The Thing No One Is Talking About

Last night I saw Doug Applegate, the Democratic frontrunner challenging Darrell Issa’s seat in the 49th Congressional District, speak. The most frustrating moment for me came when he revealed that he is very aware of the real impending apocalypse, and he immediately backed off talking about it. And I understand why he did. No politician who wants to get elected, much less one who wants to do so in a Republican district, can say certain words aloud. Hell, Bernie couldn’t even say these words aloud. But there’s a terrifying truth no one is talking about.

We are at the end of the Industrial Age, folks. What comes next is the Age of Automation. In 20 years, MILLIONS of people will be put out of work by driverless cars. Self check-out at grocery stores. Ordering your food at kiosks at your table will mean fewer waiters to serve the same number of diners. Artificial intelligence will mean even those problem-solving jobs us educated elites think make us so special will be thin on the ground.

People like to talk about how unrealistic socialism is, but let me tell you something. Capitalism is based on the notion that human labor can be traded for goods and services. That everyone needs to do 40+ hours of work each week in order for society to function, and that they will be compensated for that work. It’s built on the fundamental truth from back when we were all small clans trying to beat back the wilderness to build shelter, to find food, to survive, that everyone has to do his fair share or we will die. Its millennia old.

But what happens when human labor is no longer necessary to build the shelters and grow the food for society? Socialism might sound unrealistic, but capitalism is already dying, because our technology has made the basic concepts on which it was built – human labor is necessary and resources are scare – untrue. Like De Beers with diamond prices, we have been artificially propping up these precepts for years now. But we can’t do that forever, and we damn well better have something to replace it with. Soon.

We are at the brink of a world where unemployment will rise above 50% and stay there. It will be catastrophic unless we very quickly re-evaluate bedrock notions of labor, value, purpose, and what money even is. And we all better get used to saying aloud the phrase ‘Universal Wage.’

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3 Responses to The Thing No One Is Talking About

  1. amyleannwood says:

    Oh yes. Omg. Sean talks about this too. Such a good point girl!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Mark S. Bennett says:

    Wow! Great to see someone brave enough (and smart enough) to mention this! How can I best follow your blog? How can I help unseat Darrell Issa? Unfortunately I recently contracted chronic disease that has led to me being unemployed, filing for bankruptcy, and fighting to get SSDI. However, I graduate magna cum laude from Ivy League university with B.S.E. In bioengineering, a Ph.D. in chemical engineering from M.I.T., and worked 20+ years as an environmental consultant. I am hoping despite my current limitations I can still be of some value.

    Liked by 1 person

    • sosasmash says:

      Mark – I’m very sorry to hear about your struggles, but of course you are incredibly valuable! If this blog post appealed to you, you might be interested in checking out the San Diego Chapter of the Democratic Socialists of America. It is an activist group, not a political party, with a focus on local issues. The main group meets at 3850 Westgate Pl, San Diego, CA 92105 on the third Sunday of the month at 4 pm. The next meeting is May 21. There is also a North County satellite group. I think they meet the second Thursday at 6:30 at Leucadia Pizzeria at 315 S Coast Hwy 101, Encinitas, CA 92024. I think they’re next meeting will May 11, but I’m not 100% positive on that.

      Like

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