Since I resumed paying attention to Samizdata, some of my favourite comments there have been from someone calling him/her self “Nullius in Verba”. The only drawback being the pseudonym, which I think always unpacks some of the punch in what gets said.
Here’s what Nullius in Verba, commenting on this posting today by Johnathan Pearce, says about the claim that automation will cause unemployment:
Automation generally results in unskilled jobs being automated and disappearing, skilled jobs being automated and becoming unskilled, and impossible jobs being made possible to the skilled with the aid of automation.
But people only look at what’s going to happen to the job they’ve got now, not what new job they could have in the future. So they’re always going to see automation as a problem in need of a political solution.
Most of the confusion about economics is caused by seeing only the obvious damage that something will do, while neglecting the more unpredictable – but just as real and in the long run more significant – good stuff that will also happen. Or, seeing only the obvious good of a certain measure, and neglecting the longer term harm.
Shame that NiV feels the need to use a pseudonym.