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There Is a Way to Stop Machines From Making Americans Poorer

From the collection The Vanishing Middle Class

Advances in technology are rapidly transforming our economy, enabling smarter, cheaper and faster ways of producing goods, acquiring services, and communicating with others. But, warns Andy Stern, former president of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) now teaching at Columbia, the enormous potential of technological change also carries the peril of mounting inequality. The engine of prosperity, he warns, is increasingly being decoupled from the jobs through which millions of Americans have joined, and remained in the country’s middle class. His extensively researched book Raising the Floor: How a Universal Basic Income Can Renew Our Economy and Rebuild the American Dream makes a robust case for a change in social policy. Recognizing the danger of technological advances dragging down the economy by reinforcing unemployment and inequality, he argues that a guaranteed universal basic income for all citizens is key to sustaining demand in the U.S. economy.

Raising the Floor: How a Universal Basic Income Can Renew Our Economy and Rebuild the American Dream

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