What would happen if I found a way to completely automate my job or make my job obsolete? I think of the movie Office Space. Who in their right mind would do that, in this economy even (smiley face)? Would showing my boss how to make my own job obsolete make me obsolete? I would think not. But still, it doesn’t make sense. It’s not the American way. If someone can get away with slacking off for eight hours and not get caught then that person should never let anyone know, by any means. That person would have a backstage pass, the secret to a magic trick. Plus, making one’s job obsolete would put one’s income on the line. Would Unemployment consider it being laid off, or fired? Most people wouldn’t find a way to make their job obsolete.
Look at cancer researchers. (No offense to any cancer survivors, treatments are one thing, finding a cure is another.)
Without getting into too many specifics, according to the National Cancer Institute’s website nearly $5 billion goes into funding each year for cancer research. Most cancer researchers rely on grants for their income. The average salary for these researchers is about $75,000 a year. Would these researchers, who undoubtedly prefer lab work to practicing medicine to the public (a possible alternative), knowingly find a way to make their job obsolete? Essentially, isn’t the cancer researcher’s job to find a cure for the disease they are researching and thus put themselves out of a job? Or maybe the incentive to finding a cure is the patent they would get, but they would still be out of work. And a curious mind like a researcher may find life unbearable without a subject to hold his/her interest. Of course, there will always be more diseases to research and find cures for–or a new disease could be “found” which would then need research.
I’m not saying the cancer research institution is corrupt. Or am I?
But I may say that the education system is corrupt. Practically all traditional universities are “non-profit,” yet big money goes into and comes from athletics and alumni associations, while presidents get six-figure salaries and students pay higher tuition. Universities are also willing to take out-of-state and international students because they pay even higher tuition rates. A few years ago Yale received some $70 million in grants, with tuition on top of that.
Non-profit = not for profit, right? Wouldn’t this mean that society’s best interests are in mind and not the people working for the business?
Back to where I started…if we can find a way to make our own jobs obsolete then we would not be obsolete, just the job. This doesn’t mean that people are obsolete. But, if a population grows so much, then statistically there will be more people that may be seen as “unimportant” or “obsolete” to others. There are over 7 billion people in the world with a little over 1,200 billionaires in the world.
If a job that can be automated is obsolete, then are college grads obsolete to a university president? There are more college grads who are unemployed right now than ever in U.S. history. So what did the university do besides take tuition from those students? We know they didn’t make a profit, because they’re non-profit, and we know a university’s job (to educate) is not obsolete–just like a cancer researcher’s job is not obsolete.
Who are the important people in this world that judge whether or not someone else is unimportant or obsolete?
You are important.
You are not obsolete.
(Worship life, not money.)