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We Want Full Lives, Not Full Employment October 15, 2011

Posted by Summerspeaker in Anarchism, Technocracy, Transhumanism.
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If a household gets a washing machine you never hear the family member who used to do the laundry complain that this “puts them out of work.” But strangely if a similar situation occurs in society, it becomes a problem – unemployment – which can only be solved by inventing more jobs for people to do. While proposals to shorten the work week or for more government and corporate spending, seem at first sight to address the matter rationally. But such proposals only help to reinforce the illusion that most present day work is normal and necessary. The absurdity of 90% of existing job is never mentioned.

In a sane society the elimination of all the absurd jobs that serve no real purpose and the ones that directly and indirectly exist to promote and protect an organization of society that only benefits the top 1% could reduce the necessary task to such a trivial level. If we continue with the current system (with further outsourcing and automation) there will never be enough work for everyone.

We need to create another form of society, one in which people will decide on their own activity and production rather than being slaves to the “needs” of the economy. This is obviously a huge project, and the first steps are overcoming our isolation and submission (the number one weapon of the present system). At our occupation we are encouraging every one to join us and to organize themselves in order to continue and extend the struggle.

This comes from flyer printed by a local comrade who wishes to remain anonymous. This is the sort of economy transhumanists should take as a goal. The majority of toil arises from a production and distribution scheme that is profoundly irrational for the common good.  We can do so much better.

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Comments»

1. CMStewart - October 15, 2011

What are the criteria for an absurd job?

2. bruno - October 17, 2011

advertising is an absurd sector of production. Riot police is a job that only serves to protect the present organization of society.

whatever that is not necessary to provide a basic quality of living to everyone(necessities are agriculture, metallurgy, production of clothing, transportation, health care, etc), and is in the context of a hypothetical free society, undesirable, is an absurd job.
Ask yourself if what you and your friends do and if it is necessary or desirable. What does it amount to in current society. For example, teaching in present society doesn’t amount to much more than disciplining future obedient workers or specialist. Under a free society, where everyone shares in necessary labor, real learning and education could be a life-long project available to anyone who desires it thanks to the time liberated by industrialization and mechanization of necessary labor. and the products of society could be available to everyone to enjoy.

I recommend reading the works of the Situationist International (the title of this article, ‘We Want Full Lives, Not Full Employment ‘, comes from them) who wrote extensively about the new revolutionary project during the ’60s.

Here is one article dealing with this specific subject: http://www.bopsecrets.org/SI/12.selfman.htm

CMStewart - October 19, 2011

@bruno Thank you for the information.

So artists have “absurd jobs”? Or would their occupations be re-classified under an anti-absurdity system? Maybe a certain level of absurdity should be allowed, or even encouraged, in a full-spectrum society. I can’t imagine how empty my life would be without novels, poetry, music, paintings, sculptures, films, performance art . .


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