From ProleWiki, the proletarian encyclopedia
A robotic arm which is able to perform manual tasks at a higher efficiency than human workers, with higher uptime (ability to work 24/7, unlike human workers who require rest and leisure time)
Meme demonstrating the irrationality of the capitalist economic system; heightened technological progress shouldn't result in human misery, it should result in the liberation of the workers from their toils.

Automation describes a wide range of technologies that reduce human intervention in processes, typically in the realm of economic production.

Under capitalist economic relations, these labor-saving technologies threaten job security of workers and thus lower wages or reduce them to zero altogether. Manual laborers are in competition with machines[1], and knowledge workers are in competition with information systems.[2][3] This results in technological unemployment, where workers become unemplloyed through no fault of their own. The bourgeoisie has coined the sinister term "useless class" for these people.

Under a socialist economic system, labor-saving technologies can be used to enhance the quality of life for the working class by reducing work hours, enhancing societal productivity, and moving towards the immense abundance of post-scarcity.[4]

Relevant quotes[edit | edit source]

Che Guevara[edit | edit source]

Che Guevara, the revolutionary who helped to liberate Cuba from US imperialism, said the following regarding the relationship between workers and machines:

We must remember that machines do not, as in the capitalist system, compete with workers or enslave workers. Workers must view machines as the liberators of their force. Machines are placed at the service of workers as soon as the exploitation of man by man stops. And that is what we are striving for: we are trying to turn machines into liberating instruments of peasants, so they will have more time for leisure, so they will have more time to study, to develop in every sense, to achieve the most important thing we must achieve: individuals developed to the full, this is the aim we are all struggling for.[5]

Stephen Hawking[edit | edit source]

Stephen Hawking was a world-renowned theoretical physicist and cosmologist who has contributed significantly to both fields. The following quote is from a Reddit reply he wrote towards the end of his life:

If machines produce everything we need, the outcome will depend on how things are distributed. Everyone can enjoy a life of luxurious leisure if the machine-produced wealth is shared, or most people can end up miserably poor if the machine-owners successfully lobby against wealth redistribution. So far, the trend seems to be toward the second option, with technology driving ever-increasing inequality.[6]

Further reading[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]