The time we’re living in is being called the Technology Revolution. It’s given us personal computers and cell phones and devices that, we all agree, make our lives altogether better. Everything is more efficient, more connected. Things can be ordered to appear at your door, getting lost in your car is almost impossible, and you don’t have to wait a whole day (or even hours) to find out what a celebrity thinks about something.
But while life has become more “frictionless,” old-fashioned concerns like wages and buying power haven’t been helped by Tech. On the contrary, they’ve been hurt. Unlike the Industrial Revolution that preceded it, the Technology Revolution has not lifted the mass of humanity out of poverty.
The Technology Revolution has coincided with an extended period of American economic decline. It’s coincided with the systematic evisceration of the Middle Class. It’s coincided with a period of wealth inequality that many are now considering dangerous, as in untenable and unsustainable.
Thankfully, Tech is smart. We can engineer solutions. Apps will be built. Algorithms will be written. Dilemmas will be automated. Instead of us Americans doing any sort of physical labor, we’ll figure out how to comprehensively colonize a distant race of worker drones while calling the whole arrangement “globalization.” And then we highly-educated knowledge-based workers will be free to design things, making everything sleeker and slicker and ineffably cooler. We’ll all be designers! Even our farmers and plumbers.
Tech is what sets us all free to live a life of the mind. The really great thing about the Technology Revolution is that it gets more affordable annually. More processing power and memory and speed costs less. Tech will eventually make smartness cheap enough that our slaves can afford to be smart, too. And then all the planet’s work can be done by our iPhones. Problem solved! What a wonderful world, indeed.