December 22nd, 2012
(written by lawrence krubner, however indented passages are often quotes). You can contact lawrence at: firstname.lastname@example.org
The fundamental question is: if there’s 15% unemployment in one industry and 3% in another, why aren’t people switching jobs?
…Massive demand for skilled workers and zero demand for unskilled workers suggests a course of action, which brings me to my second point. If there are a bunch of people sitting around unemployed while there’s a ton of work to be done, that’s not their fault; it’s the fault of the people who need the work done. It means it’s worth putting some time towards finding a way to use that untapped labour force, by trying to build “knowledge factories”.
What do I mean by that? Think about how a physical factory worked. The reason unskilled jobs in manufacturing, say, cars existed is because some very highly skilled people first got together and looked at the process of building a car and said “okay, we can automate this bit and this bit and this bit, but making machines to do this bit is way too hard”. The blue collar workers of Detroit didn’t know how to build cars: they knew how to operate one particular bit of machinery. The only people who knew how to build cars were the guys who put the machines together.