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God, I miss Walter.
I'm loving the synchronicity on the Flashbacks page today, though I think Uncle Sigmund would be interested to know why GBT is so interested in how people put their trousers on.
Today's strip is the only time I have disagreed with Doonesbury. Automation puts people out of work who would be doing the simpler tasks. With increasing technological demands, it is mostly the better educated, more creative and more intelligent people who are able to find work. At the risk of sounding elitist, I suggest these are the very people who would be doing original creative work if they were freed from the need to earn a living. Moreover, people with well-paying jobs generally work many more than 40 hours a week. I further suggest the majority of corporations would prefer machines over people -- no strikes, no complaints, no retirement, no benefits to pay. Look at how people who could once be free of work at least when they were in airplanes, their cars, or their homes are now expected to be constantly engaged.
In this particular march towards automation, the reach of outsourcing enabled by the digital age finds a much larger number of "skill communities" vanishing locally, since they are not being integrated into sort-of-similar automated versions of what they were doing previously. "Skilled labor" dwells in communities of old and young, vendors and suppliers, which depend on commerce to finance their continuity. These communities cannot be stopped and started at will. They are complex networks that, with enough lean years, can go away and maybe not come back.
"Because each successive advancement liberates us to do higher-value work." Like administrator at a university or high frequency trader? Come on, Mike! I suggest you read David Graeber's article "On the Phenomenon of B***S*** Jobs."
Mike, Walden taught you well. Today's strip was straight out of Economics 101.
I'm not sure Kim would be sleeping so soundly if she had a chance to look at the labour force participation rate which is at historical lows.
The Nixon Years. Wow, that's a blast from the past. The Classic strips are a blessing, a graphic history lesson for those who weren't around for it the first time and chose to sleep through their U.S. history and government classes.
"And God help you if you were against the war....." When I first read that Blowback comment, I thought he was talking about G.W. Bush. God bless the men and women of the U.S. military forces.
Ahh Nixon indeed. Remembering all the spying on U.S. citizens -- presidentially-mandated FBI harassment. Shoving 5/4/70 under the carpet. And God help you if you dared to take a stand against the war or anything he was in favor of. Along with his all but ignoring the fact that we even had a Constitution. Nixon was single-handedly responsible for my shift from moderate to the left, back in the day. And here we are again. The song "Now I am a Hippie Again" comes to mind.
That bamboo fence is brilliant! Difficult to imagine how anyone can maintain that level of brilliance for forty years, yet there it is, in plain sight.
Ah, Nixon! Remember the good old days, when all a rogue president did was condone a breaking and entering, and then lie about it? And he got driven out of office for it! Those were the days... Oh, wait, I forgot about the chemical warfare against civilians (Agent Orange and napalm).
Dynastic closure? Funny. But what I would like to see is closure of dynasties!
Wonderful. Today's 40-year-old strip gives a view of the early days of Lacey's life -- quite in character with everything I already knew about her, but charming and enlightening nonetheless.
Today's 40-years-ago strip is why I thought the Davenports were not actually married. Maybe Dick was just being romantic. I'm going to my 50th in two weeks, so I am freaking about the reunion strips.
The 8/12/1974 strip, which is today's 20-years-ago flashback-within-a-flashback (very meta), is one I will always remember. Watching the President and all his men twist and spin was a very painful experience for my 16-year-old self. I thought it then, and I can say it now; thanks GBT, for so elegantly and simply showing us the definition of "stonewalling."