Will Robots Replace the Working Class in the not-so-distant future?

September 29th 2020 | كتبها

Over the last few years, robots have taken over hundreds of thousands of jobs in manufacturing and the services sector, primarily in the automotive, electrical, and electronics industries. The photo attached to this post shows a robot working in a hospital.

According to one study in May 2020, ” the number of robots in use worldwide multiplied three-fold over the past two decades, to 2.25 million. Trends suggest the global stock of robots will multiply even faster in the next 20 years, reaching as many as 20 million by 2030, with 14 million in China alone” (Oxford Economics, How Robots Change the World).

China, Japan, the United States, S. Korea, and Germany, according to another study in 2018, have been the forerunners in installing robots annually, with China superseding any other nation in that regard with over 150 thousand robots installed in its factories and establishments per year, and with Japan coming in second at over 55 thousand per year, and the USA coming in third at over 40 thousand per year (Top 5 countries using industrial robots in 2018, Steve Crowe).

“In South Korea, there are nearly 800 robots per 10,000 manufacturing employees. In the automotive sector, this figure exceeds 2,000 installations per 10,000 employees” (Industrial Robots, Melania Scerra). Those stats are for 2018 by the way, and the numbers are rising worldwide.

In short, robots are taking over jobs in manufacturing, transportation, inventory management, sales, and even health and education, rendering millions of “menial jobs” irrelevant, even in low-wage countries. Workers are no longer mere extensions of the machine as Marx described them in the 19th century. They are simply becoming irrelevant in the 21st century. Tedious work is becoming increasingly outmoded. Therefore, those “extensions” can be done away with.

Will this trend prevail, leaving maybe hundreds of millions of workers and employees worldwide irrelevant historically, just like ATM’s replaced bank employees and the Ford assembly line replaced hundreds of thousands of workers worldwide who used to make wooden carriages?

There is no question that robots increase general productivity, but how will they affect the structure of human society, and who will benefit from the rise of the machines, and who will lose?

That is the question..

Ibrahim Alloush

Will Robots Replace the Working Class in the not-so-distant future?Over the last few years, robots have taken over…

Geplaatst door Ibrahim Alloush op Maandag 28 september 2020

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