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Technology's Impact on Economy
Before the industrial revolution almost one hundred percent of the population was focused on offering products and services that were essential for nothing more than survival. This meaning that most goods and services were created to fulfill a practical purpose and were needed for the survival of civilization itself. Very few people were well off, and even fewer were members of the leisure class. After the industrial revolution various technological developments, in many fields, completely changed the situation. In ancient times over 95% of the people were farmers and, even with that fact, they often had trouble creating enough food for the entire population. Now, we only need a handful of farmers, and the amount of food they produce can easily feed the entire population. Now, the only times starvation usually occurs is because of various issues related to finance. At the end of the industrial revolution many products and services started to be offered to fulfill the desires instead of the needs for a much greater percentage of the population. Thanks to technological advancement, in these times, the percentage of wealthy people exploded in a very little amount of time. Though the industrial revolution started to provide the human race with the services and goods that people could only previously dream of, the situation caused many troubles for the old economic systems, and still does to this day. The old economic systems have never been sufficiently upgraded to fit our modern technological age, they have only been slightly altered so that they do not completely break down. The issue at hand is that only a relatively small percentage of the population is needed for the workforce in order to provide basic necessities (by modern standards) for everyone, such as food, shelter, transportation, utilities, basic goods, law, and healthcare. An even smaller percentage of the population is needed to provide the population with products and services to fulfill their reasonable desires, such as those in the fields of entertainment and recreation. This is a problem for the old system because now you have a great percentage of the population potentially unemployed. For over a century the plutocracy have taken several strategies to sweep this problem under the rug and keep the current order in place. Firstly, they promoted, via modern media and educational systems, actions such as conspicuous consumption and other forms of wasteful consumption, otherwise known as consumerism. There are also many other things they do and promote in order to keep creating jobs and wasting resources. Their main goal is to create demand at any expense, even if that means to start wars. War, as well as consumerism, is a great tool for the wealthy of the old systems. This is because not only does war create jobs by expending vast amounts of services and goods, but great profits can be achieved by investing in the corporations that provide these goods and services. So now we have a completely unneeded situation on our hands as a result of consumerism, wars for profit, and related wasteful systems. For one, a mass amount of natural resources are being obliterated for nothing while contributing to the destruction of the environment. Secondly, most people are working way too many hours while others are being oppressed and living in poverty for no sensible reason. Another negative effect of sustaining to the old system is that it requires to keep the general population decadent and mentally primitive, therefore greatly retarding the educational and social progress of our human societies. Technology’s natural effect on economy is an extremely positive one as long as the economy evolves with the technological age. Unfortunately there are other parties at play that value power over prosperity that manipulate society, and in doing so significantly negate technology’s blessings, and cause other problems in the process.