Structural Unemployment and the Sacrifice of Human Professions

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Terminator 2

The Luddites weren’t crazy

Since the beginning of the industrial age there has been concern over the hidden dangers of machines. Now, not everyone had a keen mental picture of the Terminator coming to take their life, but plenty of people saw a slightly different threat coming to take their jobs, and they haven’t been entirely out of line to think so.

Many modern thinkers and economists believe that machines don’t actually result in overall job loss. Though looking at the situation with a narrow perspective would show people clearly losing their jobs as they are replaced by machines and computers that can do the same work quicker and more cost-effectively, that picture wouldn’t show what actually can happen to the economy and work environment as a whole.

According to The Economist, economists have upheld the argument that improving the efficiency of labor — such as by using advanced technology —  will ultimately lead to increases in employment. First off, workers at the newly economized companies could start receiving higher wages. From there, those workers with newly fattened wallets would boost the demand for products and services. That increased demand would necessitate new jobs, creating opportunities for any displaced workers.

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