Submitted by SantoshiEspada t3_10omwyu in Futurology


I think by now we all agree that a highly automated society can become a post-labor society and therefore should resort to a wealth distribution instrument such as universal basic income.


But what happens? Western society has a childish fear of all state intervention, labeling each of these possible interventions as communist. It's the result of decades of anti-socialist indoctrination driven by the largest propaganda machine history has seen.


Implementing UBI in a capitalist society is, at best, extremely optimistic. People prefer to pour millions into state resources for companies, banks, or financial institutions bailouts, rather than implementing any type of social assistance plan for the common people.


That's why I envision a scenario where resources are poured into the private sector, and companies are the ones who have a large number of employees on their payroll. Paying them just for being on their payroll. A kind of private UBI.


Personally, I don't think it's the best solution (I would prefer a highly automated or digitized state that distributes its resources among its inhabitants), but I think it's a solution that seems a little more realistic than universal basic income from the state.


I listen to your opinions.



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Substantial_Space478 t1_j6geflr wrote

what your describing basically sounds like "trickle down economics" for UBI. you really think if we dump public funds into the private sector, they'll just redistribute it to the public? look at the world we live in now, and it should be apparent how unlikely that is.

implementing any sort of UBI would require a shift away from an exclusively capitalist framework, so trying to frame it in terms of current globalized capitalism is just going to lead to a lot of dead ends. consider that if a future really becomes "post work" as some people theorize (i do not think this will happen tbqh, but i am open to it conceptually), that will come with massive social upheaval. revolutionary social periods tend to spring up when people have a lot of time on their hands in addition to knowledge and a cause to fight for. hopefully, over the next 60 years we will see a transition from exclusionist socio-economic structures to holistic models that incorporate facets of all existing theories with some new ones. this has notably been the trend of every academic, scientific, and artistic field as we have entered the transition to the age of aquarius over the past two decades, so it is not unlikely. if we live in a truly post work society, people will have enough time on their hands to force such new social structures, and UBI on a public level or other equivalents would likely be on that list (assuming a better alternative is not developed by then)


MINIMAN10001 t1_j6h4kfb wrote

Wasn't it something like 80% of the covid money went to private businesses? Did it trickle down?


maretus t1_j6kzvzm wrote

Considering damn near anyone could register a business and fraudulently get PPP money, I’d say some of it did.

My old neighbor used to brag about how she hadn’t worked in months cause she got 30k from the PPP for a “salon” business she set up that never had any actual revenue.


Ghost_Alice t1_j6hd0bw wrote

I mean... dump public funds into companies for a privatized UBI and they'll just find ways to not pay it... Fuck that, skip the middle man instead of trusting people whose primary motivating force is greed.


aeusoes1 t1_j6g7w0w wrote

  1. Become massive corporation with billions in capital.
  2. Put hundreds of thousands on your payroll.
  3. Don't have them work.
  4. ??
  5. Profit.

nomorebuttsplz t1_j6h3lb1 wrote

yeah they are called shareholders. OP is describing dividend paying stocks without realizing it and everyone is acting like he is talking crazy.


RocketScient1st t1_j6i92tv wrote

Most jobs within big corporations are already bullshit to begin with. Just look at how easily companies are able to slash large percentages of their workforce during recessions. Most people don’t contribute anything to the bottom line and could easily have their job eliminated entirely or partially due to the redundancy from large and inefficient bureaucracies.


aeusoes1 t1_j6iass6 wrote

You do realize that recessions are periods of reduced economic activity, right? Don't you think it might follow that this reduced economic activity would lead to a concomitant reduced need in a corporation's number of employees? Like, maybe that's why there are mass firings in those times.

Corporate CEOs have a fiduciary responsibility to maximize profits. Just last month we saw the US government step in to prevent rail workers from striking over a few sick days. You think they're going to have so much trimmable fat in their workforce that it's tantamount to UBI? That's..well, that is a take.


RocketScient1st t1_j6l22om wrote

Ah the typical condescending Reddit comment “you do realize <enter basic fact>”… ad hominem aside…. Yes the board and CEO has a responsibility to act in shareholder interests so during times of cuts they too trim the fat on corporations to appease investors. Executives aren’t stupid and would not “trim the meat” by cutting staff that actually produce more than they consume in pay. They target the employees that add less value than what they cost.


aeusoes1 t1_j6lbm81 wrote

Please don't take this the wrong way, but I made no actual personal attack (you do realize that's what ad hominem means, right?). People get prickly about that sort of thing, so I choose not to do so.

Anyway, it seems like we are in agreement now. Your most recent comment kinda contradicts what you said before, and I can't find anything I disagree with now. So good job!


pro_nosepicker t1_j6gfhne wrote

“We can all agree”

“Childish fear of state intervention”

What a load of crap


SantoshiEspada OP t1_j6kivgz wrote

Thank you for your insightful addition


pro_nosepicker t1_j6l1ij1 wrote

More insightful than the nonsense I responded to.


SantoshiEspada OP t1_j6l7amp wrote

Totally, your astute comments and bold reflections shed wisdom on this pale discussion.


World_May_Wobble t1_j6fv9bh wrote

>I think by now we all agree that a highly automated society can become a post-labor society and therefore should resort to a wealth distribution instrument such as universal basic income.

Uh. Don't put me down for that. I don't have expert knowledge in macroeconomics, so I don't have a clue what an automated economy looks like. Not even a guess. North and South could become East and West for all I know.

Anyone here who purports greater certainty than that is lying to you or themselves.


strvgglecity t1_j6gf35n wrote

Nobody does, it's never existed. That's why there's palpable anxiety or fear as AI and automated machines are very rapidly being introduced by major corporations to automate industries that employ hundreds of thousands of workers.


slickbandito69 t1_j6gn8gj wrote

Nobody knows what it looks like but i gotta hunch that everyone who isn't 1% will be either dejure or defacto genocided


wannabesaddoc t1_j6hg5s2 wrote

Do you really, honestly, believe that 99% of the population will be genocided? Like over 7 billion people?


TheSecretAgenda t1_j6hl1vl wrote

No more like. You get $1000 a month UBI normally. If you are between the ages of 18 and 50 and agree to be sterilized, you get $1,500 a month. You get no additional UBI if you have a child.

Within 100 years the working class will take itself out.


reidlos1624 t1_j6hs7b7 wrote

Population growth drives consumerism in many if not most capitalist societies. We're already seeing the panic as population curves near negative growth.


World_May_Wobble t1_j6ihei4 wrote

I think something like half of annual GDP growth comes population growth, and the rest from gains in productivity. That's not a feature of capitalism, because even the Soviet Union's output benefited from more bodies.

That said, yes. The flattening of population growth hurts economic growth, but that might be mitigated against by removing labor as a bottleneck. Human consumption could stagnate, but there's no reason productivity has to, so the economy could continue to grow.


reidlos1624 t1_j6ijfq3 wrote

If Human consumption stagnates, so does production. Production is determined by consumption, that's why in a supply side economic model we get these stupid boom bust cycles where economic downturn is just expected after a few years of growth. Difference is that a population drop wouldn't be a typical bust cycle and would more than likely break many economic systems.

But I'm not an economist and this is just my understanding of how these systems work.


World_May_Wobble t1_j6inou9 wrote

No, I think you're right about how the economic model works today. If population flat lines, consumption does too, and production follows, both because there's no growth in demand and because there are no new bodies to work.


SantoshiEspada OP t1_j6g011n wrote

You don't have to be so fussy on yourself. This is reddit not the Davos Forum, you can just have an opinion based on your current knowledge or experience. Thank you four your comment and have a great day.


World_May_Wobble t1_j6g9lwy wrote

I have an opinion. I expressed it. My opinion is that none of this is as obvious as you made it out to be.


strvgglecity t1_j6geor8 wrote

What would be the motivation for them to pay anyone?


ianitic t1_j6i7z4i wrote

Wanting people not to revolt at their respective locations. That being said I could see government regulations giving incentives based on how many people they employee with more and more automation coming.

I still find it somewhat unrealistic.


choptic t1_j6if4bo wrote

I doubt that would work. They would plan for it just like they do with complicated matters like legal loopholes. Human suffering has never thwarted greedy corporations from being big shitters.


ianitic t1_j6ih41k wrote

I remember in an economics class that focused on the history of capitalism, that was a main reason why we have any social safety nets at all. When the middle class loses what wealth they have seems to be when people start revolting.

Again, I don't agree with OPs premise though that this is what'll happen. Just that I could see why some might think this way.


Laser-Brain-Delusion t1_j6gsxs5 wrote

I think it’s much more likely that there is no such basic income at all, and that companies continue on as though nothing is different, happily replacing as many warm bodies as possible with more efficient silicon hands and minds. There will be far greater wealth concentration than at any time in all of human history, in the hands of a few thousand extraordinarily wealthy families. Most people will be relegated to absolute penury as wages stagnate and prices continue to relentlessly rise. People will naturally stop having children as it becomes prohibitively expensive to raise them, and populations will decline. Violence will become far more common, as people are displaced by climate change and attempt to squeeze into the remaining areas on Earth that are habitable. The rich will retreat into lives preserved for hundreds of years through genetic and cybernetic intervention, and will potentially live lives of absolute luxury in the few extremely fine habitats on Earth, or in orbiting space stations with an extravagantly high entry price that all but assure the wealthy will live completely separate lives from the masses of humanity slowly dying in piles of filth at their feet.


Jaszuni t1_j6hw0u3 wrote

The crazy thing is. Someone 200 years ago could have described our situation now and it would sound like your description.


[deleted] t1_j6k6t0n wrote



decoy1985 t1_j6gy0dl wrote

Sounds like a truly awful idea. Just look at how harmful private healthcare is. Private UBI (a massive contradiction in terms) would be just as bad or worse.

No corporation would ever do that. Their only mandate is to increase profits. Many cut necessary jobs from the payroll to cut corners and reduce spending as it is, why would they ever pay anyone other than a CEO to do nothing? It doesn't make the slightest bit of sense.

This isn't a solution, no part of it is remotely feasible or possible.


SantoshiEspada OP t1_j6kraj7 wrote

It's actually a very common practice in many IT companies. Just google 'bench employees'


Whole_Sales_2020 t1_j6gv7pf wrote

Why does everyone think that free shit is free and that AI is free? I dont get it you'd think these ideas are the ones you realize are retarded by the time you are 6.


override367 t1_j6k6bq1 wrote

I wouldn't write off socialist programs like UBI yet, once the boomers die the political landscape will be vastly different


roofgram t1_j6gvio1 wrote

Until all the world’s problems are solved, there’s no need for UBI, plenty of work to do.

Unless you’re physically unable to in which case there are already social safety nets for that.

Handing out money doesn’t magically create more doctors and food. Those are both still limited resources. Just like the Corona stimulus - when you flood the economy with money, you only get inflation. Nothing is free.


decoy1985 t1_j6gyoab wrote

Most social safety nets are barely functional, assuming you even live somewhere that has them. Often they have terrible barriers to entry, and don't really provide enough to support to actually survive on. Disabled people suffer immensely because of this. You have a very naive and uninformed view of social safety nets. I am guessing you have never been poor or even talked to a poor person before.

If you have the poor fortune to be American, its especially bad because in addition to poor social safety nets you have no public healthcare.

A lot of the major social problems in the world would be solved by UBI. It would enable a lot of people to do the remaining work to fix the rest without having to worry about how they will survive, or spending all their time grinding away at pointless jobs instead of working at what really matters.

Corona stimulus didn't drive inflation. Corporate greed did. Those small supplements to replace the income people no longer had isn't "flooding the economy" it was barely a fraction of what normally goes into the economy.

Here's the thing, when more people can see the doctor or buy food, that creates incentives to become a doctor, or to increase food production. Not only that, UBI would make it a hell of a lot easier for students to afford to live and go to school to become doctors and the like.


roofgram t1_j6hivjd wrote

When you print money, you get inflation, very simple. 13 trillion dollars was created for Corona stimulus. Nothing is free. You either pay for it upfront with taxes, or pay for it later with your inflation.

No one is debating anymore, that is exactly what happened.

More examples - healthcare, super expensive because Medicare/Medicaid has given healthcare providers a blank check to drive up prices.

Education - with federally backed loans the government has given schools a blank check to charge as much as they want.

Basically anywhere you put ‘free money’ on the table prices go up.

So we can only conclude that if UBI was implemented, prices would go up, which means UBI would need to be increased and you’d be in never ending cycle.

Just like education, just like health care, and just like corona stimulus. Free money is short term gain, long term pain. You think you want it, you really don’t.


KingAthelas t1_j6iuywq wrote

40% of ALL money in the US has been printed in the last 3 years. Yes, almost half of money ever created has been introduced in less than 3 years.

Yet here we are, having people who actually believe that didn't massively contribute to inflation...


ladydafleurs t1_j6h5rtz wrote

Crazy how they cant see that a UBI would FIX like 50% of the worlds problems


OneSplendidFellow t1_j6fqlav wrote

Until you run out of somebody else's money, and the more equal pigs start the same old mass murders. No thanks.


BoringBob84 t1_j6fyhb4 wrote

> somebody else's money

In an highly-automated society, it is not so easy to determine who the wealth really belongs to.


strvgglecity t1_j6gfaqb wrote

Murders? What? More equal pigs? What are you talking about, stranger?


rogert2 t1_j6ghxik wrote

It is a reference to George Orwell's novel 1984, in which idealistic farm animals establish a socialist society that is ultimately subverted by pigs.


strvgglecity t1_j6gjepa wrote

I assume you meant Animal Farm lololol. I do laugh at how people in 2023 still think more socialized economies are somehow bad for citizens when nearly every metric of life is higher in those countries than the world's most purely capitalist society.


BoringBob84 t1_j6fy6of wrote

I like the concept of a UBI - a minimum standard of living for everyone - but from a pragmatic standpoint, I see problems.

There are many people who will piss away every penny that they get. With a UBI, those people will still end up broke and homeless. In those cases, we will need public assistance based on need to provide essential services to them (e.g., food, shelter, clothing, medicine).

Also, it seems like a waste of tax money to provide UBI checks to wealthy people who don't need them.

So, we end up back to needs-based public assistance of services, rather than cash. Maybe this is a good thing, since we already have some of those systems in place, so we can just expand and strengthen them.


runthepoint1 t1_j6gdgog wrote

I think the point is not necessarily to worry about where the money is going but rather that the money is circulating through the economy. Hey if Jimbob down the street wants to smoke away his whole UBI check that’s fine because it goes to someone who spends it then it gets spent again, etc etc. good for the economy!


HourApprehensive2330 t1_j6gp7yh wrote

thats the problem. people now dont have money to smoke away or do whataver. so in a sense, jobs keeps us safe. we stay out of trouble cause we gotta have clean police record so we keep being employed so we can take care of our families. ubi will lead people to completely destroy their lifes as their will be no consequences for their actions.


runthepoint1 t1_j6gtoyd wrote

So keep people poor and then they’ll be better off? Lmao


decoy1985 t1_j6gyw9n wrote

This is a very bizarre and unrealistic idea. UBI won't lead to people destroying their lives, it will enable countless people to fix their lives and thrive.
Most jobs don't even do a background check here in Canada, and society hasn't crumbled yet. We're doing just fine. Jobs don't keep us safe, they just keep us too busy to do what actually matters.


technosis t1_j6h837l wrote

Since when has having a job ever stopped an addict? My wife just had to turn in a coworker for smoking meth in the bathroom at her office. This coworker has a child and she is their only caretaker. The fear of losing her job didn't help. The fear of losing her CHILD didn't help.

Addiction isn't something you can just scare out of someone with threats of homelessness. It requires a will beyond fear and the support required for treatment.

I'm in the US, arguably the most capitalist society on the planet, and everything you mentioned that UBI will cause (idleness, addiction, etc) is already happening right now in our current system. Same with all these worries about healthcare. I work and have decent insurance, yet I had to wait 4 full months to get an MRI to check for the BRAIN CANCER they were worried might be causing my vision problems. Long waits, lack of quality care, it's all happening right now, in our current system. At the very least, UBI would remove some bureaucracy and overhead from the welfare system. At best, it makes basic human dignity possible for everyone.

They ran a UBI pilot program in Stockton, California (one of the most violent and crime ridden cities in CA). According to reports, randomly selected families were given something like $500/mo no questions asked. What they found was that not only did those selected families improve their quality of life in responsible ways (trips to the doctor, braces, healthier food, etc), it increased employment in the area and they improved the quality of life of their friends and family as well. Adding just a small amount of stability to a few families made positive ripples throughout the whole community.


strvgglecity t1_j6gevmc wrote

It doesn't matter if the handful of billionaires also collect the $3000 a month or whatever, as long as they are being taxed appropriately. The effect of monies going to those who don't need it would be negligible.


goldygnome t1_j6gmhbt wrote

> Some people piss their money away

People with jobs also piss their money away. When that happens it's usually charities that pick up the slack, not the government. Under UBI that wouldn't change.

> it seems like a waste of tax money to provide UBI checks to wealthy people who don't need them.

They'd pay it back in tax. It's cheaper doing it this way than creating a bureaucracy to police who gets it.


rogert2 t1_j6ghc2z wrote

> There are many people who will piss away every penny that they get.

That's also true today, in a capitalist society that has no UBI. Since you treated this possibility as a fatal argument against UBI, I assume you also believe the current economic system is exactly as unworkable as UBI, because the current capitalist economy demonstrably fails to prevent this bad outcome you consider a deal-breaker.

If we had UBI, then we could at least guarantee that the only people who are broke and homeless are people who consistently waste all their money. (And, if they ever decide to become responsible, their next UBI payment would end their poverty and homelessness.)

Capitalism doesn't provide that guarantee. In our current system, many people are broke and homeless simply because they can't find stable work or work that pays a decent wage.


BoringBob84 t1_j6gw02j wrote

> you treated this possibility as a fatal argument against UBI,

That was not my intent. I was just thinking of what I perceive would be pros and cons.

And I agree that our current system is less-workable than a UBI, as income inequality gets ever more extreme.


ladydafleurs t1_j6h5mp7 wrote

Almost as if the state should put more focus on funding public housing and social welfare services for the people 🤨 and atleast attempt to minimise the percentage of people who fall into the poverty cycle so that people will be educated, access mental and physical health care and be less likely to drug and gamble their money away, homeless uneducated citizens = drugs, depression, bad life choices


Monsee1 t1_j6g03mw wrote

the biggest issue is why would corporations willingly act as a working class life support and loose profits employing large amounts of people a specially in a country like the us where they have a very large amount influence and control over the government. Also purely government based ubi is actually a popular idea with some billionaires in the us like Elon Musk, Richard Branson,Mark Zuckerberg. So in a post laborer highly automated/ai dominated economy a more likely scenario is that the government recycles ubi through taxes in order to artificially create consumers and to stimulate the economy.


ladydafleurs t1_j6h5fia wrote

I stand for fully automated luxury space communism. Lets go comrades ✊


Lazy_Air_5936 t1_j6kmr62 wrote

I am with you comrade, we have nothing to lose but our chains. ☭


IGetNakedAtParties t1_j6gwb9f wrote

You're painting with a broad brush, which got sone others' backs up, but anyway it's an interesting conversation starter.

There are two things to bear in mind which will help form an opinion. First, it is in the interests of industry to have customers, from Henry Ford paying a minimum salary (thus diving up salaries to a level where he had more customers) to the modern versions Bezos and Musk who do the same source despite their rivalry. This seems at first like it should be a shared goal between unions fighting for higher salaries, and minimum wage proponents, but here is where we get into politics.

Since the turn of the century there have emerged two parties in most Western countries, one representing industry, and the other the labour unions (side note, this is in contrast to the preceding political landscape which was drawn more along the lines of city vs country, the British Tories and both US parties seemingly "inverted" at this time as the world changed around them). It is worth noting that these political parties are usually completely funded by their respective bases.

The industrialists support a minimum wage commensurate with their target customers, but want it to be enforced on their competitors even to the detriment of their competition. Imagine Ford trying to sell more Model Ts, your town of 1000 workers, which has nobody earning his $5 minimum to afford it (only the bosses) if he pushes for a minimum wage some businesses will fail under this burden, others will thrive, so he sells 500 cars to wealthy workers and creates 500 unemployed workers, great success, until they vote for unions.

The unions push for higher salaries also, but their goal is also maximum employment, they calculate the maximum each business can sustain and negotiate for this, maybe, in the example above, only 100 cars are sold, but employment is maintained.

In this 1912 example a UBI results in something in-between, taxing companies, however not pushing them out of business, and leaving wages low but supplemented, ideally results in the maximum number of cars sold, by limiting both wealth (with low wages) and poverty (with UBI).

If you add a load of technology redundancy to this situation the maths becomes even more extreme, requiring a UBI for the major companies (the ones with the technology) to survive.

How strange that modern industrialists would want something so socialist, but it must be Universal to work, they can only go so far on their own, for this they need a political party to do their work. For the industrialists this is most likely the GOP, so socialist! It's almost as if political parties have never "inverted" based on disruptive technology... Oh wait!

This is my hypothesis: Amazon, Tesla, Apple maybe even Ford (the company) need a UBI to survive the technological revolution we're in, the unions must resists this technology, and therefore resist the UBI. Ironic that the "socialist" parties of the left must resist literal socialism. The GOP will rebrand itself as a champion of the free market's success story, an "innovation dividend" or whatever they call it, paid for by those that pioneer technology, and punish those that don't (especially unionised businesses). Sold to the traditional voters as a way to have smaller government and empowering individuals to choose how they spend their own taxes. Looking at demographics and reading Strauss - Howe's Generational Model, the boomers and gen X are already mostly republican, so the battleground must be fought over the millennials, so I think they need a charismatic "leader" - a front-person to bring in the millennial vote by targeting them directly. To do this they will also need the press (Twitter, Washington post). The wheels are already in motion, maybe not this election cycle, but not much longer after that.

In answer to your question, from my perspective it is a private enterprise, they just need to go through some minor inconveniences like elections to make it happen.


SantoshiEspada OP t1_j6kiskx wrote

Thank you for sharing your opinions. For one, we're in reddit, and within, in the futurology sub. It's basically us making sht up since no one can predict the future. So I applaud comments as yours. Cheers


golsol t1_j6h4q1t wrote

People who understand math, economics, and human corruption don't like communism/socialism because it's proven not to work. There are many examples of this but idealists keep pushing these failed systems. While capitalism isn't perfect, no system has raised as many people out of poverty. The poorest in America are still wealthier than most of the world.


SantoshiEspada OP t1_j6hj3kq wrote

Indeed, these systems never worked because power brake humans. Equally distribution is only possible if automated.


ladydafleurs t1_j6h65l6 wrote

Marx and engels WERE economists … the poorest in america are wealthier than most of the world, off the backs of whom? The west intentionally exploits and enslaves the citizens of developing countries, its the only way you can make capitalism work


TheReelChristianGray t1_j6hqdi4 wrote

Automated ways of making money will probably become the new norm. If not, government issued salaries would probably only allow people to do more of what they love and, for me anyways, include learning ways to become more self-sustainable.


SantoshiEspada OP t1_j6khp5b wrote

I like this take. Sometimes I comfort myself thinking we will be the best at a job that hasn't been created yet


KamikazeArchon t1_j6jpwp8 wrote

It is impossible to implement any significant long-term change without changing the distribution of opinions. You can't build something around a structure that actively resists the thing you are building.

>It's the result of decades of anti-socialist indoctrination driven by the largest propaganda machine history has seen.

Yes, it is. That's why a necessary step for any large-scale change must be to build our own propaganda machine.

The exact shape of it will be different - messages are medium-dependent, and that specific existing machine is optimized for particular conservative messages. Just building the exact same thing wouldn't work. But we do need active, intentional, well-funded, coordinated messaging.


SantoshiEspada OP t1_j6kl83z wrote

I like your thinking. would love to hear if you have any additional ideas


KamikazeArchon t1_j6ksn4x wrote

Well, the good news is that this process is underway - there are people actively working on it, with much greater expertise than myself. The bad news is that it takes a lot of effort and time, and the people involved have to fight the existing propaganda machine.

One of the key elements of the success of the existing propaganda machine was the takeover of huge swaths of attention-share in mass media; the Murdoch empire and its satellites & affiliates.

Trying to buy a cable news channel now is not actually a way forward, for many reasons. However, there is a relatively new media battleground in social media. The old machine is certainly sinking its hooks into those new areas, primarily via "youthwashed" vectors ranging from Peterson to Tate, but it has not yet been as successful, and its hold isn't as strong, as in the "old media" world - leaving greater room to overcome those efforts and gain control on that battleground.


SantoshiEspada OP t1_j6l6uqt wrote

It is true that social media has been time changing for current society, i.e. the Arab Spring would have not been the same without it. It's like McLuhan wet dream, but still it can be conveyed to a great amount of control from an interested party. Social platforms have in their hands a vast amount of power.


Stillwater215 t1_j6gcwv9 wrote

I think UBI is where we’ll eventually end up, but I can’t see the transition being something smooth. I am anticipating some kind of economic collapse to rival the Great Depression, followed by a period of civil unrest, that (hopefully) turns into a near post-scarcity economy.


IGetNakedAtParties t1_j6gxd84 wrote

It took a huge war in Europe (1914), a pandemic (1918), the great depression (1929), and a technological revolution (cars, telegraph, mass production) to invert politics and give the US a minimum wage... It will probably take something like a war in Europe (2022), pandemic (2020), market crash (2021), and technological revolution (EVs, AI, Automation) to do the same again... I'm sure that will never happen again!


TheSecretAgenda t1_j6hlsjx wrote

If Wal-Mart and Target and all the other mass retailers want to stay in business, they will approve UBI. We are already seeing swarm looting attacks on retailers. Increase those incidents by a factor of 100 if nobody is working and has not money to buy things and they will be out business. Then there is no place to purchase food. It will be like a zombie apocalypse.


stiveooo t1_j6gu0y4 wrote

good point of view

but the problem is the same:

  1. country creates UBI, does economic activity grow? does other metric of "happiness" grow which makes the workers healthier/work better? if not then it doesnt make economic sense and the country gets damaged and more since if other countries dont do it the impact is bigger cause capital would flee resulting in less economic activity, less jobs, more poverty, more death.
  2. companies create UBI for workers, which is like a share for everyone that they cant sell and will give dividends for them. That sounds like extra pay with extra steps.
    The problem is the same, x company gives extra dividends "for free"=higher salary just because. Which is good cause it will atract better workers, current workers will perform better. But that only works up to a point=worker wont be happy/work better at the same ratio increase as the dividend. So real shareholders will sell the stock cause it doesnt make economic sense if the dividend is too high , resulting in the need to drop the value of the dividend cause now the company is worth less.

It makes way better sense cause companies are with a better standing vs most countries which are riddled with debt+countries getting weaker by bad economic decision is bad cause geopolitics. So companies doing it is more real.


SantoshiEspada OP t1_j6kkbqz wrote

Thank you for your comments. Probably we would end up with a solution we can't even fathom from where we are now. I'm talking about a solution because I think that there is actually a problem, whether we like it or not.


SpaceDewdle t1_j6gu7j6 wrote

Ubi should be tied to education, health and job, imo.

Education as we do it now is basically completely for profit. If we could change that system to entice people to continue into late adulthood, a much larger part of our population would be able to impact humanity in better ways.

Some jobs aren't going to be replaced anytime soon. Those people usually work hard as fuck.

People can not help they cards they were dealt and imo a huge portion of people with disabilities are forced to live a meh life. At the same time, sometimes people aren't afforded an education that would allow them to do more for themselves and or humanity. That balance can really lift a lot of folks up. Self-esteem and production wise.


Ubi funded by taxes on corporations.


tengosolonada t1_j6h03nr wrote

There will be civil war before UBI goes mainstream. The elites won’t let go of their wealth happily.


psychedoutcasts t1_j6he1bp wrote

The best course of action is to develop the new system, which is likely heavily socialist in practice, and run it parallel with the old system.

As both run parallel with each other we ever so gently merge the old with the new.

People are addicted to this eay of life and only see the end of the world before the end of capitalism. Therefore we will have to slowly ween everyone off little by little to get everyone onboard with the new system. If we take away the drug now we're looking at a chaotic mess.


AloofPenny t1_j6hikde wrote

We will get government UBI once everyone realizes they only have to work if they want to. They’re already testing a robot McDonald’s in the US. All those “shitty jobs” and “workforce entry” jobs will disappear


SantoshiEspada OP t1_j6kp7e5 wrote

Saw that in TX. Scary AF, the thing about shitty jobs disappearing is that they are as important as the non shitty ones and the impact of losing those can affect the entire market as a whole


HauntingSentence6359 t1_j6in1fn wrote

If you took all the wealth in the world and distributed it equally, by the end of the week there be grossly wealthy and grossly poor people, as time went by it wold become worse.


MyTnotE t1_j6ja46c wrote

In the words of Morty Smith, “That’s just slavery with extra steps.”


chaosenhanced t1_j6lg6rn wrote

Hard disagree that UBI requires a divergence from capitalism. Capitalism might be the perfect economic structure for UBI.

People in a post scarcity world would still want to do things that create value for each other and they should be able to make money off of their efforts... Ie... Capitalism.

What doesn't need to happen is anyone worrying about having a safe place to sleep, and food to eat.

My dream is to have government owned commercial properties (but oriented as a town square and transportation hub) that charge 0 rent to owner operated businesses. So people could have their basic needs met by ubi, and if they want to do something they love for extra income, they can.

If I could feed and clothe my family without worry, I'd immediately go back into music production. But I can't, because I can't make enough money and I can't go backwards in my career. I'd like a world where you can pursue your passions, and maybe even make lots of money, without fear of starving if you fail.


gfkxchy t1_j6p9azd wrote

I'm surprised to find someone else who thinks capitalism and UBI are a great pairing. No one should worry about where their next meal is coming from or if they'll be able to stay warm this winter, and nothing should stop them from hustling and building something up to be worth millions or billions (but, like, pay your taxes).

I could see myself moving away from a full-time grind to a most-time consulting gig, maintaining tech skills and uptraining from time-to-time without having to give up my evenings and weekends. Stay current, low stress, lots of time to go fishing, still maintaining my professional relationships, no worries if the next gig isn't immediately available.

It really is a bit of a Star Trek-like economy. You don't have to work for basic necessities, but there is still a reward for putting in the effort.


XVUltima t1_j6gnx8e wrote

You are right about UBI being difficult in a capitalist society. The solution isn't to modify UBI for the private sector.

It's to end capitalism.


SantoshiEspada OP t1_j6kjnw5 wrote

FBI wants to know your location


XVUltima t1_j6km705 wrote

Why would a social service be interested in little old me for disliking the idea of capitalism, I wonder...


makeasnek t1_j6h0stz wrote

We don't have to wait on the government to implement basic UBI, cryptocurrency can make such a scheme turnkey. For example, you can make 1% of transaction fees get redistributed to users, you can make rules based on wealth of different users, etc. You can vote on-chain about changes to the rules. For example, 1% of fees can be redistributed to users, 10% of fees can go into a common healthcare insurance fund which anybody can request funds for and be reimbursed from, etc. 100% transparent, no middlemen, free to anybody who wants to join it, and completely uncensorable. There are cryptos already working on a model very similar to this. This is one of many reasons why I am very excited to see what DLT brings us in the next 10-20 years, it has the power to fundamentally change society if people can get past "I saw that crypto was a scam in an article title once".

Instead of all being stuck in whatever economy we are born in, we can choose to participate in an economy that reflects our values, whatever they may be, and we can be in multiple economies at once.


8BitHegel t1_j6h9cjz wrote

Given that all the AI and ML things that are truly game changing require computing power that is out of reach of moderate and even large businesses - only global mega corps can afford it - we ought to simply make it a public utility.


royalblue1982 t1_j6hhrx6 wrote

You're generalising quite a bit when you say 'Western Society'. I don't think that France/Germany/Sweden/Canada - maybe not even Japan is going to have a significant problem with the idea of redistributing the gains from automation. And ultimately, the democratic pressures to do so can only be held back for so long - even the best right-wing propaganda is going to struggle to tell people that black is white.

My own opinion is that this process will start by 'dealing' with the problems we're seeing right now with funding for an ever increasingly elderly population. That will take a huge amount of resources just to get us back to the same position we were in in the early 1980s.

Once that has been 'paid down', I think that states will start providing more basic services for free, and reducing taxation, rather than giving money directly. So, there will still be incentives for people to earn, but the salaries that they are willing to accept will be less. If there's no income tax up to a certain level and your water/energy/public transport is provided for free then you can afford to accept a much lower wage, which companies will be still willing to pay whilst the move over the full automation is taking place. On top for that, companies will be able to afford to offer more hybrid work/training programmes at these lower wages, meaning that people can get developed in a skill that has value in the new economy whilst they are working.


SantoshiEspada OP t1_j6kmaeo wrote

yeah I know, got a lot of hate for doing generalizations. Sorry about that, but if not spiced, this post would've been a pitch more boring.
Thank you for your comments. I do hope for states to provide more services to its citizens (risking myself here on communist shaming)


scurvofpcp t1_j6hyvap wrote

For 2 I'm going to guess that you have never had to rely on the VA, been enlisted or incarcerated. That tends to give those who experience that a conditioned aversion to small brained power drunk government workers and the things they do.


And as for 3 well ... IT tends to be the politicians that favor corporate bailouts.


unskilledplay t1_j6j6x5k wrote

This is a pretty decent description of what Big Tech already does.

Consider the cost of developing and maintaining software that companies like Google and Meta provide to people at no cost. Consider the cost of producing entertainment products like professional sports that are provided by networks at no cost because dollar value is found in advertising.

Economics and forward thinking companies have already learned that fundamental unit of value isn't promise of labor or goods, but choice. This was understood when advanced economies transitioned from producing goods to services. UBI is just another way of allowing low friction choice. UBI is not just entirely compatible with capitalism but is the end state of capitalism.

The barrier isn't propaganda or capitalism. The barrier is that people and by proxy, elected government, don't understand this.


[deleted] t1_j6jr638 wrote



Futurology-ModTeam t1_j6kt5oy wrote

Hi, pleasetellafriend. Thanks for contributing. However, your comment was removed from /r/Futurology.

> > The answer is an online platform that distributes its income with its users. Look at the money Twitter , facebook, > Instagram, ect .. > Billions going into a select few people's pockets. > If you are intrested in being a part of something special and having residual income for the rest of your life simply by doing what your. Already doing. Email me at

> reddit site-wide rule: No spam

Refer to the subreddit rules, the transparency wiki, or the domain blacklist for more information.

[Message the Mods]( regarding the removal of this comment by /u/pleasetellafriend&message=I have a question regarding the removal of this comment if you feel this was in error.


Oudeis16 t1_j6k6fpd wrote

What incentive would the companies have to "hire" people?


AftyOfTheUK t1_j6kcoty wrote

>I think by now we all agree that... society ... should resort to a wealth distribution instrument such as universal basic income

No, while I support it, it's a fairly minority view. We already have pretty huge wealthy redistribution going on, but I would agree a little more may be needed. Many people don't, though.

>People prefer to pour millions into state resources for companies, banks, or financial institutions bailouts, rather than implementing any type of social assistance plan for the common people.

Western society runs quite the gamut of political and economic positions, but all are basically well-or-weakly regulated free market capitalist economies. They all have pretty significant social assistance plans for most people.

>That's why I envision a scenario where resources are poured into the private sector, and companies are the ones who have a large number of employees on their payroll. Paying them just for being on their payroll. A kind of private UBI.

I'd love a pill or two of whatever you've been taking.

Human beings respond to incentives - your system won't work because you have created a system with incentives counter to what you wish the outcome to be. You've suggested providing funds to the private sector, and having them distribute money to people for nothing in return You're incentivizing the private sector to NOT have many employees on their payroll (because if they have fewer employees, they make more profit), whereas what you desire is more people on their payroll.


SantoshiEspada OP t1_j6kkx26 wrote

Disclaimer: I don't like the idea of overfunding the private sector. Just think of it more realistic in current corpo world.
Thank you for taking the time to write this and for your curiosity on my pill dosage


modern-b1acksmith t1_j6kd8f5 wrote

The private sector already works like this. I work with a guy we call "bad decisions". He's paying child support to four different baby mommas. Of course they all got their side hustles, but that child support check is what pays for the basic necessities.


smartsometimes t1_j6keht0 wrote

Do you like shopping, renting, eating, sleeping, almost every tangible aspect of your life to be from the "company store"? This is a good way to get to that and give up on regulatory capture and stopping total corporatocracy.


funkybus t1_j6kh1wr wrote

by far the largest federal budget outlay is for entitlement programs: medicare, medicaid, etc. your premise is kinda faulty.


cannibalisland t1_j6kkdxj wrote

fat chance. might as well hope money falls from the sky.


BoysenberryLanky6112 t1_j6klah8 wrote

Seriously stop rationalizing ubi with something that could happen. People have been predicting automation eliminating jobs for literally ever and it hasn't happened yet. Sure it could happen this could be different, but maybe let's wait until unemployment is above the record lows we're at now to think about implementing it?

It's also worth noting that the Venn diagram of people convinced ai will take over and there will be massive unemployment therefore ubi is required and the people who wanted ubi and mass redistribution before ai was even a thing is basically a circle.


SantoshiEspada OP t1_j6kllw6 wrote

So let's say there's a moment when we have the technological capacity to automate everything. (Let's say)
You are saying that it just won't happen?


BoysenberryLanky6112 t1_j6kmmqr wrote

I'm saying that no one can predict what the result will be. I tend to think that if this actually happens money will cease to be necessary and a mix of charities and governments will basically set up a safety net that allows all of us to live like the kings of today due to it being basically free. Others like I'm assuming you think it will result in governments and corporations attempting to keep people down even though it would basically be free to not keep them down. If you're right about that, I would support a ubi and we could have that discussion. If I'm right I think a ubi would make absolutely no sense.

So what I'm saying is you're looking at something that may or may not happen in the next 100 years, and if it does happen there are a variety of ways it might take form and maybe things will happen that none of us could even think of now. So I'm saying having a discussion on how to optimize public policy for something that might not happen or if it does happen might look very different from what we all picture isn't particularly helpful. Furthermore, I think these discussions are used by people who don't like capitalism and free markets and instead want to have control themselves, so they use topics like this to sound intellectual, when in reality they're economically ignorant wannabe fascists. I'm not saying this is you specifically, but as I said the vast majority of people pushing ubi because of ai were pushing ubi and other mass redistributionism 20 years ago too.


Hybrid_Divide t1_j6kle28 wrote

If you give the money to companies first, they'll want their cut.
Then they'll nickel and dime you to oblivion for the rest.

It's a bad idea. Every middleman wants their share.

UBI works best when the money goes DIRECTLY to those who need it.


DP11117 t1_j6l0vvt wrote

This is exactly what key people from the company i work for are trying to do. They are switching from a seniority based pay model to a relationship based one.


Gravix-Gotcha t1_j6mis7r wrote

As someone who has been working full time for 30 years and never got anywhere in life, the idea of me and my wife just being able to stay home and enjoy our time together and still receive enough money to live off of sounds amazing.

But imagine your government starts doing something you don’t agree with and you join protests against it. Then they use facial recognition to see who the dissidents are and shut off their income. What’s worse, they deny access to the money you already have. We’ve already seen this even now.

UBI and digital currency would give governments more control over populations. Nothing like financially choking someone to get them to comply.


SantoshiEspada OP t1_j6mx7z6 wrote

I feel your pain broda. We're caught in a loop of getting nowhere. Best regards,


Rocketknightgeek t1_j6h4mew wrote

You seem to have the purpose of UBI confused with some sort of actual goal.

UBI is the final, desperate grasp for supply side and end user based economies to continue after workers getting replaced by machines becomes too efficient to disincentivize with grants.

The fact is that a post-scarcity world where desperate powers didn't end the whole thing (unlikely) may not need a universal income at all as needs will simply be met with luxuries either public or earned through whatever system survived.


Eokokok t1_j6jxgm4 wrote

How you managed to start off with 3 falsehoods in a row is really impressive...


AFEngineer t1_j6kdef7 wrote

I disagree with your initial assumptions. Why and/or how does a highly automated society have to become post-labor?

What do you think happens when congress passes a spending bill? We use taxes to hire people in the private sector to do the work contained in the bill.

Based on your personal opinion, you just sound like a communist.


SantoshiEspada OP t1_j6kjzkg wrote

Thank you for your labels and assumptions. Have a great day


AFEngineer t1_j6kn6gm wrote

No response?

You just shit on people and spew your opinion without any debate? Why even start the conversation?


SantoshiEspada OP t1_j6knqn6 wrote

I actually answer more comments than any of the other OP you're gonna see today in reddit. have a great day


AFEngineer t1_j6kr0w7 wrote

That may be true, but I wanted to debate too haha

you too


SantoshiEspada OP t1_j6kscc9 wrote

Ok let's do this.

Let's say we have this future where AI + robotics are everywhere. Supply lines are fully automated, Harvesting, distribution, stockpiling, everything fully automated.
Those jobs that have been lost will have to be replaced somehow. My fear is that technology pace is super fast and the replacement jobs won't come so fast or be created at that pace, that's a problem.
It could lead to post labor, maybe the good scenario if the commoner have a safety net, if not, the bad one.


AFEngineer t1_j6oai79 wrote

I totally agree. However, what you are describing, I think, is an unavoidable consequence of development. The "best" (what is best depends on morals, ethics, politics, religion, etc. and is subjective) we can do is have a safety net to soften the blow, which we already have. I think determining the fair level the safety net provided is a much larger debate which gets into the political side of economics, ethics, etc.

During the industrial revolution, the automation of the loom created the Luddites. During the 20th century, factory automation created the Rust Belt.

Gentrification is another example of how development kind of screws people unavoidably, but there really is nobody to blame.


SantoshiEspada OP t1_j6kt06i wrote

Also, I'm not communist but seems like in here is being used as an insult or as a way of auto dismiss someone.

It's just a different way of thinking than yours.


AFEngineer t1_j6o70rq wrote

Right on, I didn't mean it as an insult, or a compliment. I like to discuss with people who think differently to challenge my views and learn.


RoxyGlaw t1_j6g6y9d wrote

Most people don’t want to do squat but still have wants. Almost everyone wants more than their neighbors. A large portion of the population will do the very least they can get by with. people will trade whatever you give them for what they want even if you make it illegal. Move a stack of boards from one side of the construction site and then move them back just to make it look like they are doing something. “Capitalism “ as the Socialist/Communists call it (free market economy) is not perfect but definitely rewards the motivated and penalizes the lazy. The people calling for “fairness” don’t really want fairness. It is fair to get rewarded for the amount you contribute and to be penalized for inactivity. Every system that has tried it collapsed after the workers figured out they will get the same amount for less and less effort and then come the death squads.


strvgglecity t1_j6gfm7e wrote

Capitalism rewards those with capital far more than those with ideas or innovation. Hard work is a bullshit line capitalists feed to you. Nurses in an ER work MUCH harder every single day than bill gates or Donald Trump has ever worked in their lives. Bill gates received investment from people he knew, and he didn't invent the thing that made him rich. Trumpie was onv just handed a massive pile of cash. And others who do have ideas and make money then gain exponential power to increase their wealth that every day citizens cannot access.

Yet, nurses aren't billionaires, and in fact some do live paycheck to paycheck while they spend their days saving lives. America simply gave the power of making law to lobbyists and corporations that spent the last 50 years rewriting the laws and the tax code to increasingly shift wealth from the population to the corporations and those who invest in them.


RoxyGlaw t1_j6ht05z wrote

You use a few examples of people with a silver spoon to suggest the game is rigged. “Easy come, easy go” is a real thing. There are lots of folks that started with nothing and made it big. As far as the Nurse statement goes who in there right mind would suggest “nurse” as a golden ticket to Billionaire status? “Capitalism “ (free markets) gives the well motivated and talented the best chance of gathering a comfortable life of any other system.


strvgglecity t1_j6iq6zz wrote

You said capitalism rewards the motivated and penalizes the lazy. Nurses aren't lazy, capitalism rewards greed and moral bankruptcy, NOT hard work. I guarantee you don't work harder than a landscaper and the owner of all your local McDonald's doesn't work harder than any of the teenagers they employ. Your opinions are just not based on facts.


RoxyGlaw t1_j6ktf30 wrote

Dude really? That’s your argument. If your only goal in life is to work at freaking McDonalds your whole life and be the greatest fry maker ever! You wont get anywhere. I started out using a shovel to dig ditches for irrigation in orange groves in Florida but that’s not where I ended up! If you have no more motivation than to stick in a dead end job I don’t care what system you are in, you will go no where. If you can’t figure out the difference i can see why you think Communism’s a good idea. Free markets reward - communism only benefits the lazy.


strvgglecity t1_j6lm6id wrote

You said capitalism rewards the motivated. It. Does. Not. Many nurses are as motivated as any startup CEO.

It more effectively rewards those specifically motivated TO SEEK MONEY ABOVE ALL ELSE. No matter the human, resource or societal cost, to seek profit. See: Facebook & leaded gasoline


decoy1985 t1_j6gzu48 wrote

I disagree. Most people want to do plenty of things, but can't because they have to grind away at a pointless job to survive. Artists and musicians are one example. Also tons of people would rather pursue hobbies and develop them into crafts and trades but they can't because there is no way to survive doing that, and working a job doesn't leave time to ever take it that far. Likewise tons of people would rather be developing tech skills, coding, researching, and innovating, but get stuck in dead end jobs, or otherwise can't find the time or money to get there.

If it wasn't for the pandemic, and having months of time and some CERB to cover the bills, I might never have managed to put enough time and effort into woodworking to turn it into a job now. At the very least it would have taken many more years. I worked my ass off during my extra time off, and I am not special or unique in any way.


People want to do the things that interest them, that they can engage with, that give them fulfillment, which matter. Capitalism presents significant barriers to that most of the time.

They might not work as many hours a day or week given the chance to take time for their families, for self care, and for living, but that just speaks to how much capitalism drives people to work like dogs to the detriment of everything else in their life. It doesn't mean people are being lazy for wanting to have a healthy work life balance.

You seem to be labouring under a delusion. That system has never been tried. There has yet to be an actual communist nation on Earth. The USSR and China failed their revolutions and were co-opted into brutal authoritarian state capitalism, and then exported that corrupt system under false label of communism and socialism.

Capitalism doesn't reward the motivated, it rewards those who are already wealthy. The rest of us mostly get held down and often punished despite working our asses off. Most of those so-called lazy are actually disabled or otherwise infirm, and suffer immensely for it under capitalism. There is nothing fair about how capitalism works. It is a system of massive inequality built on exploitation and generational wealth. It is the height of delusion to claim the rich were rewarded for hard work and everyone else is being penalized for being lazy.


RoxyGlaw t1_j6hse0y wrote

That’s cool you can disagree. You make some great points like your experience with becoming a wood worker and how hard you had to work to get there. Also your point about how there has never been a true communist state and how it was always compromised by thugs and the people we’re repressed. I agree with all of that. Where we diverge is basic human nature. I’m sure our experiences in getting to where we are right now have been considerably different. My opinion of human nature has been shaped by those experiences as yours has. To me a true egalitarian society is impossible. I would love to see something like that possible but until we can banish greed and pettiness from the human genome we will continue to see egalitarianism used as a tool to enslave by Megalomaniacs. I must also disagree with the “capitalism” (free markets) not rewarding the motivated (personal experience).


Galactus_Jones762 t1_j6gso3m wrote

UBI is about making access to basic money like access to public water. Just a constant. Not need-based, just there. Like the air. Because we can, and because we will eventually have to.


Zemirolha t1_j6g6zwi wrote

UBI already exist. But, for now, just for friendly "investors" and landlords


aeusoes1 t1_j6g7o2o wrote

Would you like to know what the U in UBI stands for?


New-Tip4903 t1_j6gcwf8 wrote

It would be awesome if someone like Elon Musk would start a private company called UBI. The purpose of this company would be to function as a hedgefund for the people. The way you would do it is first determine how much you want someone to survive off of from birth to death. Then you invest enough in an interest bearing account to generate that much.

So if you want to make 100k per year you might have to invest 10million.

So that "employee" will generate 100k to live off per year wbile your initial investment stays with the company.

Once that persons 100 year trust fund is up the original prinicple returns to the company and is reissued to a new "employee" .

It wouldnt work for everyone in the short term but might be a way to wean ourselves off the capitalist machine that is destined to destroy us.


strvgglecity t1_j6ggbch wrote

Why would interest even still exist? Why would the stock market exist if nobody worked? A fully automated society could not be capitalist. I can see socialism, or authoritarianism. The reality is that the corporations woul control every aspect of daily life.


rogert2 t1_j6gifd1 wrote

"To wean off" pretty much means "bridging the transition from the current system to a future system."

So, saying it won't work for people in the short term also means it is no "weaning off" of anything.

Also, Elon Musk is an awful right-wing sociopath. We should all fear the day that he ends up with power over our livelihoods. The less money and power he has, the better.


SuckmyBlunt545 t1_j6fnorf wrote

“US” is not western society. You’re talking about some form of communism that controls itself through some advanced AI. Sounds ass


SantoshiEspada OP t1_j6fobej wrote

I'm not even from the US. Thanks for your comments


SuckmyBlunt545 t1_j6fogqo wrote

Doesn’t matter it’s a generalisation and I would inherently disagree. Anywho have a good one :)


SantoshiEspada OP t1_j6frrvz wrote

Also, the point of the text was companies having employees in the bench in great numbers as a practice. You just took a margin comment on a few words in a parenthesis for your appreciation, regards