Look around!  Look around!  What a time to be alive right now!

Here are 11 reasons to be excited.

Thrilling.

Everything from flying cars to tremendous increases in efficiency and sustainability.  Making a pound of “beef” without 1,800 gallons of water.

Yes, it’s a little scary, too. (How soon will we be pleading with HAL to “open the pod bay doors“?)

With serious concerns over what it will do to jobs.

But as to that:

History has shown that while new technology does indeed eliminate jobs, it also creates new and better jobs to replace them. For example, with advent of the personal computer, the number of typographer jobs dropped, but the increase in graphic designer jobs more than made up for it.

It is much easier to imagine jobs that will go away than new jobs that will be created. Today millions of people work as app developers, ride-sharing drivers, drone operators, and social media marketers— jobs that didn’t exist and would have been difficult to even imagine ten years ago. . . .

And the future is coming in any event, so you may as well take a peak.


Then if you have time, read this by Richard B. Freeman — “Who Owns the Robots Rules the World” — which addresses that issue of employment . . . and, really, the central issue of our time: how to distribute the fruits of human ingenuity?

. . . Robotization, like past technological changes, can be a very good thing, relieving the workload of humans while helping overcome the many challenges the world faces. But it could also affect humans disastrously, dividing societies between the owners of the robots on one side, and the workers who compete with the robots on the other. We should worry less about the potential displacement of human labor by robots than about how to share fairly across society the prosperity that the robots produce. . . .

. . . In recent decades, the labor market has increasingly tilted against workers, producing levels of inequality that arouse global concern not just from traditional advocates of an egalitarian income distribution, but also from such staid organizations as the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. Increases in worker productivity were once passed on proportionately to workers through gains in wages. Today, gains accrue disproportionately to the wealthy—who are the principal owners of capital. . . .




Apologies that yesterday’s short column got mangled.  Here it is, corrected:

Trump’s Campaign CEO Guilty Of Voter Fraud

You gotta have to kinda love this:

Donald Trump’s new presidential campaign chief is registered to vote in a key swing state at an empty house where he does not live, in an apparent breach of election laws. . . . Bannon is executive chairman of the rightwing website Breitbart News, which has for years aggressively claimed that voter fraud is rife among minorities and in Democratic-leaning areas. . . . Willfully submitting false information on a Florida voter registration – or helping someone to do so – is a third-degree felony punishable by up to five years in prison.

Already loathsome for his views and headlines, this is who Trump chooses to helm his campaign?  (Or, more likely, to helm the cable channel bonanza he plans to reap if he loses?)

 

 

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