Up ahead

Click. Click. Scratch. Hummmmmmmm. Clatter clatter. Pause. Hummmmmm. If you sit there quietly and listen, you will hear them out there. Gathering. Arranging themselves. Approaching, approaching. IS THAT ONE ON YOUR LEG???

It’s not going to be like it was. It never is, but it’s really REALLY not going to be like it was. They are coming, they are HERE. Yes it’s ROBOT DAY again here in this blog. I’ve been consulting my crystal ball on this subject and have been forecasting BIG CHANGES because of robots. But now my forecasts have improved, because now I have a ROBOT making them FOR ME! The two big things that are coming are robot cars, which will completely change transportation in cities, before 2020! The other thing, the bigger one, is robots will take your job. The robot who will take your job will not drive to work in a robot car, the robot who will take you job doesn’t go home at night. Implications?

Oh there sure are some! We have to stop thinking about what we can do that robots won’t be able to because the answer is in: NOTHING. This means we need to start thinking about how to distribute the wealth some more, because it’s the robot OWNERS who are going to profit from this. You better figure out how to own some robots, or devise a wealth-redistribution system that would make Karl Marx look like Adam Smith. Also, the robots will solve the demographic problem facing the Social Security and Medicare, because we will have, say, 100 robots working for every retiree. Even when ALL the workers retire because the robots are doing the work! I say it’s time we started worrying about too MUCH leisure time again. It’s been too long. All this will reduce the need for people to procreate to make an ever-increasing workforce, so population will fall. This will take the pressure off the environment, allowing the planet and its other species to recover. Who knows, this could all end up as the beautiful mature phase of human civilization.

Or if you prefer to fight the tide of history, there’s always religious fundamentalism (fundamentalism of many different and mutually-contradictory creeds), that could end up fighting everything and everybody, as they have done so well in the past. Should be interesting!

Tom Toles is the editorial cartoonist for The Post and writes the Tom Toles blog.
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