Monday, February 12, 2018

His 2020 Campaign Message: The Robots Are Coming - The New York Times

His 2020 Campaign Message: The Robots Are Coming - The New York Times



Among
the many, many Democrats who will seek the party’s presidential
nomination in 2020, most probably agree on a handful of core issues:
protecting DACA, rejoining the Paris climate agreement, unraveling
President Trump’s tax breaks for the wealthy.
Only one of them will be focused on the robot apocalypse.

That candidate is Andrew Yang, a well-connected New York businessman who is mounting
a longer-than-long-shot bid for the White House. Mr. Yang, a former
tech executive who started the nonprofit organization Venture for
America, believes that automation and advanced artificial intelligence
will soon make millions of jobs obsolete — yours, mine, those of our
accountants and radiologists and grocery store cashiers. He says America
needs to take radical steps to prevent Great Depression-level
unemployment and a total societal meltdown, including handing out
trillions of dollars in cash.

“All
you need is self-driving cars to destabilize society,” Mr. Yang, 43,
said over lunch at a Thai restaurant in Manhattan last month, in his
first interview about his campaign. In just a few years, he said, “we’re
going to have a million truck drivers out of work who are 94 percent
male, with an average level of education of high school or one year of
college.”

“That
one innovation,” he continued, “will be enough to create riots in the
street. And we’re about to do the same thing to retail workers, call
center workers, fast-food workers, insurance companies, accounting
firms.”
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