… T.B. Wisdom endorses Mr. Andrew Yang for president.
I’m not enamored with the “$1000/mo per adult” slogan, but otherwise, the guy comes off as genuine, knowledgeable, and forward-looking.
The suggestion that the UBI program may be partially funded through a VAT also doesn’t sit quite right with me; in Europe, it’s ultimately the consumer of the final product that pays it, so it’s quite far from his “tech check” equivalent to Alaska’s “oil check.” In one speech, Mr. Yang did bring up the possibility of taxing the tech giants for using data that is currently freely reaped by them. Taxing every displayed / targeted ad, every bit of stored, processed, and analyzed data, every transaction from which a tech giant takes a cut, sign me up. But that’s the only time I heard it (or maybe misheard it?). Most of the time, he simply refers to Europe (and that implementing half the VAT in Europe will be sufficient to prop up UBI as an opt-in system that doesn’t stack with other social programs). I hope he refines this plan and speaks in more detail in the future.
Another peeve is the idea that his version of UBI will count as income for determining eligibility for other matters (even if not actually taxed). So if UBI hits before Medicare for All, a whole lot of people will suddenly not qualify for the ACA. People will be pushed into different tax brackets. A whole lot of divorced parents will take their exes to court for increased child support. Etc. etc. Again, I hope that it’s something he works out as his campaign matures.
That said… at least it’s a conversation that doesn’t exhaust at “tax the rich” for “free everything.”