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Equality and the Future Socio-Economic Class

Updated: Feb 24

A train in an old Japanese mountain village.

In an ideal world, everyone would be able to afford the necessities of life based on the time and energy they dedicate to work. It is unfair that a worker who is willing to work overtime may not be able to afford the minimum requirements for living, while those who work far less than them, can.

The problem with capitalism is that it creates a huge gap between those who know how to make a fortune and those who have dedicated most of their lives to work, just to sustain themselves or their families.

There are also those who have a harder time making money due to their disabilities, seen or unseen, which leaves them no option but to apply for social security, and will not necessarily find themselves being able to do more than that.

With the rise of AI as a far more competent and cost-effective workforce than humans, a new social class shall be created out of circumstance — the financially-unnecessary people, those who have better replacements for, theoretically, every job they can or are able to do.

Additionally, this class might even be increased in size as AI will be able to replace more and more jobs that were once considered exclusive to humans. This includes art, medicine, and so forth, and not only basic, more menial jobs.

This would lead to the inevitability of creating a universal basic income for any human being whose competence as a worker is far inferior from his machine/robotic counterpart. It is inevitable because if people will not have any money to sustain themselves, riots and insurgencies might happen across the globe, leading to the inevitability of all unemployed to live off government money, at least of just having a living wage and no more, for the rest of our job-replaced lives.

This leads to the conclusion that we should prepare both financially and mentally to the possibility that we won't enjoy the expenses we are currently able to afford, thus the importance of giving up some of our financial freedom.

Perhaps eventually, most if not all jobs will be replaced by more revenue-generating AI, leading to the conclusion that while it is considered inferior to us, it may emerge and become a new socioeconomic class, leading to inequality between man and machine.

Regardless, the equality of the law and of opportunities should not be exclusive but universal. Those born with one or more certain disadvantages should be supported to receive the same rights as everyone else, even in a world where a universal basic income will be humanity's primary source of income.

There should also be consideration of something else: if we wish to promote and advance humanity's achievements, there should also be funding for education and any other program that will improve the quality of the human material. It is unfair, for example, that Africa, the world's second biggest continent, still remains in the shadows of civilization. Much of the African population, I believe, can make great contributions to many fields if only they had more opportunities—opportunities that we Westerners may take for granted.

Once a basic universal income is provided, we will then have the freedom to do anything we like instead of finding ourselves doing jobs we either don't like or even despise. I myself, as an autistic man, earn mostly money from the government due to welfare, and if I did not have this money I am so thankful for, I would not be able to be a productive philosopher. Just imagine the opportunities, once AI might replace most of our jobs, thus ending the race for the next monthly paycheck.

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Tomasio A. Rubinshtein, Philosocom's Founder & Writer

I am a philosopher from Israel, author of several books in 2 languages, and Quora's Top Writer of the year 2018. I'm also a semi-hermit who has decided to dedicate his life to writing and sharing my articles across the globe. Several podcasts on me, as well as a radio interview, have been made since my career as a writer. More information about me can be found here.

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