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Jobs and Jobs: What happens when work is automated



Long the prediction of futurists and philosophers, the living reality of technology replacing human labor is a constant feature since cotton gin, the assembly line, and more recently the computer.

We are deep in what … if with these ideas, but the talk of robots and work is increasingly combined with the debate about how to cope with growing income inequality – a key issue in the Democratic presidential primary through 2020

The workplace is changing. How should Americans handle it?

"There's no simple answer," says Stuart Russell, a computer scientist at UC Berkeley, associate professor of neurological surgery at UC San Francisco and author of the forthcoming book, "Human Compatibility: Artificial Intelligence and the Problem of Control. "But in the long run, almost all current jobs are going to disappear, so we need some pretty radical policy changes to prepare for a very different future economy."

In his book, Russell writes, "A rapidly emerging picture is one in an economy where fewer people work because jobs are unnecessary. "

It's either a very frightening or a tormenting prospect, very much depending on whether and how much you (and / or society) think that people need to work and how society will put a price on humanity oud.

There will be less work in manufacturing, less work in call centers, less truck driving and more work in healthcare and home and construction care.

The MIT Technology Review tried to track all the various reports that this automation would have on the workforce. There are many. And they suggest everything from a moderate move to a general overview of a workforce with varying degrees of alarm.
One McKinsey Global Institute report includes an overview of how susceptible to automation different jobs can be, and finds that hundreds of millions of people around the world will need to find new jobs or learn new skills. Learning new skills can be harder than it sounds, as CNN has found in cars plants like the one that closed in Lordstown, Ohio.

More robots means more inequality

Almost everyone who thought seriously about it said that more automation would probably lead to more inequality.

It is common ground that businesses are becoming more productive, but workers' wages have not kept pace.

"Our analysis shows that the largest employment growth in the US and other advanced economies will be in the professions that are currently the highest end of wage distribution," according to McKinsey. "Some professions that are currently low-paid, such as nursing assistants and assistants, will also increase, while a wide range of middle-income professions will have the greatest decline in employment."

"The likely challenge for the future lies in tackling growing inequality and providing sufficient (re-) training, especially for low-skilled workers, "according to a report by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development.

One Democratic presidential candidate ̵

1; Andrew Yang, a rebellious non-politician – Yang blames job automation for more than outsourcing China to declining US manufacturing and drawing a direct line between this shrinking manufacturing sector and the rise of Donald Trump.

"We need to wake people up "Ian recently told The Atlantic." This is the reason why Donald Trump is our president today because we have already destroyed millions of US jobs and people feel they have lost their way forward.

auto atizatsiyata take jobs, should all people to receive government salary? Yan's answer to the problem is to give everyone in the US, regardless of need, an income – he calls it a "dividend for freedom" – at $ 1,000 a month.

It will address inequality, both economically and racially, he argues, and will leave people to continue work that adds value to the community.

This is not a new idea. Congress and President Richard Nixon almost adopted a similar proposal in the early 1970s as part of the war on poverty. But now, after decades of the GOP distancing itself from social programs, the idea of ​​a universal basic income looks as sci-fi as the new Terminator movie (yes, they make another one) coming out this year.

"Ninety-four percent of the new jobs created in the US at the moment are concerts, temporary or contract work, and we're still just pretending it's the 70s, where it's all the same," You will work for a company, you will receive benefits, you will be able to retire, even though we have totally released all pension benefits, but somehow you will retire, it will work, "Ian said in this Atlantic interview." Young people look at this and they look like, "That doesn't seem to work." And we're like, "Oh, it's all right e. "This is wrong. We need to grow."

He points specifically truck driving as a profession, which is key to the US economy today, but it could and can be fully automated in the near future. Truck automation will help the environment, save money and help productivity, he says. But that won't help truck drivers.

On the other hand, driving a truck while it is honest work may not be the ambition of many people's lives. This way, robots will take on jobs that people may not want unless they have to do what they are currently doing.

"When you accept these circumstances that we are going to compete against technologies that have a price cap near zero, then you have to say OK quickly, then how do we start to evaluate our time? What does the economy of the 21st century look like in a way that caters to our interests and not the capital efficiency machine? So he, like many liberal economists and capitalists like Elon Musk, came up with the idea of ​​a basic income.

Ian argued at CNN this year that it's not enough people to organize themselves as workers

"I don't think we have time to redesign the workforce this way," he said. "We need to start distributing value directly to Americans."

which can withstand a basic income without a job would ultimately change the way

"For some, UBI is a version of paradise For others, it is an admission of failure – a claim that most people will have no economic value to contribute to society," Russell wrote. "They can be fed and housed – mostly by machines, but otherwise left on their own devices."

Jan focuses more on the immediate threat that automation poses to American jobs. And politicians don't talk about it honestly because they are too focused to be optimistic.

"You are a politician, your incentives are to say that we can do this, we can do this, we can do the other thing, and in the meantime society falls apart. "

What to do with our time?

Not everyone thinks that society will fall apart and in fact there is a very serious concern about what people will do when productivity increases to the point where

In an important document from 1930, economist John Maynard Keynes wrote that people would have to cope with their spare time in generations to come.

"For those who sweat for the daily your bread, free time is a longing for sweet – until you get it, "he writes, later ADDED that "man will face his real, permanent problem – how to use his freedom from pressure economic cares, how to occupy leisure, which science and complex interest there will be for him, to live wisely and pleasant and well. "

Instead of tackling the problem of leisure, automation can often lead to unforeseen problems. The cotton gin made it so that the slaves of the American south did not have to remove cotton seeds, but it also led to the explosion of slavery as cotton was made easier.

And while facilitating the lives of individual workers, managing the transition from one type of economy to the next (farmer to producer, information specialist and now beyond) has been a key long-term reality for the American worker.

Is the pace of change different this time?

No one thought more about this than the unions. AFL-CIO Finance Minister Liz Schuler agrees with Jan that automation is one of the biggest challenges we face as a country and does not receive the attention it deserves. But she's still not bothered by dystopia.

"Scare tactics are a bit extreme," she said in an interview, arguing that reports of tens of millions of US jobs lost by 2030 are likely to be overstated.

"Every time a technological change has occurred in this country, there have been these scenarios of fate," she said in an interview.

That was a problem in the 1950s, said Schuler. "You have (then the president of the United Automobile Workers) Walter Reuter, testifying before Congress, talks about how automation will change jobs and people make these wild predictions that if you put robots in car factories that there will be huge unemployment, "she said,
Reuter's are really interesting to read, in between "The revolutionary change made by automation is its tendency to displace the worker entirely from the direct work of the machine," he said. He claims that unions are not against automation, but that they want more help from companies and the government

"What ultimately happens is what they call a lucrative agreement," Schuler said, "where the unions went to the table and said, 'OK, we understand , this technology is coming, but how will we manage the change "How will we have the voice of the table workers?" How do we make sure that working people benefit from it and that the company can be more efficient and successful? ""

Jan counters this argument, noting that automation is accelerated, making it difficult to adapt workers, employers and "Unlike previous waves of automation, this time new jobs will not appear quickly enough in large numbers to compensate," he says on his website.

Somewhere in the middle is the place , where we will finish up

Schule said that American workers should talk about the future of work more urgently today.

"We all have a choice to do," she said. "Do we want the technology to benefit working people and our country as a result? Or do we want to follow the path of this gloomy, dystopian view that work will disappear and humans will have nothing to do and we will just essentially work on the whims of a bunch of robots? "

Somewhere in the middle, she argues, is where we end up.

" We will work with technology as it evolves. A new job will appear. We want to ensure that working people can move fairly and fairly and responsibly, and we can only do so if working people have a table. "

The long-term future

Today Schuler has an interest in workers and their rights, but Russell writes that in the long run, as work automation becomes more tangible, the country will have to change the overall

"We need a radical rethinking of our education system and our scientific endeavor to focus more on the human rather than the physical world." "It sounds strange to say that happiness must be in energy discipline, but it seems inevitable conclusion. "

In other words: You'll have to figure out how to be happy with robots and automation because they come.


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