Pilot Program Gives 2000 Actors, Musicians, Painters, and Writers Universal Basic Income for 3 Years

Activist Post – by BN Frank

Years ago, tech inventers proposed that citizens worldwide be provided with Universal Basic Income (UBI) because they were afraid of what could happen when their innovations replace most human jobs.  Since then, countless more jobs have been lost to automation and/or robots (see 12, 3) and more job loss is expected.  UBI pilot programs have been introduced but also remain controversial and recently another one was announced in Ireland for artists.

From Newser:

2K Irish Artists Now Getting Universal Basic Income

3-year pilot program could transform lives, boost sector, backers say

(Newser) – Ireland’s government has begun paying $325 per week to 2,000 artists—including actors, musicians, writers, and painters—as part of a research program on the effects of universal basic income. The 707 visual artists, 584 musicians, 204 film artists, 184 writers, 173 theater artists, 32 dancers and choreographers, 13 circus artists, and 10 architects were chosen anonymously and at random from 9,000 applicants and will receive $325 per week over three years while undergoing data collection, reports the BBC. Another 1,000 artists who will not receive the weekly payment will be used as a control group as the government assesses the impact of the program on artists and their creative practice, according to a release, per Music Business Worldwide.

Members of the government’s Arts and Culture Recovery Taskforce unanimously backed the Basic Income for the Arts project after looking for ways to revive the arts sector following the COVID-19 pandemic. Indeed, the scheme became the group’s top recommendation. The pandemic “was extremely challenging for artists and creative workers, exposing vulnerabilities which have existed for decades within the Irish arts sector,” says chair Claire Duignan. “This is a landmark day, not just for those receiving grants, but also for Ireland, as it is the day that the state formally recognizes the financial instability faced by many working in the arts and places a value on the time spent developing a creative practice.”

The pilot program could transform the lives of participants, “reduce the constant level of uncertainty and insecurity felt by many,” offer “an increased sense of self-worth,” and facilitate “risk-taking and experimentation in their practice … allowing them to contribute to broader Irish society both socially and economically,” Duigan continues. “Ireland could lead the way on a new model to support people active in the sector, recognizing its importance to all people,” adds Catherine Martin, Ireland’s Minister for Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media. The program is expected to cost $25 million. Participating artists can continue to earn money from their work and may still be eligible for social welfare programs, the BBC reports. (Read more universal basic income stories.)

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7 thoughts on “Pilot Program Gives 2000 Actors, Musicians, Painters, and Writers Universal Basic Income for 3 Years

  1. Any guesses as to which actors, musicians, painters and writers will qualify for the “free” dough?

    My guess is it’ll look a lot like aldous huxley’s list of beneficiaries.

    1. There won’t be any “free money” for real artists who tell the truth. Who paint murals of manufactured hunger, or playwrights who tell about a Rothschild-dominated planet suppressing freedom everywhere, or dancers who dance the dance of global extermination. No, the money will go to those who go along with and bow down to the status quo which, as we all know, is obedient slavery.

      Book-burning has so many faces. Book-burners all look the same.


    1. Yes, darling. Just keep taking your medicine, and be sure to politely coerce people to respect your pronouns. I do believe you are destined for an Academy Award.

      And darling, please try to drop a few pounds, will you?


  2. I was more or less, chosen by God to be an artist. This choice, artist as a vocation, was greatly discouraged by those around me – and even those who were supportive said, “Great, but what are you going to do for a living?”
    Starving artist was and still is the norm, yet I made the choice and lived the impecunious life of an artist. It was my choice. Whether good or bad, no one should have to pay me for making that choice. We should all have to live with our decisions, without asking others to pay for them.

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