ROBOTS GET RIGHTS AS “ELECTRONIC PERSONS”
“IT’S ALREADY BEGUN TO HAPPEN,” SAY EXPERTS
President Donald Trump may save thousands of jobs, but such rescues are likely to be temporary.
The reason is that American jobs will soon be lost not to foreign countries but to domestic robots.
Robots with Artificial Intelligence could replace humans in up to 47 percent of today’s jobs, from hamburger flippers and factory workers to truck drivers, according to a report issued December 20, 2016, by the White House.
Many millions of people will be unemployed and in need of money. The government at the same time will lose trillions in revenue from jobless, broke former taxpayers.
This could devastate the world economy. Government will increase reckless printing of money out of thin air, destroying the dollar’s value. Taxes will skyrocket.
In their latest book, Money, Morality & The Machine: Smith’s Law in an Unethical, Over-Governed Age, Craig R. Smith and Lowell Ponte predicted that the European Union would turn to strange measures – and in early 2017 they have.
The EU, exactly as Smith and Ponte warned, moved in January to make robots “electronic persons.” It did this so that all kinds of robots can be made to pay tax – especially the steep retirement tax – that the robots, which never “retire,” will never receive as retirement benefits.
These robot taxes can be used to keep government fat as well as to provide part of a guaranteed “universal income” that all people could receive, whether they worked or not. A test of such “universal income” just got underway with thousands of people in Finland.
Few European politicians believe that taxing robots will deter companies from replacing human workers. Robots boost productivity so dramatically – working 24 hours a day without pay, strikes, getting sick or making human errors – that in 10 or 20 years a company, or country, without robot workers will be unable to compete. The robot revolution is inevitable.
A “universal income” for all citizens is surprisingly applauded by some across the political spectrum in the United States. Radical labor leader Andy Stern believes it “would make people more secure and give them more human dignity.”
On the right, Libertarian Charles Murray of the American Enterprise Institute calculates that giving everyone a basic income of $850 to $1,200 per month would save money if it replaced today’s welfare state.
Welfare gives the poor as little as 19 cents of every dollar spent in their name – the rest being taken by social workers, political appointees, and other government retainers who make their living by keeping others in poverty.
What about making robots into “electronic citizens”? Smith and Ponte ask if robots will acquire other human rights: “The right to vote and elect robot lawmakers? Free speech? Marriage? Choice of gender identity? … Freedom not to be fired when they become old, slow, and obsolete?”
“Will robots have the right to move and work anywhere…?” ask Smith and Ponte. “Have maximum daily work hours? Vacations? A guaranteed minimum wage? The right to keep and bear arms?” No, say Smith and Ponte, “Nobody in the EU has that right….”
For an Interview with Lowell Ponte, contact: Sandy Frazier firstname.lastname@example.org 516-735-5468
For a free media copy of their book Money, Morality & The Machine: Smith’s Law in an Unethical, Over-Governed Age, contact: David Bradshaw, email@example.com 602-918-3296
Craig R. Smith and Lowell Ponte, Money, Morality & The Machine: Smith’s Law in an Unethical, Over-Governed Age. Phoenix: P2 Press, 2016. Pages 159-175.
Executive Office of the President, Artificial Intelligence, Automation, and the Economy. Washington, D.C.: The White House, December 20, 2016. https://obamawhitehouse.archives.gov/sites/whitehouse.gov/files/documents/Artificial-Intelligence-Automation-Economy.PDF