Does either candidate have a plan for AI automation job loss?

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by Zombie Acorn, Oct 22, 2016.

  1. Zombie Acorn macrumors 65816

    Zombie Acorn

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    #1
    We could be seeing many driving/manufacturing/service jobs replaced by bots in the next decade, has either candidate addressed what lower skilled workers are going to do when they can't get a job?
     
  2. smallcoffee macrumors 65816

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    #2
    No. Neither does. Our government will never deal with it unless there's an outright revolution.
     
  3. colourfastt macrumors 6502a

    colourfastt

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    #3
    It is part and parcel of industrialization. Does one feel for the horse-drawn buggy maker? The farrier? The legions of lower-end clerks who did accounting manually on spreadsheets, who have now been replaced by accounting software? The answer is education and constant retraining. The skills in use now could possibly be obsolete in 5 to 10 years. The idea of static workplaces ended in the 60s/70s.
     
  4. Zombie Acorn thread starter macrumors 65816

    Zombie Acorn

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    #4
    The speed of displacement will be faster than in the past, many workers can't retrain for higher level jobs as they didn't receive the prerequisite education to step up to them.
     
  5. jnpy!$4g3cwk macrumors 65816

    jnpy!$4g3cwk

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    #5
    Good question. Answer: No. Obama is starting to get it, but, he isn't a candidate this time. The U.S. has historically been a leader in certain things, but, I don't expect the U.S. political system to respond quickly to this looming problem. The U.S. always lags when it comes to anything that requires intervention in the mythical "free market". Let's hope other countries get busy on this first.

    Suppose, for the sake of argument, that robots can do for $2/hr, most labor jobs that today pay up to $20/hr? Including build more robots? Instantly, you have the potential for 50% unemployment. And eventually, most non-creative jobs will disappear, including a lot of high-paying jobs.

    I don't see an alternative to various kinds of welfare state interventions, but, even there, I think (for reasons related to social psychology) most people still need to work. Putting everyone to work is going to be hard when pure labor is in massive surplus, and, (usu. conservative) proposals for a negative income tax will leave a lot of people standing around on street corners getting in trouble. It is a difficult problem. I'm hoping that Germany can figure out how to do restructure on a national level-- Germany has a better track record on solving welfare state problems than the U.S.
     
  6. thermodynamic, Oct 22, 2016
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2016

    thermodynamic Suspended

    thermodynamic

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    #6
    Which is why people lament on college costs where, unlike in 1978, a summer job can no longer pay for the minimum credentials required. Since jobs back then didn't require stringent degrees, the value of college wasn't there. Especially with the great recession combined with the same law of supply and demand increasing value of college, today's huge mess ($1.3T+ and counting) is a result. Anyone blaming those who went back to college or doing their part for the loans is a damn fool. Since private banks happily back loans and for much larger amounts, blaming government for today's mess is also damn stupid. It all goes back to the perceived law of supply and demand, unregulated.

    On the plus side, with people everywhere griping about news articles' grammar because Microsoft Word made all of those editing jobs obsolete, maybe there will be a comeback if image leads to a better perception?
    --- Post Merged, Oct 22, 2016 ---
    Plus, causality and time for ideas to move forward - there is legitimacy involved, but Obama - like Clinton - have both said how people who do their part should get ahead but college costs are clearly not having the intended effect. Clinton is more likely going to do something, but ideally today's problems would not have been made to begin with. The issue is how to move forward the best we can, which inevitably means helping the working class a bit more. With all the corporate welfare and other expenditures, who can argue that it's overdue for the working class to get a helping hand?

    And when the cheaply made robot wears out buy another. So we dispose of people AND help increase landfills faster. That's win-win?! But if it helps, say, Al Gore's stock holdings, do you think he will care? I'd still like to think he does.

    There are lots of ideas being bandied about... yet nobody wants to agree -- and all while pretending there is no problem because all the unemployed people are just lazy worthless drains on society. Don't believe me? A three letter word describes:

    ask
    --- Post Merged, Oct 22, 2016 ---
    If people are so sure on that, why aren't people out there already?
     
  7. jnpy!$4g3cwk macrumors 65816

    jnpy!$4g3cwk

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    #7
    There is an very important difference between the industrialization and whatever the next phase is going to be called. Industrialization amplified the physical work that people could do. Most people were and are capable of doing semi-skilled work, and, many people can do various kinds of skilled work to operate powered, but, human-guided and controlled machinery. Labor, per se, still had great value. Skilled labor actually had greater value.

    In the new post-industrial (a better word is needed) world, the machines control themselves via computers and sensors, and all the bookkeeping and information-broker jobs disappear into algorithm-driven systems that deliver information to the top. Vehicles drive themselves (Uber won't need drivers with self-driving cars), automatic lawn mowers mow the lawns (if the lawns exist -- no lawns in most of the West in the future), consumers check out their own groceries, plug in their own electric vehicle to charge, ride around in self-driving cars, ride in driverless subway trains.

    IOW-- all routine, boring jobs disappear. That is not the same thing at all as industrialization. Industrialization amplified the physical power of workers. Post-industrialization surpluses all pure labor-- only non-routine, high-creativity jobs eventually will remain-- that is not very many jobs, and not very many people. Idle hands are the devil's workshop.
     
  8. thermodynamic Suspended

    thermodynamic

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    #8
    Uber is part of the amusingly-labeled "sharing economy" where average joe drivers work for pennies while Uber rakes in far more. It is not going to spend the amount of money needed for driverless cars, nor is it going to take responsibility for when the driverless car causes an accident any more than the manufacturer of the technology will be bothered to take responsibility either. That's part of how they "profit", delegating cost and responsibility to the driver whose insurance rates cost far more than what it's worth (prior to any accident). It's slimy and doesn't reward labor as much as it does pretend the driver and car came magically out of nowhere since they obviously have no costs of their own to contend with.

    You're missing out on a couple of points. Trouble is, guessing isn't fun and doesn't always lead to accurate definitions of the future. You've the other pieces as perceived put into place, so what are the points you had not brought up?

    In other words, this is Hell?
     
  9. Eraserhead macrumors G4

    Eraserhead

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    #9
    No one is going to retrain every 5-10 years. It isn't going to happen. Nor is it affordable.

    If that's the position you ban automation.
     
  10. Macky-Mac macrumors 68030

    Macky-Mac

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    #10
    Displacement has been a problem over the last 30 years and it certainly will become worse. Even re-training won't help if enough new types of jobs aren't being created......instead the trend has been the shift of redundant skilled workers into unskilled and lower paying low-skill jobs
     
  11. Zombie Acorn thread starter macrumors 65816

    Zombie Acorn

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    #11
    I think it's going to get bad over the next 10 years and not like the previous 30. Not only is power more concentrated in fewer corporate hands, but they will be completely scrapping entire job categories and centralizing control over the IT infrastructure leaving fewer and fewer jobs.

    For instance, just today I noticed McDonald's just installed touch screens when you walk in the doors and it's so much easier to order than talking to someone.
     
  12. Fancuku macrumors 6502a

    Fancuku

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    #12
    Easy answer. Moar votes for the democrats. ;)
     
  13. Eraserhead macrumors G4

    Eraserhead

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    #13
    The poor seem to be voting Republican these days...
     
  14. vrDrew macrumors 65816

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    #14
    I'm not sure that's true.

    As far as "automation" goes, we've already automated the easily-done jobs. Power looms and steam shovels did that a long time before computers came on the scene.

    What is happening now is that we are getting down to jobs which are very, very hard to automate well. Like driving a car in city traffic. Something that most 16 year-olds can do reasonably well is still years in the future.

    Government cannot, and should not, stand in the way of companies increasing automation. In, fact, they ought to encourage it here in the USA. Because that will make our factories more productive and will grow the market for jobs taking care of the robots, etc.

    There is little doubt that increased automation is going to cause disruption in the labor markets. Where Government can be of use is to help provide retraining and opportunities for displaced workers to replace their lost occupations with ones that are at least as rewarding financially and mentally.

    The reality is that there is a tremendous amount of work to be done in this country. Work that, by and large, can only be done by people. Jobs like child- and elder-care. Environmental and ecological remediation. Improvements to our housing stock.
     
  15. LizKat macrumors 68040

    LizKat

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    #15
    Yeah but that's probably not a a realistic option, at least insofar as capitalism persists.

    So if extrapolating based on current trends... eventually there will have to be some form of Unconditional Basic Income and I would assume along with that some great infotainment, virtual reality options, "things to do, people to see, bring the kids along".. because otherwise if there's a global shortage of jobs and political reluctance or inability to impose draconian scenarios like "authorized breeders" and "authorized workers"... then it won't be much fun to be on the planet. People will do whatever they can do to survive when they don't have food or water etc.

    In the shorter term it's good seeing more articles about schools and local industry cooperating to design apprenticeships and specific curricula to prepare high school kids to land in the workplace. Also consortia of colleges and industry cooperating in tech developments like in Albany NY w/ extremely small chip development.
     
  16. appleisking macrumors 6502a

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  17. jkcerda macrumors 6502

    jkcerda

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    #18
    Population is going to be trimmed a bit by war :eek:
     
  18. LizKat macrumors 68040

    LizKat

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    #19
    Ever the optimist.. :rolleyes: you need to discover a more joyful programming language than whatever one you now spend way too much time working on, its filters are too grim!

    I used to think VR was just going to end up as the next step in first person shooter games but I realized some time in the past couple years that it will have lots of complex applications and intersections w/ regular reality. I would not be surprised if pacifying the masses who live on a guaranteed income (without ever working) turned up a need for VR applications. This could be great, or horrible. Or, both depending on where it's deployed and by whom for what purpose.
     
  19. Thomas Veil macrumors 68020

    Thomas Veil

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    #20
    Decades ago, speaking about automation, Arthur C. Clarke said that the goal of mankind was the disinvention of work, so we can play.

    That was, of course, before anybody considered the economic and sociological ramifications.

    It does seem, however, we are moving slowly, inevitably in that direction.

    I don't know what the answer to this problem is. I just know that it won't be solved by politicians, but by futurists. We need a modern day Alvin Toffler.
     
  20. sim667 macrumors 65816

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    #21
    I hear trumps planning on building a wall and making the robots pay for it.
     
  21. jnpy!$4g3cwk macrumors 65816

    jnpy!$4g3cwk

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    #22
    Steam shovels needed operators -- increasing the demand for skilled labor.

    Information technology is having the opposite effect -- increasing demand for personal servants in their various forms, but, decreasing demand for information brokers, bookkeepers, logistics staff, blue collar supervisors, and higher-level blue collar jobs in general.

    Basic self-driving cars are already here. With an assist from smart roadways, that may be the only vehicle mode allowed in, say, Manhattan. IOW-- "years in the future"? How many?

    I have no faith in markets to solve this kind of problem. Markets are great at providing local optimizations, like better cell phones. This is going to be a sociological problem -- people need to work, AND, they need to make enough money to live. This is already getting to be very hard for what used to be the lower middle class.

    Hard to live on what elder-care pays right now. Hard to see a future when everybody 16-66 is providing elder-care for 67-90 year olds.

    I think we are facing a much more difficult problem than you do, because it will fundamentally change the assumption between working and getting stuff. You notice how controversial it is to give people free food?
     
  22. poloponies Suspended

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    #23
    It is unrealistic to believe that anyone has an unlimited right to unskilled employment. Coal miners started disappearing long before coal fell out of favor. Ditto steelworkers. Coal production in 2010 was more than double that of 1960 but with half the workers. Productivity per worker went up 600% in 50 years. We have been producing coal at historical rates in the last decade. Increasing those rates will not add a significant number of jobs. In fact, the employment numbers were hovering around 80,000 since the early 90's. Ditto steelworkers. Takes far fewer people to produce steel today than 40 years ago, and increased recycling has simplified steelmaking. And the jobs that remain pay relatively less than they used to.

    Trump's promises to add more steel and coal jobs are as misguided and dishonest as anything else that comes out of his mouth. And are people really clamoring to get these jobs? Automation SHOULD take away dangerous jobs like these. As for other jobs, change is inevitable and we've sen it coming for decades. People that refuse to adapt may suffer but it's only because they din't want to change. I saw a documentary about the infancy of Japan's auto industry and how quick they were to ramp up and adapt. An employee would get a lifetime employment commitment from the company with the understanding that if they were a welder and at some point the company had too many welders, they would be retrained to needed tasks. That would never fly here because people are not as welcoming of change.
     
  23. Eraserhead macrumors G4

    Eraserhead

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    #24
    On the other hand I can't see people retraining every five minutes.
     
  24. samcraig macrumors P6

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    #25
    I believe Trump is having Barron work on it since he's really good at cyber
     

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