T Nation

How to Get Rid of the Jobless


Sure, whatever you want to call it. The fact is, people are jobless because there aren't enough jobs for all of the people in existance in America today. Many companies elimited jobs quite a few years ago, in the name of saving themselves money (a very valid reason. lol). Slightly before this, the market was made to look like there was more demand for goods which resulted in jobs than there actually was. The point is, these people are basically unneeded. Should we just shoot them because they are no longer needed?

The economic theory holds that there will always be new fields and places to put these people. How can that be possible if society is becoming more efficient at every step of it's processes? It's more likely that we have reached a place where we honestly don't need as many people as there are. So I repeat my question: should we just kill off these unneeded people? Let them mooch off of the others for their entire lives? Should we send them out of the country? What's the solution?


survival of the fittest right, JK

Kind of.


I'm seriously curious what solutions there might be other than disposing of these people somehow. Capitalism is a constant progress towards supplying more, in a shorter amount of time, at less cost. That means developing the abilitiy to produce more goods with less resources (people). The more people there are trying to speed up the process through new inventions, proceedures, whatever, the faster we are going to be eliminating people. At some point, there truly will be more people in existance than are needed to produce the amount they demand. Then they become jobless and demand even less.

What's the solution?


Well, these improvements only come if they cost of improvement is feasible. Problem is we have had more of a corporatist government economy then a free market economy. Subsidizing products and companies that otherwise would not have made it if it really was a free market. We have also increased the costs of the products through unionization and regulations so the increased efficiency and decreased cost has not made it to the consumers, had it they would be able to purchase more keeping these companies open and looking into new areas.

So in short, we have 2 choices, turn to national socialism, turn to free market. I know everyone says we need to compromise, but this does not work. The second you let the government in it will take over through time. With gradual steps.

There are opportunities, but most people have been living well beyond their means and abilities and aren't willing to sacrifice and do without certain luxuries.

It also makes it hard to start a business and make money when the government has made it impossible unless you are one of their chosen winners. And that is what they have done.

If we want to have a chance to help these people we need to remove their crutches and also stop breaking their legs. does tha make sense.


I agree that policies which make transparency impossible should be eliminate. However, even after all of that is said and done, you're going to be left with the same problem: the entire system provides many times over the amount people need with far less people than there are.

On the other hand, I believe that some policy is not to be argued with. I am not okay with eliminating child labor laws and the like. Large companies will monopolize completely if laws are not in place to prevent this. Then try starting a home business in the same industry and see how impossible it is to rise up in the world. Also, slavery and avoidable endangerment of workers are not cool either. However, forcing people to join a union if they want to work at a company or industry is utter bullshit as well. They should be allowed to choose.

Lastly, today I realized there's a huge problem with America regarding the topic of movement of workers to industries and positions where they are needed: we don't have enough information as workers to figure out which field to get into. First, as children we're told "you can be whatever you want to be in when you grow up!" then we're told "figure out what you really want to do with your life." Rarely is what we want to do in allignment with what's needed. We figure that out after a few years in the workforce after college. Then we go back. BUT IT'S NEARLY IMPOSSIBLE FOR THE AVAGE PERSON TO FIGURE OUT WHICH INDUSTRIES, WHICH THEY ARE PHYSICALLY AND MENTALLY SUITABLE FOR, NEED THEM.

For instance, I recently learned ffrom a friend that agricultural science does and will need 27% more people than they currently have. It's almost guaranteed that if you get a degree in that kind of science, you will have a job. No one is telling anyone who hasn't already started the degree that!

We need a large, transparent information source about every industry in the country and what the collective needs are in every type of position today. So far, nothing that large, which is the scale it has to be to work, exists. So people are poking around, slowly, in the dark trying to figure out where jobs are. Some of the largest needs we have nowdays are in positions to new to be known about. If you truly want to end joblessness, making a resource where people could easily find accurate information about all jobs at once would be the firat step.


couple of things to point out.
1. progress does not necessarily lead to less jobs in the market - look at IT or space industry or whatever is the hot industry of the day (biochem?) - those fields have created enormous industries with job opportunities that go along with them;
2. service industries. no matter how you slice it, if you want your customers to be happy you're going to hire as many waitresses/busboys as needed to serve them efficiently - where I'm going with this is in a service industry the dynamics of job numbers are different than manufacturing for example.


Please find - "Economics In One Lesson" and read " the curse of machinery"

Technological advancements cannot and do not put people out of work.

Few keys points to remember

  • the goal of work is production; work is not an end in and of itself , it is the means to an end.
  • ask - what happens when a business man is able to find new ways of improving efficiencies and lays people off ? what does he do with this new profits ??
  • are you currently fully materially satisfied ? Is the world ?

Consider the above.


I heard that somewhere in Europe(I think it might have been Sweden), they were moving towards having a full part time work force. Obviously this wouldn't be for all jobs, but it mentioned how a lot of people would rather work to live, than live to work.


First point- I'm very confused as to why you felt the need to bring that up. My entire premise wouldn't be possible if I didn't agree with that.
Second point- The argument, of course, is that he would spend it to create more jobs. However, there are two issues with this argument, part of which I already addressed above in the post that was too long for anyone to read.

  1. Most people sitting on top of the major profits are investing it. Sometimes, yes, they invest in business. However, they also invest it in things all over the world (vacations, keep sakes, etc), and lastly they simply let a lot of it exist in a pile which isn't going to be spent any time soon. That pile grows, but doesn't stimulate new opportunities if the person with the pile already has enough to meet all of his desires in the amount of time allotted in a day (think old money).

  2. If the person does create new job opportunities with their spending, it's unlikely that the unemployed masses are going to magically wander into the field where the money is unless there's a system directing them there. Right now, there are a lot of people poking around in the dark. The market is MUCH too vast for people to clearly see where new opportunities are. Classic supply and demand economics works best when there's a lot of transparency in all systems, which you can't have when there are hundreds of different ways of advertising for people and when there are too many fields for all to be common knowledge. This prevents a job seeker from being able to solve their own problem as classic economics proposes they should.


I've heard that. It's definitely one option.


Good points. I've been thinking about this nearly all day and came to the conclusion that the problem is, the job industry is too big for the people in to be able to see where the opportunities are. For instance, I recently was told by a person in the field that agricultural science is currently growing at a pace where it would be impossible to graduate enough people in the next few years to fill all of the jobs available. However, you never hear advisers saying that.

What we need is a system with all of the job information, accurate, in one place, and compiled in a way that's easy to understand. That would stimulate the economy in a real way. I'm currently thinking it would have to be a computer program with access to all of the department of revenues info, info from all of the colleges regarding how many are enrolled in what major, and access to many of the private hiring sites in addition to the public ones, so that a complete picture of the needs of all industries can be presented to everyone.