Anxiety, Automation & the Future of Work

Wednesday, March 22, 2017 - 6:00pm
Gregory Diamant

Not only are we facing a rise in right wing authoritarianism but climate disruption is looming over our lives. In the United States, the past thirty years has seen a rise in a collective anxiety fed by a media desperate for profit at any cost. This anxiety, though, has a real base as our infrastructure is crumbling and the real worth of our jobs has shown a steady decline. These jobs are more and more located off-shore and in the future will be taken over by robots and other expressions of artificial intelligence. Even coders in Silicon Valley and other centers of high-tech creativity will see their work taken over by non-human programs. Bringing factories back to the U. S. will not significantly increase employment as pundits predict: those factories will be automated to a great degree and in order to satisfy the voracious need for profit humans will not be needed to the extent they once were. What is to be done? What is the future of work? Will everyone have a guaranteed basic income and if so, what form will it take? How will it be funded?

Gregory Diamant, a long-time political activist, will discuss these issues and solicit your ideas and comments. The old curse has come to pass: we are living in interesting times.