Sunday, January 3, 2010

Peak Labor: Surplus Populations are here to stay

Today, I'm afraid, the oligarchs belief is that there is a "surplus population", of course that's inevitable as machines took over most of the physical work, and computers/telecoms took over most of the mental work-- making all the routine information jobs unnecessary.

Compare this with the 20th century belief that there was a problem of "surplus resources", a surplus that suppressed prices all the way up the production chain, and threatened the entire architecture of rent capture implicit in corporate capitalism. Example: the Iraq War was built and executed by many segments of the military complex and wall street-- but its oil segment was intent on two things: the most prominent was destroying oil capacity to jack up prices. The other component of course was to literally capture the ownership and control over the oil reserves.

So we've gone from surplus resources to surplus labor, in a big way.

There seems a mathematical collision between the size of human populations, which constantly increase, and the number of jobs available in an economy constructed around profit and minimizing labor costs. Like Peak Oil, the number of jobs available raced up to a Peak, and then drops sharply. So, the unemployed are supposed to go away, and disappear, and die quietly, I suppose.

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