Yes, this is a click bait title but it’s actually true, so hopefully by the end of the article you’ll let me off the hook. It all has to do with the automation of work.
If you recall from the overview video, when compared to working in a typical capitalist business, those working in a BRIDGE business simply get more. This type of environment, where one receives more for doing the very same work … many things happen … but two pertaining to this article are: reducing the need to stockpile financial resources and increasing one’s awareness of abundance.
When I say increasing awareness of abundance I’m not necessarily talking from a logical point of view, such as how statistically we have more than enough of everything for everyone. I’m talking about an internal point of view, the way that you approach life, the feeling of being supported and not having to vie and compete for basic needs.
Coming from a place where one is supported – remaining at the same standard of living while working fewer hours – what argument is there for anyone to continue working those extra hours currently necessary to feed the endless pit of payments in a capitalist environment? If a robot can check people out at the grocery store freeing the cashier to pursue her life’s passion, who would choose mundane tasks over creative ones? Isn’t this closer to the lifestyle we spend our lives striving to achieve anyway?
In practical terms it might not be as simple as one robot replacing one person tomorrow morning. Time is a consideration, and we don’t actually live in this proposed work environment yet. As we transition, it would more likely be two cashiers working half time (or three cashiers working two thirds time, etc) while the robot fills in during slow periods for example. If financial standards remain the same yet workers have more free time, then nobody is “losing” their jobs, everybody is only gaining more space in their life. In this scenario, what argument is there to “save our jobs”?
There’s never a shortage of stuff for people to do. Being released from pulling a lever forty hours per week doesn’t mean everyone will end up sitting on a beach sponging off the system. Although there may be short term truth to that concern when looking from the perspective of our outgoing paradigm it’s really more of a gauge as to your own level of awareness.
If you remove the obligation to labour, where one is forced to pull the lever, very few people would have the ability to waste their lives sitting around doing nothing.
Remember when you were a kid, always getting up to something … until you were made to that is. Kids are always creating art, building forts, or inventing games, that’s their default. Forcing a kid into an institutional setting to learn how to contribute to society is exactly what teaches them to want to break free and sit on a beach doing nothing. (classic humans eh, always solving a problem with another problem!)
Retirement is the other bookend. Most people in retirement make it two months before going stir crazy. Sitting around is not natural. Gardening, travel or even going back to work seem to be the most common outlets to overcome stagnation.
If you look at this from a bird’s eye view, kids and seniors, who are outside the window of the capitalist jobligation, naturally default to doing stuff – creating, participating, engaging with life and other people. It’s only when one is forced to work that they don’t resist it.
Which leads us to the second way The Bridge kills jobs (and hopefully redemption for the click bait title!)
The Bridge takes us beyond the very concept of the “Just Over Broke”, “J.O.B.”, “Jobligation”. Today, mandatory labour is accepted as our only means to survive on Earth. But The BRIDGE not only offers short term relief (receiving more) as mentioned above, it is also a pathway to an entirely new option – a way of life where people are free to contribute. A society that incentivises collaboration and bringing others forward; one that eliminates the enormous amount of wasted human effort due to redundancies an one that allows the room to grow as individuals, which further increases our ability to produce and discover more ways of being efficient.
Each of these on their own have an exponential benefit to humanity but when you multiply them together human society starts becoming incomprehensible. To those who’ve grown up in our current way of life this description of society may sound far fetched – work less, get more and we’ll all be a big happy family. And from today’s perspective you’d be right. Nobody’s going to snap their fingers and tomorrow morning we all wake up in utopia. But it doesn’t discount the possibility. All futures remain possible until one is acted out.
And really that’s the point. The last generation imagined it, this generation has begun practising it, next generation will live it, and the generation after that will only be able to roll their eyes at how dim society used to be – “Seriously, competing with your neighbour for things we have more than enough of. Get real Gramps!”
Our job (pun intended) is to start society across The BRIDGE so that the next generations have something to work with. Which, by the way, work has long since begun with organizations like the Venus Project and One Small Town. Most of the pieces are in place. All we need to do is assemble The BRIDGE (continue practising the model) and we meet with others who have already laid foundations of a better way of life.