Andrew Yang has a big goal for a relatively unknown business person:to reach the White
House. And he's aiming to get there by selling America on the idea that all
citizens, ages 18-64, should get a check for $1,000 every month, no strings attached, from the U.S. government.
"People who think the antidote
to Donald Trump is a boring generic Democrat missed the point. He is a sign of
massive institutional failure. On both sides," Yang said on Reddit on April 2.
A universal basic income (UBI)
payment, which Yang calls "the Freedom Dividend," is one of his major
Andrew Yang is running for President in 2020 as a Democrat on Universal
Basic Income a policy that guarantees every adult American $1,000 a month, no
strings attached. A future of freedom & abundance is possible.
direct and concrete way for the government to improve your life is to send you
a check for $1,000 every month and let you spend it in whatever manner will
benefit you the most," Yang writes on his campaign website.
The government has "plenty of
resources, they're just not being distributed to enough people right now,"
"It is impossible to overstate
the positive impact of $1k a month on households around the country. It would
take people from a constant mindset of scarcity to a mindset of assured
survival and possibility. It would transform our society in myriad positive
ways by taking the boot off of people's throats," wrote Yang on Reddit in March.
"I've worked with hundreds of
entrepreneurs and most have an incredible mindset of abundance and possibility.
A UBI would be the greatest catalyst for arts, entrepreneurship and creativity
that we have ever seen," he said.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg made a similar argument in his Harvard
commencement speech in May. "Now it's our time to define a new social
contract for our generation. We should explore ideas like universal basic
income to give everyone a cushion to try new things," the billionaire
Finally, $1,000 is low enough to help assuage a
common criticism of UBI: that it will discourage people from working.
"It's virtually impossible to
do more than just survive on a thousand dollars a month around the
country," Yang tells CNBC Make It. "It would make a huge difference
for families, but it's not a level that would lead one not to work."
Automation is driving an urgent need for cash
UBI is necessary, according to Yang,
because automation is replacing human workers in manufacturing and threatens
jobs in retail, food service and preparation, customer service, transportation,
insurance, accounting, medicine and law, he says in a campaign video.
Indeed, some reports are
concerning. By 2030, 75 million workers around the globe will need to change
occupational category due to automation, according to a December 2017 study by McKinsey Global
Institute, and 400 million jobs could be potentially displaced. These estimates
are based on analysis of 46 countries that include 90 percent of global gross
domestic product and a mid level pace of adoption of automation.
A report published in March by the
Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) predicts 14 percent of the jobs measured in 32 OECD countries,
or about 66 million jobs, are "highly automatable," which the report
defines as having a probability of being automated over 70 percent over the
next 15 to 20 years. Another 32 percent have a risk of being automated at 50 to
70 percent, the report says.
Yang says he is uniquely positioned to see both sides
of the automation story in the United States thanks to his work with Venture
"I'm usually highly exposed,
where most people in my line of work have not spent six years marching around
Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Missouri," Yang tells CNBC Make It.
"Most people haven't spent six and a half years working in these regions
with the businesses and entrepreneurs there. And most people probably do not
directly know people in Silicon Valley who are working on automating away
millions of jobs and know it."
That tax, he explains, would be a
value-added tax (VAT) of 10 percent on goods and services a company produces.
(Europe already has a VAT, with rates ranging from 17 percent in Luxembourg to
27 percent in Hungary as of Jan.1, 2018, according to the European Commission.)
The idea of a VAT will become ever
more important, according to Yang's campaign, "because you cannot collect
income tax from robots or software."
"Because our economy is so
vast, this would generate between $700 and $800 billion in revenue," said Yang on Reddit.
Yang points to a 2012 estimate published by Bloomberg that
a 10 percent VAT would raise $750 billion. And a 2010 estimate by Eric Toder
and Joseph Rosenberg of the Washington, DC-based Tax Policy Center, predicted
the United States could have raised $356 billion in 2012 through a 5 percent
VAT. At the time, that $356 billion in VAT was equal to 2.3 percent of GDP.
Yang doubled the VAT in this estimate for a 10 percent tax, which equals $712
Eric Toder tells CNBC Make It a 10
percent VAT in the United States could raise anywhere from $500 billion to $1
trillion, depending on how broadly the tax is applied.
"I made a rough calculation
that a 10 percent VAT with the same coverage as the average in other countries
would raise about $500 billion per year," says Toder. A typical VAT is
levied on 50 percent of total spending on consumption in a country, according
to Toder (who references "The VAT Reader: What a Federal Consumption Tax Would
Mean for America" published in 2011).
Under Yang's plan, current welfare
and social program beneficiaries in the United States would be able to keep
their existing benefits if they prefer.
As for getting a VAT passed, Yang
says, "If I become president then there will likely will have been a blue
wave, and so we would have a majority Democratic Congress." But he also
sees evidence that Republicans can support a cash handout to the North:
"The only state right now with a universal basic income equivalent is
Alaska and that's a deep red state."
But fundamentally, says Yang, he's
running for President because he sees a problem that needs to be solved.
"I'm an entrepreneur ... so you want to try and solve problems. The
problem I saw was that we're going to automate away millions of jobs ... so
then the question is how can you realistically solve for that?" Yang tells
CNBC Make It. "There's a very limited range of things you can do if you're
genuinely trying to solve that problem, and so that's how I arrived at running
World’s 1st remote brain surgery via 5G network performed in China Published time: 17 Mar, 2019 13:12 · A Chinese surgeon has performed the world’s first remote brain surgery using 5G technology, with the patient 3,000km away from the operating doctor. Dr. Ling Zhipei remotely implanted a neurostimulator into his patient’s brain on Saturday, Chinese state-run media reports . The surgeon manipulated the instruments in the Beijing-based PLAGH hospital from a clinic subsidiary on the southern Hainan island, located 3,000km away. The surgery is said to have lasted three hours and ended successfully. The patient, suffering from Parkinson’s disease, is said to be feeling well after the pioneering operation. The doctor used a computer connected to the next-generation 5G network developed by Chinese tech giant Huawei. The new device enabled a near real-time connection, according to Dr. Ling. “You barely feel that the patient is 3,000 kilometers away,” he said.
Visualizing The Power Of The World's Supercomputers BY TYLER DURDEN FRIDAY, JAN 21, 2022 - 04:15 AM A supercomputer is a machine that is built to handle billions, if not trillions of calculations at once. Each supercomputer is actually made up of many individual computers (known as nodes) that work together in parallel. A common metric for measuring the performance of these machines is flops , or floating point operations per second . In this visualization, Visual Capitalist's Marcus Lu uses November 2021 data from TOP500 to visualize the computing power of the world’s top five supercomputers. For added context, a number of modern consumer devices were included in the comparison. Ranking by Teraflops Because supercomputers can achieve over one quadrillion flops, and consumer devices are much less powerful, we’ve used teraflops as our comparison metric. 1 teraflop = 1,000,000,000,000 (1 trillion) flops. Supercomputer Fugaku was completed in March 202
Beijing Orders Alibaba To Dump Media Assets That Rival China's Propaganda Machine BY TYLER DURDEN MONDAY, MAR 15, 2021 - 07:30 PM Beijing is reviving its crackdown on the country's biggest tech firms, reminding the world that the CCP is still focused on neutralizing any and all threats to its control of the Chinese economy and its people. Even after amending China's official ideology to include entrepreneurs among the protected classes represented by the CCP (in addition to workers, farmers and soldiers), Beijing, with President Xi at its center, has apparently decided that Chinese tech firms won't follow the American model after all. Instead, their growth and competitive capabilities will be curtailed for the sake of stability at home. After Tencent was censured and strict new requirements were officailly imposed on Alibaba-owned Ant Group that will prevent the company from growing , the Wall Street Journal reports that next up on Beijing's to-do lis