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How Will The Swelling Middle Class Underclass Spend Their Time?

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I guess most people here are well aware that the middle class has been dying on its feet for a while, and that this will continue as more and more traditionally MC jobs are first outsourced and then automated out of the human race altogether.

This is eminently an issue with e.g. accountancy, with the legal profession and other supposed MC citadels not that far behind.

Now here's what I've been pondering: at present, the general public image of "welfare lifestyle" people (even if they're in that position unwillingly) is that they spend their daytimes watching Jeremy Kyle and similar junk TV; eat junk food; drink regularly; smoke frequently; dress slovenly; easily get into brawls with neighbours etc; do little or nothing to look after their homes; and generally live at a low cultural level, to say the least.

So here's the question folks: as the ranks of the hithero MC new unemployed greatly increase, how will THEY spend their free time? Will it be much as above, or will it be with plenty of reading online or at libraries, with serious cultural TV/online interaction such as this forum?

I suspect the latter, because the current underclass are basically children/grandchildren of people who would have been in manual industrial work 40 or more years ago, and back then they would have spent their relatively little free time boozing and on low grade TV, etc.

Whereas if the MC enters mass unemployment, won't they similarly just do more of what they currently do in their relatively limited free time?

Or is that going to degenerate as the years and decades go by?

Fire away folks.

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Been saying for years the MC will be chopped at least in half over a generation. They will largely go to Poor or Sub Poor - the latter have no income and no assets...

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More and more people will be doing work for free...meaning no money passes hands......now lets see how it is possible for inflation to unfold in any meaningful way under those circumstances.

We are not talking any kind of underclass, we are talking the technology class of the 21st century in its infancy. ;)

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It is not so bad MC members, just adjust and be quick about it.

All you need is a council house, a big garden, an old Japanese van, boxes full of clothes (bought in better days) and you`ve got it made.

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I guess most people here are well aware that the middle class has been dying on its feet for a while, and that this will continue as more and more traditionally MC jobs are first outsourced and then automated out of the human race altogether.

This is eminently an issue with e.g. accountancy, with the legal profession and other supposed MC citadels not that far behind.

Now here's what I've been pondering: at present, the general public image of "welfare lifestyle" people (even if they're in that position unwillingly) is that they spend their daytimes watching Jeremy Kyle and similar junk TV; eat junk food; drink regularly; smoke frequently; dress slovenly; easily get into brawls with neighbours etc; do little or nothing to look after their homes; and generally live at a low cultural level, to say the least.

So here's the question folks: as the ranks of the hithero MC new unemployed greatly increase, how will THEY spend their free time? Will it be much as above, or will it be with plenty of reading online or at libraries, with serious cultural TV/online interaction such as this forum?

I suspect the latter, because the current underclass are basically children/grandchildren of people who would have been in manual industrial work 40 or more years ago, and back then they would have spent their relatively little free time boozing and on low grade TV, etc.

Whereas if the MC enters mass unemployment, won't they similarly just do more of what they currently do in their relatively limited free time?

Or is that going to degenerate as the years and decades go by?

Fire away folks.

Many will top themselves sadly, they will not be emotionally equipped to deal with the reality of being expendable.

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There are many similarities between a long-term unemployed person reliant on the state to pay the bills, as a working person in a long-term job/employment reliant on their employer to pay their bills.

The brave person is the one who tries to make it on their own, being dependant on themselves and confident enough about their skills and abilities that they can sell to others who will pay the price......and no there is no holiday pay, sick pay, pension or a regular payment into a bank account to pay the bills at the end of the month. ;)

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One I know of does album reviews on Facebook of pretentious indie albums she collected as a student that nobody's heard of

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Emigrate?

Where to? As I said, in due course automation with sweep the entire globe.

Many will top themselves sadly, they will not be emotionally equipped to deal with the reality of being expendable.

Sadly I think that's right, yes - MCs are much more sensitive to the "shame" of joblessness, just as they are re. offences like speeding whereas the current underclass think nothing of doing much worse and being totally brazen about it.

However, "many" will still leave millions who live on. What of them?

McNinja's: Middle class, no income, no job, no assets.

Great original (?) take - one for a sig?

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I guess most people here are well aware that the middle class has been dying on its feet for a while, and that this will continue as more and more traditionally MC jobs are first outsourced and then automated out of the human race altogether.

This is eminently an issue with e.g. accountancy, with the legal profession and other supposed MC citadels not that far behind.

Now here's what I've been pondering: at present, the general public image of "welfare lifestyle" people (even if they're in that position unwillingly) is that they spend their daytimes watching Jeremy Kyle and similar junk TV; eat junk food; drink regularly; smoke frequently; dress slovenly; easily get into brawls with neighbours etc; do little or nothing to look after their homes; and generally live at a low cultural level, to say the least.

So here's the question folks: as the ranks of the hithero MC new unemployed greatly increase, how will THEY spend their free time? Will it be much as above, or will it be with plenty of reading online or at libraries, with serious cultural TV/online interaction such as this forum?

I suspect the latter, because the current underclass are basically children/grandchildren of people who would have been in manual industrial work 40 or more years ago, and back then they would have spent their relatively little free time boozing and on low grade TV, etc.

Whereas if the MC enters mass unemployment, won't they similarly just do more of what they currently do in their relatively limited free time?

Or is that going to degenerate as the years and decades go by?

Fire away folks.

No free time. Automation just creates more work.

Go to any business department today and ask them whether they need more resources. There is a ton of work to be done out there. And it will continue to be a ton for the foreseeable future.

As for accountants going out of business, don't make me laugh. The whole of accountancy is just rules for the sake of rules. Do you really think they are going to go out of business by not making up more rules and compliances that people have to adhere to ?

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No free time. Automation just creates more work.

I don't see how automation can create more work- if that were true no one would invest in automation. Jobs do seem to be created, but are they well paid jobs for the middle classes? Most seem to lower paid lower class jobs at the moment.

I think the perception in many workplaces that workload has increased has been in part due to manpower reductions driven by managers who are chasing bonus's rather than their day jobs of running the company.

Historically revolution has tended to be fermented by a disenfranchised middle class rather than the starving proles- so perhaps we will see an upsurge in radical political activity if too many middle class types find themselves with to much time on their hands?

Edited by wonderpup

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Historically revolution has tended to be fermented by a disenfranchised middle class rather than the starving proles- so perhaps we will see an upsurge in radical political activity if too many middle class types finds themselves with to much time on their hands?

Cue UKIP?

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Cue UKIP?

UKIP do seem to be tapping in to some vein of middle class angst- it's no longer only the union jack T shirt brigade they appeal to, which is why the Tories are panicking- something in the UKIP policy melange clearly resonates with some section of the middle class tory voters.

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I don't see how automation can create more work- if that were true no one would invest in automation. Jobs do seem to be created, but are they well paid jobs for the middle classes? Most seem to lower paid lower class jobs at the moment.

I think the perception in many workplaces that workload has increased has been in part due to manpower reductions driven by managers who are chasing bonus's rather than their day jobs of running the company.

Historically revolution has tended to be fermented by a disenfranchised middle class rather than the starving proles- so perhaps we will see an upsurge in radical political activity if too many middle class types find themselves with to much time on their hands?

The mistake that you're making is that you think the sole result of automation is to make people redundant.

Some automation exists because things can't be built in any other way. Other automation is done because as a result things can be done better. Some automation is done because of labour efficiency purposes but by no means all of it.

A lot of automation itself produces products and jobs. Look at the mobile phone industry. No one could produce a mobile phone entirely by hand. Without robots and automation that industry could not exist. But now it employs tens of thousands of people. It will be similar with nanotech.

Nanotech will/is allowing us to develop hundreds of new products that may need to be assembled by robots, but will require an army of people in support of those robots.

Come back in 100 years when the government has successfully managed to integrate the NHS information system for less than 30 billion quid, when it can collect tax from everyone without them having to do self assessment, when the French can fine UK speeders on their roads because police computer systems are compatible across europe, when the government has successfully implemented an e-borders system. Then perhaps there might be a case to argue that there is less work available.

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Now here's what I've been pondering: at present, the general public image of "welfare lifestyle" people (even if they're in that position unwillingly) is that they spend their daytimes watching Jeremy Kyle and similar junk TV; eat junk food; drink regularly; smoke frequently; dress slovenly; easily get into brawls with neighbours etc; do little or nothing to look after their homes; and generally live at a low cultural level, to say the least.

So here's the question folks: as the ranks of the hithero MC new unemployed greatly increase, how will THEY spend their free time? Will it be much as above, or will it be with plenty of reading online or at libraries, with serious cultural TV/online interaction such as this forum?

I suspect the latter, because the current underclass are basically children/grandchildren of people who would have been in manual industrial work 40 or more years ago, and back then they would have spent their relatively little free time boozing and on low grade TV, etc.

I went to a 3 day work week at 27, now 8 years ago.

Before I had children, which now fills me "spare" time I spent a lot of time reading online*, doing the boring stuff I'd usually do at weekends so that these days were always free when others were off work, travel, cooking. Yes I also spent time playing computer games but I enjoy them so it isn't wasted time.

* I honestly believed I learnt more about economics, politics, investing etc then I did in 3 years of university. The internet is so much better a teacher than most university teachers.

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Historically revolution has tended to be fermented by a disenfranchised middle class rather than the starving proles- so perhaps we will see an upsurge in radical political activity if too many middle class types find themselves with to much time on their hands?

NIMBY's?

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I don't see how automation can create more work

automation -> cheaper goods -> people now have money left over after buying their usual basket so spend it on goods and services they couldn't afford before -> new jobs providing these new goods and services

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automation -> cheaper goods -> people now have money left over after buying their usual basket so spend it on goods and services they couldn't afford before -> new jobs providing these new goods and services

Not happened though has it? Any surplus from cheaper good feeds back into the housing market or gets captured by the rentier class.Thats if there is a surplus because people are out of work!

Edited by aSecureTenant

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automation -> cheaper goods -> people now have money left over after buying their usual basket so spend it on goods and services they couldn't afford before -> new jobs providing these new goods and services

ummmm............

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A lot of automation itself produces products and jobs. Look at the mobile phone industry. No one could produce a mobile phone entirely by hand. Without robots and automation that industry could not exist. But now it employs tens of thousands of people. It will be similar with nanotech.

Nanotech will/is allowing us to develop hundreds of new products that may need to be assembled by robots, but will require an army of people in support of those robots.

+1 the skillsets required will shift to a more technical nature - Engineers, Techs, IT, Design, Maintenance etc. the support required is always greater than expected when they first approved the project.

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UKIP do seem to be tapping in to some vein of middle class angst- it's no longer only the union jack T shirt brigade they appeal to, which is why the Tories are panicking- something in the UKIP policy melange clearly resonates with some section of the middle class tory voters.

But whatever you do do not reduce the price of my house.

UKIP does not support free market int rates

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Going by the drop off in energy production graphs...peddling bikes to generate electricity!

Automation you can believe in!

Real assets will be shared between generations. Buckle up!

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