Andrew Yang was met with a huge round of applause after his speech at the Democratic National Committee’s (DNC) Summer Meeting last Friday.
During the meeting at Hilton San Francisco Union Square in San Francisco, the 44-year-old Democratic presidential candidate raised the issue of automation in many working sectors, such as manufacturing, retail, call center, fast food and truck driving.
Yang explained that millions of Americans may lose their jobs in these sectors as technology evolves.
“We are going through the greatest economic transformation in our country’s history what experts are calling the fourth industrial evolution,” Yang said in his speech.
He defended that immigrants are not the cause of fewer job opportunities for Americans but technology. Yang noted that immigrants are being scapegoated “for something they have nothing to do with.”
As a solution, Yang pushed forward with the Universal Basic Income (UBI), which he describes as a “deeply American idea.” The UBI will give each American from the age of 18 to 64 $1,000 a month.
Yang cited two important figures in the past who had the same idea: Thomas Paine through his Agrarian Justice and Martin Luther King Jr., who fought for the same idea he called “the guaranteed income.”
Yang pointed out that a thousand dollars a month would mean “stronger families, higher graduation rates, lower stress levels, less domestic violence.”
According to Yang, the United States’ Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is at record high levels. However, he said that the U.S. is also facing record-high levels of suicides, drug overdoses, anxiety, depression and financial insecurity.
“It’s gotten so bad that our life expectancy has declined for the last three years in a row,” he said, adding, “last time our life expectancy declined for three years in a row: the Spanish flu of 1918 — global pandemic.”
What Yang proposed in the meeting is to focus more on “share of progress through health and life expectancy, mental health and freedom from substance abuse, clean air, clean water, childhood success rates.”
“Right now the democratic party is being cast as the party that wants to spend money. We want to move society forward and we need the right measurements to do that,” Yang said.
On Saturday, Yang announced his limited edition of marijuana merchandise.
— Andrew Yang (@AndrewYang) August 24, 2019
According to Forbes, the entrepreneur-turned-politician is selling T-shirts for $30 that say “Math. Money. Marijuana,” a cap with “Math” written on the front and a cannabis leaf on the back, and a bumper sticker that says “Legalize Marijuana.”
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