Sunday March 12, 2017

The Backlash against Bill Gates' Call for a Robot Tax

I feel like Gates was just shooting the shiet during that robot-tax interview, but I guess you can’t be a billionaire without people looking for a reason to put you down. Economists and other important folks are basically calling him a luddite whose ideas would hold back progress. But wait, isn’t this the same Bill who practically made computing mainstream and is on course to eradicate four major diseases? How about no more robots, problem solved.

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آ…the idea drew a lot of complaints that he was being naive. While Microsoft is a leader in artificial intelligence research, Gates’ critics label his tax notion as opposing progress, a neo-Luddite prescription for a 21st century dilemma. (The Luddites were British workers in cotton and wool mills who destroyed machinery they thought threatened their jobs.) "That’s how it comes across," as a Luddite solution, said economist Dean Baker, co-director at the Center for Economic and Policy Research. This "is a tax on productivity growth." The 1947-1973 period and the late 1990s were times of "mostly low unemployment and rapid wage growth" amid pell-mell productivity expansion, he noted.