Author Topic: As Our Jobs Are Automated, Some Say We'll Need A Guaranteed Basic Income  (Read 1861 times)

Offline Ixarku

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Re: As Our Jobs Are Automated, Some Say We'll Need A Guaranteed Basic Income
« Reply #60 on: October 13, 2016, 12:34:28 pm »
Again, I think it's more about the rate of change over time versus society's ability to adapt.  Too much too fast, and a lot of people will be negatively impacted and will become disaffected.  Phase changes in gradually, and businesses will adapt (the smartest ones will have the vision to plan ahead for such changes), and people will have time to retrain and adjust.  Self-driving cars, for example, have been in development for a while, but even when they are ready, it's unlikely that they're going to immediately flood the market and render human drivers obsolete right away.

Automation in particular is market-driven.  Nobody is mandating that businesses fire their workers and replace them with machines.  Business needs and pressures drive the push towards automation, and I think there's a certain amount of inertia to overcome.  Companies (at least the ones that aren't already failing) aren't going out of business because of lack automation.  I think you need to look at what's driving the push to automate, and it's largely going to be the desire to reduce labor costs and increase quality.


Regarding test automation:

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Offline Burkingam

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Re: As Our Jobs Are Automated, Some Say We'll Need A Guaranteed Basic Income
« Reply #61 on: October 13, 2016, 01:43:42 pm »
Do you think the angry driver movement we will inevitably see as self driving cars steal their jobs will be associated with the right or the left?
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Offline Spiku

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Re: As Our Jobs Are Automated, Some Say We'll Need A Guaranteed Basic Income
« Reply #62 on: October 13, 2016, 04:05:28 pm »
Ingore please.
« Last Edit: October 13, 2016, 04:21:45 pm by Spiku »

Offline halfelite

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Re: As Our Jobs Are Automated, Some Say We'll Need A Guaranteed Basic Income
« Reply #63 on: October 13, 2016, 06:37:04 pm »
Do you think the angry driver movement we will inevitably see as self driving cars steal their jobs will be associated with the right or the left?

It will be associated with the Right for the negative impact and it will be associated with the Left for a positive when they offer free rides for low income.

Offline Ixarku

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Re: As Our Jobs Are Automated, Some Say We'll Need A Guaranteed Basic Income
« Reply #64 on: October 14, 2016, 12:22:52 am »
Do you think the angry driver movement we will inevitably see as self driving cars steal their jobs will be associated with the right or the left?

It will be associated with the Right for the negative impact and it will be associated with the Left for a positive when they offer free rides for low income.

Yeah, I don't see the Left rioting over lost jobs, particularly not if self-driving cars are presented as a green and safer option.  The Right will certainly proclaim, "They took 'er jobs!"
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Offline Nikkoru

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Re: As Our Jobs Are Automated, Some Say We'll Need A Guaranteed Basic Income
« Reply #65 on: October 14, 2016, 02:00:52 am »
Do you think the angry driver movement we will inevitably see as self driving cars steal their jobs will be associated with the right or the left?

It will be associated with the Right for the negative impact and it will be associated with the Left for a positive when they offer free rides for low income.

Yeah, I don't see the Left rioting over lost jobs, particularly not if self-driving cars are presented as a green and safer option.  The Right will certainly proclaim, "They took 'er jobs!"

I mean, can you imagine what'll happen when truckers begin to be downsized en masse because of auto-navigating trucks? There are around 3.6 million of them and they'll likely be more come that point in innovation where such a thing is considered street-worthy.

I think at that point you'll get a lot more - possibly disingenuous - questions of their safety and whether they should be legalized. Even heavier than we've seen with Uber and the taxi industry because nominally people still do profit from Uber even if they suppress wages overall -- whereas very, very few people will get anything out of fleets of auto-trucks working across the continent.
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Offline Burkingam

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Re: As Our Jobs Are Automated, Some Say We'll Need A Guaranteed Basic Income
« Reply #66 on: October 14, 2016, 03:13:34 am »
whereas very, very few people will get anything out of fleets of auto-trucks working across the continent.
I beg to differ. I think virtually everyone will get something out of trucks driving themselves, with the exception of those directly affected by the job cuts. Virtually everyone benefits from cheaper transportation since everyone uses goods that were transported.

And the saving here is more than just the truckers' wage. Autonomous trucks can drive themselves 24h a day while the number of hours truckers can drive in a day is often limited by law (13 hours in Canada). Suddenly, trucks are a much quicker way to transport goods. Suddenly fewer trucks need to be built for the same job.

And that's not even counting the lives that could be saved. Autonomous trucks will almost certainly be less error prone than humans.
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Offline Nikkoru

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Re: As Our Jobs Are Automated, Some Say We'll Need A Guaranteed Basic Income
« Reply #67 on: October 14, 2016, 03:25:27 am »
whereas very, very few people will get anything out of fleets of auto-trucks working across the continent.
I beg to differ. I think virtually everyone will get something out of trucks driving themselves, with the exception of those directly affected by the job cuts. Virtually everyone benefits from cheaper transportation since everyone uses goods that were transported.

And the saving here is more than just the truckers' wage. Autonomous trucks can drive themselves 24h a day while the number of hours truckers can drive in a day is often limited by law (13 hours in Canada). Suddenly, trucks are a much quicker way to transport goods. Suddenly fewer trucks need to be built for the same job.

And that's not even counting the lives that could be saved. Autonomous trucks will almost certainly be less error prone than humans.

... but the profits from those fleets of very efficient auto-trucks are going to go into the hands of a tiny minority - those who own them which will get the most significant lion's share, those who make the actual automation possible, those who administrate their use, and those who maintain them. Which all-in-all is going to be a fraction of those currently employed in the industry. Add in every other business based around hiring driving staff like taxis, and while overall output will increase dramatically the spread of wealth will constrict even further into fewer and fewer hands.
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Offline Burkingam

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Re: As Our Jobs Are Automated, Some Say We'll Need A Guaranteed Basic Income
« Reply #68 on: October 14, 2016, 03:44:14 am »
That's a very cartoonish view of how the economy works. In real life, when the cost of a technology goes down, its price also usually diminishes. The possibility that a technology may benefit some more than others isn't incompatible with the possibility that this technology may ultimately benefit everyone.
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Offline Ixarku

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Re: As Our Jobs Are Automated, Some Say We'll Need A Guaranteed Basic Income
« Reply #69 on: October 14, 2016, 03:55:49 am »
Sadly, I agree with Nik.  A revolution in automated trucking will have a dramatic impact on transportation costs, which should translate into cheaper goods.  Competition in the marketplace should drive prices down as a result, but in reality, I think the lion's share of those savings will end up in the pockets of shareholders rather than in the pockets of the average consumer.  I have very little faith these days in the ability of consumers to influence prices except in certain industries.
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Offline Nikkoru

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Re: As Our Jobs Are Automated, Some Say We'll Need A Guaranteed Basic Income
« Reply #70 on: October 14, 2016, 04:42:19 am »
Our society simply doesn't have a reasonable answer to the pangs of post-capitalism.

I recall, shortly after the election, Prime Minister Trudeau and the CBC had a Sunday television special aimed at addressing various people's questions. One of them was a long-time worker in Southern Ontario's industrial sector who has suddenly found himself unemployed from his long-time well-paying private job and has been struggling to manage in his public sector job at a much-diminished wage, nearing retirement age and having to eat through his pension to remain above water. Trudeau responded that while there are mechanisms aimed at reeducation for employment in other areas, and attempts to draw more manufacturing back have been made, and regardless his pension is still going to be a thing, there wasn't anything he could do and at his age very likely the re-training wasn't going to go anywhere. While I believe his job moved to Mexico, a majority of the 20th centuries' industrial sector is simply lost to obsolescence. There are still jobs, of course, but unstable and usually less rewarding -- that's the future for millennials in particularly. It's just the dejecting nature of global economics in the 21st century.

Which is my perspective when you give what I consider a somewhat utopic perspective on technology Burk. It's just not a thing where I can leave aside millions of potentially unemployed workers in what would become a defunct sector of what is one of the more secure areas of the current economy as an "exception".  It's still going to happen, probably, but I'm taking a hefty dose of Ixarku's cynicism here.
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Offline Burkingam

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Re: As Our Jobs Are Automated, Some Say We'll Need A Guaranteed Basic Income
« Reply #71 on: October 14, 2016, 05:00:41 am »
But I agree that a small minority will probably get the lion share of the savings. I'm not denying that. I never tried to argue that innovation was equally beneficial for everyone. It will be beneficial for almost everyone, and that benefit will be spread unequally.

In any case, while I understand that the people directly affected by the job cuts this will be a tragedy, that's not a sufficient reason to prevent innovation. If humanity had followed that logic, we would still be in the dark age. Do you think scribes around the world were happy when the printing press stole their job?
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Offline Nikkoru

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Re: As Our Jobs Are Automated, Some Say We'll Need A Guaranteed Basic Income
« Reply #72 on: October 14, 2016, 05:29:22 am »
But I agree that a small minority will probably get the lion share of the savings. I'm not denying that. I never tried to argue that innovation was equally beneficial for everyone. It will be beneficial for almost everyone, and that benefit will be spread unequally.

Ah, then I agree. Rather it's probably inevitable whether I do or not.

In any case, while I understand that the people directly affected by the job cuts this will be a tragedy, that's not a sufficient reason to prevent innovation. If humanity had followed that logic, we would still be in the dark age. Do you think scribes around the world were happy when the printing press stole their job?

It's not really an issue of innovation - I want orbital colonies and giant mechas as much as the next red-suited man with a mask fetish - it's economic structure, the inability for governments to reconcile post-capitalism with democracy and corporations being inherently required to work in its own limited interests regardless of broader effects on society.
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Offline Burkingam

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Re: As Our Jobs Are Automated, Some Say We'll Need A Guaranteed Basic Income
« Reply #73 on: October 14, 2016, 05:53:01 am »
Then we agree.
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Offline Ixarku

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Re: As Our Jobs Are Automated, Some Say We'll Need A Guaranteed Basic Income
« Reply #74 on: October 14, 2016, 12:34:12 pm »
Then we agree.

Yes we do.  Let's all go out and hug and have a beer.
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Offline Saras

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Re: As Our Jobs Are Automated, Some Say We'll Need A Guaranteed Basic Income
« Reply #75 on: October 14, 2016, 12:34:30 pm »
Again, I think it's more about the rate of change over time versus society's ability to adapt.  Too much too fast, and a lot of people will be negatively impacted and will become disaffected.  Phase changes in gradually, and businesses will adapt (the smartest ones will have the vision to plan ahead for such changes), and people will have time to retrain and adjust.  Self-driving cars, for example, have been in development for a while, but even when they are ready, it's unlikely that they're going to immediately flood the market and render human drivers obsolete right away.

Automation in particular is market-driven.  Nobody is mandating that businesses fire their workers and replace them with machines.  Business needs and pressures drive the push towards automation, and I think there's a certain amount of inertia to overcome.  Companies (at least the ones that aren't already failing) aren't going out of business because of lack automation.  I think you need to look at what's driving the push to automate, and it's largely going to be the desire to reduce labor costs and increase quality.


Regarding test automation:

Sorry but you are not allowed to view spoiler contents.

I fully agree. The rate of change important and that's part of the problem, I literally see it happening overnight.

A self driving truck could transport significantly more goods, because automation could stabilise a longer truck. The australian "road trains" could feasibly be used in reletively inhabited areas.
A self driving truck could drive non-stop 24/7
A self driving truck would cost pennies to insure, because the risk is lower.
A self driving fleet would deliver more of the product without incident, due to the lower risk.
You don't have to pay for health insurance/wages, that's a fuckload
Cheaper cost to transport things

I see no practical benefit in having a human operate a truck.

Driving product from point A to point B isn't a creative task, it's a very simple logic tree. It's basically stick to the lines and follow the GPS, the only real decision making is when to hit the brakes and when not to. Really, the only difficulty is maintaining concentration and not starting to daydream midway through, which isn't an issue for computers.

And lets not forget that finally, the sheer size of the industry basically makes even a 15% improvement "worthy of investment" even if it's stupid expensive. The instant self driving trucks become legal, I can't see it taking more than 3 years for the companies to nationally tell the truckers to fuck off. With them only really being able to continue to work in very low scale environments, like movers. There's enough money and incentive in the system to where I can literally see them changing on a dime, because quite simply human driven trucks can't compete.

Offline Ixarku

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Re: As Our Jobs Are Automated, Some Say We'll Need A Guaranteed Basic Income
« Reply #76 on: October 14, 2016, 12:45:50 pm »
I agree that once the technology for automated vehicles is proven and rolled out commercially, it will be adopted widely.  The technology is certainly moving forward, but I think it's going to take years, perhaps decades, in order for it to become truly transformative.  The switch-over isn't going to happen all at once, even just in the U.S. -- the capital investment for companies will be huge, and it takes time for that kind of expenditure to happen.  The whole industry and everything associated with shipping goods is simply too massive for everything to change in just a few years.  It's not like companies swap out their entire fleet of vehicles every year (or maybe some of them do?)  There has to be contract considerations, union rules, and a host of other logistical issues to address.  Business doesn't always move at light-speed, contrary to what those IBM commercials would have us all believe.
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Offline Krudda

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Re: As Our Jobs Are Automated, Some Say We'll Need A Guaranteed Basic Income
« Reply #77 on: October 14, 2016, 01:03:31 pm »
As an example, just yesterday, two B-doubles crashed and blocked the highway 12 minutes from where I live. The crash caused a major fuck up for every single vehicle, they had to wait 11 hours for the mess to be cleared enough to safely reopen the highway.
As a domino effect, every business waiting on other deliveries didn't get their stuff until today. That may have resulted in loss of sales, upset customers, companies would have had to pay the human drivers for 11 hours of sitting around.

The cause of the crash was determined to be human error.

A computerised truck, on the other hand, probably wouldn't have crashed. And if it had, all the other vehicles held up would not have cost any additional wages while they waited.


The thing about automating transport is that it will be too fast. If companies don't switch to self-driven trucks in a reasonable time-frame, competition will get a large share of the market, so once one company begins, every other company will be forced to change also, or fold from excess overhead. Whichever happens, the drivers will be out of a job, and considering the number of people in the industry, these people will need a new job, because the rest of technology hasn't caught up, humans will still need a job. But where do these "new" jobs come from? Its not like there's an excess of jobs as is and not everyone will be needed to perform maintenance on a fleet of automated trucks/delivery vehicles. But its not like they can't be fired either. If the companies don't, they will very likely cripple to competition who can lower their price due to lower overhead and therefore gain more of the market. So its a chain reaction and if you don't jump on, you get left behind. The victim, in this case, is the truck drivers. They can't realistically be kept on, but firing them isn't guaranteeing them a new job and goods will still cost money and I'm hopeless at conveying my thoughts.... I'm going to quit while I'm cohesive still.

Online Govna

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Re: As Our Jobs Are Automated, Some Say We'll Need A Guaranteed Basic Income
« Reply #78 on: October 14, 2016, 03:44:36 pm »
Cities. That's for cities. Now assume a village or basically any place that doesn't have a housing bubble.

Rent a room in a place that isn't san francisco(I've just googled, you can get a room in Wyoming near a campus for 200/mo), minimal to no luxuries, no eating out and honestly I'd be surprised if you exceeded 10k.

Is this the "good life"? No. But it's a life. It also assumes 0 income.

The problem with this is, you'd have to live in Wyoming.  There are reasons why some states in the U.S. are sparsely populated.  It's economy is dedicated to tourism, agriculture, and energy extraction, so I imagine it would be difficult finding work outside of these sectors.  Wyoming has a population less than 600k, and it has only 2 towns / cities with a population greater than 50,000.  If you like national parks and hate being around people, it's probably the state to live in.

I live in TX and used to only pay $500/mo for rent. It wasn't an amazing place but I've certainly stayed in worse.

Offline Ixarku

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Re: As Our Jobs Are Automated, Some Say We'll Need A Guaranteed Basic Income
« Reply #79 on: October 15, 2016, 01:03:16 am »
I live in TX and used to only pay $500/mo for rent. It wasn't an amazing place but I've certainly stayed in worse.

Sure, but if you were making $10k/year and paying $500/mo in rent, could you have anything other than a subsistence living on the remaining $4000?  That's $333.33 a month for utilities, transportation, food, necessities, entertainment, and savings.  Without being on some other kind of government assistance, having some other form of income, or growing/hunting your own food and generally being off the grid, I don't see it being very likely in the U.S.

20 years ago, I could spend $35-40/week on groceries & necessities and be fine; these days, I don't walk out with less than $60-80, and that's just for myself.  Granted, I'm not pinching pennies, but I think I'd be hard-pressed to regularly spend $50 or less unless I was consistently eating cheap, unhealthy garbage, like ramen noodles and hot dogs.

By comparison, my grandmother survives alone on about $900 a month.  But her home is paid for and she has around $100k from the sale of investment properties to dip into if necessary.  And she was making money from garage sales 30 years before anyone ever heard of eBay or Amazon, so she can always find ways to make extra cash that way.  That's a woman who can rub two pennies together to make a nickel!


EDIT - coincidentally topical:  http://www.dailyfailcentral.com/473437
« Last Edit: October 15, 2016, 02:29:08 am by Ixarku »
If I ever meet God in person, I'm going to ask Him why he created so many stupid people, and then punch Him in the nose before he answers.