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View Diary: The Bifurcated Recovery (193 comments)

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  •  Not in the last couple quarters, but since 92 (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Odysseus, Sparhawk, 3goldens, BYw

    as productivity seeps into more sectors and businesses, it eradicates jobs like a flesh eating virus.  And we are not just talking in terms of manufacturing, but also services/retail (remember all those blockbuster/video stores?).  The problem we are facing is that technology is really replacing labor faster than new industries (that require labor) can sprout up.  And more importantly, the technology is essentially replacing low/unskilled labor with highly skilled/educated labor.

    •  Careful about "replacing unskilled with highly (9+ / 0-)

      skilled"--that might mean losing 20 old jobs for one new job....while population continues to increase.

      The strange thing about the employment economy is that decades ago, when people envisioned how technology would make life better the most common idea was that it would eliminate labor...which was seen as a good thing, freeing people from the monotony of work so they could pursue leisure, art, whatever...forgetting that little detail that under capitalism, this means that the majority of people are left to starve. I think the assumption is that society would become somehow more enlightened and therefore more socialistic in terms of distributing wealth...then again, they also thought we'd have a permanent settlement on the moon and daily Pan Am flights to take people there....

      "All governments lie, but disaster lies in wait for countries whose officials smoke the same hashish they give out." --I.F. Stone

      by Alice in Florida on Mon Mar 01, 2010 at 08:21:45 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Is the Democratic party ready (6+ / 0-)

        to advocate that government pay folks to stay home and work their gardens, rather than waste resources making money out of money or delivering throw away products to the info-sedated?

        Slowing down is no joke. When the argument is about entitlements or jobs we lose - because right now, creating jobs creates waste (in most cases), and creating sweeping entitlements is seen as immoral to too many Dems and Repubs alike.

        I'd like to see the conversation shift to talk about sharing and efficiency. We can examine the institutions that resist these things and not be afraid of discarding those institutions.

        Right now Democracy doesn't want to say goodbye to the banks. Congress can't even muster an "easy cowboy . . ." ($4T Barney Frank are you fucking kidding me?!?!? I liked that guy so much on Bill Maher . . . ) But there's little doubt that central banking's long term interests dovetail with a new dark age, and they have way too much say about policy and the structuring of our institutions.

        Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of the cancer cell - Edward Abbey

        by ZAP210 on Mon Mar 01, 2010 at 09:34:36 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Things Are Better in Europe (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        bara, ZAP210

        and they aren't technologically "far behind" us by any measure, if at all.

        We are replacing unskilled labor with highly skilled labor. But we don't demand a commeasurate decrease in quantity of work put in by the highly skilled labor so that more people can do work, unlike the Europeans, who demand large amounts of maternity leave, vacation days, etc.

        Take the bankers, for instance. We demonize them often here. But it would be undeniable that they put in their hours to get their work done. We might find it much harder to demonize them if the labor regulations cap their amount of work, such that there are more bankers who are at the same time more reasonably paid.

    •  I misunderstood your point (0+ / 0-)

      which seemed to imply that jobs wouldn't rebound to, say, 2004 levels even when industrial production had because of increases in 'productivity'.

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