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Opinion

Readers React: Artificial intelligence will make no job safe. We must provide for everyone’s needs, regardless of employment

FILE - In this March 14, 2014 file photo, automated robots build a 2015 Chrysler 200 at the Sterling
Robots build a Chrysler sedan at the Sterling Heights Assembly Plant in Sterling Heights, Mich.
(Paul Sancya / Associated Press)

To the editor: I’m glad that some folks at the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis can see that automation is causing an employment crisis in America. But I am disappointed by the suggested solution to train more people in robotics and artificial intelligence, as if those fields could ever provide enough work to replace all the other jobs people do.

The power of artificial intelligence is such that very few jobs will be safe. The truth is that automation is currently being driven less by a desire to make people’s lives easier or better than by a desire to cut labor costs. This is a problem as long as people still need money to live and still need to work to get money.

What we need is a world where everyone’s basic needs are met regardless of how much or little they work, and the kind and amount of work that people do is determined by society’s needs and by individual talents, abilities and desires, rather than by efficiency, competition and profit.

Carol Wuenschell, Arcadia

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To the editor: Unfortunately, I am in the position of defending our dear leader when it comes to putting tariffs on certain Chinese imports. It’s nice to make suggestions for ways to reduce our trade deficit, but someone is actually doing something.

Many Americans don’t want “leadership in free trade and globalization.” The nature of human beings is that some of our citizens simply can’t be trained to be “better in automation and artificial intelligence,” and even if they could, this is a long-term and iffy solution to a problem that is happening now.

As for “information and technology” being the “most exportable U.S. products in the future,” these things are being offshored right now.

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There are human issues as well. Many of us don’t like having to buy products made in a country controlled by one repressive political party. We would like to buy from our fellow citizens, who pay taxes on their salaries.

Lewis Livingston, Orange

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