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View Diary: Crumbs much too small for the other Whos' mouses (199 comments)

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  •  Krugman's arguments carry greater weight... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RobLewis, Mokurai

    ...because this is an issue that he has reconsidered and is changing his views on.  Historically, he didn't believe that automation led to increased inequality, but is now finding evidence that has forced him to consider the possibility that it is one of the drivers in increasing inequality.

    That said, I think that there's a regulatory issue in play here, too.  Appropriate regulation in terms of standard working hours, overtime rules, and minimum wage could do much to spread the benefits of automation more widely.  Consider these possible outcomes from automating a factory:
    1.  More output from the same number of people (increased profits for owners, nothing for the workers).
    2.  The same output from fewer people (increased profits for owners, nothing for the workers).
    3.  The same output from fewer people, who get more pay as a result of increased productivity (increased profits for owners, some works come out ahead while others lose)
    4.  The same output from the same number of people, who are now working fewer hours (workers get more leisure time)
    To some degree, laws and regulation can dictate how the actual outcome balances between these three possibilities.

    Political Compass: -6.75, -3.08

    by TexasTom on Sun Dec 16, 2012 at 09:26:27 AM PST

    [ Parent ]

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