If you would go out of your way to argue how easy it is for capital to automate away jobs when labor costs become too high, then you should probably know that you’re giving all kinds of credibility to those of us who advocate fully-automated luxury communism. I mean, think about it: you’re arguing that so much of human labor ISN’T NECESSARY because said jobs can be done by machines, and yet you STILL want the bulk of humanity to pointlessly scrape by laboring for the capitalist class, receiving meager wages to buy the shit they helped generate in the first place. The above billboard is a THREAT. Let’s not mince words – that billboard is bourgeois propaganda designed to turn the working class against each other and against the broader goals of resource democratization. “If you fight for a basic livable wage, just know that you’re easily replaceable, peon!”
This is what leftists mean when they say that capitalism is an economic system filled to the brim with tensions and contradictions; it’s also what they mean when they say that capitalism inevitably produces its own gravediggers. Automation is one of those gravediggers, and it’s a major one at that. As more and more jobs become automated in the coming decades, the working class will face widespread dispossession, ramping up revolutionary class consciousness in the process. At that point, capitalism will either focus on generating more superfluous jobs for people to work or set about instituting a universal basic income – regardless, the point is to keep enough scraps flowing downward so that people don’t call for a broader system change. In this way, capitalism’s ruling class can maintain control over the wealth-producing means of production and imperialist capital accumulation can continue unrestrained.
For these reasons, “more jobs” and universal basic incomes are not enough. We need to democratize the broader social infrastructure and eliminate the profit system. If you recognize how possible it is to automate away human labor, then you should defenestrate yourself out of the Overton Window and use some political imagination – cut out the unnecessary jobs, automate all the labor you can, produce for human need rather than elite profit, and you end up with drastically reduced working hours and bountiful leisure time. This is the essence of fully-automated luxury communism – the natural conclusion of the conditions that capitalism set in motion.
Be wary of automation in the present climate, but always trace it back to the class struggle. Robots taking our jobs SHOULD be cause for celebration; why should we treat these potential liberators as harbingers of dispossession? Technological advancements are pushing us exponentially towards a de facto post-scarcity world, where everyone’s needs can be comfortably met alongside their desires for community and leisure and entertainment, and yet we’re held back by Empire’s insistence on keeping the means of production hoarded under the command of a superfluous ruling class. As long as we are divided into capitalists and workers, humanity will never know full liberation.
In 24 cities on Monday, fast food workers took to the streets, hung banners from the tops of buildings and even shut down a corporate office in St. Louis.
They had one simple goal: to stop Trump from making fast food CEO Andrew Puzder the top government official for protecting workers’ rights.
Puzder serves as the CEO of CKE Restaurants, the umbrella company that owns Hardee’s and Carl’s Jr. burger chains.
Less than a month ago, cooks and cashiers filed 33 legal complaints against CKE. One complaint says that the company surveilled employees and sent out intimidating memos warning them not to speak to the press.
One woman fought off advances from a manager who, after he was rejected, allegedly told her, “If you don’t start giving me what I want, I’m going to have to start taking it from you.” Read more (2/13/17 8:12 PM)
• “I wanna speak to your manager!”
• *tells you the price of every item as they’re taking it out of their cart*
• “Do you work here??”
• *Gives you half of their order saying they don’t want it anymore*
• *checks out 5 min after the store closes*
• “NO! I WANT EACH ITEM BAGGED SEPARATE!!”
• *hides things in random spots of the store*
• *watches- as their baby is sucking on an item, then puts it back afterwards*
• *Lets their kids ‘pretend’ shop- filling the cart with random things*
• *asks you to take off items, then changes their mind*
• *spends 10 minutes looking for a coupon as their checking out*
• *silences you* “I’m on the phone.”
• *Leaves their garbage behind items on the shelf*
So the Walmart in my town is going under a little bit of construction. Almost a third of the register space has been closed off and the registered removed, and the floor torn up.
I went to an employee and asked what was going on. “They’re taking out most of the regular lanes,” she said, “And replacing them with self checkout services.”
“That’s cool.” I said.
“Not really. Most of us are getting laid off. I’m losing my job in a month because of those machines.”
Let me explain something to y'all. Where I live, Middle Of Nowhere, Alabama, the minimum wage is $7.50. Seven dollars fifty. That’s peanuts for the amount of work these people do. And still, the Walmart corporation is replacing them with machines because if they could have zero employees, they would do it.
Whenever someone says “if you raise the minimum wage, the companies will just automate and fire people!” Tell them that’s bullshit. If these companies could automate they would have done it already. When they can automate, they will do it with out a care to the employees.
Companies do not care about their people. Stop blaming the poor for the crimes of the rich.
All types of jobs are necessary in society.
All types of jobs are valuable in society.
Things kids should be taught to value and respect in people are things like integrity, dedication, honesty, and how hard a person is willing to work to provide for their families.
We also need to make sure that the money we pay these people reflects those qualities vs. the status of that job.
Someone needs to empty your trash, clean your work bathroom, and salt your fries. If they’re willing to work hard and put in a full work week they should be able to provide a basic and decent living for their families.
The more we pay people in these jobs the more competitive the jobs become and the better the service we all receive.