Izabella KaminskaRead Biography
Between 2012 and 2014, the established rhetoric coming from bitcoin’s staunchest supporters was that the cryptocurrency would disrupt payment clearing costs, kill-off intermediaries and economically bank the unbanked. Now that bitcoin is failing on most of those fronts, bitcoin purists claim all that was just fake news. Apparently the movement’s real purpose was to establish a bitcoin-based reserve system that mirrored established banking hierarchies.
In a rebuttal to Bill Gates, Larry Summers argues robots are wealth creators which should not be taxed accordingly. He’s right. But only if the driving motivation for robot innovation is enhanced productivity. Not if it’s a Silicon Valley god complex.
The latest BIS quarterly review notes that last year’s US MMF reforms didn’t squeeze the international dollar funding markets as many had feared. To the contrary, they initiated a pathway to new dollar funding sources — taking non-US banks’ aggregate US dollar funding levels to all time highs in the third quarter of 2016.
Uber CEO Travis Kalanick has apologised for acting disrespectfully to a driver, admitting he needs “leadership help”. It’s a weird world we live in where CEOs of billion dollar companies can admit to having leadership issues but get to cling on to power anyway.
If we want an economy full of meaningful jobs, not just ones that pay the bills or enable subsistence, we need to cater to the full spectrum of the human condition. This means understanding that for those who are that way inclined, manual work can be deemed a fair trade for security, simplicity, a good base standard of living and a peaceful life — and that this in itself is meaningful.
Most of civilised history has been spent trying to reduce the number of hours humans work in back-breaking menial jobs and increasing the number of hours worked in safe and intellectually rewarding knowledge jobs. Technologists, for some reason, think it’s now logical to encourage the opposite, and the phenomenon is leading to an inflation paradox.
Is CalPERS’ earning enough to justify its risk position?; The IMF is bridging research and reality on inequality; Giant Iron Man statues; Inside Uber’s aggressive, unrestrained workplace culture; Do we deserve sexy time breaks?; A retort to the Economist on the free trade issue; Fintech gets appropriated; Apple and the innovation vs planned obsolescence cycle; The world’s tiniest stock exchange; ITV did an investigation on Deliveroo working standards; Why we can’t repeat the Golden Age; What’s happening beyond the coastal cities and elite college campuses in America; Why we may have reached “peak renter”.
Bill Gates wants robots to pay income tax to help protect human workplaces, slow the pace of technological disruption and (we presume) ease off the risk of revolution. But what’s a robot income tax than a corporation or wealth tax by another name?