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In the Face of a Pandemic, Universal Basic Income Is Having a Moment

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The Shakeout Podcast
Roberto Martinez

The sheer scale of the economic damage of the pandemic has led some to call for equally large-scale reforms. For instance, Universal Basic Income. Paul calls in San Antonio Express News financial columnist Michael Taylor to break down the pros and cons of Universal Basic Income.

Small-scale studies show that providing cash directly to people impacted by disasters is efficient and effective. But critics of Alaska's long-running Permanent Fund Dividend, America's largest experiment in UBI, will attest to the unforeseen political challenge of balancing a state's budget around an annual cash giveaway. The permanent fund is the closest thing to UBI America has tried, and its been going on for nearly 40 years.

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Paul Flahive can be reached at Paul@tpr.org