Category Archives: Economy

Marc Andreessen On When The Robots Come To Take All Our Jobs

It’s one of the great mysteries of our time, why there are so many insisting that this time around is different. That automation, as it proceeds, is going to leave everyone out of work and idling away their time with nothing to do and no income to do nothing with. It’s as if no one is willing to believe that the Luddite fallacy was in fact proven wrong. What’s worse is that all too many of those getting this wrong are setting themselves up as thinkers, philosopher kings, on the subject and as a result of their complete misunderstanding of the basic situation then they’re proposing all sorts of nonsense.

The simple fact is that as long as there’s things that humans can do which add value then humans will continue to have jobs. And when there’s nothing left that humans can do which adds value then no one needs to have a job so who in heck cares whether there are any or not?

ObamaCare Beyond the Handouts

We’ve always said that ObamaCare, for all its flaws, could become the instrument by which responsible reformers renew their push for health care that delivers value for money. In the meantime, however, no worthwhile thoughts about ObamaCare, pro or con, are to be heard from people who count a program as a success just because Americans enjoy receiving benefits at the expense of other Americans.

Source: ObamaCare Beyond the Handouts – WSJ

GE’s Immelt: U.S. retreat from ExIm, trade will cost jobs, influence

When will Americans learn that in today’s globally connected world corporations have a choice where they make a product or service. It is up to our Federal government to compete for jobs just like our state governors and city mayors have been competing for decades.

President Barack Obama’s plans for a pan-Pacific free trade zone have stalled after Democrats defeated a key portion of legislation aimed at speeding negotiations.

“In two weeks the U.S. will have neither trade deals, nor an export bank. And at that point we’re going to be in full retreat on the global economic stage,” Immelt said.

Without Ex-Im, major export deals will be lost to China, Japan and Europe, where there is aggressive government support for exports, he said. Since GE does not want to lose that business, it will move production to countries where it can take advantage of export credit agency support.

The necessity of more skilled IT professionals

Today’s kids need to consider a role in IT.  Here is a quick paragraph from a recent Wall Street Journal article.

It doesn’t hurt their cause that the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that there will be one million unfilled jobs for programmers in the U.S. by 2020. And that may be an underestimate, … He adds that the more software and hardware humans create, the more jobs in software there are, as new platforms like smartphones and drones spawn their own software ecosystems.

The Second Job You Don’t Know You Have

With the move to $15 or higher minimum wage, you can bet there will much more “shadow work” that will be moved to consumers or lost to automation. Shadow work is all the unpaid jobs we do on behalf of businesses and organizations: We are pumping our own gas, scanning our own groceries, booking our travel and busing our tables at Starbucks. Shadow work is a new concept, so as yet, no one has compiled economic data on how many jobs we, the consumers, have taken over from (erstwhile) employees. Yet it is surely a force shrinking the job market, and the unemployment it creates is structural.