When Robots Take Our Jobs, Should Everyone Still Get a Paycheck?

“…. tech anxiety got a fresh jolt last month when the White House sent out a Council of Economic Advisers report including a projection that people making less than $20 an hour have an 83 percent chance of eventually losing their jobs to a robot. The odds for those earning up to $40 an hour are more than 30 percent.”

via When Robots Take Our Jobs, Should Everyone Still Get a Paycheck? | Innovation | Smithsonian

Like I didn’t have enough to be depressed about in the world today, I spotted this story in my email. It is not the first time I have read about robots taking over many jobs now done by humans. Science Fiction authors have  written about this for a long time. In 1927, there was a film Metropolis, that depicts a class of poor workers , under the city, running the machines that keep society going and then a human like robot is created.

This idea of robots taking over so many jobs is creepy. I really don’t see robots being as good as or better at being human. There are certain jobs where I do not think they can adequately replace humans such as the caring professions. Would you want a robot caregiver, a robot Nurse?

The Smithsonian article also talks about Universal Basic Income ( UBI) where the government would pay everyone a basic amount to live on after the robots take over. Countries are doing studies now to see how this will work.

If you could be guaranteed enough to live on, what would you do with your life? The Universal Base Income would probably be a small amount of money, not like winning the lottery, just enough to meet your basic needs. I can see certain factions in the US not wanting to support the UBI. The same ones that want to abolish Social Security.

Read more about “The Fourth Industrial Revolution” from these articles posted on Drudge this morning:

LA Times

Wall Street Journal

25 thoughts on “When Robots Take Our Jobs, Should Everyone Still Get a Paycheck?

  1. Yinglan

    This is all we ever talk about in my Information system class and as a class, we’ve seen in action, robot assembling an airplane (real, not the toy kind) and it is just scary.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
    1. Deborah Drucker Post author

      Well maybe it is good if people are talking about it and aware of it because then they can plan for what to do to survive it. I have read some people saying that humans could have jobs repairing the robots and then it was pointed out that there are robots that can repair the robots. This next “industrial revolution” has the potential to create almost unimaginable changes to our societies. It is hard for me to get my head around it right now. It seems like the science fiction movies are becoming the reality.

      Liked by 1 person

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      1. Yinglan

        It’s definitely hard to imagine. My instructor says the only job that will still be available would be the kind of job that requires creativity. I think the robots will most likely replace the manual labor like picking fruits and data entry.

        Liked by 2 people

  2. Dan Antion

    There are plenty of days I’d gladly hand my job over to a robot. I worry some about robots taking over, but then I think about jobs like construction trades where everything isn’t done according to a plan or where it would actually cost more to program a robot that it would to have a human do it. If we get robots who can think and reason and adapt, task to task, minute to minute, then I’d happily stand aside. Then again, we might get robots that are so smart they won’t want to do certain jobs either.

    Liked by 1 person

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  3. Rose

    If Robots are performing surgery, then… I think a lot of jobs will be overtaken by robots. Not just the manual labor. Robots are able to “think critically”. So unsettling…

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
    1. Deborah Drucker Post author

      It is unsettling and it would be good if people could be prepared for it. Schools need to prepare students for this future world and what role they will play in it. People need to have meaningful work and to make a living.

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply
      1. Deborah Drucker Post author

        It might be a lonely world. If you walk into a store, or business, or take out food place and there are no human beings working there. I don’t think people will take to that too well because even now when I go to the market and there is the automatic check out, I prefer to go to the check out with the human being clerk because there is that human interaction. I do not like talking to the robots on the phone at customer service centers either. It is always better to talk to the live rep.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Yolanda Renee

    Such an interesting concept. I don’t understand why we as civilians of earth, it’s inhabitants don’t already receive a dividend for all the minerals, and natural resources mined or taken from it. Men with the means, the 1% get it all. It’s never been fair! But, I’m sorry, i don’t want to ever consider robots taking over, not in the sense that they tell me what to do. Too weird! And I too hate phone robots!

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
    1. Deborah Drucker Post author

      I have thought the same thing, that we should be the beneficiaries of the revenues from our natural resources. I don’t think people would really like to have to interact with robots in businesses or wherever else they are planning to put them. I just posted a short blurb about AI writing a novel. Yikes. Thanks Yolanda Renee. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply
  5. luckyjc007

    Technology is great, but it has it’s drawbacks. Years ago people were saying that the things that are happening now would not be possible, and now here we are saying much the same thing. There will always be jobs that only a human can do, if not….is there a need for a human? Problem is, there will not be enough jobs for humans. We do not have enough jobs now! Will a robot get to the point of being laid off from work? Great thought provoking post.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
    1. Deborah Drucker Post author

      Thanks JC. You comments are thought provoking as well. I think there are jobs that only humans can do. And that’s the trouble, seems like we don’t need something that is going to shrink the number of jobs available. I wonder if a robot would care if they were laid off. 🙂

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      1. luckyjc007

        Ha! …they probably would especially since they would more than likely be made to do a particular job…I can just picture them standing in the unemployment line! Would they really get benefits? And the questions go on and on…..:)

        Liked by 1 person

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