If you’ve observed the faces of people commuting to their jobs on a Monday morning then you probably noticed that they look like cheap deflated air mattresses that are being dragged down the street against their will. You’ll pass one person that is skipping down the street, extremely enthusiastic, with a big smile on their face, and a pin affixed to their lapel that reads “#HappyMonday”. The rest of us, however, are so cranky that we want to snatch that person’s lapel pin and stab them in the face with it until they bleed to death, because, #FuckMondays.
I’ve never had to work in an industry where physical labor was needed, except for when I was 17 and I worked at my parents grocery store part time, but that doesn’t count. I’ve never had to commute more than 15 minutes for a job. The most strenuous work week I had was a Monday through Friday 9 to 5 where I was required to put in 6 billable hours a day, but I had 2 hours for lunch and breaks. On top of that, my careers have mostly consisted of sitting in front of a computer while banging at the keyboard with my fingers. I still hatttteeeee working!
Even though I was only required to put in 30 billable hours per week I figured out ways to automate tasks that were routine. This cut down my workload to 20-25 hours a week and gave me more time to procrastinate as I surfed the internet. I was ecstatic when I read recently that companies in countries like Sweden have been testing out 30 hour work weeks. They are realizing that less labor along with automation results in better production for the business as well as happier humans. All these years it may have seemed that I was stealing company time, but in reality, I was a visionary prodigy whose laziness produced meaningful development of software technologies. Also, I eventually became a partner of said company due to my efforts.
While many western countries are opting to work less by increasing automation and productivity, here in America, we’re still in the mindset of working longer and harder for less pay, non-existent benefits, and less time off while still shouting, “Jobs! Jobs! Jobs! We need more jobs!” Seriously? Like, you want more opportunities where you’re expected to do menial labor for 3,000 hours per week in order to earn enough money to keep your head above the poverty line? Jobs, where you’re looked at as a commodity that’s treated worse than an Orca at Sea World? Are you fucking crazy? I think saying you want more of these jobs is the modern day equivalent of saying you want more slavery.
Long gone are those jobs that people are yearning for. They’ve all been shipped to developing countries because the slaves in those places cost a lot less money for a lot more production which means more profits for our corporate overlords. Humans are still employed because businesses haven’t figured out how to make robotics and automation more efficient and less costly for every single task. Yet. As technology advances these droids will replace Chinese kids because they’ll be able to manufacture goods faster, 24/7, and without complaining about needing worker’s rights. Boo hoo!
What’s a Job?
A “job” never made sense to me anyway. The only reason to do any labor as a species is to attain basic necessities so that we can enjoy the rest of our time on earth. If, as a society, we can automate a majority of our tasks which results in minimal amount of our time, why not do so? Plus, it’s already taking place.
Economists and other smart people are predicting that half of all professions will mostly be replaced by automation. Great! Less work for us to do. By my own subjective, and possibly far fetched, assessments:
- Humans will be replaced by robots at McDonald’s and many other restaurants. These robots will manage a majority of the tasks needed to operate a business, including cooking all the processed foods our obese and diabetic bodies need.
- Uber taxi will drive itself and autonomous cars will all but eliminate accidents. We probably won’t need to own a vehicle because companies will offer a subscription service for transportation. A driverless car will pick you up when you’re ready to travel. Since stupid humans won’t be handling the wheel, cars may eventually take flight as well. Shit, all transportation could technically be automated. Planes, trains, and other automobiles will all be able to navigate by themselves.
- Farmers? Bye bye. Robots will take the field and we may entirely shift to rooftop or vertical farming in urban areas.
- Getting an operation done by a surgeon will be considered risky. Even the most successful surgeon can have external circumstances that impact their effectiveness. They could be hungover due to binge drinking the night before. They may have been involved in a road rage incident prior to reaching work. They could’ve gotten into a fight with their husband and then bitchslapped him because in my imagination gender roles will be reversed in the future. The surgeon’s hand will be too cramped up to perform well. Now you’re dead, cause you didn’t use a fucking robot. I don’t want to take the risk and rather have the loving stainless steel limbs of a machine remove the colon cancer that I’m bound to have in the future. Maybe we’ll even have technology which allows us to ingest a nanorobotic capsule that will kill tumors instead of having invasive surgeries.
- We’ll also be able to find cures to diseases through medicine much faster since robots will be able to test chemicals and solutions at a swift pace.
- Architectural structures will be built in factories that will look like large 3D printers and they will produce flawless buildings. No more unsightly port-o-potties or construction workers whistling at women that pass by. Skyscrapers will be built rapidly and the only thing slowing down development would be human bureaucracy.
- Porn stars may be computer generated models. We’ll be masturbating to CGI.
- Robocop? Maybe. At the very least there’ll be cameras on every block that collect and parse videos while using algorithms to determine any occurrences of crime. Though there may also be robotic officers that police the streets and harass, choke, or shoot down those pesky minorities if they try to sell looseys.
Less is More
This article took me 20+ hours to complete. It’s one of hundreds, if not thousands, of pieces/ideas I want to work on. It can take over a decade to complete all of that and by then I’ll have more ideas. Every time I write a piece I have to edit it, reread it, edit, reread, edit, over and over and over. Ahhhhhhhhhh! It’s so time consuming! Personally, I can’t wait till my writing is automated where a majority of my thoughts are written out by a robot on my behalf. All the writing will be properly edited and formatted for whatever politically correct world we’re living in at the time. My job will be to look the draft over and click submit. I won’t need to waste countless hours searching for words that will accurately communicate my thoughts. Automation would save me thousands of keystrokes of energy per day so that I can do other things, like, nothing.
Plus, if my writing offends anyone I can just blame it on a bug in my robot’s software, “Damn you racist robot, you can’t use the word oriental to describe people, only rugs! I don’t know why it’s offensive, robot. The word orient actually means east or far east. Some people probably used it as a derogatory term and now none of us can use the word. Now stop being a faggot. I mean, never use the word faggot…or oriental. Not cool robot. Not, cool. What? I don’t know why I haven’t named you yet and still refer to you as robot. Come up with a list of names and I can pick one. Cool. I’m going to bed. It doesn’t matter if it’s 2pm in the afternoon. It’s none of your fucking business! Stop crying. Come on, not again. You’re not real bro, you’re a robot. Uhhhh…you’re right. You’re right. I apologize. I love you, okay? Good nighfternoon.”
On one hand, with technology, automation, and robotics a few people starting a small business in their basement will be able to knock out industries that employ hundreds of thousands of people over night. It’s already happening, but the speed will be accelerated. Great! There’ll still be high paying jobs, but the positions will call for very intelligent people in high-tech fields that work on building this future of ours until robots can completely self-create. Awesome! Many people will continue to have menial jobs, but they’ll work a lot less. Yay! Some people will not have a job. That’s okay!
On the other hand, the wealthy elite will continue automating, cutting their workforce and prospering off of public resources even though they’ll be more productive and cost effective than any other time in history. Our oligarchs will try to convince the public that it’s society’s fault that there aren’t enough jobs because either we tax them too much or that we don’t give them enough subsidies to have wealth trickle down into the lives of average citizens. They’ll have us fighting over the few jobs available as if we’re pigeons tussling over a stale donut that was tossed onto the street. These greedy wealthy piggies will get fatter and fatter to a point where income inequality becomes evident and we’ll have to smash them open with a hammer so that we can spread the wealth and that society could still be sustainable as a whole (sound familiar?). We may have to establish something similar to basic income to ensure everyone can have at least the standard means to survive, even though some will try to demonize the need for welfare. We may have to protest, many of us will die, but it’s all worth it. Fuck jobs, gimme robots!
Of course, not everything I documented will happen, but much of it will. Automation and robotics will replace people. I can’t wait…assuming we’re creating a utopian future and not a dystopian one. That will probably be the biggest question we’ll have to answer as humans. Will we be a society in which we all fare well through the means of our production or will just a few wealthy elites control it all. Robotics and automation is coming, even if it makes us uncomfortable. It will be fun to see what transpires when I’m older and I’m looking at the world through a prosthetic eye.