Monday, 8 August 2016

A Call for 3 DAY/24-HOUR WORK WEEK

Since the beginning of this 21st  century, specially from the last five years, a sudden surge of news media reporting, social media posts,  all warning about the upcoming unparalleled TECHNOLOGICAL UNEMPLOYMENT at our doorsteps as the result of the rapid advancement in the AI robotic automation. The IT professional experts, academics economic business leaders all voicing their apprehensions. The benchmark reference is the deep learning, self-driving autonomous vehicles, replacing human drivers. The  AI robots automation capable of  replacing human workers almost in every employment sector,  blue collar as well the white collar professional jobs. Many well-known  business, economic, forecasting agencies predict  that as much as 50% of the jobs in general will be lost to the robots in the coming two decades.

Most of the experts commonly agree that the advancement in the  AI autonomous robots can take away much of the present jobs that we see around us. However, most argue that like of the 19th century industrial revolution, the 21st century robot revolution will also create new kinds of jobs replacing the old ones. Therefore, they say, instead of thinking like the  19th century Luddites, we should learn from the history and believe that the new technologies while disposing the old jobs also will create new, better well-paid jobs but it will require new job skills. Therefore it is important that society should RE-TRAIN or re-educate the people who lost their job to equip them with new job skills so they will able get into the new jobs when made available. They also propose, higher more college education for the upcoming younger generation to prepare them for the future jobs.

However, this optimistic view of ‘significant amount of new job creation’, not shared equally by all. the in the field. Many the concerned experts disagree that this robotic automation technology can create any new jobs in significant numbers, their apprehension about this technological advancements, unlike the previous times will permanently illiminate most of the human jobs in the coming couple of decades. Because, in their opinion, the robots can do any new jobs with greater efficiently and with far lesser cost, resulting in massive unemployment. However,  they do not offer any comprehensive solution except for the unemployment benefit schemes including the Universal Basic Income (UBI) to prevent the masses falling below the poverty line until someone will come up with some novel solution.

With my due respect to their viewpoints, I like to say they basically lack the “Historical Perspective” of this situation blinding them from seeing  the ONLY possible scientific solution to tackle this upcoming future massive TECHNOLOGICAL UNEMPLOYMENT. I was a 29 years old worker when I foresaw this upcoming massive technological unemployment threat to the world working class in the future decades. The progressive solution that I put forward at that time was the GRADUAL REDUCTION IN WORKING HOURS STEP BY STEP FINALLY TO ZERO WORK. Today the problem and it solution has become obvious, however the concerned experts don’t seems to recognize it even it is shown right at front of them. To them I say, “people don’t see the solutions when their salaries depends on not seeing it”.

My book titled:  “An ALTERNATIVE to Marxian Scientific Socialism – The Theory Reduction in Working Hours (RWH),- A Demand 6 Hour Working Day” was published in the year 1981. As its title suggests, the main objective of this theory is to put forward an alternative to Marxian socialism. It basically proclaims that the labour RELATION (compulsions) on humans in order to obtain their means of subsistence or the WAGES, is the root cause of exploitation thereby, all the evils in the  human society including the widening of the gap between the haves and the have-nots. Therefore, along with the progress  of TECHNOLOGY, with its development of the productive forces, labor productivity, the oncoming AI robot automation provides a great opportunity for the Working Class in its historical “May Day” mission  to engage in step by step working hours. Thereby, the problems of widening income gap, massive unemployment and decrease in the workers real wages can kept under control while promoting the technological progress, until finally, completely ending abolishing the people's need of the wage-labor in the society. My revised name for this theory today is “Zero Work Theory” (ZWT).

The ZWT today sees that the Universal Basic Income (UBI)  as the early manifestation of abolition of work or the ZERO WORK for people who no more like to undergo the wage-labor exploitation. However the old campaign of Reduction In Working Hours needs to continues with the renewed radical demand for THREE-DAY/24/HOUR  WORK WEEK. Hereby I call upon all the working class union leaders contempries all over the world to unite under this demand in achieving the historical mission to get rid of the wage labour exploitation in the human society.

Valerian Texeira. Email:

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