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Friday, May 27, 2016
A cranky opinion for
CRANKY OPINION SATURDAY
The following is the opinion of a cranky old man with little expertise on the topic opined. Opposing opinions are welcome, but they are wrong. As always, please, no name calling, that means you, you big stupid head.
I just saw an article where 60,000 workers making Apple products in China are being replaced with robots. In the US, McDonalds is warning that a high minimum wage will make it cost effective to replace workers with robots.
With today’s technology virtually any repetitive job can be replaced by robots, and with computers, as the repetitive job changes, robots can be reprogrammed cheaply.
Years ago when ever automation threatened jobs, the new technology itself created new jobs which were generally higher paying. Computers and communication devises created new industries and employment was not adversely effected.
I am afraid robots will not have the same effect. Robots will replace low skill, low income jobs in the near term, and more complicated jobs in the future. Robots are expensive to develop and institute, but they work for free, will work overtime and will work on holidays. They are always on time, don’t complain, and they demand no healthcare or retirement expenses. Robots do not go on strike.
It is only a matter of time. Perhaps the only good thing for our country will be manufacturing may stay in the States. When labor only costs the price of a robot, there is no reason to manufacture overseas. Perhaps we will gain supervisory jobs, but we may lose so many more.
Jobs flipping burgers…gone. Jobs in landscaping…gone. Clerical work…gone.
Low to minimum wage jobs, entry level jobs will be hard to find.
We will need workers in skilled positions like never before: engineers, electricians, plumbers, carpenters, mechanics, welders and more. Our higher education system needs to produce more skilled workers and less History and Ethnic Study majors. High school needs to teach advanced computer skills math and communication skills.
Robototics will take over many low wage jobs. More than ever we need to convert low wage workers into higher wage skilled positions.
It is fine to worry about everyone’s bathroom rights, climate change is a legitimate concern, guns are a worry, and wedding cakes for gay people are a problem, but if we have massive unemployment, those issues will seem insignificant.
The most important thing this country needs to focus on is jobs, good jobs, skilled jobs, jobs that will not be taken over by machines. If we have massive unemployment, we will have massive crime and massive drug problems, we will have riots. All the problems this country currently faces will only be magnified if we cannot find new jobs and train workers to fill new job requirements.
Without jobs people have no dignity and without dignity the country as we know it will not survive.
We have problems on the periphery, but we must not take our eyes away from the ball. It is always the economy stupid.
The preceding was the opinion of a cranky old man and not necessarily that of management…Mrs. Cranky.