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View Diary: Open thread for night owls: The end of labor—protecting workers from robots (140 comments)

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  •  Kurt Vonnegut wrote his first book about it (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ZenTrainer, basquebob, AnnCetera, Aunt Pat

    in the late 1940s - Player Piano.

    The technology he referenced is more or less obsolete, but the social outcome still seems likely.

    I think robots and productivity improvement are fine, too - I like the increase in efficiency and in quality. But like you, I want to see living standards maintained, and that requires either enough good jobs, or some other economic system that distributes wealth more evenly.

    In some ways those intangibles are significant. I've designed and built things, from my own stereo, my own computers, to my own house. I make my own frozen french fries now. I read books from a book stand my wife made for me, and a scarf she wove 30 years ago still keeps me warm in winter. Our good "china" is from recycled wine bottles that my wife made in her studio.

    But, outside of the house, for which the "sweat equity" turned out to be significant, it's hard to make a living off of all those things. Maybe the barter economy will improve as more people are automated out of work.

    In Soviet Russia, you rob bank. In America, bank robs you.

    by badger on Fri Jan 18, 2013 at 10:20:39 PM PST

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