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Comment Re:It's a bug, not a feature. UBI will not fix it. (Score 3, Insightful) 295

What UBI assumes is that:

1) All members of society should share in productivity gains.
2) Working for someone else isn't the only way of being productive.
3) Money isn't the only --- or the best --- way of attaining status or self-worth.
4) Most humans have a desire to be productive in some way, and that desire can best be fulfilled in a self-directed manner.
5) There's plenty of fulfilling work available, even if that's just participating in vibrant relationships and communities and taking care of our homes and our hobbies; we don't have to make work as if we were in 2nd grade and the teacher needed a break so he or she gives us those busy-work assignments most of us hated.

Comment Re:"It never happens". (Score 2) 295

You're working with a population of people who are either stressed out from work, stressed out from not working, being told that they are worthless and lazy if they don't have a job, being told they will become worthless and lazy if they lose their job.... there's no control group. we're just speculating. Sure, maybe I'm wrong, but maybe you're wrong. Either way, I'd like to find out and then deal with that.

Comment Re:"It never happens". (Score 1) 295

I agree that long-term, most people won't find these kinds of pursuits satisfying. There will be a transition period as people who are used to getting their self-worth from their jobs and income will need to figure out new ways of feeling good about their days. Long-term, I believe most people would spend more time nurturing their relationships and their communities, taking care of their homes, and pursuing education and hobbies that they find satisfying.

Comment Re:"It never happens". (Score 2) 295

"...for a lot of people that incentive comes from avoiding abject poverty..."

If the fear weren't "abject poverty" but instead "needs to figure out how to feel good about spending their time" because the former were out of the question, the motivation would shift to the latter and that would be better.

Comment Re:"It never happens". (Score 1) 295

Also, can't we finally accept that people having to work less could be a feature of more technology, not a bug?

In my opinion, automating away a lot of work and instituting a universal basic income sounds amazing. I'd love to see people freely choosing to spend their time pursuing hobbies, raising their children, pursuing a job out of passion rather than need, getting education, playing games, taking walks in park, reading, watching television, or any of the billion other things that humans can do when we're not chasing paychecks.

Comment Re:No (Score 1) 397

"An analogy would be you finding a gold coin on your coffee table. If you have no idea where it came from or how it got there you cannot assume that one would appear on other coffee tables in other homes across the world."

There's a terrible analogy. There's no reason to believe anything other than natural processes gave rise to life. Sure, it could be that conditions aren't often right, but it the possibility that they would be right exactly 1 time in a huge universe that we know very little about has got to be vanishingly small.

Comment Re:No (Score 2) 397

"Were there a single instance of hard proof extraterrestrial life -- never mind intelligent life, I think we'd be further along the path to 'maybe it's a big artificial construction' vs. something else."

What?? extraterrestrial life isn't something special, it's just another case of a system of life like we have here where we are. The fact that we're here doesn't somehow make a big difference between terrestrial life and extraterrestrial life. Terrestrial life is proof that extraterrestrial life is 100% possible, and in fact, there being no other system of life in the universe besides what we have here would be the far weirder case.

Comment Re:The harsh reality (Score 2) 193

US scientists, by and large, would probably not get on board if the US was going to charge foreign scientists for access. For one thing, a major reason for open-access journals is so that researchers in less-developed countries that may not have access to expensive journals can still keep abreast of current research. Plus, at least in my industry, there basically aren't national borders to the research. Sure, I apply to US for my grant money and my colleagues in Austria apply to their government for their grant money, but we're collaborating, visiting each other, and conferencing like we're all in the same magical Country of Science.

Comment journal spam (Score 1) 193

But if someone from a journal or conference I never heard of asked me to peer review something I may simply say no. It's not just the prestige of the author that matters. The reviewer has to feel they are actually reviewing peers and not just random crazy people.

Yeah, it would quickly turn into the spam we all get from random publishers asking us to contribute to their journal we've never heard of... So how would a scheme like this pull itself up by its own bootstraps out of the morass of publication spam we all get already?

Comment Re:Where do people find jobs? (Score 1) 586

Yeah, I'd looooove to see the Republicans, aka Wealth Creation Force (TM) go to town on that proposal: "*We* built this nation, we are entitled to a share (Nontaxable of course, it's investment income. Which shouldn't be taxed, or if it is it should be a much lower rate, obviously.). *You* on the other hand...should've bought a robot..."

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What is wanted is not the will to believe, but the will to find out, which is the exact opposite. -- Bertrand Russell, "Skeptical Essays", 1928