A more targeted effort that did not aim to be universal could do much more on that score. Ms Smith, along with 1,000 other residents of the Bronx, received a one-off $1,000 grant from Mr Yang’s outfit. This allowed her to buy food and to restore the internet, which her 14-year-old son needed for remote learning. This helped a great deal. But UBI advocates still have to explain why it would not be better to give families such as hers larger sums rather than a smaller payment that also goes to those who do not need it.