Most jobs AI is gonna take over were not real jobs when the Beatles recorded Sgt Peppers

The evolution of technology, particularly artificial intelligence (AI), has sparked discussions about the future of work and the impact on various job sectors. A poignant observation is that many of the jobs AI is poised to take over were non-existent during significant historical moments. For instance, when The Beatles recorded their iconic album “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band,” professions like social media manager, app developer, data scientist, and genetic counselor were unimaginable. However, as technology advances, these once-novel jobs are now at risk of being automated by AI.

It’s a testament to the dynamic nature of the job market—technology gives rise to new opportunities, but it also has the capacity to render certain occupations obsolete. The phrase “tech gaveth and tech taketh away” encapsulates this phenomenon succinctly. While technological advancements have created numerous new roles and industries, they also pose a threat to traditional job sectors.

Conversely, there are what can be termed “anti-fragile” jobs—roles that have endured across centuries, adapting to changes in technology, society, and the economy. These jobs have demonstrated resilience, evolving alongside advancements while maintaining their fundamental purpose and nature. Tasks and tools may have evolved over time, but the core essence of these occupations remains intact.

However, there’s a caveat to the stability of anti-fragile jobs. Despite their resilience, there’s always a numerus clausus—a limited number—associated with them. These roles often have barriers to entry, whether it’s through formal education, licensure requirements, or access to resources. This limitation creates a competitive landscape where individuals vie for these stable positions, contributing to societal tensions and conflicts—what some might call the “culture war.”

The paradox where individuals on both ends of the political spectrum can simultaneously express support for and skepticism towards technology, all while lacking a deep understanding of its complexities and implications.

Indeed, it’s not uncommon for both liberals and conservatives to exhibit contradictory attitudes towards technology. For example, a liberal might champion the use of renewable energy and advocate for greater regulation of big tech companies to protect privacy, while also expressing concerns about the impact of automation on jobs and the widening digital divide. Similarly, a conservative might embrace free-market principles and celebrate technological innovation as drivers of economic growth, while also expressing reservations about the cultural impact of social media and the influence of tech giants on political discourse.

Despite these conflicting perspectives, what unites them is a shared tendency to overlook the intricacies of technology and its broader societal implications. This lack of understanding can lead to inconsistent policy positions, misguided interventions, and missed opportunities for constructive dialogue and collaboration.

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