immigrants. And once you’re born there, you’re automatically a citizen of the USA. So that will impose a huge financial burden on the coffers of US gov’t. I don’t think that the VAT alone will suffice to cover the UBI for all. And I believe it will promote more drug use and laziness. Unearned money is dangerous.