Sunday, September 1, 2013

Thought of the day "Would you feel differently if the creative destruction were a natural disaster instead of an economic one?"

The issue of how the pace of innovation has been destroying middle class jobs has been more and more in the news recently with several stories about it on Marketplace and a couple of Economist articles over the last few months.

Most people who are knowledgeable on this issue tend to take the long view that this has all happened before and, in the long term, we still ended up with plenty of jobs for everyone.  I mostly agree with this line of reasoning but have to admit that this time does look a little different.

Mark Sigal of Unicorn Labs has an interesting post over at gigaom that looks more deeply at the issues of innovation and jobs.
Innovation, economics, and messy, complex truths
SUMMARY:The only certainty involved in assessing the impact of technology on the future of our economy is complexity. Mark Sigal of Unicorn Labs argues that the impact of technology on job creation is a complicated question with no easy answers.
The biggest policy issue that might be facing us today is how to deal with technological unemployment.  It doesn't appear that a laissez-faire approach will work, but then what will?  There isn't an obvious answer and a lot of people are going to get hurt while we try to figure out what to do.