Will working be necessary in 2070?
closes 2070

Will a typical American citizen be required to work in order to live comfortably in 2070?

Comfortably defined as subjectively equivalent to the standard of living of the median American in 2023.

Resolves ambiguously is the US does not exist at time of resolution.

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Sort by:
AdamK avatar
AdamKpredicts NO

Clarifying: do you mean typical biological American citizen? If there is a functional AI population in the billions working while most humans can leisure, does this resolve NO?

1 reply
AdamK avatar
AdamKbought Ṁ40 of NO
jameso avatar
james o

The typical American citizen, if America continues to exist, will be an AI whose whole purpose is to work. For the biohuman citizen, work would pointless from a financial perspective.

brp avatar
brpbought Ṁ100 of YES

I just bet yes. Here's my rationale: even in the post-AGI or post-uploading world, the resources of the Earth will be finite, and at least some necessities will be scarce. Trade is the only computationally efficient way to prioritize the allocation of scarce resources, so it follows that a market economy will exist. People's time (or computational time, if you believe in uploading) is also a scarce resource, so it follows that there will be a market for trade in the time of people. A labor market.

The thing that could negate this would be some sort of UBI. But with the current standard of living being unsustainable (both environmentally and economically, as it is financed by debt and dollar-bond sales), it seems unlikely to resolve positively. It would be good, however, to come up with an objective metric for standard of living. Obviously if we are all wireheading while an AI runs the world, it will be subjectively better...

Tomoffer avatar
Tom Offersold Ṁ78 of YES

Glad I sold up - regardless of my position, this is a volatile market!

JakobBrunker avatar
Jakob Brünkerbought Ṁ100 of NO

How will it resolve if the US exists but without humans?

2 replies
JakobBrunker avatar
Jakob Brünkerpredicts NO

@JakobBrunker wait I guess that means you're not gonna be around to resolve it

MartinRandall avatar
Martin Randall

@JakobBrunker Maybe a trustworthy AI will do it for us.


Frogswap avatar
Frogswapbought Ṁ100 of NO

AGI by 2070 is pretty much a given, which leaves physical labor and elected positions. That means mass unemployment of the middle class and downward wage pressure on the employed, which will put a ton of political capital behind policies like UBI while elected officials depend on reelection more than ever. Add in robotics and it's a sure thing.

Maybe we don't get AGI, or we don't get robots and we shorten the work week to raise employment, or institute a works program instead of UBI. But if I add up those probabilities, I still can't find a 20% chance of Yes.

Tomoffer avatar
Tom Offerbought Ṁ60 of YES

Yes because MOLOCH SAYS SO

B avatar
benjsmithbought Ṁ10 of NO

Median 2023 is a fairly low bar. How much income do you need to live as well as the median American did in 1975?

6 replies
MartinRandall avatar
Martin Randall

@B Quite a bit because living like the median 1975 American is illegal.

Ouroboros avatar
Calibrated Chameleonpredicts YES

@MartinRandall could you elaborate?

MartinRandall avatar
Martin Randall

@SpiralChameleon for example, childcare: 1975 American could skimp on car seats, let kids walk to school, etc. 1975 standard housing is no longer legal to build. 1975 standard cars are not road legal. Many examples.

B avatar
benjsmithpredicts NO

@MartinRandall I think barring the occasional boneheaded Texas cop it's still legal to let your kids walk to school, right?

MartinRandall avatar
Martin Randall

@B Depends on the age, the school, the distance, the state, the route, etc.

B avatar
benjsmithpredicts NO

@MartinRandall I think in most cases it would be legal for a kid to walk most routes that kids walked in 1975.

ShitakiIntaki avatar
Wamba Ivanhoe

"typical American citizen" seems ambiguous already. Presumably median American is a reference to median income.

Would the criteria essentially be that

"In 2070 a lifestyle equivalent to that of a median income American in 2023, will require no work on the part of the individual."

And presumably "equivalent to that of a median income American in 2023" means having access to the same level of resources which the 2023 buying power of a median income American has whether that requires adjustment for inflation or evaluation of some in kind portfolio of goods and services.

Julian avatar

Given that this would involve the end of capitalism I kinda doubt that the US would still exist in a scenario where it's not necessary

evergreenemily avatar
evergreenbought Ṁ13 of YES

YES as insurance.