Saturday, January 02, 2016

It is capitalism not robots we need to fear

"If machines produce everything we need, the outcome will depend on how things are distributed. Everyone can enjoy a life of luxurious leisure if the machine-produced wealth is shared, or most people can end up miserably poor if the machine-owners successfully lobby against wealth redistribution. So far, the trend seems to be toward the second option, with technology driving ever-increasing inequality." - Stephen Hawking

Actually, although Hawking doesn't actually use the word capitalism, he does say so in so many words. Luxurious leisure is not going to happen of course unless society as a whole becomes the machine owners. Only then can we decide how what is produced can be distributed.
Quite apart, that is, from cheaper labour power being an obstacle to complete automation coming about under capitalism, So the wages system would have to go too. But then common ownership and the abolition of the wages system are two sides of the same.

1 comment:

prolerat said...

Good on Stephen though.