[ExI] Is unemployment the future?

Michael LaTorra mlatorra at gmail.com
Sat Nov 7 18:39:58 UTC 2009

While reading an article in SCIENCE magazine about renewable energy projects
in China, I was struck most of all by the mention, made in passing, that the
majority of the leaders of the Chinese government/Communist Party are

They may be terrible on issues of human rights. But their management of the
Chinese economy and development of infrastructure show a much better grasp
on reality than what we see in the USA among our leaders.

I'd like to see more scientists and engineers in our government, rather
than the lawyers and bankers who control the United States of Goldman

Mike LaTorra

On Tue, Nov 3, 2009 at 9:19 AM, Eugen Leitl <eugen at leitl.org> wrote:

> On Tue, Nov 03, 2009 at 04:15:20PM +0100, Stefano Vaj wrote:
> > Sorry if I am pestering you, but I think it is at least equally
> > plausible to see things the other way around. Engineering is declining
> > in Europe because cultural values dictate that you should be instead a
> > banker, a lawyer or a consultant.
> The distinct problem I have that smart people are moving to these
> professions (because of the value society puts into them, measured
> in terms of hard cash) that they're a symptom of an overregulated,
> mature, bureaucratic society. You no longer create stuff, but squabble
> over allocation and distribution of existing stuff. Zero-sum, not
> positive-sum.
> Hence the need for conflict resolution, arbitration, mock-property, claim
> and pretend-wealth management (alas, the knowledge nor money
> doesn't like to work very hard).
> > And the view is widespread that a society can live perfectly well by
> > simply selling financial and commercial services to one another.
> Well, we're seeing where such views have taken us. And it sure ain't
> pretty.
> > As a consequence, economy (and technological innovation!) slow down.
> > This in turn creates unemployment. And ultimately poverty, for that
> Worse, it creates static, brittle societies which are unable to deal
> with change. Coming just at the time where the need for adaptation and
> change is highest, as we're running into limits of resources without
> having achieved escape velocity yet.
> That is a recipe for failure, not survival. At least, for established
> old, I'm hoping the emerging new ones will do better, by necessity alone.
> > matter. Not that this makes any easier to find a good butler or
> > lute-maker, eg, even though in such jobs technology remains largely
> > irrelevant.
> --
> Eugen* Leitl <a href="http://leitl.org">leitl</a> http://leitl.org
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