Should people consider having a revolution?

Should people consider having a revolution? Joe Zott 27 Jun 2023 - Joe Zott

The term “revolution” has many connotations and can mean different things to different people. In the context of widespread economic displacement due to AI and automation, revolution can be interpreted in a few ways.

  1. Economic Revolution: This could be understood as individuals, communities, and societies pushing for a significant shift in the economic system in response to these changes. This could involve advocating for policies like universal basic income (UBI), worker retraining programs, or increased regulation of AI and automation to protect jobs.

  2. Technological Revolution: In another sense, people might embrace the technological revolution by equipping themselves with the skills needed to thrive in the new economy. As mentioned in the previous response, this could include upskilling or reskilling, lifelong learning, or even starting businesses that leverage AI and automation.

  3. Social Revolution: This could refer to broader changes in societal attitudes and norms in response to the changes brought by AI and automation. This might involve promoting greater social safety nets, more inclusive economic policies, or a shift in attitudes towards work and leisure.

While some people might interpret “revolution” as a call for more confrontational or disruptive actions, it’s important to note that peaceful and constructive approaches are generally more effective in bringing about lasting change. Dialogue, advocacy, and collaboration between different sectors of society - including workers, employers, educators, governments, and tech companies - will be crucial in navigating the changes brought by AI and automation.

Finally, it’s worth remembering that while AI and automation pose significant challenges, they also offer opportunities for improving productivity, solving complex problems, and enhancing quality of life. The goal should be to harness these benefits while mitigating the downsides, rather than rejecting these technologies outright.