With the advancing technological unemployment, what jobs are REALLY needed in society?Submitted by tamckissick on Wed, 11/21/2012 - 14:21
As we know, technology is advancing our abilities to do work in both quantity and quality. This has been taking place fairly slowly for a long time but in recent years, it has been accelerating rapidly. We used to have 60% of our work force employed in just feeding everyone but now that's less than 2%.
This has reconfigured our economy toward making up new jobs. People have found ways to earn a living doing all kinds of other things. Some of which are productive while others are what I call 'fluff jobs'. These are jobs that we only think we need because we're too accepting of them to do that work ourselves.
However, technology has another ace up it's sleeve. It is now getting smart enough to relegate even those jobs to the dust bin. Soon, the business owners will switch over and finally end those jobs.
On top of that, even the so called 'productive' jobs are being downsized. For example, we used to have factories that employed hundreds to thousands of people for each of a dozen different electronic devices. Now, an automated factory of less than a hundred can make a smart phone or PC which can in a single shot replace all those devices. No more are the record players, tape decks, CD players, VHS and DVD players, clocks, phone books, maps and the thousand other devices these two little miracles are now replacing. Sure, in the past, we have kept those workers busy by troubleshooting either the hardware, software or humanware of the new devices, but they are now getting much more efficient.
Another aspect of this is that with each device that's no longer manufactured, we lose all the support jobs that go behind it. If no products need a certain resource, it's possible that industry may drastically downsize. You get the idea.
My question is what jobs are left today and what jobs will there always be? The follow up to this is how can we maintain equality across the employment spectrum when only a tiny percentage of today's jobs even exist?
My take is that lots of people will revert to less years of work (as opposed to less hours for the same years) and will retire early to give their job to the next person.
This may sound like Utopia but isn't it inevitable? And if so, I see no reason we can't direct society towards that path on our own. With the SHTF coming, it seems almost a no-brainer to go after starting now.
What are the group's thoughts?