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View Diary: Drive To Unionize Fast Food Workers Runs Into Automation (84 comments)

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  •  Oh, Y2K was "a serious threat," too, as I recall. (3+ / 0-)

    Then midnight broke on New Year's Eve, 1999. And absolutely nothing happened. We all woke up the next morning. Same as in the other countries that had not done any "preparation" (we'd spent bazillions here, "getting ready")

    Pardon my sneer :)

    I've tipped and rec'd this diary, obviously. I believe this matter is worth discussing. But I don't believe automation of the labor force will necessarily spell Armageddon for the labor movement.

    It's here they got the range/ and the machinery for change/ and it's here they got the spiritual thirst. --Leonard Cohen

    by karmsy on Sat Sep 21, 2013 at 12:20:10 PM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  Not a reality-based argument. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Sparhawk

      Despite having been shown concrete evidence, you cling to a position for which you are unable to justify.

      Are there any facts or evidence that you're not mentioning?

      •  OK, be all fanatical :) (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        serendipityisabitch, chuckvw

        A lot of people harbor the delusion that theirs is the "lone Clarion call" the masses won't heed because they are hopelessly "in denial." Fanatics of one kind and another command a following around here, sure enough.

        But, unless "fanatical" ideas are picked up by those willing to do more balanced and credible analysis--and that does happen from time to time--most of us tune them out.

        It's here they got the range/ and the machinery for change/ and it's here they got the spiritual thirst. --Leonard Cohen

        by karmsy on Sat Sep 21, 2013 at 07:08:21 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  The labor movement (8+ / 0-)

      has essentially been on life support for the past 30 years or so. Union membership in the private sector is now down to 9%. It is under heavy attack in the public sector. It faces opposition from political, economic and technological forces. Automation does not stand as its only problem, but it is certainly already adding to the problems and seems likely to continue to do so.

    •  No, Y2K was not "a serious threat". (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      coffeetalk, karmsy

      Not for those with a bit of technical background. But it was an excellent opportunity for snake oil salesmen to profit from the gullible.

      •  Thank you. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        serendipityisabitch

        Hard thing to say, actually. Nobody likes being played for a fool.

        In a sense, the topic of this diary doesn't compare well to Y2K. Automation, a lot of it, is still in the future. We don't know how it will affect society and the labor market, but it seems a reasonable conjecture that it will have an impact. Let's have a conversation about it.

        But let's keep in mind it's impossible to predict the future. Some people (cf this thread) are getting awfully worked-up over what is still, after all, merely a possibility.

        A lot of snake-oil salesmen profited, handsomely, from Y2K. Because people were flat-out gullible. They bought the most extreme, alarmist scenarios, hook, line, and sinker.

        And today nobody wants to talk about it today.

        It's here they got the range/ and the machinery for change/ and it's here they got the spiritual thirst. --Leonard Cohen

        by karmsy on Sat Sep 21, 2013 at 07:19:55 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  It's only a matter of time, though. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          karmsy

          Whether it's 10, 50, or 100+ years in the future, the need for human labor and mindpower will be drastically decreased. Perhaps even eliminated.

          What's worth talking about now is what to do with excess human capacity. We have learned from auto plants and steel mills and textile factories that many, if not most, human functions are replaceable.

          But what do we do when it only takes 10% or 1% of humans to accomplish remaining tasks? Are the 90% or 99% to sit idle? Be euthanized? Given make-work?

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