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Robots are entering the workforce. It has been happening for decades; and safety, efficiency, quality, and costs will continue to provide incentives for businesses to buy machines rather than hire humans. The data are too new to prove a trend, but there are reasons to believe that wealth inequality, stagnant wages, and unemployment are tied to the robotic revolution. A company that makes the same money but pays fewer people keeps more of the money, and wealth accumulates. Wages stagnate because humans are losing the competition for better jobs. Enough people are worked out of jobs that the percentage of employed people is decreasing. Regardless of unemployment, which has many caveats in its calculation, the percentage of Americans employed has dropped from 76% in 1990 to 68% in 2013. One solution is to accept the trend, but redefine the society. Redirecting profits, insuring a minimum livable income for all, and constant retraining are possible, but are dramatic shifts in our current politics and policies. Or, we can just let the robots take over and let someone have all the money.

(Click on the inforgraphic for the link.)

“Who Will Own The Robots” – MIT Technology Review

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