One of Donald Trump’s ongoing promises has been jobs. And lots of them. Specifically in manufacturing. However, he’s also pushing for innovation, especially here in the U.S. during “Made in America Week”. There’s one little problem, though. The jobs Trump wants to push are directly at odds with his message of innovation. And that’s becoming obvious as more and more companies turn to technology to compete with online retailers
What “Jobs” does the President Actually Make?
The economy is doing just fine under President Trump. Nowhere is that more evident than in the stock market, which has soared to record high after record high after record high. Unemployment is steady, hovering around 4.5 percent. And the dollar has gotten so strong that the president has had to speak against it to weaken our currency before the economy suffered as a result. Yet, Trump is still talking about job creation. But here’s the thing, companies aren’t looking to create more jobs, they’re looking to create more efficiency, and that comes through technology.
— Scott Belford (@myesoteric) May 22, 2017
Case in point, Wal-Mart.
While the robots we think of from movies are still years away, more basic robots are already replacing human labor in restaurants such as McDonalds, and retailers like Wal-Mart, especially as a result of a growing cry for a $15 minimum wage. These bots are replacing thousands of jobs across the country, many of which will hit Trump’s main voter base. Wal-Mart, for example, is installing Cash360 machines in almost all their 4,700 U.S. stores.
The Cash360 machine counts money exponentially faster than a human, which is a specific job Wal-Mart has always hired for. Now, instead of paying $13/hr for a money counter, the machine does the same work significantly more efficiently, making those jobs obsolete. While the company claims those employees will be moved to new positions, the fact is most of them can’t do any other jobs and are forced to leave the company.
That’s just one example.
The more routine a job is, the more likely it is to be replaced. Ordering a burger at McDonalds through a digital touch screen. Self checkout lanes at the grocery store. Toll takers. Even autonomous vehicles, which will replace delivery drivers in a few years.
Can Trump’s policies drive manufacturing jobs back to America? Watch this news clip from Fox Business:
And the biggest group who have routine jobs? Trump’s supporters. Especially in the manufacturing jobs he keeps promising. Innovation and job creation are currently at odds with each other — as long as we’re looking at the same jobs. Moving forward, we need more innovative jobs, not just innovation within existing jobs.
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