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Taxing robots: Bill Gates proposes tax on automation to fund human jobs

Discussion in 'World Economy' started by thesolar65, Feb 20, 2017.

  1. thesolar65

    thesolar65 2nd Lieutant FULL MEMBER

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    Robots that steal human jobs should pay taxes, Microsoft co-founder and philanthropist Bill Gates has said.

    "Certainly there will be taxes that relate to automation. Right now, the human worker who does, say, $50,000 worth of work in a factory, that income is taxed and you get income tax, social security tax, all those things," Gates told Quartz website.

    "If a robot comes in to do the same thing, you'd think that we'd tax the robot at a similar level," said Gates, one of the world's richest men.


    Gates said he believes that governments should tax companies' use of robots, as a way to at least temporarily slow the spread of automation and to fund other types of employment.

    The 61-year-old philanthropist said a robot tax could finance jobs, taking care of elderly people or working with kids in schools, for which needs are unmet and to which humans are particularly well suited.

    He argued that governments must oversee such programmes rather than relying on businesses, in order to redirect the jobs to help people with lower incomes.

    "If you can take the labour that used to do the things automation replaces, and financially and training-wise and fulfilment-wise have that person go off and do these other things, then you're net ahead," said Gates, one of the leading players in artificial-intelligence technology.

    "But you can't just give up that income tax, because that's part of how you've been funding that level of human workers," he said.

    The web portal reported that the idea is not totally theoretical as EU lawmakers had considered a proposal to tax robot owners to pay for training for workers who lose their jobs, though on February 16 the legislators ultimately rejected it.

    "You ought to be willing to raise the tax level and even slow down the speed" of automation, Gates said.

    "Exactly how you'd do it, measure it, you know, it's interesting for people to start talking about now," Gates said.

    Talking about the tax on robots, Gates said, "Some of it can come on the profits that are generated by the labour-saving efficiency there. Some of it can come directly in some type of robot tax. I don't think the robot companies are going to be outraged that there might be a tax. It's OK."

    http://www.business-standard.com/ar...mation-to-fund-human-jobs-117021900415_1.html
    I support this.

    What's your views?

    @Levina @PARIKRAMA @Rain Man @ranjeet @randomradio @SrNair
     
  2. randomradio

    randomradio Mod Staff Member MODERATOR

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    Taxing robots will make you less competitive, so factory owners will simply relocate and sell their goods via exports.

    The only way to beat automation is upskilling. If you have 10 years of experience in software and all you're doing is stuff that even new graduates can do, then you deserve to have your job taken from you.
     
    A_poster and INDIAN NATIONALIST like this.
  3. VCheng

    VCheng RIDER GEO STRATEGIC ANALYST

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    Let us start with the basics: What qualifies as a robot or not, for the proposed tax? Industrial automation takes many forms.
     
    dadeechi and GSLV Mk III like this.
  4. thesolar65

    thesolar65 2nd Lieutant FULL MEMBER

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    then what about universal basic income? How we are going to implement it in future?

    http://basicincome.org/news/2017/02/elon-musk-reaffirms-ubi-prediction-world-government-summit/
    http://www.hindustantimes.com/india...pes-jaitley/story-ImP4JMbOVPK7fuNC6MjthN.html
     
  5. Rain Man

    Rain Man 2nd Lieutant POLITICAL ANALYST

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    Governments have to tax increasing automation in some way, blue collar jobs are most affected by it....there is no other way..
     
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  6. INDIAN NATIONALIST

    INDIAN NATIONALIST Major SENIOR MEMBER

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    If there are taxes on automation, the revenue they generate should be heavily directed toward improving the quality of human capital to serve in fields in which there will still remain demand for human input with increased automation; a.k.a., thought-work that requires creative and innovative skill.

    Given the relatively low cost of Indian labor, I think it is conceivable that businesses will choose to remain in India, even if taxed, so long as we can maximize the quality/cost function of the talent pool they access only domestically.
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2017
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  7. SvenSvensonov

    SvenSvensonov MILITARY STRATEGIST

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    A luddites guide to remaining more competitive then the robot that wants your job:

    [​IMG]
     
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  8. dadeechi

    dadeechi Lieutenant FULL MEMBER

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    Anything that

    1) Uses Software

    2) Has Electronics

    3) Powered by Energy

    Using Computers, Calculators, Machines, digital equipment all should be taxed or replaced.

    ==> Accountants replace computers and software with books and folders to close the books

    ==> Workers should be using hand chisels and tools to build products

    ==> Tailors should stitch clothes without sewing machines

    ==> Electric cookers and ovens should be replaced with coal based stoves and mud/stone oven

    ==> All motor vehicles should be replaced with animal/human pulled carts


    Life would be so cool once we get rid of all these robots...
     
  9. VCheng

    VCheng RIDER GEO STRATEGIC ANALYST

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    Why not just outlaw electricity. Problem solved. :D
     
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  10. INDIAN NATIONALIST

    INDIAN NATIONALIST Major SENIOR MEMBER

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    During the cold-war, the Soviets developed boarding-school systems in which children identified as gifted could live in highly controlled environments to cultivate their talents and receive accelerated education. The purpose was to ensure the Soviets would remain at the forefront of science and technology for future generations.

    I would be interested in India implementing similar program nationwide, to select gifted students at an early age and raise them largely within controlled environment engineered to develop their technical skill to full potential, same or superior to what the most advanced societies could offer.

    I am certain this is largely the direction modern society will go in terms of child rearing in the future, for children of all demonstrated competencies. India would simply be ahead of the curve if it could perhaps develop a successful pilot program on a state level which could then be scaled and implemented at the national level. This would probably be funded by a mix of private and public funding. Initially it may be necessary to also take on any student from wealthy backgrounds who can pay into the system in order to subsidize boarding school costs for gifted children from lower-class backgrounds.
     
  11. randomradio

    randomradio Mod Staff Member MODERATOR

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    Those who are educated will find ways to get around automation. By getting into evening college, distance education, online education, or just going back to university etc.

    Those who are not will get screwed without UBI. But UBI has to be a temporary measure, what's more important is training the blue collar workers to move up the value chain through skills building programs. So give them UBI until they get a new job, preferably a more skilled job. Money is better spent that way.

    School level education by the govt has to become completely free and compulsory, while also ensuring quality.
     
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  12. randomradio

    randomradio Mod Staff Member MODERATOR

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    Half of them will be from reserved classes. The other half will be sons of politicians and businessmen.

    This is India bro. Nothing happens in the govt without reservation.
     
  13. dadeechi

    dadeechi Lieutenant FULL MEMBER

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    Energy includes generating and using electricity..:biggthumpup:
     

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