There are three general categories of Objections to the implementation of a universal guaranteed livable income.

Objection One B "But what if people don't work?"
(related to Objection One A: Work or Die and Grow the Pie)

To respond to the idea the humans are inherently lazy, there are three arguments:

1) The world actually runs on unpaid work. If people were inherently lazy there would be no people. Most of the essential work in the world is unpaid care work and most is done by women. It becomes immediately apparent after having a baby just how much intense work it is to grow the next generation of humans.

If women were inherently lazy they would not do this work and humans would not even exist. Ask people if they think the work their mother (or primary caregiver) did to raise them was productive. If they say no, that is an argument for the extinction of the human species. If they say yes, then they are admitting that people do essential, difficult work for no monetary incentive, in fact people who give up paid work to do unpaid work are losing money.

On that theme... Why would anyone work for free under any circumstances if people are inherently lazy? Why are there any volunteers at all? Why do many people nearing retirement indicate that they want to keep working? Why is workaholism rampant in western culture?

2) Less economic activity -- production and consumption-- would help save the environment. More jobs and more work means more consumption and production. According to experts like Al Gore we have less than 10 years to try to save the planet.

"Humanity is sitting on a ticking time bomb. If the vast majority of the world's scientists are right, we have just ten years to avert a major catastrophe that could send our entire planet into a tail-spin of epic destruction involving extreme weather, floods, droughts, epidemics and killer heat waves beyond anything we have ever experienced."
-- Al Gore, An Inconvenient Truth

Unlike Gore who as yet does not advocate a guaranteed income (so he is by default saying there needs to be more jobs), Buckminster Fuller decades ago said it would make sense to pay people to not work because it would save the planet's real wealth -- natural resources.

"It doesn't take a computer to tell you that it will save both Universe and humanity trillions of dollars a day to pay them handsomely to stay at home."
--Buckminster Fuller, Critical Path (xxxv). 1980

Some unions (like the Canadian Auto Workers) call this a Just Transition Fund. Fuller calls it a Lifetime Fellowship (in his book Spaceship Earth). Thomas Paine called it a National Dividend.

3) What then is the purpose of labour saving technology if the point is a moral desire to force humans to work as much as possible? Technology has increased production. Ask people to specifically name what things humans need to produce more of since there is a glut of amost everything. Given the over-capacity and over-production facts, why are people saying that humans must work more?

What then is the logic then of increasing efficiency with technology? Should we tell engineers to design things as inefficiently as possible, and designed to break down instead of lasting a long time as that will provide more jobs? Should we do away with all labour saving technology so that people can prove how hard they can work?

This is why many technologists argue for a guanteed income:

"Embrace the End of Work: Unless we send humanity on a permanent paid vacation, the future could get very bleak" -- Dr. James Hughes


See paradigm-shifting material about how we look at work this website

The trump card always used to prevent any kind of major change in the how we organize human society is the idea that we must always create economic growth and jobs.

If we organize society based on jobs, regardless of the benefits or harm from those jobs, the environment and people's health, family well-being and community well-being cannot be taken into consideration.

by C. L'Hirondelle, October 2007
LIFE co-founding member,

Next: Objection Two
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