Freya’s Day again! Happily the air temperature was high enough for me to assay a constitutional in the park. Marginal between enjoyable and miserable. Sputtering fall of dihydrogen oxide. Moderately brisk wind, enough to get under my ear covers and ping the nerves. And my nose was running.
That latter is not at all exceptional. My nose runs in winters. No, not exercising but leaking copious quantities of thin fluid. I should trow a sample in a mass spectrometer and get a grasp of what it is but somehow that never seems to be possible when I become aware of the actuality. More interested in buffering the flood.
Speaking of buffering the flood. I ran across an article [Link] about the problem with driver-less cars and jobs for motor vehicle people. The article is written by a grad student so it isn’t horribly compromised by “professional” journalism.
It’s also only part of the total problem. That problem is what do we do with people when there are no meaningful (or payful) jobs for a significant fraction of the population? Say over 0.25 and probably more like 0.5. The uncertainty is because of the reaction of politicians. If they do nothing but shore up the finances of their capitalist oligarch donors then the larger fraction applies because of the collapse of the correlated jobs at third and higher tiers. If they are actually constructive and forward thinking it will be closer to the smaller.
The hidden fault is that when this many jobs crash, so do all of those capitalist oligarchs’ businesses as well. You can replace the workers with robots but you can’t live without customers.
The driver-less motorcar (lorry) is one example. So are manufacturing jobs. And a lot of trained business jobs. So far all we have done about the approaching catastrophe is politicians mumbling about generating new jobs and ending unemployment benefits.
I agree that most people prefer to have a job to living on the dole. Not everyone, mostly because the jobs have to have some degree and dimensions of satisfaction. The large employers of Amerika have forgotten or ignored this latter.
When jobs are unavailable or unsatisfying, the traditional response is for people to turn to crime. If that’s the only way they can survive it takes on a morality that transcends the law. If it doesn’t work, then they turn to rebellion.
Remember what happened to France. At least that episode produced the (arguably) most humans instrument of human discorporation, although it wasn’t all that appreciated by the aristocrats who were its clients.
This is not a simple problem. It is complicated by the inertia of money grubbing. Climate change makes the situation worse. The longer we ignore it the less likely it is that the nation will survive.