On October 19, the Adam Smith Society sponsored a debate at Dallas’s famed Old Parkland on the resolution, “A universal basic income is necessary in the age of automation.” The debate featured two of the most prominent voices on the idea of UBI: Charles Murray of the American Enterprise Institute and Jared Bernstein from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. Moderated by journalist Jared Lindzon, the debate addressed the potential merits and disadvantages of UBI, the future of work, and much more.
For the motion, Charles Murray argued that we should replace the current welfare state with a UBI, which will give people autonomy and freedom to make decisions about their own lives. Jared Bernstein, on the other hand, made the case that the current welfare state does a better job of providing direct resources to people in need, and encourages them to find jobs to supplement their lives. Watch the video below, as well as see the audience results from the debate.