The Future of America.

We are about to experience the single biggest fundamental shift in humanity since the machine age. Outsourcing and robots have already displaced countless American jobs, their income, and our pride. As technology accelerates, things are going to get much worse. And much faster than anyone could imagine.

iStock_000017496132XSmallKids in college today may be the last generation that will have gainful employment. Depending on how things go during the next few years, they too may be out of luck.

On the immediate horizon, self-driving cars, trucks, buses and trains are already poised to disrupt the entire transportation sector. Millions of truck drivers, cab drivers, Uber drivers, and the $120 billion automobile insurance industry are all about to be crushed and junked. Humans who still want to drive will pay dearly for that dangerous right. Many futurists believe we have another decade before this disruption becomes mainstream, but Elon Musk and I agree this will happen well before 2020.

As artificial intelligence (AI), the dexterity of robotics, and manufacturing scaling matures, those “fallback” jobs that used to be great jobs – think careers in the military, public service, medicine, or investing – will begin to disappear. Anything that can be studied and repeated will be replaced by a much more efficient automated solution. Robots can work 24 hours a day, don’t need breaks, don’t have babies, w0n’t sue for workmen’s comp, don’t take sick days, and will never ask for a raise. The first career on the chopping block? Human resources. Target date: no later than 2023.

Narcissists, don’t think you are excluded. Powerful algorithms can replace almost anything. There are already digital artists, painters, composers, and even journalists. Facebook’s push into virtual reality (VR) push will eventually create digital actors and musicians who look perfect, never age, and won’t ever complain about songs or scripts. Imagine a computer that can figure out your preferences, install your favorite digital actors, write a cool plot line, instill some random twists, and then assemble all that fun into a 90-minute 8k motion picture within minutes. You could watch the best movies you’ve ever seen continually for the rest of your life. It’s not as far-fetched as you might think.

Software engineers and coders? You’re history too. What makes you think these machines can’t learn to write better and more efficient code faster than you can? Ironically, you may be the coder who codes yourself right out of a job. If it’s not you, don’t worry – some other capitalist whore will do it for you.

Any actual jobs that remain due to an extreme difficulty (or resistance) in replacing will pay very well, and probably be reserved for the elite.

That brings up the trillion dollar question – what’s going to happen to our economy? This whole capitalism thing doesn’t work if people don’t have income to spend. And our government cannot function if people aren’t paying taxes. There are some very smart people (outside politics, of course) who are postulation possible solutions, including socialism and a national guaranteed income – essentially a wide-scale welfare rollout. The trouble is no one can figure out how who’s going to pay for all of that.

One of two things can happen. First, the economy could miraculously shift towards a progressive income and consumption tax that will compensate those who no longer are required to work, which will allow some semblance of capitalism to continue. People will be free to pursue arts, hobbies, books, endless anime, exploration, and anything else that floats your boat. It’s a paradise on earth, or beyond. Think Star Trek, only without Klingons.

Or, something much more dark and sinister may take place. The oligarchs may decide they don’t want to share their vast and unusable income, and whomever survives the panic, starvation, and unavoidable revolution will be housed in government run compounds isolated from the rest of the world. Think a Hunger Games scenario.

I don’t intend to foreshadow doom and gloom, or to be the harbinger of the negativity of the human race. I want to offer real world solutions that we can implement right now. Ideas that will save all of us. Your comments are welcomed. I can’t do it all myself.

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About Miso N. Grey

Critical thinker, honest pundit, world shaper.
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6 Responses to The Future of America.

  1. Janice says:

    Interesting that you put medical in there as one of the jobs you think will be taken over by robotics…..you really think so? And my husband is a cop, and we thought his was a guaranteed job (you put military, so I’m not sure if the police are covered under it). It is a bleak outlook though….and a bit scary. To be honest, I think those with the vast amounts of money will do anything to keep their money…..how many of them help out this economy already?

    Like

    • kogeil says:

      I think medical will certainly be on the list, but that one may take a while longer. Think of a surgeon with perfect hands that never makes a mistake… but I wonder how policemen could be replaced, though, that is a good point.

      Like

  2. Justin B says:

    Wow. That’s a bit….bleak. But, yeah, totally agree with this. Seeing more and more about driverless cars by various companies, and because of the complete incompetence and laziness of some citizens, there will be robots who replace workers. And my girlfriend is constantly on her various social media sites, and shows me almost every day there’s new robotics/automation coming out….especially over in the Asian countries. And I don’t see the super rich giving the rest of society anything….they’d rather see us as the old Romans did with the Coliseums and fights for survival…..for their amusement while they hoard the money. This is definitely something to think about, and I agree with you on the time frame also.

    Like

  3. Miso N. Grey says:

    Even more pressing questions are:

    — Is a 250-year-old document written in an agrarian economy while enslavement of humans was still legal relevant in today’s global society?
    — Is a country that obtained its lands via what would today be considered domestic terrorism a legitimate nation?
    — How do we get those in temporary control to be more representative of the people rather than puppets of a hidden oligarchy?

    And, most importantly,

    — In a civilization controlled by jaded communications companies, celebrities, investors, priests, historians, career politicians and a military complex we were warned about, how can you spread truth peacefully?

    Unfortunately, your “good men” have been trapped in low-paying jobs trying to avoid becoming homeless, and don’t have the time and resources to affect change. What now?

    Like

  4. Joe says:

    Sociology is the empirical study of human interaction that spans relationships of basic families to complex societies. Each part in the development of society is built on the previous step. In any step of human development the government is in place to protect and make a level playing field for everyone.
    The real questions everyone should be asking are:
    What can we do to follow the simple set of rules that have been given to us in the Constitution of the United States of America?
    How do we keep those in temporary control to be accountable? i.e. Politicians
    How do we keep our government from trying to interpret something that is written plainly?
    The general public must begin to take responsibility for all events currently and start to come together to make a brighter future. Most people are being passive in this endeavor and you blog must serve and a stark wake up call. Look at the whole situation and realize that every time you vote in a local, state and federal election – there are consequences. We must all focus on what we have in common. We must all realize that all people generally want Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.
    I leave you with a quote
    “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” – Edmund Burke

    Liked by 1 person

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