samantha sjatkins at mac.com
Thu Jun 3 23:04:18 UTC 2010

Adrian Tymes wrote:
> --- On Thu, 6/3/10, BillK <pharos at gmail.com> wrote:
>> As the author says, you are not pointing to a flaw in the
>> argument.
>> You are denying that massive unemployment will ever happen.
> Two responses:
> 1) Massive unemployment can happen due to other causes.  I am
> just pointing out a flaw in this particular argument.
> 2) Reading that as "massive unemployment *due to technological
> advancement*" - well, yes.  Pointing out that the author's
> logic is flawed here does suggest that the conclusion the
> author draws may be in error.  (But, again, that's only the
> expanded/specified version.  Massive unemployment could well
> happen for other reasons.)
>> The US
>> already has about 40 million living on food stamps (i in 8
>> of the
>> population) with many jobs disappearing, never to come
>> back.
Part of the above is a feedback loop.  You get more of what you pay for 
to put it bluntly.  If you create a niche where you can survive on the 
dole then that niche will likely fill to its carrying capacity.   We 
have built such a massive entitlement mentality in the process that even 
otherwise quite rational and even libertarian folks just sort of assume 
that to be born is to have the right to at least a modestly nice 
life.    This mentality has fueled the destruction of economy after 
economy throughout history until the entitlements were cut back 
voluntarily or collapse occurred.  In the US the unfunded entitlements 
amount to some $40 trillion in addition to a national debt that is 
nearly 90% of GDP.   Yet with the entitlement mentality we call for yet 
more entitlements to fix the problems already in large part caused by 
the ones we already have.   This is running toward the edge of the cliff 
full speed.

But to say is to be considered heartless.
> And how many jobs exist now in industries that didn't exist
> 10 years ago?  Looking only at one side of the coin does
> not yield useful predictions.

Probably not 40 million or not that can be filled by arbitrary members 
of that 40 million.   People are not fungible.  Neither are jobs.

>> Don't you think it would be a good idea to start thinking
>> about what
>> changes are needed to deal with massive unempoyment and
>> poverty?
> How about making enough resources in flow that tomorrow's
> "poverty" is today's "middle class"?  Some of the poor
> today are better off than certain kings of a few centuries
> ago.

How will you do that when you (taken individual as metaphor for nation) 
owe an order of magnitude more in credit card debt alone than your 
entire yearly income?   Not to mention various promissory notes coming 
due that you keep kiting with new notes than total more than 4 times the 
huge credit card debt.   I know!  You will counterfeit money. :)

- s

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