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Give People Money

How a Universal Basic Income Would End Poverty, Revolutionize Work, and Remake the World
Narrated by: Annie Lowrey
Length: 7 hrs and 11 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (152 ratings)
Regular price: $24.50
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Publisher's Summary

New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice

Short-listed for the 2018 FT & McKinsey Business Book of the Year Award

A brilliantly reported, global look at universal basic income - a stipend given to every citizen - and why it might be necessary in an age of rising inequality, persistent poverty, and dazzling technology.

Imagine if every month the government deposited $1,000 into your bank account, with nothing expected in return. It sounds crazy. But it has become one of the most influential and hotly debated policy ideas of our time. Futurists, radicals, libertarians, socialists, union representatives, feminists, conservatives, Bernie supporters, development economists, childcare workers, welfare recipients, and politicians from India to Finland to Canada to Mexico - all are talking about UBI.

In this sparkling and provocative book, economics writer Annie Lowrey examines the UBI movement from many angles. She travels to Kenya to see how a UBI is lifting the poorest people on earth out of destitution, India to see how inefficient government programs are failing the poor, South Korea to interrogate UBI’s intellectual pedigree, and Silicon Valley to meet the tech titans financing UBI pilots in expectation of a world with advanced artificial intelligence and little need for human labor.

Lowrey explores the potential of such a sweeping policy and the challenges the movement faces, among them contradictory aims, uncomfortable costs, and, most powerfully, the entrenched belief that no one should get something for nothing. In the end, she shows how this arcane policy has the potential to solve some of our most intractable economic problems while offering a new vision of citizenship and a firmer foundation for our society in this age of turbulence and marvels.

©2018 Annie Lowrey (P)2018 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

“Lowrey, a journalist who covers economic policy for The Atlantic, musters considerable research to make the case for a universal basic income - a government-funded cash handout for all.” (New York Times Book Review

“Lowrey is a policy person. She is interested in working from the concept down.... Her conscientiously reported book assesses the widespread effects that money and a bit of hope could buy.” (The New Yorker

“Like UBI, the book is ambitious, and it presents a strong case for cash aid.” (Financial Times)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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A pinch of Ethos, add Logos for flavor

The author does a superb job at voicing her written work, which itself is a great, and (imo) fair look at the concepts, arguments for and against, and real evidences related to UBI. My favorite thing about her wiring style inherent is the adept use of universal (worldwide) anecdote combined with simple, but not simplified, explanations of the research that currently exists. I would even like to pick up a physical copy for the bibliography section!

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Good ideas, buy lacks statistical support

The book is a good frame for a new way of government. It lacks statistical and economics support to actually make it believable.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Missed Opportunity

The author misses an opportunity for a substantive discussion of UBI, instead indulging in her own elaboration of Soacialism and a canned analysis of society at large.

I consider myself left of center and I do believe in social nets, but the author indulges in her own little view from the Ivory Tower without any substantive or technical discussion of UBI.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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An intriguing idea

I first heard of the Universal Basic Income (UBI) about a year ago and wished there was a book that discussed it. And here it is. The studies the author cites are quite interesting, though they are generally not studies from Western countries. I did read about a study in Canada in another book. Oh, if only we could have such a thing. It seems unrealistic, but maybe one day. Talking about it, writing about it is the first step to getting the idea out there.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Liberal whine-fest rather than serious discussion

I’m a supporter of UBI but embarrassed by this book. The author shares her laundry list of what’s wrong with society and asserts that UBI would fix it. She touches on cost but then brushes it away with a “but the government can just print money argument”. She ignores inflationary implications of money printing, but more glaringly, of the UBI itself. In a final insult to the reader, she compares us to the Jetsons. Hardly rigorous analysis. If UBI stands a chance, it will need more competent supporters.

9 of 13 people found this review helpful

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Tecnicaly is not communism but heavily inspired by

the author does not understand the destructive consequences of a UBI and sadly does not care. why give money to everybody instead of just the poor... the answer "to make everybody guilty of the crime, stilling". in another chapter the author played with the idea of printing money without caring the inflation it will cause!! just because we (the USA) can!.

If you think UBI is a good Idea look at my country Venezuela with inflation of 1,000,000% in 2018.

the one that gives you the money will CONTROL YOU!

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Mind blown!

Mind has been blown! Well done, Annie! A very thorough trip through the annals of UBI theory.

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Great ideas, good book, okay reading.

Author is obviously intelligent and the book is well-researched. She writes with passion on the subject but spends a great deal of time waxing poetic about the human stories. I get the relevance but she goes on. Her reading of the book reflects this. Her upward inflections and tired droning sometimes drag the material down. Contrast that with the actual philosophic parts of the book and she is excited and reading as much from her own personal philosophy as from the page.

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Must read

To better understand universal based income and the ins and outs this book clearly discusses it and presents strengths and weaknesses to it.

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This book was horrible - Annie takes an unbalanced view toPromote a political agenda

This book is a joke - don’t bother reading it. Full of emotional and illogical argument. Who will pay for this is the ultimate question - which is not answered.