a long time ago, when i still thought capitalism was the least worst economic system we'd come up with, i emailed the Freakonomics people to ask what would happen if we just gave $50,000 to 500 families in one targeted neighborhood. What would the benefits be? Etc. (This was before UBI was a popular topic.)

They spent an entire 45-minute episode of their podcast talking about how, because of the Lottery Effect, everybody would immediately blow all that money on fancy cars or w/e and be wasted

@trappleton Did they convince you?

For the record, I'd be awfully suspicious of anyone making that conclusion. Mostly because most people are really good at deciding that "others" will "blow" the money on unworthy things, and they "know" this without really challenging how they come to this belief.

@OldBrushNewPaper They did not convince me, at least I can say that much. I was *furious*. I took it really personally at the time, like they must have thought I was an idiot and it felt like they'd spent however much time and money just to condescend to my childish, foolish idea (which I thought they hadn't actually addressed at all). Today I can recognize it more for what it was: Establishment figures protecting the status quo.

@trappleton *sympathies* to you, even if that fury was a long time ago. I'd have reacted exactly the same way, to be honest. Even if I dodged "they must have thought I was an idiot!" thoughts, I would have felt taken less than seriously, and also for the sake of the families, who might not only benefit from such a measure, but also might have generated some seriously good things through their endeavors.

@OldBrushNewPaper right! And then to use their platform to persuade people it's not helpful... Yeah. Shameful.


@trappleton Yep. There's a reason for the expression "bully pulpit".

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