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The Andrew Yang thread
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Kid Twist Offline
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Post: #1051
RE: The Andrew Yang thread
(05-14-2019 11:15 AM)kaotic Wrote:  So break down how AI is snake oil?

How is the radiology example debunked?

I want to know both sides of the story.

Here's why I'm inclined to understand his conversation.

I work in the software/technology sector, our bread and butter is manufacturing and defense contracting.

Automation isn't end times or global warming myth - it's already here.

We help customers help get prototypes done fast, automate internal processes, ECO's, life cycles, faster time to market, etc.

Some of our customer ARE using AI when developing products and they are replacing workers on the design/mfg teams.

While yeah we still need highly skilled workers in the design processes and in software tech, I can tell you that ALOT of our customers are looking at automation, whether it's internally or for their customers.

Automation is alot more reliable, makes us money, saves them money, time and material, etc.

Walter Black just pointed to Amazon as well, which I was going to mention, we've worked with simliar companies who the same type of logistical fulfillment jobs, same goes for agriculture here in the central valley.

"Lights out warehouse" is a very well known term in the industry we're in, it's not just some buzzword either.

While it's not Yang is screaming fire in a crowded theater, but he does see smoke on the horizon.

You mention his isssues are a couple decades away, but think about this.

Any time there is technological advancement it only accelerates every singe year forward, just like it did with computers and the internet.

I agreee there's bigger fish to fry, but Yang does bring up some valid points we need to be concerned about in the future.

Obviously there's quite a bit I disagree with him on.

I perceive you are earnest in wanting to know the sides of the conversation, and I figured you'd ask, so let me explain:

AI is a very generic term. So is futurism. As many examples as you can bring up of "look at what happened" I can show you 60s ideas and movies (2001) that are crazy off the mark as far as such sensationalism goes. And that's what it is, and for many reasons.

There has always been automation. Huge strides in automation took place within the last 150 years, just on a different level. They didn't cause more unemployment. Did they cause disturbances of sorts in life though? Sure. It's like a socratic understanding of the world, though. The more you know the more you don't know. The more you invent the more you need jobs to adapt to the new technology, even though much is displaced into the unknown category ... but look, we already have a track record showing this! It produced more jobs, greater standard of living, more prosperity. The right scenarios that caused this could be different now (bad gov't, evil globalists, etc), yes, but that's a different issue not purely automation or tech increases that in themselves are disturbing.

Humans still run AI and control it, if it is even allowed, and if (here's my point) you can even define it. Let me run a tangent to the radiology example. We have had AI in radiology for over 30 years. It is called computer aided detection in mammography. It would take too long for me to explain all the reasons, and there are many, why this has not improved outcomes for patients one iota, but that's the case. But you can talk about it being a computer that "detected" something, and you can sell it to people, or the government, or women's groups, about how much better it is. But it isn't. It does nothing, and if anything, it causes more problems.

Genghis Khan posts above and embarrassing lack of critical thinking, the stuff of NPCs. Yang posts a video of a marketing tool that just says "AI in radiology beats chinese radiologists" and you just take it on face value because it has people talking, a video of computers and a few percentages? I was flabbergasted when I saw that as a response. It means nothing. Yes, it is fake news. How could AI be "whooping the shit out of medical doctors" when you don't even know what you claim AI is doing, and you don't even know what (for example) a radiologist even does (or how many things he does?). You don't. At all. That's why you fall for this stuff. You have no idea what you don't know.

Let me set another thing straight: I'm not making the outrageous claims here. Futurists and AI sensationalists are. They bear the burden to substantiate their claims. I don't have to disprove them. They don't have anything, literally ZERO, to disprove (by definition it can't be disproved, since there is nothing to talk about). It's a backwards way of thinking on multiple levels.

Automation is one thing, computer learning is another. The human mind clearly lacks particular processing speed of computers, but it's not without advantage in other realms: it is far more flexible and adaptable than a computer will ever be, by definition. That's the problem that strict mathematician logic like the Architect guy from Matrix Reloaded, employ. They want graphs, algorithms, and have this idea that judgment and troubleshooting can be written into such paradigms. It can't. Insomuch as it can, it can only be added and adapted by humans. This is where most of the misunderstanding begins, if recognized. But there are technological triumphs of engineered machines and improved efficiencies in bridges and weaponry, etc. that fool us into thinking the higher level qualities of the human mind can be programmed by similar designs, but it is faith. They can't. The humans made the machines to begin with. That should help you understand the paradox, if you are humble enough to let it sink in.

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(This post was last modified: 05-14-2019 09:45 PM by Kid Twist.)
05-14-2019 09:41 PM
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Post: #1052
RE: The Andrew Yang thread
[Image: giphy.gif]

Not even going to bother.

I look forward to seeing the above post picked apart like roadkill by vultures.
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05-14-2019 10:08 PM
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Post: #1053
RE: The Andrew Yang thread
(05-14-2019 09:41 PM)Kid Twist Wrote:  I perceive you are earnest ... to let it sink in.

Yep.
Computers do not think.
Computers merely process data.
05-14-2019 11:18 PM
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Post: #1054
RE: The Andrew Yang thread
That's great news, Kid Twist!

Quick, somebody call up Amazon and tell them that you can't write judgement and troubleshooting into paradigms! They'll shut down that packing machine we saw on the last page and give all those workers their jobs back.

Then we just need to call up Waymo and tell them that they only THINK they have working self-driving cars because technological triumphs of engineered machines and improved efficiencies in bridges and weaponry have blinded their strict mathematician logic. I bet if we can call this afternoon, they'll have the whole company shut down by the weekend.

Man, I was really worried for a while there, but now I've humbled my mind enough to accept the paradox, and I realize that everything's fine! Thanks for setting me straight. Kid Twist!

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05-15-2019 12:09 AM
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Post: #1055
RE: The Andrew Yang thread
The problem with the argument that past technological advances didn't cause mass unemployment in the past and won't now, is that the potential new jobs created by new technologies now require a skill level that the average person simply won't be able to meet.

Consider something as simple as moving large rocks. 500 years ago, you might have had a horse and cart. Today you use a backhoe. Clearly a backhoe is better in every way, and the skill level required to drive the thing also happens to be within attainable levels for most of the population. All the the people that would lead the horses now drive the backhoes, no jobs are lost, more work is done, everybody wins.

But maintaining or coding complex embedded systems to carry out repetitive tasks is beyond the capabilities of a lot of the public, and even moreso for the people whose jobs would be replaced by automation.

Until coding becomes a core subject within classrooms, held to the same standard as maths and English, the knowledge gap will simply be too large for many people to bridge.

That's why the truck driver example is so succinct, and why journalists were ridiculed for saying 'learn to code.' There will be a generation left behind by this automation sweep.

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05-15-2019 08:57 AM
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Post: #1056
RE: The Andrew Yang thread
(05-15-2019 08:57 AM)glugger Wrote:  The problem with the argument that past technological advances didn't cause mass unemployment in the past and won't now, is that the potential new jobs created by new technologies now require a skill level that the average person simply won't be able to meet.

Pretty much this. As I pointed out earlier in this thread, many people in service jobs already have trouble dealing with the complexity of everything in modern society: currency exchange rates, apartment floorplans, relocation logistics, etc. That's speaking from personal experience.

Get these people into coding AI software or maintaining fleets of robots? Forget about it.

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05-15-2019 10:19 AM
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Post: #1057
RE: The Andrew Yang thread
(05-14-2019 09:41 PM)Kid Twist Wrote:  Automation is one thing, computer learning is another. The human mind clearly lacks particular processing speed of computers, but it's not without advantage in other realms: it is far more flexible and adaptable than a computer will ever be, by definition. That's the problem that strict mathematician logic like the Architect guy from Matrix Reloaded, employ. They want graphs, algorithms, and have this idea that judgment and troubleshooting can be written into such paradigms. It can't. Insomuch as it can, it can only be added and adapted by humans. This is where most of the misunderstanding begins, if recognized. But there are technological triumphs of engineered machines and improved efficiencies in bridges and weaponry, etc. that fool us into thinking the higher level qualities of the human mind can be programmed by similar designs, but it is faith. They can't. The humans made the machines to begin with. That should help you understand the paradox, if you are humble enough to let it sink in.

That's ok. We're not exactly looking for machines to achieve world domination here, just to replace a bunch of low to medium skill humans at some very specific tasks.

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05-15-2019 11:47 AM
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Post: #1058
RE: The Andrew Yang thread
It's all besides the point.

Even if you could teach the layman to code, the whole point of automating the process in the first place was to get rid of all the laymen.

As I've noted some way back, the mechanization of agriculture, forestry, mining and fishing over the last 100 years has vanished most of the jobs men used to do.

That vast pool of unemployment has been seriously diluted by government make-work jobs, government empire/police state work, government contract work, further education, part time work and welfare. A massive jump in productivity due to that mechanization brought wealth that was still fairly evenly distributed and so more employment was created by a vast series of luxury industries that was characterized by the excesses of the 80's.

All that capital has finally flowed up into the hands of a few oligarchs so when productivity jumps up due to automation the gains don't start flowing into luxury resorts and Cadillacs and big screen TVs and McMansions and by extension the wallets of everyone providing those luxury products and services that were never around in the 40s. It just goes into the wallets of the Zuckerbergs and the Bezos'.

I will repeat myself.

You.
Don't.
Automate.
Systems.
Just.
To.
Retrain.
And.
Shuffle.
The.
Same.
Amount.
Of.
Staff.

The public will judge a man by what he lifts, but those close to him will judge him by what he carries.
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05-15-2019 12:06 PM
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Post: #1059
RE: The Andrew Yang thread
I notice that beyond all the gif placement and snarky comments, no one countered what I was saying, my focus on the asinine radiology example. To be clear, the main focus was how ridiculous it was that some clowns here just believed a post about Chinese radiology vs. AI because they wanted to after reading a graphic. Yang has no idea what he doesn't know (on the topics I discuss not all), and now I am quite certain, from these responses, not many of you do.

My main point of contention did not revolve around how automation was clearly going to streamline a lot of things for big companies, of course it is. That's a far cry from saying something like "Look, even the most educated people in our society are going to be replaced by machine learning!" Think about how ridiculous it is. I've seen the programs. They are not capable of anything remotely related to what the propaganda is. I gave examples of this too, of course this was not countered because it was BS 30 years ago and still is today.

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05-16-2019 09:43 PM
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Post: #1060
RE: The Andrew Yang thread
(05-15-2019 12:09 AM)SamuelBRoberts Wrote:  That's great news, Kid Twist!

Quick, somebody call up Amazon and tell them that you can't write judgement and troubleshooting into paradigms! They'll shut down that packing machine we saw on the last page and give all those workers their jobs back.

Then we just need to call up Waymo and tell them that they only THINK they have working self-driving cars because technological triumphs of engineered machines and improved efficiencies in bridges and weaponry have blinded their strict mathematician logic. I bet if we can call this afternoon, they'll have the whole company shut down by the weekend.

Man, I was really worried for a while there, but now I've humbled my mind enough to accept the paradox, and I realize that everything's fine! Thanks for setting me straight. Kid Twist!

I have two related questions for you:

1. Have you ever run your own business?
2. Do you think that businesses owe their staff employment in perpetuity?

It seems to me that it's Amazon's prerogative to make their operations more efficient. More than that, it's their obligation to the people whom they DO currently employ—over 600,000 of them—to ensure that they remain in the position of employing them, and perhaps many others, by staying ahead in one of the most fiercely competitive markets in the world.

Those people who lose their marbles over the jobs that get automated seem to be unaware that those jobs would not even exist in the first place without the businesses which, at great risk to their founders, created those positions, and enabled the employees in those positions to get paid while acquiring general and specific skills.

Entrepreneurs don't start businesses in order to employ people. And not only do they have no obligation to continue to employ them if they can automate the work they perform, they HAVE to do so in order to stay competitive.

If your company is paying tens of thousand of dollars per yet in salaries to team members while your competitor is paying a few hundred bucks for automation software, he's going to find himself in a much better position to help the customers you're vying for, and they will go over to him, thus putting you and your staff out on your butt.

If somebody told me that I had to continue employing an accountant when a sophisticated new software could do the job just as well, more quickly, more accurately, and for a fraction of the cost, wouldn't it be absurd to keep the accountant on payroll?

If self-mowing lawns become a thing, is anybody really going to keep plunking their hard earned money over to a mowing company? Sure, there will be a few stragglers but in time that role will become obsolete and disappear and/or transform into an area of higher efficiency (think auto-mowing lawn device repair man).

(05-15-2019 08:57 AM)glugger Wrote:  The problem with the argument that past technological advances didn't cause mass unemployment in the past and won't now, is that the potential new jobs created by new technologies now require a skill level that the average person simply won't be able to meet.

Consider something as simple as moving large rocks. 500 years ago, you might have had a horse and cart. Today you use a backhoe. Clearly a backhoe is better in every way, and the skill level required to drive the thing also happens to be within attainable levels for most of the population. All the the people that would lead the horses now drive the backhoes, no jobs are lost, more work is done, everybody wins.

But maintaining or coding complex embedded systems to carry out repetitive tasks is beyond the capabilities of a lot of the public, and even moreso for the people whose jobs would be replaced by automation.

Until coding becomes a core subject within classrooms, held to the same standard as maths and English, the knowledge gap will simply be too large for many people to bridge.

That's why the truck driver example is so succinct, and why journalists were ridiculed for saying 'learn to code.' There will be a generation left behind by this automation sweep.

Necessity is the mother of all invention.

History consistently shows that if people have to learn new and complex skills in order to feed their families they will do so. You'll even see old dogs learn new tricks.

Learn to code isn't about coding per se. It's a metaphorical exhortation for the general leveling up of peoples' education, understanding, skills—and consequently, professions. I don't code jack squat but my all of the team members I employ in my company do. So "learn to code" can also mean "learn business", "learn marketing", "learn how to open and run MMA gyms".

The fact that fewer and fewer Americans would need to bother with backhoes or even crackhoes for that matter, and would have the opportunity to move into more lucrative and in-demand knowledge work is a net positive for the individual. There will always be blue collar and so-called menial jobs available, but they will be more sophisticated than the menial jobs of the past is all.

In the past few years unemployment—in the US in this case—has been very low, and it has been in single digits since 1982 (source: https://www.thebalance.com/unemployment-...-3305506). So if automation is "already here", why aren't we in double digit unemployment?

It's because most honest, hardworking people (which is most people) who have families to feed aren't just going to sit on their asses if the steel mill shuts down, or the Amazon packing factory goes full robot, or the trucking industry finally figures out self driving trucks on a large scale, or any of the specific scenarios that are disingenuously cited as 'evidence' that hordes of Americans will be left in jobless limbo as various improvements and efficiencies take place in their specific industries in particular, and in the marketplace itself in general.

They will adapt, they will learn, and they will level up causing the whole society, and in fact the whole world to level up. That's what we've been doing and what we will continue to do. And no amount of shrieking about how "this time is different" will change the reality.

(05-15-2019 12:06 PM)Leonard D Neubache Wrote:  It's all besides the point.

Even if you could teach the layman to code, the whole point of automating the process in the first place was to get rid of all the laymen.

As I've noted some way back, the mechanization of agriculture, forestry, mining and fishing over the last 100 years has vanished most of the jobs men used to do.

That vast pool of unemployment has been seriously diluted by government make-work jobs, government empire/police state work, government contract work, further education, part time work and welfare. A massive jump in productivity due to that mechanization brought wealth that was still fairly evenly distributed and so more employment was created by a vast series of luxury industries that was characterized by the excesses of the 80's.

All that capital has finally flowed up into the hands of a few oligarchs so when productivity jumps up due to automation the gains don't start flowing into luxury resorts and Cadillacs and big screen TVs and McMansions and by extension the wallets of everyone providing those luxury products and services that were never around in the 40s. It just goes into the wallets of the Zuckerbergs and the Bezos'.

I will repeat myself.

You.
Don't.
Automate.
Systems.
Just.
To.
Retrain.
And.
Shuffle.
The.
Same.
Amount.
Of.
Staff.

Firstly, I would pose you the same two questions I asked of SamuelRoberts.

And secondly, can you provide evidence for any of the assertions you've made in this comment?

I agree that there are far too many government jobs (some 16% of American employed by Uncle Sam!) And I'd like to get rid of about 15.9% of those. But meanwhile in the private sector, there are currently more millionaires in the US than there have ever been. And that's despite the fact that taxes on the wealthiest Americans are cripplingly high. Are all of these people oligarchs akin to Bezos and Zuckerberg in your view?

To use your example, the man who used to fish for a living now fishes for leisure. Or, he can take his knowledge and start a fish farm and provide for his family in a way that the erstwhile fisherman couldn't.

The man who used to risk his life in mines for a pittance now runs elegant equipment that does the job instead, for an excellent wage at that.

I understand nostalgia for simpler times (although I remind myself that the people of those simpler times in their turn might have longed for simpler times as well). But those days are gone, so what exactly is it that you'd like to see happen in lieu of what appears to me to be a net positive for all concerned?

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05-21-2019 12:51 PM
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Post: #1061
RE: The Andrew Yang thread
Great post Vincent, I agree with it for the most part.

Entrepreneurship is a great way to avoid being made redundant, but I think you'd agree most people don't have this mindset.

The crux of the whole UBI argument comes down to this:
Quote:There will always be blue collar and so-called menial jobs available, but they will be more sophisticated than the menial jobs of the past is all.
I would argue that these 'sophisticated' menial jobs will be moved out of immediate reach for those same workers, at least without significant retraining. I agree that some, if not most, will learn from necessity, but the time spent retraining is time without income. 40% of Americans have less than $1000 in savings.

Do you have any employees besides the coders? Cleaning staff, delivery drivers, receptionists? Do you honestly think that they could be trained to higher positions within your company?

As hardworking as they may be, I simply don't think they'll be able to cope with this retraining. Not without significant growing pains.

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(This post was last modified: 05-21-2019 08:41 PM by glugger.)
05-21-2019 08:36 PM
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Post: #1062
RE: The Andrew Yang thread
Unemployment is a red herring.

So many Americans living paycheck to paycheck, some of that being their own fault, some of it isn't.

We're working 50+ hours a week, while rent, food costs, insurance and pretty much everything else is getting more and more expensive. No, I'm not gonna post charts and graphs to prove my point because I can see these things happening with my own two eyes.

If you're talking about "economic growth", you're part of the problem.
05-21-2019 08:54 PM
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Post: #1063
RE: The Andrew Yang thread
Quote:I have two related questions for you:
1. Have you ever run your own business?

I don't answer questions about my personal life on highly monitored forums, and I encourage everyone else to follow my example here.

Quote:2. Do you think that businesses owe their staff employment in perpetuity?

No.

Quote:It seems to me that it's Amazon's prerogative to make their operations more efficient. More than that, it's their obligation to the people whom they DO currently employ—over 600,000 of them—to ensure that they remain in the position of employing them, and perhaps many others, by staying ahead in one of the most fiercely competitive markets in the world.
Those people who lose their marbles over the jobs that get automated seem to be unaware that those jobs would not even exist in the first place without the businesses which, at great risk to their founders, created those positions, and enabled the employees in those positions to get paid while acquiring general and specific skills.
Entrepreneurs don't start businesses in order to employ people. And not only do they have no obligation to continue to employ them if they can automate the work they perform, they HAVE to do so in order to stay competitive.
If your company is paying tens of thousand of dollars per yet in salaries to team members while your competitor is paying a few hundred bucks for automation software, he's going to find himself in a much better position to help the customers you're vying for, and they will go over to him, thus putting you and your staff out on your butt.
If somebody told me that I had to continue employing an accountant when a sophisticated new software could do the job just as well, more quickly, more accurately, and for a fraction of the cost, wouldn't it be absurd to keep the accountant on payroll?

If self-mowing lawns become a thing, is anybody really going to keep plunking their hard earned money over to a mowing company? Sure, there will be a few stragglers but in time that role will become obsolete and disappear and/or transform into an area of higher efficiency (think auto-mowing lawn device repair man).

I agree with this 100%! Companies in a capitalist economy will do whatever it takes to cut costs, and personnel is one of the biggest costs a business has. Anybody who doesn't automate will be driven into the ground by the competitors. There was a guy several pages back arguing against a UBI who said that he'd "rather have people than machines working for him", and that many business owners would feel the same way (And thus, fears of automation were overblown). But as you've conclusively demonstrated, that's just not feasible. He and anyone who feels like him will be driven under by the fact that their competitors can offer cheaper services. The robots are coming, and there's no way to avoid them.

Thank you for doing your part to spread the gospel of UBI and Andrew Yang!

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05-21-2019 08:57 PM
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Post: #1064
RE: The Andrew Yang thread
(05-21-2019 08:57 PM)SamuelBRoberts Wrote:  
Quote:I have two related questions for you:
1. Have you ever run your own business?

I don't answer questions about my personal life on highly monitored forums, and I encourage everyone else to follow my example here.

Quote:2. Do you think that businesses owe their staff employment in perpetuity?

No.

Quote:It seems to me that it's Amazon's prerogative to make their operations more efficient. More than that, it's their obligation to the people whom they DO currently employ—over 600,000 of them—to ensure that they remain in the position of employing them, and perhaps many others, by staying ahead in one of the most fiercely competitive markets in the world.
Those people who lose their marbles over the jobs that get automated seem to be unaware that those jobs would not even exist in the first place without the businesses which, at great risk to their founders, created those positions, and enabled the employees in those positions to get paid while acquiring general and specific skills.
Entrepreneurs don't start businesses in order to employ people. And not only do they have no obligation to continue to employ them if they can automate the work they perform, they HAVE to do so in order to stay competitive.
If your company is paying tens of thousand of dollars per yet in salaries to team members while your competitor is paying a few hundred bucks for automation software, he's going to find himself in a much better position to help the customers you're vying for, and they will go over to him, thus putting you and your staff out on your butt.
If somebody told me that I had to continue employing an accountant when a sophisticated new software could do the job just as well, more quickly, more accurately, and for a fraction of the cost, wouldn't it be absurd to keep the accountant on payroll?

If self-mowing lawns become a thing, is anybody really going to keep plunking their hard earned money over to a mowing company? Sure, there will be a few stragglers but in time that role will become obsolete and disappear and/or transform into an area of higher efficiency (think auto-mowing lawn device repair man).

I agree with this 100%! Companies in a capitalist economy will do whatever it takes to cut costs, and personnel is one of the biggest costs a business has. Anybody who doesn't automate will be driven into the ground by the competitors. There was a guy several pages back arguing against a UBI who said that he'd "rather have people than machines working for him", and that many business owners would feel the same way (And thus, fears of automation were overblown). But as you've conclusively demonstrated, that's just not feasible. He and anyone who feels like him will be driven under by the fact that their competitors can offer cheaper services. The robots are coming, and there's no way to avoid them.

Thank you for doing your part to spread the gospel of UBI and Andrew Yang!

Sam, I don't know if you ever get the feeling of "why do I even bother posting".

But if you do, I just want to let you know I always enjoy your posts.

Thank you for bringing a sense of sanity when a lot of posts just read like complete poop.

EDIT: I've been really busy lately, but remind me to destroy Kid Twist's garbage posts on a technical level

Not happening. - redbeard in regards to ETH flippening BTC
(This post was last modified: 05-21-2019 09:34 PM by Genghis Khan.)
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Post: #1065
RE: The Andrew Yang thread
Paragraph 119 of Industrial Society and Its Future seems appropriate after the last few posts.

Quote:The system does not and cannot exist to satisfy human needs. Instead, it is human behavior that has to be modified to fit the needs of the system. This has nothing to do with the political or social ideology that may pretend to guide the technological system. It is not the fault of capitalism and it is not the fault of socialism. It is the fault of technology, because the system is guided not by ideology but by technical necessity. Of course the system does satisfy many human needs, but generally speaking it does this only to the extend that it is to the advantage of the system to do it. It is the needs of the system that are paramount, not those of the human being. For example, the system provides people with food because the system couldn’t function if everyone starved; it attends to people’s psychological needs whenever it can CONVENIENTLY do so, because it couldn’t function if too many people became depressed or rebellious. But the system, for good, solid, practical reasons, must exert constant pressure on people to mold their behavior to the needs of the system. Too much waste accumulating? The government, the media, the educational system, environmentalists, everyone inundates us with a mass of propaganda about recycling. Need more technical personnel? A chorus of voices exhorts kids to study science. No one stops to ask whether it is inhumane to force adolescents to spend the bulk of their time studying subjects most of them hate. When skilled workers are put out of a job by technical advances and have to undergo “retraining,” no one asks whether it is humiliating for them to be pushed around in this way. It is simply taken for granted that everyone must bow to technical necessity. and for good reason: If human needs were put before technical necessity there would be economic problems, unemployment, shortages or worse. The concept of “mental health” in our society is defined largely by the extent to which an individual behaves in accord with the needs of the system and does so without showing signs of stress

«Spring brings cherry blossoms to comfort you, the summer stars, the harvest moon in fall, and the powdered snow in winter. All of these things, and the promise of them, is what makes sake taste so good. If the taste is bad, it comes from you.»

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Post: #1066
RE: The Andrew Yang thread
(05-21-2019 08:36 PM)glugger Wrote:  Great post Vincent, I agree with it for the most part.

Entrepreneurship is a great way to avoid being made redundant, but I think you'd agree most people don't have this mindset.

The crux of the whole UBI argument comes down to this:
Quote:There will always be blue collar and so-called menial jobs available, but they will be more sophisticated than the menial jobs of the past is all.
I would argue that these 'sophisticated' menial jobs will be moved out of immediate reach for those same workers, at least without significant retraining. I agree that some, if not most, will learn from necessity, but the time spent retraining is time without income. 40% of Americans have less than $1000 in savings.

Do you have any employees besides the coders? Cleaning staff, delivery drivers, receptionists? Do you honestly think that they could be trained to higher positions within your company?

As hardworking as they may be, I simply don't think they'll be able to cope with this retraining. Not without significant growing pains.

I appreciate the kind words, Glugger. I enjoy your posts as well.

As to your point, you may be right that some folks—perhaps even a majority—will not be able to easily retrain into more technical or skilled, or even completely new positions. They would be in difficulty as a result of these changes, especially if they hadn't accumulated some savings while looking for new work.

And while I commiserate—I've been through multiple careers myself, and starting over in your main field is hard enough; never mind a completely new field—it is not the duty of businesses to keep these people employed out of sympathy (or unearned guilt), nor is it the responsibility of OTHER citizens who have their own families and their own difficulties to deal with, to assuage the temporary pain of this situation.

The statists are always soo compassionate and so willing to remedy suffering in all its forms, so long as they force others to pay for that compassion at the point of a gun via the government.

To put it in more concrete terms, if your neighbor was an older gentleman with whom you were on friendly terms, and he was working at an Amazon packing facility and was recently made obsolete by the automation of that facility via robots, you would no doubt feel empathy for his plight as any decent human being would.

How would you then feel if you got a knock on your door early in the morning, and two soldiers with firearms visible in their holsters greeted you and proceeded to explain that a portion of your salary will now be collected and provided to your neighbor. How do you suppose that would make you feel about the situation?

For my part, I would wonder where this man's family is, his kids, his grandkids. Supposing he had no living relatives, I would then wonder if he couldn't be somehow helped via private charity (which requires no guns, no soldiers, and no forcible theft of your salary, which may very well be JUST enough to make YOUR ends meet prior to said theft). I may even appeal to charities on his behalf to try to help him, or recommend a different job like a restaurant host for instance.

In other words, automation is certainly a real thing, and it certainly puts people out of jobs (jobs they wouldn't have had if it weren't for companies being competitive, which is the process that created the job and is now being condemned when it means the loss of that job).

But it is being used—as all things are by statists and tyrants of every stripe—as a completely overblown and misunderstood bogey man (in fact they count on its being misunderstood) to justify the need for more soldiers at your door with guns taking more of your wages for more of your neighbors (and people who aren't even in your neighbors).

Life is hard, work is hard, adapting and pivoting and starting over is hard, and you may have to do it at any age. And that is all hard and I commiserate. But forcing your neighbor to pay for your problems and making it a state policy (e.g. UBI) has never worked, and will never work in any capacity other than the enlargement of the state.

To answer your other question, I've had several technical team members learn operations roles which involves soft skills that by no means come naturally to techies for whom English is a second language no less. But there are so many coders out there that training somebody for that role would be absurd. One of the best hires I ever made was for an operations manager role and that was THE hardest hiring round I ever conducted. Those skills are MUCH more nuanced and difficult than coding, and harder to come by. And consequently that guy receives the highest salary in the company (more than I take in fact).

Also of note is that all of our team members are required to create content (articles and videos) for our marketing. And absolutely every one of them has balked at this requirement. And absolutely every one of them has learned to write well, speak well on camera while explaining things clearly, and has learned to enjoy a skill that will now serve them everywhere else they go.

(05-21-2019 08:54 PM)TigerMandingo Wrote:  Unemployment is a red herring.

So many Americans living paycheck to paycheck, some of that being their own fault, some of it isn't.

We're working 50+ hours a week, while rent, food costs, insurance and pretty much everything else is getting more and more expensive. No, I'm not gonna post charts and graphs to prove my point because I can see these things happening with my own two eyes.

If you're talking about "economic growth", you're part of the problem.

There's a beach in my city, therefore all cities have beaches and I don't need to see no map to know that's true because I see it with my own eyes every day.

What you see with your own eyes in an infinitesimal part of a much larger whole. Hence, charts and graphs. But to your main point, if unemployment is a red herring then why all this ado about people becoming unemployed due to automation?

As for 'economic growth', that needs to be defined before we can discuss whether it's a valid point. Because you're right, economic growth can occur at the same time as inflation (for instance), and your dollar is no more valuable than it was in previous years.

ARE all of the things you just enumerated REALLY getting more expensive? Let's see some evidence (yes, in the form of charts and graphs and citations) that this is the case en masse. Otherwise you're making assertions that may or may not be true as far as anybody knows.

(05-21-2019 08:57 PM)SamuelBRoberts Wrote:  
Quote:I have two related questions for you:
1. Have you ever run your own business?

I don't answer questions about my personal life on highly monitored forums, and I encourage everyone else to follow my example here.

Fair enough.[/quote]

Quote:I agree with this 100%! Companies in a capitalist economy will do whatever it takes to cut costs, and personnel is one of the biggest costs a business has. Anybody who doesn't automate will be driven into the ground by the competitors. There was a guy several pages back arguing against a UBI who said that he'd "rather have people than machines working for him", and that many business owners would feel the same way (And thus, fears of automation were overblown). But as you've conclusively demonstrated, that's just not feasible. He and anyone who feels like him will be driven under by the fact that their competitors can offer cheaper services. The robots are coming, and there's no way to avoid them.

Thank you for doing your part to spread the gospel of UBI and Andrew Yang!

I don't know what business owners you're talking to but to your point, in my real world circle of real world business owner contacts (as opposed to the AI simulation that some people seem to be living in where the laws of economics cease to exist), most of them would certainly prefer robots over humans!

Just as you would probably prefer a dishwasher over hand-washing your dishes every night, and for similar reasons.

But to say that this is some kind of 'proof' of the need for UBI does not follow in the logical chain.

In the first place, the people who will lose their jobs due to automation—most of them—will not simply sit around twiddling their thumbs. They have families to support (not to mention themselves) and they will go out and find alternative work, even if it's a downgrade from what they were doing before. Two steps forward, one step back. I've been there, I'm sure you have too.

In the second place, Yang's UBI in particular (as opposed to say Friedman's negative income tax, which is fundamentally different) would be paid for by imposing an additional, new tax on all stages of the business cycle in the form of a VAT. Anybody who has studied economics at all would be able to predict the effect this has on businesses (makes it more expensive and harder to startup, maintain, hire, and grow), and on consumers (less buying power in the form of increased prices passed on by businesses in order to be able to survive.

Yang thinks 10% VAT is reasonable because it's half the European level. What an absurd attempt at legitimacy, as if Europe should be the model. Western Europe is a full blown socialist boondoggle that's completely hostile to the people who created all the wealth they're now so busy seizing.

Every single Western European friend I have, whether French, German, Swedish, or otherwise, bemoans the crippling taxes and regulations that make starting a business a painful, unrewarding and likely doomed proposition. Which is why so many people incorporate in Estonia, Georgia, etc., instead.

(Note: in France it's actually fairly easy to start a business and there are many exemptions available for startups. But they start mercilessly milking you once you start creating some appreciable value. Like those life sucking pods in The Matrix movie).

As a business owner, my honest opinion is that a 10% tax is a HUGE amount. Especially for a startup where an errant operating expense, or a few cancelled customers, can sound the death knell of an enterprise that might have gone on to employ hundreds of people. That 10% is your runway. It's somebody's salary. That's a customer who no longer can afford to work with you because you've had to raise your prices to be able to pay that tax (which inconveniently grows the more you 'earn').

That's why I asked before whether or not some of you have run your own businesses and met a payroll. It's not to paint myself as a hotshot just because I've got an online gig going. It's because what I know now about what it takes to create jobs as compared to when I worked in hotels and restaurants is substantially, crucially different.

UBI is nothing more than welfare dressed up in a populist garb to make it more palatable to average Americans. Luckily, Yang will never win and the average American in fly over country is no fool. They see right through Yang.

"And his eyes have all the seeming of a demon’s that is dreaming..."

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Post: #1067
RE: The Andrew Yang thread
(Yesterday 12:45 PM)VincentVinturi Wrote:  UBI is nothing more than welfare dressed up in a populist garb to make it more palatable to average Americans. Luckily, Yang will never win and the average American in fly over country is no fool. They see right through Yang.

Yang may not win, but let's take a look at what the trends are:

[Image: 2h6zlu8.png]

I could see some form of socialism coming, whether it's medicare-for-all, elimination of college debt, UBI etc. But something will give. That's just the direction we're headed in. If Milton Friedman's muh free market ideology was working out, we wouldn't be in this situation today, with the country torn apart and with a tiny segment of the population hoarding all the wealth.
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Post: #1068
RE: The Andrew Yang thread
(Yesterday 06:32 PM)TigerMandingo Wrote:  I could see some form of socialism coming, whether it's medicare-for-all, elimination of college debt, UBI etc. But something will give. That's just the direction we're headed in. If Milton Friedman's muh free market ideology was working out, we wouldn't be in this situation today, with the country torn apart and with a tiny segment of the population hoarding all the wealth.

While I agree that we ARE getting progressively more socialist in most of the Western world, it is NOT destined to go that way, and it's certainly not an indictment of a rational philosophy and resulting economic / political policies.

Quite the contrary, freedom of any kind must be vigilantly defended and upheld precisely because there are people out there who would use the state to deprive you of it with the promise of security, and the end goal of power over your life.

Your comment mistakenly implies that the best, or most virtuous ideology / economic system eventually wins. As history has shown time and again, that isn't the case if a nation's people are unable and unwilling to defend it.

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Post: #1069
RE: The Andrew Yang thread
(Today 10:55 AM)VincentVinturi Wrote:  While I agree that we ARE getting progressively more socialist in most of the Western world, it is NOT destined to go that way, and it's certainly not an indictment of a rational philosophy and resulting economic / political policies.

It certainly doesn't look promising. The huge disparities we're seeing between the ownership class (aka "the job creators") and the rest of the population are so big that some kind of conflict is bound to happen. But don't take it from me, here's ultra-capitalist and entrepreneur Nick Hanauer basically saying the same.





(Today 10:55 AM)VincentVinturi Wrote:  Quite the contrary, freedom of any kind must be vigilantly defended and upheld precisely because there are people out there who would use the state to deprive you of it with the promise of security, and the end goal of power over your life.

Agreed, though you just inadvertently described modern America. The "people out there" who are using the state as a tool of coercion are the corporations and the business class. We have failed to protect our freedoms granted to us by the founders of this country by allowing the merchant class to grow out of control and do as it pleases.

(Today 10:55 AM)VincentVinturi Wrote:  Your comment mistakenly implies that the best, or most virtuous ideology / economic system eventually wins. As history has shown time and again, that isn't the case if a nation's people are unable and unwilling to defend it.

Not really. I don't subscribe to any particular ideology and I don't know what's gonna happen, other than the fact that something will have to give. But changes are coming, whether you like it or not.
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