“As long as we haven’t run out of problems, we won’t run out of work.”

“We are suffering just now from a bad attack of economic pessimism. It is common to hear people say that the epoch of enormous economic progress which characterised the nineteenth century is over; that the rapid improvement in the standard of life is now going to slow down; that a decline in prosperity is more likely than an improvement in the decade which lies ahead of us. I believe that this is a wildly mistaken interpretation of what is happening to us. We are suffering, not from the rheumatics of old age, but from the growing-pains of over-rapid changes, from the painfulness of readjustment between one economic period and another….”

The above John Maynard Keyne’s quote, which sounds like it could have been written this morning despite its having been published in 1931, comes from a must-read essay at Medium by Tim O’Reilly. O’Reilly looks at the future of work, and the idea that while there will always be work, this is not the same as saying there will always be jobs.

What does this mean, in the age of automation, as more and more functions are delegated and humankind faces the question of what to do with all the excess time. I send you there now…

Machine Money and People Money (Medium) 



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