Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News
Friday, February 17, 2017

At the recent World Government Summit held in Dubai, Tesla's CEO Elon Musk was given the opportunity to share his views and insights on some of the most pressing global issues and what the world can do to overcome the forthcoming challenges. ... On automation, Musk singled out transportation as the industry that will be hardest and first to be hit, saying that large-scale automation of transportation will likely be realized in the next few decades. But it's not just transportation that will be affected. The impact of automation will be felt across several industries, so much so that with the number of workers that will get displaced, governments will have no choice but to implement some kind of universal basic income (UBI) program to help its citizens cope with unemployment. "I think it's going to be necessary. There will be fewer and fewer jobs that a robot cannot do better," said Musk.

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While the billionaire tech idealist has always been vocal about his support for UBI, this is the first time he addresses the argument by noting the profound effect automation will have on mass unemployment.

Apart from the obvious issue of financial worries stemming from shifts in labor demand, Musk believes there's a more serious challenge that has to be overcome, and that's "meaning."

"A lot of people derive meaning from their employment. If you're not needed, what is the meaning? Do you feel useless? That is a much harder problem to deal with. How do we ensure the future is a future that we want, that we still like?"

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Immigration and trade are minor problems compared to the coming societal and economic changes due to shifting, and disappearing, jobs.

#1 | Posted by Corky at 2017-02-16 12:32 AM | Reply

"in the next few decades".

#2 | Posted by HeliumRat at 2017-02-16 12:34 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

Short term thinker?

Your Hero Trump is going to bring back jobs by building a Wall to keep out ebil robots! And making trade deals to.... import more good Trump Brand robots!!

You have been hornswoggled, Ratty.

#3 | Posted by Corky at 2017-02-16 12:44 AM | Reply

#2 | Posted by HeliumRat at 2017-02-16 12:34

This is just part of the continuation of the campaign of CORKYS claim that it is not free trade that is causing the loss of jobs it is automation but yes decades into the future it will cause jobs loss but it is not the real cause now, and yes UBI will be the answer to that

#4 | Posted by PunchyPossum at 2017-02-16 01:43 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

- but it is not the real cause now,

It's happening now and will only get worse.....

"But research shows that the automation of U.S. factories is a much bigger factor than foreign trade in the loss of factory jobs. A study at Ball State University's Center for Business and Economic Research last year found that trade accounted for just 13 percent of America's lost factory jobs. The vast majority of the lost jobs -- 88 percent -- were taken by robots and other homegrown factors that reduce factories' need for human labor.

"We're making more with fewer people," says Howard Shatz, a senior economist at the Rand Corp. think tank.

bigstory.ap.org

ball state study

conexus.cberdata.org

Stephen Hawking: This will be the impact of automation and AI on jobs

Technology has already gutted many traditional manufacturing and working class jobs -- but now it may be poised to wreak similar havoc with the middle classes.

A report put out in February 2016 by Citibank in partnership with the University of Oxford predicted that 47% of US jobs are at risk of automation. In the UK, 35% are. In China, it's a whopping 77% -- while across the OECD it's an average of 57%.

Automation will, "in turn will accelerate the already widening economic inequality around the world," Hawking wrote.

"The internet and the platforms that it makes possible allow very small groups of individuals to make enormous profits while employing very few people. This is inevitable, it is progress, but it is also socially destructive."

He frames this economic anxiety as a reason for the rise in right-wing, populist politics in the West:

"We are living in a world of widening, not diminishing, financial inequality, in which many people can see not just their standard of living, but their ability to earn a living at all, disappearing. It is no wonder then that they are searching for a new deal, which Trump and Brexit might have appeared to represent."

www.weforum.org

#5 | Posted by Corky at 2017-02-16 02:18 AM | Reply

Your study was debunked. Germany has more automation than the US, but also more factory workers, even with 1/4 of our population. Because they protected their jobs.

#6 | Posted by HeliumRat at 2017-02-16 02:27 AM | Reply

"So is there a relationship between job loss and the use of industrial robots?
[ Answer no not really]

www.brookings.edu

The substantial variation of the degree to which countries deploy robots should provide clues. If robots are a substitute for human workers, then one would expect the countries with much higher investment rates in automation technology to have experienced greater employment loss in their manufacturing sectors. Germany deploys over three times as many robots per hour worked than the United States, largely due to Germany's robust automotive industry, which is by far the most robot-intensive industry (with over 10 times more robots per worker than the average industry). Sweden has 60 percent more robots per hour worked than the United States thanks to its highly technical metal and chemical industries.

Yet the evidence suggests there is essentially no relationship between the change in manufacturing employment and robot use. Despite the installation of far more robots between 1993 and 2007, Germany lost just 19 percent of its manufacturing jobs between 1996 and 2012 compared to a 33 percent drop in the United States. (We introduce a three-year time lag to allow for robots to influence the labor market and continued with the most recent data, 2012). Korea, France, and Italy also lost fewer manufacturing jobs than the United States even as they introduced more industrial robots. On the other hand, countries like the United Kingdom and Australia invested less in robots but saw faster declines in their manufacturing sectors."

#7 | Posted by PunchyPossum at 2017-02-16 02:41 AM | Reply

-Your study was debunked.

Both studys were done 2 years ago BUT the newer studies support the Ball State conclusions, not the Brookings.....

"The "automation bomb" could destroy 45 percent of the work activities currently performed in the United States, representing about $2 trillion in annual wages, according to a study last year by the consulting firm McKinsey & Co. We've seen only the beginning of this change, they warned. Currently, only 5 percent of occupations can be entirely automated, but 60 percent of occupations could soon see machines doing 30 percent or more of the work.

The McKinsey analysts sharpened their argument in a paper released last month. Their estimates, based on U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data covering more than 800 occupations, draw a shocking picture of the future.

In manufacturing, 59 percent of activities could be automated, and that includes "90 percent of what welders, cutters, solderers and brazers do." In food service and accommodations, 73 percent of the work could be performed by machines. In retailing, 53 percent of current jobs could be lost."

www.washingtonpost.com

And Stephen Hawking is timeless and correct.

You've been Trumped.

#8 | Posted by Corky at 2017-02-16 12:14 PM | Reply

Now I want all you people to tell me why companies are going to automation and don't give me the old story of corporate greed only.

#9 | Posted by Sniper at 2017-02-16 12:48 PM | Reply

Tell why, other than their bottom line, they would go to automation?

It is inevitable. Robots will be modern day slaves... which left time for the ancients to philosophize, theorize, create art and music... and war upon each other incessantly.

#10 | Posted by Corky at 2017-02-16 12:52 PM | Reply

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So cor, what is their biggest operating expense? What do high costs do to their sales? Use your head for something besides keeping your ears from slapping together when you shake your head.

#11 | Posted by Sniper at 2017-02-16 01:04 PM | Reply

I don't know if you libs realize about 1/2 of all construction costs is the cost of labor.

#12 | Posted by Sniper at 2017-02-16 01:05 PM | Reply

"...about 1/2 of all construction costs is the cost of labor." - #12 | Posted by Sniper at 2017-02-16 01:05 PM

All?

Not really.

#13 | Posted by Hans at 2017-02-16 01:18 PM | Reply

-Use your head for something besides keeping your ears from slapping together when you shake your head.

You should practice what you preach. And lay offa those Trump Pills. You seem even more schizophrenic than usual.

#14 | Posted by Corky at 2017-02-16 01:18 PM | Reply

Henry Ford is shaking in his grave.

#15 | Posted by Prolix247 at 2017-02-16 05:07 PM | Reply

" governments will have no choice but to implement some kind of universal basic income (UBI) program to help its citizens cope with unemployment"..

...no other choice...lol

#16 | Posted by homerj at 2017-02-16 07:00 PM | Reply

I'm sure you understand the overarching point being made, HOMER, that being the notion of governments want to maintain the consumer based economic status quo in the light of massive technological progress, socialism will inevitably be considered and some form implemented.

There is no other way. And this is coming from someone who is against absolutism. So that should speak volumes, IMO

#17 | Posted by rstybeach11 at 2017-02-16 07:15 PM | Reply

There will be a major world war that will reduce population, destroy infrastructure and set us back to an earlier level of sophistication. As populations grow it becomes more and more inevitable.

#18 | Posted by danni at 2017-02-17 09:31 AM | Reply

#18: Danni, that was like, almost prophetic. Which by the way, I agree with you.

#19 | Posted by Daniel at 2017-02-17 10:03 AM | Reply

I'm sure your name is on Trump's Enemy List, Corky; so you'll never qualify for UBI.

Although you might get a VIP seat on the cattle car to the FEMA camp.

#20 | Posted by SheepleSchism at 2017-02-17 11:39 AM | Reply

War, famine and disease will kill off all the robots.

#21 | Posted by mikeedge at 2017-02-17 02:48 PM | Reply

Why is it always couched as Universal Basic Income and not Universal Basic Employment. The former suggests that people would receive an income simply for the act of drawing breath. Why wouldn't the taxpayers demand something from those who were the recipients and primary benefits of a government-sponsored income program?

#22 | Posted by madbomber at 2017-02-17 05:37 PM | Reply

Because people understand that make-work doesn't actually produce anything.

#23 | Posted by snoofy at 2017-02-17 05:43 PM | Reply

This will be a robot sponsored program, despite your racist comment about breath drawers!

#24 | Posted by Corky at 2017-02-17 05:43 PM | Reply

Finland is trying UBI. Limited study group of 2000 people. The group overseeing it will not release the results until 2 years (yes you read that right) after the program has ended. The only comment from a participant was something along the lines of "it lets me take part time jobs that wouldnt be worth while".

#25 | Posted by aescal at 2017-02-17 05:51 PM | Reply

Why wouldn't the taxpayers demand something from those who were the recipients and primary benefits of a government-sponsored income program?

#22 | POSTED BY MADBOMBER

What demand would that be? The entire point of UBI is to supplement people who can't find jobs, which will inevitably be the VAST majority. So if your one requirement for UBI is employment (initiating UBE), you're demanding a requirement for a program that's supposed to alleviate the pain of not having that exact requirement. There's a fancy, special word for that general scenario, yet it escapes me at the moment.

#26 | Posted by rstybeach11 at 2017-02-17 06:32 PM | Reply

Automation is definitely eliminating jobs and reducing wages for American workers. This is why we should be importing more workers via legal and illegal immigration.

Sincerely,
Democrats

#27 | Posted by nullifidian at 2017-02-17 06:54 PM | Reply

In the vein of global warming deniers who like to ask what's the ideal temperature for the earth, I'd like to ask Nulli what's the ideal number of inhabitants of the United States.

#28 | Posted by snoofy at 2017-02-17 07:07 PM | Reply

Why do you only piss on democrats, nulli?

Newsflash: they're not in charge.

#29 | Posted by Alexandrite at 2017-02-17 07:09 PM | Reply

Trumpifidian, that's why.

"Keeping the Brown Kids Offa His Lawn!"

#30 | Posted by Corky at 2017-02-17 07:11 PM | Reply

Why do you only piss on democrats, nulli?

Newsflash: they're not in charge.

Posted by Alexandrite at 2017-02-17 07:09 PM | Reply

I sorely miss the old Nullifidian. This new one stinks to high heaven.

#31 | Posted by LauraMohr at 2017-02-17 07:12 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

--I sorely miss the old Nullifidian.

I sorely miss the old left, the left that left me: pro-working class, anti-corporate globalization; before they sold out to the likes of Clinton and Obama, free-traders, Wall Street, neocons, etc.

#32 | Posted by nullifidian at 2017-02-17 07:29 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

Don't get me wrong,nulli... i don't like democrat politicians either, they only know two tricks: roll over and play dead, but they're not in power anymore.

#33 | Posted by Alexandrite at 2017-02-17 07:36 PM | Reply

The poster Bill O'Reilly was a Peabody Award winner who supported Clinton and Obama about equally.

Nullifidian is no faith.... in anything or anyone, apparently.

"I fear treachery to the host from this nullifidian Achan -- Thou shalt not go with him."

Old Mortality, Complete, Illustrated
Sir Walter Scott

#34 | Posted by Corky at 2017-02-17 07:40 PM | Reply

"who supported Clinton and Obama about equally."

Liar.

I supported Obama against Clinton in 2008 while you were busy smearing him with your Tony Rezko, Rev. Wright, Bill Ayers ad-hominems. I voted 3rd party in 2012 and 2016.

#35 | Posted by nullifidian at 2017-02-17 07:48 PM | Reply

Even were one to agree with Nulli's description of Dems, which is pretty myopic, they are still much better than the only other current alternative.

Not liking one's current alternatives should prompt some actions to create new, more desirable alternatives, not the, 'pox on both their houses' attitude which only creates further disappointments and is unfair anyway.

Trump and the GOP are extreme proof that the parties are not the same, even if one doesn't like either of them.

Until there is legit alternative, the least evil is still the best choice.

And I have yet to have any left leaning person tell me how this agenda below is as bad as Trump and the GOP.

www.vox.com

#36 | Posted by Corky at 2017-02-17 07:49 PM | Reply

Automation is definitely eliminating jobs ... for American workers.

It is.

Automated assembly lines replacing human ones.

Kiosks in stores. Supermarkets. Fast food joints. Movie theaters.

Blockbuster video was replaced by Netflix and other streaming services.

Amazon replacing mom and pop stores. Bookstores. Radios shacks.

The world is changing. Self driving cars are in the process of becoming smarter and more reliable. The trucking and shipping industries will soon be obsolete.

Life is advancing. Get an education. Learn some new skills.

#37 | Posted by ClownShack at 2017-02-17 07:50 PM | Reply

-I voted 3rd party in 2012 and 2016.

I threw away my vote on someone who had no chance of winning.

ft

-Liar.

I had most people here against me one way or another as I supported Clinton in 2008... because I wanted Obama in 2016... but Bill O'Reilly was never really one of them.... or maybe he was lying to me then, too.

#38 | Posted by Corky at 2017-02-17 07:53 PM | Reply

-you were busy smearing him

I was not nearly as good at it... or as ridiculously adamant and mindless about it as you have been in smearing Clinton for several years now.

And Trump got all that help for free... I assume, unless he was funnelling payment to you through Mackris, lmao!

#39 | Posted by Corky at 2017-02-17 07:58 PM | Reply

In the vein of global warming deniers who like to ask what's the ideal temperature for the earth, I'd like to ask Nulli what's the ideal number of inhabitants of the United States.
#28 | POSTED BY SNOOFY

There isn't an ideal number but if you want assimilation, there is an ideal growth and adoption rate, much like global warming/ecology, rapid changes lead to disruption. For your question the immigration rate should be the inverse of the ratio of unemployment, then within industries...

But what about you? Why have an immigration service at all? Why have borders? Why not have non-citizens vote? Why not have them collect UBI? Medicare?

I have worked for HumaneBorders in Tucson back in 06', putting out water for illegal immigrants off the 286. I used to think it was the right thing, but soon realized much like simcity you build it they will come. The more we did the more we got, the more we found death, rape, abandoned kids. This is what turned my opinion, then seeing regular Americans struggle finding work and feed their families.

Where is the humanity for citizens?

Is that how you want people to come here? Is that your America?

Bonus question: Whats your reply to this woman?
www.youtube.com

I have stated this before, and will say it again ... you want singlepayer healthcare? you want UBI? control the immigration and I have no issue with it, if you can pay for it. Otherwise you can't pay for it no matter how cheap it is per person.

#40 | Posted by AndreaMackris at 2017-02-17 08:05 PM | Reply

Speak of the devil and.....

#41 | Posted by Corky at 2017-02-17 08:08 PM | Reply

- they sold out to the likes of Clinton and Obama, free-traders, Wall Street, neocons, etc.

Their plans dealt with those real world powers via the policies linked in #36... instead of hiding from them in an Ivory Tower and throwing away their votes.

#42 | Posted by Corky at 2017-02-17 08:12 PM | Reply

Try bitching about the folks who decided not to vote, CORKY. Your incessant rantings against third party voters are USELESS and in all reality counter productive to YOUR end goal.

#43 | Posted by rstybeach11 at 2017-02-17 08:18 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

In what alternate universe does it make sense to keep importing workers when automation is killing American jobs and wages?

#44 | Posted by nullifidian at 2017-02-17 08:24 PM | Reply

In what alternate universe does it make sense to keep importing workers when automation is killing American jobs and wages?

#44 | POSTED BY NULLIFIDIAN

The universe of greedy American corporate owners. Illegal (meaning cheap) human labor is still more profitable than shifting to automation. The mechanization of industry will only propel illegal immigration for a time, IMO. At least until the government finally gets serious about going after the ROOT of the problem related to illegal immigration. [YOU HEAR THAT TRUMP! YOU NSA MOTHER ------- BETTER GET THIS MESSAGE UP TO THE POS POTUS!!!!]

#45 | Posted by rstybeach11 at 2017-02-17 08:29 PM | Reply

"control the immigration"

One million people cross the US borders daily.
If you stop that, it will harm the economy. Bigly.
What exactly are you asking to be done?

#46 | Posted by snoofy at 2017-02-17 08:32 PM | Reply

"There isn't an ideal number but if you want assimilation"

Assimilation... to what?
Detroit is a lot different than Del Mar.
Which one do you want immigrants to assimilate to?

#47 | Posted by snoofy at 2017-02-17 08:34 PM | Reply

Too bad those Chinese never assimilated. They rely on those China Towns. Did you know you can't find one ------- hot dog in China Town? Not a single one!!! I mean WTF!!!!! This is America, isn't it?!!

Same thing down by the border. All those MExicans in San Diego refuse to assimilate. Did you know there's billboards in San Diego that are written in SPANISH!!!!!! Can you believe that ----!?

#48 | Posted by rstybeach11 at 2017-02-17 08:38 PM | Reply | Funny: 1

"In what alternate universe does it make sense to keep importing workers when automation is killing American jobs and wages?"

A world where profits matter more than people. A world just like this one. Why do you think Trump has his branded merchandise made overseas?

#49 | Posted by snoofy at 2017-02-17 08:39 PM | Reply

#44

In the universe where employers of multi billion dollar companies want to maximize their profits by hiring the cheapest possible labor.

I'm not saying I agree with it.

#50 | Posted by ClownShack at 2017-02-17 08:39 PM | Reply

"The more we did the more we got, the more we found death, rape, abandoned kids"

You don't think maybe you just started seeing those things because you were unaware of them before?

#51 | Posted by snoofy at 2017-02-17 08:45 PM | Reply

"In what alternate universe does it make sense to keep importing workers when automation is killing American jobs and wages?"

In the current world where robots are not yet innovators and entrepreneurs and moms and dads and good citizens, mostly. They will be job creators as we build them.

A world where fear of the unknown future is not king. A world where people like Mr Musk, who is an immigrant, are thinking about the future, not fearing it.

#52 | Posted by Corky at 2017-02-17 10:22 PM | Reply

Still waiting for an answer to my question. If automation is destroying jobs and reducing wages, how does it make sense to keep expanding the work force and importing cheap labor?

Anyone? Bueller?

#53 | Posted by nullifidian at 2017-02-17 10:32 PM | Reply

Profits go up.
That's how it makes sense.

#54 | Posted by snoofy at 2017-02-17 10:37 PM | Reply

#53

You strip the educational opportunities for the people/ move out the factories and plants/ import cheap labor and have the unemployed depend on your party for handouts and benefits in exchange for their votes while you and the rich line your pocket with profits...aka any major Democrat run city (Detroit/Baltimore/Chicago)...

#55 | Posted by aescal at 2017-02-17 10:56 PM | Reply

UBI without some form of effective (required?) family planning is a recipie for disaster. With people having more time to procreate (no more "I have to go to work in the morning", or "I'm tired from working so hard", etc., etc., etc.) the human population will EXPLODE.

#56 | Posted by FedUpWithPols at 2017-02-18 05:47 AM | Reply

FedUp,

So you are arguing for a UBI?

theweek.com we currently have the lowest birth rate EVER in the US. Boomers pretty much are done, Gen X is finishing up child bearing years and Millennials don't want kids so the birth rate will likely continue to go down.

So you think a UBI could be a fix for that, hadn't thought of that angle but maybe.

#57 | Posted by TaoWarrior at 2017-02-18 08:45 AM | Reply

#53

Still waiting for an answer he likes, not the several he got.

Immigrants can be innovators, entrepreneurs, and job creators like Mr Musk. Robots not so much.

But, hey, playing dumb may be your most believable position.

#58 | Posted by Corky at 2017-02-18 12:16 PM | Reply

In the US the Republican plan will be to line the poor unemployed up in front of pits and machine gun them because it's their fault that they don't have a job and because Jesus.

#59 | Posted by dibblda at 2017-02-19 12:42 AM | Reply

"the human population will EXPLODE."

No it won't, raising kids is hard work, a lot of hard work. Also, we have access to birth control (for now, let's see what's happens after 4 years of pseudo-facism with Christian characteristics).

Women's education and birth control is a pretty good way to reduce the birth rate, which has been demonstrated around the world.

#60 | Posted by dibblda at 2017-02-19 02:29 AM | Reply

So you are arguing for a UBI?

If people don't have a way of earning a living (because automation (aka robots) have taken all the jobs) and society still charges for the basic necessities, then a UBI is a necessity.

Initially, humans will be required to maintain the robots. But over time, robots will be repairing robots and humans that repaired robots will lose their jobs and be in need of a UBI. Even when that occurs, you will still need humans to design robots. However, over an even longer period of time, robots will be designing robots and humans that designed robots will lose their jobs and be in need of a UBI. Eventually, there will be no job that humans can do that robots can't do better.

What will humans be doing with all that free time? Making babies. There is no reason not to. Just like with other jobs, the "hard work" associated with raising kids would be outsourced to robots. Rich people have always outsourced child rearing to one degree or another. Even not so rich people do it (its called child care).

Do you think that the earth wouldn't be able to support an expanding human population? Of course it couldn't. But with robotic workers, the hard and dangerous work of mining asteroids and other planets would be common place.

This is a vision of a far distant future where automation has freed humans to do what humans do best: procreate.

#61 | Posted by FedUpWithPols at 2017-02-19 06:41 AM | Reply

Because people understand that make-work doesn't actually produce anything.

UBI doesn't produce anything either. But maybe the recipients could give back to those paying their way through life by mowing lawns or picking up garbage.

"Life is advancing. Get an education. Learn some new skills."

Oh my. You just grew up. I'm so glad I was here to share this moment with you.

#62 | Posted by madbomber at 2017-02-19 10:00 PM | Reply

"UBI doesn't produce anything either."

Eliminating or reducing poverty producess many benefits to society.

I'm not opposed to the government being the employer of last relief, but really it's the income that's needed, not the opportunity to labor.

#63 | Posted by snoofy at 2017-02-19 11:07 PM | Reply

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