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[I had a technical fumble here. I'll try to get this diary back.]

Originally posted to Q Tip on Thu Feb 07, 2013 at 06:55 AM PST.

Also republished by In Support of Labor and Unions.

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Comment Preferences

  •  In case you missed these links in the story... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    achronon, Yasuragi, lcrp

    I recommend reading these:
    Wikipedia: Basic income guarantee
    AP automation series: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3

    •  Glad to see you brought up the issue. (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Yasuragi, Q Tip, lcrp, billmosby

      The discussion comes and goes here in Germany, but Götz Werner, the founder and CEO of DM, one of Germany's largest variety store chains, wrote a book a few years ago that gained a lot of attention.

      It really is time to start re-thinking our approach to a lot of things, but since the beginning of the technology revolution it has become ever clearer that if a computer (or robot) can do the job, eventually it will. It's really time we started thinking about what to do with all the creativity that can be unleashed when they are released from wage-slavery, but we need to help get them fit mentally to get them up to the challenge.

  •  Switzerland has some of the most aggressive (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    anti-immigration policies in the world. If there is a trade off between immigration and universal living wage, how can that balance be reached?

    Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it - Samuel Clemens

    by tjlord on Thu Feb 07, 2013 at 07:06:50 AM PST

  •  Where the 1st Wave of Automation Replaced Labor, (0+ / 0-)

    the modern wave of automation is replacing problem solving.

    Those are the only 2 things humans do and so as you suggest there is nowhere for employees to go.

    You have only to look at the social security and climate change so-called debates to see where we're being led.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Thu Feb 07, 2013 at 07:41:43 AM PST

  •  Best case: all Eloi and no Morlocks. (0+ / 0-)

    Worst case: A few thousand owners inhabit the earth and the rest of us are gone.

    At this point, the owners, who are mostly "job craters", are winning.

    But the future is a big place, and for now there is still hope.

    Moderation in most things.

    by billmosby on Thu Feb 07, 2013 at 08:28:12 AM PST

  •  Further thought on my worst case (0+ / 0-)


    The owners are competitors rather than cooperators. So eventually there would only be one left, and that would probably be a clone of Larry Ellison.

    At first I wondered if Donald Trump would be in the running but Larry is much more serious and businesslike.

    Moderation in most things.

    by billmosby on Thu Feb 07, 2013 at 08:49:56 AM PST

  •  Conservative ideology would deny most of humanity (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    the productivity benefits of the automation revolution.  Conservative ideology must be defeated somehow.

    "The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt." Bertrand Russell

    by Thutmose V on Thu Feb 07, 2013 at 08:54:19 AM PST

  •  This is one of my wife's Queen of the World (0+ / 0-)

    agenda items.

    Just give everyone a living wage.  For free.  Everyone gets food, shelter, internet connection, medical care, cradle to grave.  There might not be even direct cash payment for most of this, you probably just have your SNAP-like card, perhaps with some calorie limits per month etc.  Housing that can be paid for entirely with your ration card has to meet rigorous standards for safety/comfort/etc.  It'll be minimal but not a slum.

    You want anything else, you work.  Salaries could be pretty low, because basic security is taken care of.  The jobs required by humans to fulfill all those basic security needs would be the tier that isn't creative in any way, but we're going to need artists, storytellers, childcare, cooks, etc and people who service them (agents, advertisers, reviewers etc).   There will be work enough for people who want it and are able to work, but nobody will NEED to work just to survive.

    You don't need to worry about disability, social security, medicare or whether anyone "qualifies".  Medical care needs medical necessity and preventative care probably isn't optional.  There's details but the idea would be that most government services would have less overhead because they'd be universal.

    Because you don't absolutely need a job to live somewhere, people could live in places that are beautiful, but don't have a big job market.  This is especially true for any creative work that can mostly be marketed/sold via internet.

    I dunno.  We're already hitting a point where there may just not be enough jobs of "making stuff" to provide consumers to "use the stuff".   Thus the move to a more service oriented economy and unemployment that ratchets up with each recession because the response to layoffs is efficiency increases that result in no jobs coming back when profits return.

  •  Alternative possibilities (0+ / 0-)

    Developed country populations continue to decline, dealing with the lowered demand in jobs.

    I don't think a universal wage would work, because it sever the link of individual contribution to societal welfare.  That kind of strikes at the core of the whole social contract, such as it were.

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