KARA: I think we're in for a real treat. In the fall, Dean Halik announced that ILR would be launching a theme project, and that that theme would be technology and the evolution of work. And so we've been working on technology and the evolution of work for the school year.
We've selected this theme because it has significant relevance to the world of work. It can be tackled from multiple perspectives. And ILR has an important role in addressing the opportunities and challenges that technology has in the workplace. The theme is intended to motivate new research, policy, practice, discussion, and teaching. Today's debate is just an example of how we're engaging the community around the theme.
I'd like to welcome our audience here in Ithaca, as well as our friends who are joining us virtually. I'd also like to welcome the debaters from Harvard who have come to join us. Thank you for being here. And a big thank you goes to the Speech and Debate team for pulling this event together. I'm looking forward to a lively debate. I'm sure it will be very lively.
Now, I'd like to introduce Sam Nelson, who is the Director of Forensic and Senior Lecturer who will share some information about the team, and talk a little bit about how the event will unfold.
SAM NELSON: Thank you, Kara. This is going to be an exciting event, partly because of who is in the debate and partly because of what the debate is about. I'm going to start off by just having the debaters introduce themselves very quickly. And then we'll move from there. So why don't we start right to my right?
DANNY: Hello, my name is Danny [? Dubois. ?] I'm a senior at Harvard studying history.
ARCHIE HALL: Hi, I'm Archie Hall. I'm a sophomore at Harvard studying political science.
SAM NELSON: And I should note that Danny and Archie, this past winter, won the World Debate Championship, which was held in Mexico City. Over 380 teams entered the tournament, and at the end of the tournament, they were the top team in the world.
I should also note that they had difficulty getting to Ithaca, in that there was a tremendous rainstorm in Boston yesterday. Their flight was canceled. And so they chose to drive last night, and arrived early this morning for today's debate. So we appreciate their efforts on that part, too. And then, the next debaters?
ADNAN MUTTALIB: Hi, everyone. I'm Adnan Muttalib. I'm actually a Master's student in the Industrial Labor Relations School, and one of the coaches for the debate team.
SAM NELSON: Great.
BRITTANY GARCIA: I'm Brittany Garcia. I'm a junior in the ILR school. And I'm also minoring in Spanish and Latin American studies.
SAM NELSON: Great. And I should note that Brittany is also the Captain of our Spanish Language Debate team here in ILR, and recently won the Pan-American Championships with her partner, in Spanish. So we have a number of champions up here, as well as Adnan.
Let me tell you a little bit about how the debate is going to happen. We're going to start with the pro side, or the government side, that's going to argue that technology is bad for workers. They're going to give a seven minute speech.
After one minute has passed, I as the timer will clap my hands. That will signal to the other side that they may stand up and try to ask a question. The speaker doesn't actually have to take the question. They can wave them down and say, no, we don't really want to take your question right now. But it's good at some time during the course of their speech that they take at least one question from their opponents.
Then when one minute's left, I'll clap my hands again. And that means they're back in protected time, and no more questions can be asked. So the whole speech for each speaker takes about seven minutes. And it will alternate back and forth.
And then at the end of this debate, we will have an opportunity for people in the audience, the live audience, as well as the virtual audience, to ask questions, any questions that you want related to the debate or the topic. So without further ado, I'd like to start the debate. Debaters, do you have any questions or issues? OK, great. We'll start this debate.
I now call the first speaker from the government side, Adnan Muttalib.
One more thing I should add, here in the live audience, if somebody says something you really like, feel free to bang on the table--
--like that. That shows your approval.
ADNAN MUTTALIB: Ready? Ladies and gentlemen, we are in a watershed moment in deciding the direction in which technology takes us, as nearly one billion jobs become automated in the name of efficiency, but workers are displaced and blamed for a lack of skills when they can do no otherwise, when global inequality rises in the name of countries having more money, but very few of us in this room, and few of you watching, get to actually share in the amount of money that is being accrued, and most importantly, when we're continually promised that our quality of life is improving, even though study after study shows we are significantly less happy with this unfettered [AUDIO OUT]
--the question, in our drive for efficiency, have we lost the human element? Are we driving technology, or is technology driving us? Your job as an audience to this debate is not to be swayed by the rhetoric of Harvard that is likely to come up here and try to point to one or two technological innovations that have made life better. Your job is determine whether technology as a whole right now, and moving forward, is going to make life worse for workers and make our ability to promise those workers guarantees of security and safety. If we cannot, they've lost this debate. You have to go with Cornell.
Two things, then, in this speech I'm going to talk about-- I'm going to first talk about the way that automation is affecting us now and why it's so harmful. I'm going to then tell you how automation is going to affect us even more perniciously 20, 30, 50 years down the line. And if we have time, I'm going to talk to you a little bit about the alternatives that we think are better in our world. If we don't get to that, obviously, it's still going to be [? Wednesday. ?]
So on the ways in which automation is bad for us right now, there's two lies that you're probably going to hear from tech conglomerates, and also from these guys over here. The first is that, don't worry, this only affects the lowest rungs of labor. We're just getting rid of the worst quality of it. Second, technology is making the workplace better and more equitable for all.
There is one truth to this statement. Yes, low end labor is being affected. Truck drivers, for example, are being displaced by self-driving cars. One third of labor in 60% of different sectors is being affected by automation, leading workers to lose their jobs and being displaced. That means that even if that's the only thing we've proved here in this debate, that is a significant portion of people who are massively insecure, don't have jobs, and are entirely reliant upon the goodwill of welfare programs that have consistently shown their inability to provide for workers today.
But the other thing that we always hear is, don't worry, service sector jobs will rise in that place. First thing, we question the premise and validity of that statement. Recognize a lot of you here maybe teachers, professors, in your own capacity. Massive online courses are coming in place. They're likely going to effect you, as well. The fact that one professor could reach out to tens of thousands of students means there isn't a need for as many teachers.
Waiters, the oftentimes overused example, are being replaced by iPads in the name of efficiency. The reality is, iPads can't strike. iPads don't get sick. iPads don't ask for a raise. That's why we here say that even service sector jobs are unlikely to take that place.
But even in the best case, where service sector jobs do exist, recognize when a significant portion of workers come from low end labor to service sector jobs, that drives everyone's wages down, because the demand stays the same for service sector jobs, but there a significant increase in supply of workers available. That means everyone is negatively affected.
Some of you in this room might be thinking, well, I'm a lawyer, I'm a doctor. I'm not to be affected by this. But ask yourself the question, right now, some of you are probably on your phones. Some of you probably have to be reached by email. Some of you probably can never get away from work, even when you get up and leave the physical space. You go home, and you're constantly expected to be on call.
That means what is one element of our identity? Our work becomes our entire element of our identity. And we're never able to escape it. Therefore, even if you aren't literally losing your job, ask yourself if your life has become worse through the advent of technology, in the way you're expected to work, in the way that now you're supposed to do the work of five different people. We think that still qualifies as workers' lives being significantly worse. Not at this time.
But also, recognize the fact that these guys might come up here and say, well, look, you can educate yourself. Go get college degrees. College degrees are now being proliferated at a higher rate than ever before. Yet as much as they're a necessary condition to access jobs like the legal market, they are no means a guarantee as they used to be to find a good job.
On top of that, and this is the most important thing, when you lose a number of workers in a workplace, when you're unable to advocate because all of a sudden, you're always at fear of being automated, when people fought for $15 at McDonald's, the number one threat to them was, we could just automate your job. That makes workers lose significant amounts of leverage. It's harder to strike. It's harder to ask for raises. It's hard to take a day off. We think that's a significant harm that they have to contest with on their side of the house.
Last thing to note, even if you do retain your job, you have to ask yourself is the job worth retaining any more in this world? We don't think it is. Yeah, go ahead.
DANNY: Yeah, so because of technological developments in transportation, shipping, et cetera, workers around the world in places like China, Vietnam, have access to jobs they never had before. Why shouldn't we care about benefits to those people?
ADNAN MUTTALIB: So this is a great point for why technology 30 years ago might have been useful. But we have to ask a question. For every $3 billion that goes into India, $2 billion goes in the pockets of the top 1%. Recognize the fact that the inequality present in India and China cannot simply be waved away as, oh, look at the IT sector in India, when only 5% of Indian workers benefit from that. Ask yourselves how the other 95% of Indian workers are faring. We think it's not a fair competitor for them to push upon us.
So in the long run impacts, recognize that there's been a massive spike in inequality. And part of that reason is due to the technological gap is widening between us and between those who own the means of automation, because realize that when, back in the day, Kodak and Instagram, two companies that have made the same amount of money once adjusted for inflation, when Kodak would actually make hundreds of millions of dollars, it still on 125,000 employees it had to pay. That means each worker in that workplace benefited from Kodak's success.
Instagram has 12 workers. That means those hundreds of millions of dollars go into the pockets of 12 people who are then able to entrench that amount of money to sustain their own political and economic power over their workers. If you wonder why is there so much corporate finance in our politics, this might be a reason. If you wonder why our quality of life is going down, this might be a reason. We don't have to prove that technology the only reason for high inequality. But if you believe inequality is rising, not only in America, but all over the world, you have to vote with us.
The last thing to note, they might come here and say, oh, guys, don't worry. We can try to come up with alternative solutions. Universal basic income, work programs. Recognize firstly that universal basic income only guarantees a minimum standard of living. It's been tried right now in Stockton, California. It gives people $500 a month. That means $12,000 a year. That is a significant worse quality of life than where workers had 10 years ago, 20 years ago--
--50 years ago. That means they can't just try to get out of this debate. Even if it does equal, ask yourself, how important is work to people? We think that's valuable.
Look, at the end of this debate, we're finally having a conversation about whether technology is good or bad. You all in this room finally get to decide whether it's time to take a stand against what has been an over-reliance on technology, and we finally bring the human element back. We're incredibly proud to propose.
SAM NELSON: Thank you. I now call the first speakers from the opposition side.
ARCHIE HALL: Over the past two decades, technology has lifted over a billion people out of poverty in Asia alone. Don't listen to the bogus statistics you hear out of the speech before you. Rather, think about the workers, not the comparatively affluent ones in the developed world, but think about the workers who need wealth the most, the workers who were living in abject poverty until 20 years ago, whose lives were radically transformed by technology. They are the workers that Danny and I say have benefited the most from this change. And they're the workers we should be caring about in this debate.
I want to talk about two things. First, I want to talk specifically about that, talk about extending the vision of this debate beyond just the United States of America, towards the rest of the world, talking about why workers around the world have been hugely benefited by technology, why it's probably the most important trend of the past few decades.
Secondly, though, I want to look to the future. I want to talk about why trends in automation that Adnan decries are so damaging are actually leading to a radical transformation of our politics, are actually leading, for the first time, to a potential for a real and meaningful universal basic income that can mean that people act as people, not as workers. People aren't necessarily defined by what they do, but rather by who they are. We think that's probably the most beneficial change to happen, potentially, in human history.
Before that, though, I just want to [? deal with ?] one big misconception we get out of the other side, which is that automation necessarily is taking jobs that are not coming back. We ask you, would a farmer in the 17th century have known what it would be like to be an assembly line worker at Henry Ford's factory in the early 20th century? Would an assembly line worker in Ford's factory in the early 20th century have known what it would be like to be a coder today? Ultimately, we can't imagine where jobs are taking us.
And Adnan is absolutely right to note that in some situations, potentially right now, we don't know where those jobs are. But history shows us time and time again that they will come. Even if you don't believe that, even if that isn't true, we tell you that's OK also, because as I'm going to tell you later in my speech, the kinds of political change and economic changes, the transformations in the workplace they're bringing about, means that universal basic income, for the first time, is a meaningful reality that's financially and politically feasible. And that's going to be transformative.
Let's drill down a little deeper in this debate, firstly, then, talking about workers around the world, because ultimately, they're the people we should really be worrying about. They are the people who don't have the luxury of a reasonably deep social safety net. They are the people who aren't comparatively, on the global stage, still in the top quintile of global incomes. Rather, there are people in countries like Vietnam, or Bangladesh, or Ethiopia, whose family is being left out of poverty for the very first time, and whose lives are being transformed.
So how exactly has technology benefited them? Well, Danny gave you a bit of this in the POI. Ultimately, technology is breaking down distance. We have call center workers in India who can serve customers in America by virtue of telephones, and Skype, and technological advances. We have factories which, thanks to global shipping revolutions, mean that supply chains extend around the world. Different countries can specialize in the things that they have an advantage at. It means the worker working in Vietnam can produce goods that no one in Vietnam necessarily has the money to buy, but people elsewhere in the world do. And that money can then move to that country, enrich them, and begin the transformation of that country and that economy.
And ultimately, also, these jobs are becoming less and less dangerous and more and more good for the workers, as technology is progressing, and the most dangerous things are allowed to be automated. This is a story we've seen many times. This is a story we see in Korea in the 1960s, 1970s, a story we saw in Taiwan in the 1980s, a story we saw in China in the 1990s and 2000s. It's a story we're seeing elsewhere, replicating around and around the world today.
Ultimately, if it's the global pool that we should care about, as Danny and I contend that you do, they are the people who are unambiguously being the most benefited by technological changes. And we should care about them far, far more. But even if you want to buy into the myopic framework that we hear from the other side, ultimately, America first, we should focus on the workers living in our own country, these trends are actually good for them, too.
Workers in the US can now buy goods far, far more cheaply than they could otherwise, as a result of these trends, everything from sneakers to clothes. Computers now are much cheaper than they would have been otherwise, thanks to these trends. That means that every dollar that a US worker has in their pocket is worth two or three times as much as it would otherwise be.
But let's step back a little bit farther. Let's look to the future. Let's look at how the workplace and how human life could be actually radically transformed by the trends of automation that we're seeing. Let's bite the bullet and say that Adnan's right. Let's say that automation isn't like it was in the Industrial Revolution, isn't like it was around the development of the assembly line in the early 20th century. Rather, this is a radical and new change in the way that human history is working and evolving.
Ultimately, Danny and I say that in 50 years, we're going to be looking back. And if that's the truth, it's one of the truths we're very, very happy with. And that's because of the very simple idea of a universal basic income. It was already hinted at in this speech. But this is the idea that every single person, not by virtue of anything they've done, but simply by virtue of being a person, is entitled to an amount of money that guarantees them a minimum, dignified life, that allows them to live comfortably and happily, and make decisions about what they want to do with themselves, their lives, and their work.
And ultimately, that's something that might not be feasible right now. It's something that people can very credibly say, right now, we just can't afford, or right now, the political situation is just too complex. We can't necessarily have it all. I'll take you in a few moments. That reality is likely to change. But before I explain why that's true, I'll take the other side.
BRITTANY GARCIA: When we have billionaires that have most of the money available in the world, why have we not already seen the implementation of UBI?
ARCHIE HALL: I mean, ultimately, if you want to tax billionaires 80%, good luck. That was tried in a large number of countries in the world without a huge amount of success. Also, the best and most guaranteed way to enrich people is to enrich everyone. Ultimately, technology is doing that, which is all the examples I gave you beforehand. But also, I'm going to explicitly talk now about the political conditions needed in order to guarantee us universal basic income.
So we see two things that are ultimately necessary to get us towards this goal. The first of those things is a genuine economic base that actually support that. That means higher productivity, higher productivity than we have right now, exactly what's being guaranteed by the automation trends the proposition wants to decry. It means a far, far wealthier nation than we have right now.
But secondly, it requires political changes, too. It requires a widespread workforce that genuinely pushes for and demands these changes actively. And that's the bit of the changes that the proposition didn't really want to talk about. Adnan didn't really want to talk about what happens after the [? material ?] worlds technically get automated by iPads, because they still get to vote. They still get to decide who gets put forward in politics.
We say that policies they're likely to vote for are policies that are much more redistributive than they would otherwise be, and policies that are now actually palatable and tenable to the--
--to the rich, and where they previously wouldn't have been, thanks to these trends of automation. So what exactly is a real UBI, not the one that's talked about in California that gives people $12,000 a year, but one that guarantees people a genuine dignified life, actually look like? It means that they do want to work. They actually have lobbying power, because now they can say, I don't need a job. I can live a dignified life without your job. I only want to take your job if it's going to generally benefit me, and you're not going to exploit me.
But it means that, also, people can move beyond work. I mean, I at least would like to think there's things about me that are meaningful and interesting that go beyond the job that I'll potentially be doing in five years time, you know, interest in art, interest in friends, relationships, all the other things that make us human, that define us other than our work. And now, for the first time, if a human being wants to say that that's important to me, that's who I am, and that's what I want to pursue, a universal basic income allows him to do that.
And make no mistake, for the past two, three, 5,000 years, depending on where you look in the world, ever since the Agricultural Revolution, human beings have effectively been forced by a system of labor to spend the vast majority of waking hours doing something they would not want to otherwise do. The idea that, in 50 years' time, this may not be a reality is the most important thing that you can imagine in potentially human history, and certainly in this debate. And for that reason alone, I'm very, very proud to be supporting the opposition.
SAM NELSON: I now call the next speaker to give their speech.
BRITTANY GARCIA: Hear, hear. Yeah, I'm going to stand right here. I'm a little short. That would block my face.
SAM NELSON: You may begin speaking, out loud.
BRITTANY GARCIA: OK. Adnan was very clear about this debate. The winner should be the one that has shown that, on net, labor has been impacted, either beneficially or negatively, and that, moving forward, that you can try to obtain security for laborers. The government team, or the opposition team, comes up here and tries to tell you that we're going to have universal basic income, and says that that's the way that they're going to secure happiness for workers.
The reason why this is flawed is for two reasons. As I pointed out in my POI, we already have enough money in the world circulating at the point at which Bill Gates has $75 or whatever it is billion dollars. We have enough money to redistribute.
Yet why has this not happened yet? There are two main reasons-- first of all, human nature. A lot of times, people don't want to share money. They feel that they've earned that money, and they feel that that attributes to a type of status that they have that differentiates them from everybody else, that makes them different. They have to come up here and prove to you why the top elites are going to suddenly change, and why they're going to want to forfeit that type of eliteness.
But second, and most importantly, what they have to explain is the incentives of politicians, because--
--right now, politicians have an incentive to cater to the people who have the most amount of money in the world, which means--
--that the type of policies they are advocating for in saying, oh, well, you know, the lowest laborers, they're going to have time to go and advocate for change-- who are the politicians going to listen to, the people who maybe have some votes, or the people who fund their campaigns? And when--
--campaign finance is one of the biggest factors of getting elected, that's probably who they're going to listen to, not the workers. So all the benefits they talk about with UBI is very unlikely to happen. OK, but next, before I move on to their extraneous [? piece of ?] rebuttal, I have two main points, first of all, labor in general, and then their globalization point that they bring up.
But the last point of extraneous rebuttal I want to bring up is how they say that technology has lifted 1 billion people out of poverty. This is probably the strongest piece of their case, and we don't deny that. But in response to this is that, as many people as technology has lifted out of poverty, it still traps even more people.
Why is this the case? Two big reasons. First of all, when there's technology, workers have an even increased race to the bottom, because instead of having to compete with people across different countries, which is also a problem with their globalization point, because when you expand supply chains, it means that as an American worker, I have to compete with people in Bangladesh. But on top of that, now everybody has to compete with a machine. That makes it extremely--
--hard for people to actually get out of poverty, which is why the countries that they listed, like China, Bangladesh, Vietnam, may not actually be the best of their case, because while they have seen people being uplifted out of poverty, there's still a lot of people who are trapped.
The second reason technology traps people in poverty is because technology, as Adnan explained creates inequalities. The people who create the technology and governments are the ones who benefit the most from this power. And the people at the bottom don't share in this power. What this has looked like is militarization around technological innovations.
For example, in Guatemala, hydroelectricity is great. And they started using it in Guatemala to get cheaper electricity, which on their side, they would say, that's great. We want cheaper electricity.
The problem is, because a lot of this technology is on indigenous lands, and a lot of workers have been protesting to get off of these indigenous lands, it means that these spaces are increasingly militarized. And so they have to prove to you--
--just because certain countries are enriched with their GDP, how does that actually translate to workers, because that's what the debate is about. What we tell you is how it translates to workers, is they don't actually get a share in that GDP. Rather, they get a baton to the head by a police officer if they try to riot or say, we want our lands back, we want higher pay. So that's really a point for us they need to explain, how the increase in GDP or money actually translates to better life--
--for workers. OK, but second, onto the labor point, they talk briefly about how absolute metrics are better, how a lot of people are better off because of technology. But what they didn't address is what Adnan said, which is how, relatively--
ARCHIE HALL: Question.
BRITTANY GARCIA: --there's a huge gap. Before we move on, sure.
ARCHIE HALL: So let's say you're right, and we'll assume [? our ?] workforce gives you displaced by automation. At that point, can the American elites really not listen to 80% of voters when they're demanding UBI?
BRITTANY GARCIA: I would say yes, because if you look at what's happening right now, that's what's happening. A lot of people don't care about what the lower class thinks, in part because they don't have a political voice. OK, but second, so the reason why we pay the most attention to Adnan brought up about the relative disparity that technology has created is because of how people actually derive happiness. Why is it the case that some of the poorest countries report the highest levels of happiness? Because of how humans derive happiness.
Study after study has shown that the way that I feel happy is by looking at what I have relative to my neighbor. If my neighbor and I live in a shack, then we're happy because we don't know any different, and everybody has the same thing. But if I live in a decent home, but my neighbor lives in a mansion, even though, absolutely, we're both better off, relatively, I feel worse because I don't have what my neighbor has.
And what does that say? It says something really deep, that you do not deserve what some people have, that your value and your worth and what you do deserve is based on how much money you can produce.
We think that technology, in creating this vast disparity, has produced a new value system for how we say which human life is valuable, which is not, and what people inherently deserve. We think that that not only is a problem for labor in general, but also for humanity. I find that very sad, that we deem human worth based off of things that are out of their control, that have to do with their socioeconomic background, to begin with.
But then, that brings me to their next point, when they talk about, oh, well, we just have different types of jobs. Look at the farmworker to the assembly line. But I posit to them that maybe they ought to contextualize this debate unto the current 21st century that we're having, because it's not that--
--we're going from a farm to the assembly line. It's that we're going from the assembly line with cars to then making self-driving cars. The difference here is that the skill set you need to make self-driving cars is much, much different. And it isn't accessible to lower class workers, or to unskilled workers, who were previously on the assembly line, because they don't have the degree in CS or engineering, or whatever you need to make self-driving cars.
And the OACD actually backs us when they say that 80% of middle line jobs have disappeared, and 80% of that 80% has gone up to being called high-schooled labor. And so the reason this is really bad for them is we don't see a transfer in jobs. Rather, what we see is we see that the rich have a variety of other options that the poor will never get because they can't afford to make that jump into higher education to getting those types of jobs.
And so on net, we do think that technology has reduced the amount of jobs available for the people that most matter, the people that didn't have the option, or didn't have many options, in the first place. So what we've brought you today, and the reason why we won, is because, one, we showed you, on labor, why inequality is the most important and relative to absolute standards that you ought to be judging off of, relatively how people have changed. We show you how there's a race to the bottom, how workers are less empowered overall.
And Adnan gave you an analysis on workers throughout the spectrum, not just the lower class, but also the upper class. For all these reasons, we beg for you-- or we think that we deserve your ballot. Thank you.
ADNAN MUTTALIB: (WHISPERING) Good job.
BRITTANY GARCIA: (WHISPERING) Thanks.
SAM NELSON: And now, the next speaker from [? marketing. ?]
DANNY: If we listened to the people who complained about horse carriage drivers losing their jobs, we wouldn't have the automobile, which revolutionized the global economy, created tons of manufacturing jobs, and rapidly increased labor mobility. If we listened to the people who complained about bank tellers losing their jobs to automation, we wouldn't have digital banking, which has been able to extend financial services around the world to the people who need them most.
On side opposition, we're proud to combat our fear-mongering Luddites on the government bench--
--and we argue that technology, while it changes societies in unpredictable ways, it has, over the vast course of history, rapidly improved people's quality of lives in a way that we think is fundamentally better for them and for society, writ large.
I'm going to talk about two things in the speech, first talking about workers, dealing with the predominant material we get from the government team, and mostly in wealthy countries. Then I'm going to talk about how this debate works in the rest of the world.
So what do we hear from side government? They say that tons of people are losing their jobs, and that this is different because it's not going to someone else. It's just being automated.
But recognize that's not completely true. Even in the new system we have, there are still plenty of unskilled jobs available. For example, Amazon needs tons of people to work in the warehouses that then ship goods anyways. So perhaps instead of working at a store at a mall, you're working in this type of situation. Or Facebook still needs people monitoring the vast amounts of social media accounts that actually exist. And so, they have people reading and creating those jobs, or people who are taking care or cleaning their large data centers that are necessary to fund this system.
Despite what you hear from the government's claims, the US economy has been adding over 200,000 jobs a month for basically the past 10 years. We're reaching record low unemployment, around 4%, which hasn't been seen for this long in a vast majority of time. But they say the difference is skills and education.
But we would say this is just a reason to provide increasing education to people. Recognize every other developed country basically provides this for free. You can get it for very cheap in the United Kingdom. You can get it completely free for Germany. And we're even starting to see this in places in the United States. For example, New York has recently allowed everyone making under $125,000 in total family income to get a free college education at a state school.
So we do think that society, though it is slow, and while there are painful periods of transition, is able to slowly adjust to provide resources and skills to people who need them. And recognize the end result is then a society that is overall better educated, is able to do more sophisticated work, and is able to do more productive work that actually helps people. But they say that we're not going to get that. We're never going to get to a world in which we have a universal basic income. And they ask, we have a world with vast income inequality, why haven't we seen a UBI?
Because what we would say is, the key difference is that when people have to work 40, 50, 60 hours a week, it's very hard to engage in political activism. It's very hard to engage in organizing, particularly when you have bosses or other people who can break down that organization.
The reason why the most amount of political mobilization and the most politically successful the working class has ever been during the United States was during the Great Depression is because you saw 25% unemployment, where all people had to do was lobby their government for political change. And they didn't care what ads were being shown from rich politicians who had campaign financing, because they had their basic needs met. During that time, you saw things like the passage of Social Security, which is basically a universal basic income for people over the age of 65. You saw things like vast public works programs, which took people like artists and made sure they had access to jobs.
So we dispute their characterization that this has never happened, or it's never realistic. In fact, we think we're heading to a world in which people can be more fulfilling, because what they talk about his happiness. But what I want to ask is, when we have people working 9:00-5:00 every single day for the vast majority of their adult lives, doing the same routine task again and again, do we really call that fulfillment?
Or should we free people from the burden of work, because we now have technology that can do it for them, and then share the proceeds among everyone so that they can pursue their goals just because they want to pursue them, not because they found a buyer in a market will pay them a wage, or who will pay them a type of fulfillment? Because what we think technology does is it frees people from the burdens of work, such that they become fulfilled and are able to access their basic needs.
But even if you accept that technology has become harmful for people in the developed world and workers in this situation, recognize the United States is about 5%-10% of the world's population, probably much less than that, though I'm not sure of the exact math, that it's very insignificant compared to what is done for people in countries like China, Vietnam, Brazil, India, et cetera.
What we heard from them is that this puts more people in poverty because workers have to compete. But recognize their argument just isn't mathematically possible, that even if now, people in the United States have to compete with workers around the world and with technology, what technology has done has given billions of people the opportunity to compete when they never otherwise did.
No one in China, a country of over a billion people, had a chance to participate in the global economy until technological innovation made it easy for them to sell their goods around the world. No one in India, another country that's a massive population, also had that opportunity until we saw technology make it continuously easier for these people to ship goods. Please.
ADNAN MUTTALIB: The difference between the technological changes of the 1900s and now is there was still an ability for workers back then to unionize and push for change. Now with the threat of automation, workers are fearful of being displaced and will remain silent, which is probably demonstrated by the significant declining union rates, which is now at 6%.
DANNY: It is true, the nature of union activism has changed. But that does not mean it's unsuccessful. For example, the Fight for 15 union movement was not successful in unionizing McDonald's. But it has been very successful in getting a large amount of cities to pass $15 minimum wage ordinances. We are saying, yes, the nature of political activism is changing. But that exactly proves our point, because if you can get New York, California, Seattle, Milwaukee, to pass these laws that significantly improve people's quality of lives, because it is getting the government to redistribute the proceeds, then you can get help on our side of the house.
So we say that around the world, people are getting a chance to participate in the global economy in a way that rapidly gets them out of poverty and improves their quality of lives, because even the worst-off worker in the United States is still much, much better off than the person in rural Western China who doesn't yet have this opportunity and needs increasing technology to give them a chance.
They say, though, this leads to militarization and harms indigenous people. But recognize this has been true throughout history. It's not like Standard Oil was respecting the land rights of indigenous people. But on the comparative, what has technology done? It's meant things like mining and extraction have become much less disruptive to local communities, much less of a risk of accidents, and the people who work in those situations have much safer conditions.
So we think what technology is able to do is, yes, it doesn't change the larger political climate that they also have to deal with on our side of the house, but is able to mitigate the harms of the human species, and able to deal with the best ability to move society forward. So because we both provide a meaningful life to people within the richest parts of the world, but also give the poorest people a chance to finally access their basic needs, we are so proud to oppose.
SAM NELSON: OK, and now, there will be a short wrap-up speech by each side.
ADNAN MUTTALIB: Four minutes-- there's no questions, right, Sam?
SAM NELSON: No.
ADNAN MUTTALIB: OK, great. Ladies and gentleman, you have been presented with two worlds in this debate. You have the negative world, which is unfettered technological development, which has become completely non-cognizant, the way that tech affects us and workers in its entirety, and has become harder and harder for us to challenge this narrative because of the fact that we've become so fascinated with the words "progress" and "efficiency" that we've lost sight of how it actually affects us here in this room.
On our side, we say we need a much more controlled form of technological development, one that brings workers into the picture, one that actually considers the effect that it has upon them. We're not here just to be "progress for progress's sake." We want to make sure we reinsert the human element.
We hear a couple of things from the other side that I just want to quickly respond to to clear up some confusions of the debate. First of all, their big claim in this debate is the developing world is improving. See China and India. I already gave a response this in my speech when I told you the relative inequality in these countries has significantly been rising, which means that people they most want to help have remained relatively poor, but also, their wealth compared to the richest has significantly risen, which means they're unable to access even less political and economic power relative to where they were in the 1980s.
If you don't believe me, you can look to the United Nations studies that literally show this to be true in the fact of the matter that most Indian and Chinese people had absolute better quality of life at that time because they didn't feel as unhappy with their position in the world, because they felt like they were responsible for their failure, that they were in some way unable to access the jobs that their peers were getting. But also realize that even if you don't believe anything I just said, their entire argument is a case for equalizing the technology that China and America have. But the question in this debate is not only about should China become equal to America in the ways in which they industrialize, but also whether we should continue industrializing and making more technology in the future. If we can show that that's going to make people's lives better, that's not a valid path to pursue.
Secondly, they say that universal basic income is going to work because 80% of people will be unemployed. First of all, thank you for giving us our case, right? That pretty much assumes the fact, then, the 80% of people will be unemployed. But also recognize that the reason why universal basic income hasn't happened yet is it's very hard to mobilize sympathy and empathy for people when they are seen as lazy and not contributing to the economy.
The fact is, even on their side of the house, they can get the exact same amount of money for people, which we think is a ludicrous assertion, in that instance, people now feel like they're reliant upon a welfare state and on the good whims of the rich. I'm sorry, we've tried that before. It very rarely plays out quite well.
Their example of Social Security actually kind of bites them, because the reality is, Social Security is now at its highest rate of being unpopular in the United States. And people might see it cut in the next 20-30 years. This is the problem when we become reliant upon the goodwill of liberal and conservative governments, because at any time, those can sort of change their policies, and people all of a sudden are significantly harmed because they have lost the ability to make money and be self-reliant. I think that's quite bad.
The other thing to note lastly, though, is if 80% of people are reliant upon universal basic income, and it really is going to be $30,000 a year, we ask the question, either, A, that's incredibly substantial on the government. I don't know where they're getting this money from. Or it's likely going to be something like we see in Stockton, where it's going to be $12,000 a year. In that instance, then, they still have to come up and give us a response for why it is a sufficient amount of money to go be this artist, or go run around in the park, or whatever conception of great life that they give us, which still hasn't been explained at all. So we really want to hear how, back in the day when Kodak workers are making $60,000-$65,000 of today's income, how they're going to be able to access that same quality of life. On their side, we don't think they have done it.
But lastly, they make this assertion that the Fight for 15 succeeded. I don't know if you guys have been to McDonald's recently. Kiosks are starting to pop up in vast number. This has been the number one response to the Fight for 15, that corporations have responded and immediately started crowding out workers. This has put massive amounts of fear in unions to try and push for similar policies moving forward.
Look, our side is very simple. We are tired of waiting for policies from the government. We want to get the power back the workers to become self-reliant and do what's best for them. We are incredibly proud to [? propose. ?]
SAM NELSON: And now for the final speech in today's debate, Archie.
ARCHIE HALL: I'm going to be honest with you guys, technology isn't that predictable. Maybe the proposition is right. Maybe automation is going to cause mass unemployment of a scale that we've never seen before. Or maybe we're right. Maybe actually, this looks a lot more like historically the changes that we see in the labor market over the past couple hundred years.
But here's why it doesn't matter. As I'm going to show you, and Danny and I've shown you in the past two speeches, while on either side, in either in those cases, we still win this debate. So let's talk about why. Let's talk firstly about our vision of how the world most likely looks, a vision where we listen to history, where we listen to the fact that these concerns have been raised before, these concerns that have been raised very compellingly before, have been proven to be wrong.
So ultimately, what did we tell you? We told you that we can break down distance very effectively and get technology to people haven't used it before. We tell you that it's ludicrous that I'm not going to stand up here and say, if you ask an Indian person or Chinese person living in the early 1980s where their lives are really better now or then, they tell you their lives are better then. We invite him to get on a plane and look at the real world.
Even if they can show that they can, you know, potentially worsen inequality within countries with technology, we say that's not the inequality that we care about the most. We care a lot more about inequality between countries, because ultimately, that's the inequality that drives the kind of poverty that makes people's lives around the world far worse than they ever should be.
But the most convincing response I think we ever got to any of this from the other side was that that may be true. But the new jobs you're creating are jobs that need more education, jobs that aren't accessible to everyone who don't have those same things. And note, that's exactly what someone would have said in, let's say, 1800 if, you know, a new job in the service sector required literacy. And very few people in that situation possessed literacy. And what happened? We saw a revolution in public schooling.
We say it exactly the same way. Automation is likely to change the kinds of ways that people can access education, making it, as they said themselves, far, far easier for people with backgrounds that wouldn't be able to afford education access it. And Ultimately, yes, maybe these jobs may require more skills. But there's no reason why technology can't get us those more skills. And that's, ultimately, incredibly important.
But I don't want to focus on our best case. Let's focus on their best case. That's a little bit more fun. Let's assume that they're right. Let's assume that we're going to see job losses of a colossal, unprecedented scale in human history as a result of this.
We then think the reality they give is very, very odd, because we then think that, certainly a democracy like the US, if 80% of workers are no longer employed and are in a pretty dire situation as a result, they seem to think that they'll be fine. They just kind of sit back, or maybe they'd try a little bit, they wouldn't get very far, because of campaign finance laws.
I mean, Danny and I still have a little bit of faith in American democracy. Maybe they don't. But ultimately, the thing to note here is that, time and time again in history, in the Great Depression, when there's been widespread employment and transformation in the economy, we've seen correspondingly widespread transformational politics to accommodate those changes.
We see there's no reason why the same thing won't happen again, because ultimately, a UBI, and a meaningful one, one not like in Stockton, California, is now both economically and politically possible. And we told you why. Let's remind at least the other side, because I'm sure you guys were all intelligent enough to have remembered.
First thing, in terms of economic possibility, note that the very case they give you, one that says that we're going to radically change our economy, become much more productive, be able to do everything that we can do now and more, without any workers, undermines any claim they have that UBI won't be economically possible, because the very notion is that we'll be able to effectively produce everything we do now without needing any workers, at which point, there's no reason why rather than paying those out of salaries, we can't centralize and [? ensure ?] our government to pay [? out ?] a universal basic income.
But secondly, they tell you that's not necessarily politically possible, because ultimately, conditions in democracies are very fragile. Look, we're happy to admit that, you know, American democracy is not perfect, that ultimately, campaign finance reform is not where it should be, you know. If American campaign finance laws looked a lot more like they did in Europe, that would probably be a good thing. But ultimately, democracy still exists, and democracy still matters.
Hillary raised a lot more money than Donald Trump did, but she still lost because she wasn't speaking necessarily to economic conditions that people recognize in their country. And exactly the same way, we tell you ultimately, democracy allows people to come to conditions that elites may not want, but nevertheless push you in a good direction. Donald Trump wasn't that good at direction. We think our direction might be a little bit better than that.
The final thing, though, is just that if they want to kind of question what this world looks like, they want to question, you know, are there really things that people can do with their lives other than work? We think there are. We think people care a lot more about their friends than their work. People care a lot more about their relationships than their work. They care a lot more about their hobbies than their work.
Ultimately, that's OK. And we see, for the first time in human history, we can actually have a society that recognizes that and enriches people as a result. And for that reason alone, you should vote for our side. We're incredibly happy to oppose this [? position. ?]
SAM NELSON: You may now cross the aisle, shake hands, and congratulate each other.
All right, we're going to take some questions from the audience, and also from our distant audience that's watching this f first live streaming. Are there any questions from the audience here for any of the debaters? No? Yes? No?
OK, it'll just take me one second. All right--
BRITTANY GARCIA: Sam?
SAM NELSON: Yes?
BRITTANY GARCIA: I think that she--
SAM NELSON: Oh, yes, good.
AUDIENCE: I don't know how this works, so my question might be a little too specific. But Harvard, you mentioned, I think, there was-- [? you ?] [? were ?] [? debating-- ?]
AUDIENCE: You mentioned something about the Amazon warehouses. And I was just wondering if you've ever gone to the recent news about workers and their [? brand ?] who were [? found ?] peeing in cups because they didn't have enough time to use the bathrooms while they were working at the warehouses, and how that might contribute to technology and well-being, and things like that.
DANNY: Probably not great for society.
AUDIENCE: Could you repeat the question?
DANNY: So the question was that, there's recent news that in Amazon warehouses in England, workers were so overworked that they had to pee in cups because they weren't allowed to take bathroom breaks. And I would say that that is probably-- luckily, this is a debate that you can only judge based on what the two sides presented.
SAM NELSON: OK, here's a-- I'll call you in a minute, but I want to take one of our questions from online. Here's the question. "What's the union movement doing in addressing the impact of technology on the workforce? Anybody want to take that?
BRITTANY GARCIA: Sure. So to my understanding, they're not able to do much. It's not necessarily the case that they are, you know, not trying to. But as Adnan explained, and as I explained, it's really hard for workers to actually demand things when their employers can more and more and say, well, we'll just replace you. And so, it's not as much like, what is the union doing about technology, but what is technology doing about unions, I would say.
SAM NELSON: Good. OK. Question in the back?
AUDIENCE: As a follow-up to Harvard regarding Amazon workers in the warehouse, do you have an idea of what they might do when robots replace their jobs?
DANNY: So the question is, what will Amazon workers do when robots replace their jobs? And I think the eventual answer is, we just hope that the governments redistribute the earnings, because eventually, we would probably agree--
ARCHIE HALL: Yeah, or some kind of new jobs come about. Maybe we can't imagine what they are right now. But I mean, yeah, people 100 years ago probably couldn't imagine that kind of stuff.
SAM NELSON: Good. And that actually leads into another good online question. The question is, or it's more of a request, "Please address the question about who should own technology? The debate presupposes status quo ownership and business models. How should technology business models change?"
ADNAN MUTTALIB: Yeah, we actually-- so the question was, how should the way that we allocate control to automation happen? And I think we actually had a couple of solutions that we unfortunately weren't able to get to, just because these guys gave a lot of material. But one is changing patent laws. So that's one way of going about it, not allowing companies to hold patents for so long, so minimizing the time.
Minimizing what qualifies as innovation, I think, would be another route, because right now, nearly everything can qualify as a new product, which means new markets can't enter, but also, it means that people have really long ownership. But the last thing, and one thing that we thought would be kind of a radical innovation, would be distributing the shares of something like Facebook throughout the population. So instead of universal basic income, actually giving people a vested interest in things like Facebook and Instagram, and whenever they make money, people actually profit off that, which gives people a vested interest in making sure their companies do well, but also ensuring that those companies have a broader social good whenever they help do something for the population. So that's just potential answers.
SAM NELSON: Good. All right, here's a little bit of a longer question from online. "If a factory is automated and can produce goods quicker, workers will no longer need to work nights and weekends to keep up with production. The workers who retain their jobs will achieve a healthier work-life balance and benefit from doing less physical labor. Is the well-being of these workers worth laying off a portion of the workforce to be replaced with the machines that enable the change?"
DANNY: I think this is very interesting, because this is a common intuition that a lot of people have. But historically, it's unclear if it's true. So for example, the cotton gin, a lot of people probably expected it would decrease the need for slavery. But actually, it just made factories could make more. And so then, just everyone is pushed more. So I think it's really a question of what bargaining power do the workers who are left still have to make sure they benefit from the increased productivity of that technology?
SAM NELSON: Good. And then here's a question specifically for Harvard. Why did you-- no, just kidding.
It's says, "Question for the opposition Harvard. Touching on the rebuttal question, how do you account for the systemic disenfranchisement of voters, which are already the most politically disenfranchised, when making claims like, what if 80% of the voters want UBI?"
ARCHIE HALL: Sure. So I mean, I think neither of us wants to stand up here and say US democracy is perfect. There's countless pretty serious problems with it. I guess the claim we're making is that, ultimately, if enough people in the country want something, with the political system as it is, at some point, people have to listen. Ultimately, the challenges that US democracy faces are definitely substantial. But if there are enough people who are pushing for change, we at least would assume that at some point, leaders would be forced to listen.
SAM NELSON: Great. And here's a philosophical question. "When assembly positions are replaced by machines, an unskilled machine operator is still needed to press the on and off button. Which is better, a physically taxing manual job for two assemblers, or an easier economic job as a button pusher for one assembler?"
ADNAN MUTTALIB: Yeah, I'll take that. I think that's a false dichotomy. I don't think that's the choice. I mean, there's a couple of problems with that assumption. First of all, the laborer who is replaced is probably going to multiple laborers, right? There's probably many people who are doing the factory assembly line, rather than someone clicking the on button, and that machine doing the work for 10, 15 different laborers.
The other problem, though, is the amount of money you have to pay someone who clicks the on and off button is definitely minimum wage. I mean, according to you yourself, it doesn't require a lot of skills. But that being said, laborers who exist within factories have a wide spectrum of different jobs that they can do that are paid at higher rates, because it requires a degree of skill. So yeah, I don't think it's as simple as saying, you know, one is much better than the other. I think it does lead to massive displacement of workers, but also a significant decrease in the wages of workers. So we have to consider that into the calculus, as well.
SAM NELSON: And then here's an interesting question. "How will AI, artificial intelligence and nanotechnology affect the workforce?" I mean, are there some nightmare scenarios, or are there some Utopian scenarios?
BRITTANY GARCIA: I can take that. So I think that was also part of the debate. Opposition was saying, well, it's going to be great because we can get UBI. People won't have to work. They can engage in the arts.
But then the picture that we've painted is that that's not necessarily the case, because then you're going to have people who are reliant on this welfare state, off of the goodwill of the rich. And therefore, they get a very baseline amount and potentially parallels to what we see with "welfare queens," language like that used to talk about them and disenfranchise them. And so I think that those are the two worlds that we've put forward. And obviously, since we can't look into the future either could happen. I would say that our side is more likely. But I'm a little biased.
DANNY: I think AI is also just very scary, because even jobs we would consider various skills, like bankers or coding, might be able to be done by machines. So perhaps it's even good for our side, because then wealthy people will also want the UBI as they get automated, too.
SAM NELSON: Here's a good question. "What are your thoughts about what a truly good universal living wage would be?"
ARCHIE HALL: I don't think we have a number for it. I mean, I think it's basically the argument that we're making, that it would be something that allows people, if they want to, to not work and still live a good and fulfilling life that allows them to do at least some of the things they would want do with their life. But that would probably vary hugely based on countries and regions, and the kind of, you know, state of the economy that's funding it.
SAM NELSON: And one person just made a comment. They said, "Maybe your hobby becomes the service I want."
ARCHIE HALL: It might.
SAM NELSON: Do you think that's possible?
BRITTANY GARCIA: I don't--
ARCHIE HALL: I hope so. I'm praying.
ADNAN MUTTALIB: I'm not opposed to different jobs, so let me know.
SAM NELSON: All right. Yes, Bridget?
BRIDGET: So just a question, you mentioned that, you know, massive unemployment, whatever that percentage is, gives workers the opportunity to be organized for change. If you look at the last question, [? 116, ?] [INAUDIBLE] high unemployment that happened was, even those workers who were displaced by technology, there was this sort of transference of blame on immigrant, you know, workers, and you know, [INAUDIBLE]. And so, how do you, if you're advocating for technology as a way to create progressive change, how do you ensure that that is progressive change versus reactionary change?
ARCHIE HALL: I don't know if we can. Xenophobia is obviously pretty prevalent and awful. I think one thing we can say is that, at some point, people are going to realize that victimizing immigrants isn't going to help them materially in any sense. And at that point, I think it's much more credible that they try to look at other solutions. And we at least think the ones that we suggested would help them in a way that xenophobia wouldn't.
DANNY: I think that the problem is, progressives really haven't found the right language to speak to workers victimized by technology, because it's often the idea that-- it's like, oh, we'll give you a free college education, or we'll give you this handout, kind of what the government is saying about people feeling demeaned by it. And it's figuring out a language where people are more willing to get economic redistribution, but still feel empowered at the same time.
SAM NELSON: Good. We just have time for maybe one or two more questions. Way in the back.
BRITTANY GARCIA: Oh, no. Oh, God.
AUDIENCE: I was just going to ask-- so first of all, the four of you all did phenomenal. So just-- good job.
So I'm not an educator. I'm a mom. But I'm also-- aside from that, I work for a Fortune 200 public trading company. And being in executive leadership there, something that we talk about all the time is Millennials, GenX, and the different generations and what we do. Part of that is that mobile workforce and being able to-- because of technology, being able to--
BRITTANY GARCIA: (WHISPERING) That's a good point.
AUDIENCE: --not have to go in and report to the office every day, and feeling more productive, and having more autonomy. On the flip side of that, and I think you brought this up, is we're always on call. So because of that, then it's like a full circle. What then happens is, I don't have work-life balance. Because of technology, we all feel like we can email each other whenever. Well, gosh, if my boss is emailing me at 8:00 o'clock at night, am I supposed to email them back?
And so that's something I'll just tell you all in corporate America, we talk about all the time, of what's the right thing to do on how to lead through that? What are your thoughts around that? So I see both sides. There's goodness around technology, and then there's that weight of, is it healthy? And how much is too much?
ADNAN MUTTALIB: I know in Europe, there's, you know-- broadly speaking, there is this point about a right to turn off, which is being widely discussed, which is this idea that, at a certain hour, you no longer are obligated to respond to emails and calls. And I think that's actually a very good solution, because it encapsulates both the benefits, which is being always accessible in some capacity-- obviously, that seems great-- without a lot of the downsides, because that means that you are able to escape your work at some point.
I think we just need to realize that, in the law, which is what I hope to pursue, I know this is not a reality. And it's always accessible. We have to start implementing some regulations. Otherwise this becomes very abusive, in the way that workers are expected to constantly be responding.
ARCHIE HALL: I'd add to that, as well, that given, it seems pretty implausible, at least in this country, those laws are going to happen pretty soon. I think it's incumbent on companies to start thinking very critically about what they want to do with their workforces, maybe actually whether people are more productive if they're not always on, and they do have some time to themselves.
SAM NELSON: I should mention that Adnan has just been accepted into Harvard Law School, and will be a--
DANNY: --conflict of interest.
ARCHIE HALL: --conflict of interest.
SAM NELSON: He'll be joining the competitors next year. I think there was one more question way in the back. [? Ahmed. ?]
AUDIENCE: So on side government, you guys [? explained ?] about relative inequality rate, and if the person next to you has a mansion, then your shack seems like less. But isn't it more important to kind of have a rising tide lift all boats? So even if you're maybe unhappier that somebody else is benefiting from the inequality, at the very least, everybody is kind of being risen out of poverty and has some sort of substantial life, as opposed to having those smaller shacks, [? if that makes sense? ?]
ADNAN MUTTALIB: I think it depends on what you care about. So The Economist did a study where they gave everyone an increase of $100. They gave one person an increase in $10,000. And the person who got an extra $10,000 was happy for a week, and then went back to being normal. Everyone else is very upset by that, even though they saw an increase in their own quality of life.
And so I think if happiness is what you value, I think it's been proven time and time again that seeing others do very well at your own expense creates more unhappiness than it does create happiness for the person who benefits. I would-- maybe you all have it, I'd love to hear a countervailing thing that we should care about more, maybe life expectancy or something. But I haven't really heard a compelling argument for why we should care more about everyone's absolute life increasing if everyone else is unhappy for it.
ARCHIE HALL: The one extra dimension of that, as well, is just the fact that, I think, that may well be true above a baseline. And we don't know exactly where that baseline is. But I think it might actually be pretty high, and a lot of people in the world right now are under it.
DANNY: Yeah, I've seen studies that say money doesn't make you happier if you're already making over $80,000 a year.
SAM NELSON: All right. I think that's a good place to conclude. Obviously, we've brought up more questions than we have answered them. And in fact, a number of people wrote in that we just didn't have time to get to. We will get back to you, if you wrote in a question, one way or another, and try to give you some sort of response.
Thank you, everybody that came to today's debate, and everybody that watched through live streaming. I feel it has been very successful, and kind of showcases what Cornell Speech and Debate here in ILR tries to do. We try to show people that civil discourse is possible, even among diverse groups, as diverse as Harvard and Cornell.
So thank you very much.
We've received your request
You will be notified by email when the transcript and captions are available. The process may take up to 5 business days. Please contact email@example.com if you have any questions about this request.
Join the ILR School and Cornell Speech and Debate for midday debate on “Is technology bad for workers?”. The debate, part of ILR’s “Technology and the Evolution of Work” project, will feature Cornell University debaters facing off against Harvard University debaters (current world debate champions).