Jack Saturday

Monday, May 28, 2018

Anti Wage-Slavery Pro-Freedom Quotations Of The Week 1774-1776

For Tim Button, a basic income has meant options.

The former security guard can now make choices — to buy healthier food, to pay to take transit, to meet a friend for coffee — since he enrolled in a provincial pilot project last October.

In the past, the 58-year-old, who lives in a rented room, said he would sometimes walk 20 blocks to eat one meal a day at a shelter.

"It gives me a lot more freedom," Button said.
Button is one of 1,000 local participants in a three-year, basic income pilot project launched by the province in April 2017.
People are able to eat healthier, increase their social interaction and begin to be able to think about ways to improve their lives, whether that's by going back to school or boosting skills in another way, he said....

"I think the most profound impact of basic income has really been around restoring a sense of dignity," said Cooper.
Natalie Paddon 
The Hamilton Spectator

Do you like your job? Maybe you do, but I think you should reevaluate. At the very least, I think you should be uncomfortable with the fact that you live in a system that compels you to have a job, particularly if that job is neither necessary for your own well-being nor the well-being of others. Thanks to advances in robotics and AI, we may be close to building a society in which work, as we currently know it, is no longer necessary for either of these things. Far from being a cause for concern, this is something we should welcome. The work ethic is a cultural virus, something that has infected our minds and our institutions. We need to be inoculated.
John Danaher

As an elephant handler for Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus, Lauren Ramsay used to spend her time herding four-ton pachyderms. Now she serves the dinner crowd at a Chicago wine bar. The elephants were easier. “Elephants definitely listen better and aren’t as messy as people when they eat,” she says.
What’s A Clown to Do After the Circus? One Is Running for Congress
By John Clarke
The Wall Street Journal

Monday, May 21, 2018

Anti Wage-Slavery Pro-Freedom Quotations Of The Week 1771-1773

The scarcity of time is one reason we overconsume, attempting to compensate for the loss of this most primal of all wealth. Time is life. To be truly rich is to have sovereignty over our own time.
Charles Eisenstein

 If others envy  me for my leisure, on the other hand, so be it. I do not, of course, wish to be a source of envy. I believe, however, that society will ultimately benefit the more that individuals come to realize that they long for lives of more leisure, lives outside the rat race of careerism or the monotony of the 9-to-5 grind, rather than simply lives of more wealth or material accumulation. More people must desire leisure, and thereupon demand it, in order eventually to effect the revolutions necessary for all people to enjoy more of it.
Kate McFarland
The Useless Life

There is this rise-of-the-robots logic, this fear that gradually technology is going to throw more and more people out of work. People say, “Look, it hasn’t happened.”
I think it did happen, but they made up these imaginary jobs to keep us working anyway, because we have an irrational economy that makes people work eight hours whether or not there’s anything to do. Can you have a surer sign of a stupid economic system than one in which the prospect of getting rid of onerous labor is considered a problem? Any rational economic system would redistribute the necessary work in a reasonable way and everybody would work less.

Thursday, May 10, 2018
Is Your Job Bullshit? David Graeber on Capitalism’s Endless Busywork
by Dayton Martindale
In These Times

Monday, May 14, 2018

Anti Wage-Slavery Pro-Freedom Quotations Of The Week 1768-1770

A wave of automation anxiety has hit the West. Just try typing “Will machines…” into Google. An algorithm offers to complete the sentence with differing degrees of disquiet: “...take my job?”; “...take all jobs?”; “...replace humans?”; “...take over the world?”

Job-grabbing robots are no longer science fiction.
In 2013 Carl Benedikt Frey and Michael Osborne of Oxford University used—what else?—a machine-learning algorithm to assess how easily 702 different kinds of job in America could be automated. They concluded that fully 47% could be done by machines “over the next decade or two”.
A study finds nearly half of jobs are vulnerable to automation
Apr 24th 2018
The Economist

[emphasis JS]

 Just like global warming, the steady march of work place robotics should instill immediate concern in the public. The World Bank estimates that, within the next twenty years, up to 57% of the world’s jobs face the prospect of automation. Where’s the outrage? Not in America, where one Pew Foundation study found half of its participants realize that automation will probably do most or all the work done by humans in the next fifty years. Why isn’t this issue at the forefront of every election? Like the melting ice-caps, the danger has arrived, but the entirety of the damage has yet to be felt.
The Hidden Danger of Workforce Automation
Jarl Jensen

 [emphasis JS]

 David Graeber: Capitalism treats blue-collar and white-collar wage earners differently than salary earners. Since the 1980s, anybody who has a non-bullshit job, who is doing actual work, has seen their work downsized, sped up and Taylorized.

Simultaneously, capitalism has produced endless bullshit white-collar jobs, which are designed to make you identify with the sensibilities of managers. I call this managerial feudalism, whereby they keep adding more and more and more levels of intermediary executives. If you’re an executive you need to have an assistant or else you’re not important, so they hire these flunkies. It has to do with power, really.

It screws up the creative industries. Movies have seven different levels of executives, who all have these complicated titles. They all fuck with the script and everything turns into mush. People point out this is why movies are so bad now.

In universities, you have this managerial class that’s taken over from the professors. They don’t know what the hell professors do. The more distant the managers are from what they’re managing, the more numbers they need because they don’t understand teaching themselves, and as a result we professors have to spend a larger and larger percentage of our time translating our activities into these quantitative terms that they set out.

Is Your Job Bullshit? David Graeber on Capitalism’s Endless Busywork
by Dayton Martindale

Thursday, May 10, 2018
 In These Times

Monday, May 07, 2018

Anti Wage-Slavery Pro-Freedom Quotations Of The Week 1765-1767

Still, this isn’t Canada’s first experience with basic income. The province of Manitoba first tested the idea in the 1970s, and the results suggested that people don’t become lazy slobs when freed from the struggle for survival. Instead, they go to school, get jobs, care for their families, and engage in their community. And while a basic income does cost more than many existing social programs, the cost of persistent poverty to provinces—reinforced, some argue, by services that seek to reduce poverty rather than eliminate it—amounts to tens of billions of dollars annually, through healthcare costs and lost productivity.
Basic Income Is Already Transforming Life and Work In a Postindustrial Canadian City
Jordan Pearson
Apr 23 2018

 In a recent book called Postcapitalism and a World Without Work, authors Nick Srnicek and Alex Williams argue that we should automate as much work as possible and distribute the proceeds from robot labor to everyone as a basic income.
Jordan Pearson
Apr 23 2018

 In the Wheel-Turning King Sutta (DN 26), the Buddha talks about the king who rules by dhamma. This kind of king is said to give “protection, shelter, and safety for all members of society as well as the birds and the beasts.” The Buddha says that such a king should provide “wealth to the needy,” ensuring there is no poverty. If he does so, the Buddha says, the people will not violate the five precepts (killing, lying, stealing, sexual misconduct, and taking intoxicants) and their lifespan and beauty (i.e., health) will also increase. If the king does not, then immorality will increase and people’s lifespan and beauty will decrease, and this will be passed on to their children.
Opinion: Why the Buddha Would Advocate for Universal Basic Income
By Matthew Gindin

Oct 25, 2017

Tuesday, May 01, 2018

Anti Wage-Slavery Pro-Freedom Quotations Of The Week 1762-1764

Low-wage jobs are five times more likely to be automated than high-wage jobs. A greater proportion of jobs held by women are likely to be automated. The solution that’s often suggested is that people should simply “retrain”; but if no funding or assistance is provided, this burden is too much to bear. You can’t expect people to seamlessly transition from driving taxis to writing self-driving car software without help. As we have already seen, inequality is exacerbated when jobs that don’t require advanced education (even if they require a great deal of technical skill) are the first to go.
Tech Optimists See a Golden Future—Let’s Talk About How We’ll Get Thereby
Thomas Hornigold -
Apr 22, 2018

[emphasis JS]

Over time, as societies become more unequal places, economies — and the lives within them — begin to stagnate. That is because the lion’s share of gain are going to the already very rich — as in America, for example, where over the last two decades, more than 100% of gains have accrued to the top .01%. As stagnation sets in, a healthy nation’s social structure begins to fracture, buckle, collapse. A “middle class”, to which anyone can ascend , belong, and stay a part of — key to a vibrant democracy, a sense of optimism, a society that coheres and hangs together, a country that is not a hostile and cruel and indifferent place — becomes a new poor. The old poor become the wretched. And rich become the dynastic. For anyone but the richest, lives of dignity, meaning, purpose, belonging become unaffordable luxuries.
umair haque

[emphasis JS]

 According to a 2018 report published by the Ontario government, a 2008 study pegged the costs of poverty—due to stress on the healthcare system, cost of social programs, lost productivity, and so on—at $32–$38 billion annually just in Ontario, all at the government’s expense. According to the most recent census data, there are 5 million people living in poverty across Canada, a country of 36 million.
Jordan Pearson
Apr 23 2018
[emphasis JS]