Technological Utopianism: A solution to Technological Unemployment

We all want to cheer every time a robot puts someone out of work. May the day come where no-one will have to work if they don't want to. I'm for investing in robotics as a country. Instead of worrying about jobs being lost, we could concentrate on eliminating jobs with no negative repercussions. One could invest, with our tax dollars, in a fully self replicating robotics complex. Robotics factories already have robotic arms building robotic arms. One would also wish to eliminate all subcomponent purchasing costs, and all human labor. Every bearing, bolt, electric motor, etc., required within the complex, would be produced within the complex. Underwater windmills, or some suitable alternative, would be produced in a fully automated fashion. Steel and copper would be mined in a fully automated fashion. This type of subcomponent cost elimination is central to the plan. Human labor cost elimination is also central to the plan. Costless exponential self replication is a key goal. I will call this goal 1. Consider the following, suppose one has 1000 robotic arms building another 1000 robotic arms. All subcomponents are produced automatically, as well as energy and raw materials. The result is that the robotic arm factory with 1000 robotic arms can build another factory with only land purchasing cost. Suppose it takes 1 month to replicate the factory. With continued exponential replication the base manufacturing capacity will increase to the point that you will have far more manufacturing capacity than the entire population of Canada within two years. 1000 arms would build another 1000 arms, 2000 arms would build another 2000 arms, etc. 1000, 2000, 4000, 8000, 16000, etc. Doubling capacity in this fashion would lead to 16 trillion arms within two years. Clearly the process would have to be stopped due to animal rights concerns before then. The population of robotic arms should be roughly double the human population to replace us as a workforce. I will call this goal 2. Note that one would have exponentially rising costs without complete subcomponent manufacturing on site, e.g. one's bearing bill would be enormous towards the end of the exponential replication. All intellectual property has to allow royalty free use as well, for the same reason. Surplus power, robotics, raw materials, and subcomponents, could be sold to pay for additional engineering costs. Early on, income would help pay for engineering in order to reach goal 1, the costless, exponential, self replication point. Past goal 2, income would pay for engineering costs to allow the production of consumer items. The complex could start as small as possible in order to save costs. That would allow it to build itself as much as possible. It should not be allowed to become a burden to taxpayers. Note that the complex would be immune from the upheavals in the global marketplace, as all subcomponents would be produced within the complex. Engineering should be concentrated upon the essentials of food, shelter, and clothing, as well as the most commonly used appliances such as cars and microwaves. Fair payment to impacted businesses should be supported due to the fact that the citizen owned complex would be an unfair competitor as it would be funded through taxation. Blueprints and buildings of such impacted businesses should be retained by the complex if they are put out of business. As manufacturing capacity would be cheap past goal 2, payment in equivalent manufacturing capacity could be fair with little burden to the complex. The ambitious could continue to work for extra income. All citizen's would be paid a dividend check with which they could purchase normal goods, or the complex produced goods. Welcome to the post scarcity world of free sports cars for the poor.

Warren Clayton Harding

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