Luddites have been making this claim since the Industrial Revolution and they are no closer to being true.
While you are historically correct, many economists, tech experts (people who work with tech who are far from luddites), and even CEO’s of tech companies believe that with the increasing automation of jobs, many jobs will go to machines and there will be a great, massive reduction in jobs. Economists both from the left and right think this is to be true since it’s already happening just not to a large extent YET. Even the Bureau of labor statistics projects massive job loss due to human jobs becoming obsolete because technological changes that make it more efficient to replace humans with machines/computers since it will be cheaper, less error, and more efficient to replace humans since machines do not need to rest, do not have families, can be worked to their extreme, and can be programmed to do something correctly all the time. Moreover with the prospect of artificial intelligence which is being invested heavily, the change might manifest more rapidly. One remedy for this from some economists from both the left and right is to enact a universal basic income. But while I appreciate your skepticism, which is very healthy because i too have a disdain for predictions with no basis in reality or that sound alarmist- to my knowledge there seems to be a slow, growing consensus from many fields that technological progress will replace many many human jobs the extent to which they will replace them is obviously debatable but the fact that they will be replaced to some degree that affects us seems to not be. I’m sorry I can’t cite sources I’m on my phone at the moment.Also, throughout history technological progress has always replaced jobs. There are less shoemakers now, farmers, cashiers, and countless other positions due to technological progress. Historically though, we have been able to replace these jobs with new ones created through social change, technological change, and other factors but I and many think that we have hit a special time in history where technology will simply take over many more jobs than we can replace. Technological progress is so advanced now that many products that we had to buy separately are now consolidated into one (an iphone is a fax machine, a phone, a computer, a camera, a tv, etc) and at times less people are needed in the aggregate to make these products. Lastly, and this is just semantics, I do believe that many techno-optimists believe technological progress automatically means “good” because we associate the word technology with human advancement and because “progress” is a word that assumes benevolence, but this is not the case. Technological and scientific progress are not inherently good. I am no luddite and I am a lover of science BUT science and technological advancement are sometimes removed and unaware of the unintended consequences created by their advancement since we rarely know all the social, economic, political, ramifications brought by said technology/scientific discoveries at the time of their creation and birth. So to assume everything will be a positive step forward is a naive assumption not supported by data but simply a subjective feeling of comfort and happiness because tech progress is being made. So i am no luddite, but I do think there is cause this time to be healthily afraid of what is to come. A capitalist system has historically relied on humans but when those who own the means of production switch to a more inexpensive, rational, hard working, and anti-error prone substitute …. then what happens? It has never been done before so to assume you can use history as a guide (which is usually a very intelligent move) is somewhat misguided for what is to come has never happened before.
found @ 30 likes ON 2019-03-10 05:18:33 BY ME.ME