Recently, I published an op-ed on how the coronavirus outbreak may pressure lawmakers in the United States to pursue a stimulus bill that includes “Trump Bucks” or a universal basic income (UBI) lite. Although it appears the American version is temporary and will consist of a month or two of payments, we now see a particular European nation working to implement UBI as a means to combat the economic consequences of COVID-19.
According to Economy Minister Nadia Calvino, Spain is in the process of rolling out a universal basic income in haste. Approximately, every fifteen minutes, a darkened hearse pulls up in front of a Madrid crematorium as drive-through funerals are becoming commonplace in Spain’s epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak. At the time of writing this article,
Spain is second in the world, with 135,032 confirmed cases as per Johns Hopkins University. Moreover, Spain is second in the world, with 13,055 deaths. Conditions are becoming so desperate that even New York City lawmakers are considering to temporarily bury coronavirus victims in local parks.
“More than 500 political figures and academics globally have called for universal basic income in the fight against coronavirus,” as reported by the Independent.
The United States now leads the world with confirmed COVID-19 cases at 337,933 cases and follows Spain for a close third nearing 10,000 deaths.
Will coronavirus be the catalyst fueling the impetus for an American UBI?
Sometimes I wonder if time is our friend or our enemy. Either way, time will tell how the American people will react to the economic blow delivered by coronavirus. It is worth noting how our European counterparts grapple with this crisis, as it may be an indicator of things to come in the United States of America.