If you follow John Boehner’s tweets, you’ll have seen his repeated tweets decrying “where are the jobs?” While the GOP has continually blocked legislation to help get the economy rebooted, there’s a bit of information no one is talking much about.
A U T O M A T I O N
If you’ve been shopping, you’ll note there are more and more stores who have installed self-checkout lanes. For every self-checkout, another job was lost. In sector after sector of our economy, automation has increased and workers replaced. Automation doesn’t call in sick, doesn’t require a vacation, a raise, a paycheck or benefits.
Did you know Legos are made almost totally using automation? Millions of jobs have been lost to automation over the years and more will be lost in the future.
For years, as technology has come on line, different jobs were created, but as computing capacity increases four fold again and again, there will be fewer replacement jobs. New robots are being developed in Japan regularly.
So when are the workers going to be able to take advantage of the technology that was created to make our lives easier? Or are these inventions going to be yet more bottom line builders for the corporations, while the labors get left out in the cold?
I would suggest it will do little good for companies to build products without consumers to purchase them. And there will be no consumers without workers.
Now, at a time when we need jobs, should we not be thinking about reducing the work week…but not the salaries? More workers equal more purchasing power along with more revenues for both our state and federal Treasuries – at a time when debt and deficits are becoming a concern.
While CEO’s are making record salaries and bonuses and making ludicrous statements about “doing God’s work” and that workers should “…tolerate the inequality as a way to achieve greater prosperity and opportunity for all,” don’t we need to be considering a new paradigm for the future?
Look at it this way. Wouldn’t the GOP be thrilled, if we didn’t need to extend unemployment insurance again? Or pay TANF or help people out with other social programs? Maybe the housing market would recover when more people could pay their own rent or go back to buying houses?
Can you imagine a future where you could spend time with your family, have 6 weeks of paid vacation, maybe go back to school or in your spare time build your own business?