Thank you for reading Life in the 21st Century. Please share this post. (Continued from I) Wiener sets our contemporary technological revolution in an historical frame, “Perhaps I may clarify the historical background of the present situation if I say that the first industrial revolution, the revolution of the “dark satanic mills,” was the devaluation of the human arm by the competition of machinery. There is no rate of pay at which a United States pick-and-shovel laborer can live which is low enough to compete with the work of a steam shovel as an excavator.”
Great series as always Joe. On a related note, I don't know if you saw this but you might appreciate it:
"Many degrowth scholars (as well as critics) focus on features of capitalism as the cause of this ecological overshoot. But while capitalism may be problematic, many civilizations destroyed ecosystems to the point of collapse long before it became our dominant economic model."
This is something I consider worth noting and while it may not be a popular position, I agree with this:
It is more realistic than completely frivolous views on the topic. We are building the Planet of Slums. It is heartless, mindless and gutless...These dynamics (overcrowding, stress and slummification) are tied to the rise of fascism though interested parties (read pro mindless growth libertarian economists) try to invert that. After all when you have no intention of supporting safety nets, women's rights in any sane way (hashtag theatrics aside), access to healthcare/real education for all in meaningful ways why not be bullish on chaotic mindless growth, deregulation and deeply antidemocratic social dynamics (a la Julian Simon's descendants)?
I got this via democraticunderground-it is eye popping really. We are driving the sixth mass extinction and except cruelly abused animals in factory farms, we are all that will be left at this rate. It is beyond crass: