Thanks for your very thoughtful response.
I think if you look around you can probably see many jobs that really ought to be done but aren’t being done, despite the likelihood that they would make our societies better off. A lot of these jobs are in education — and may continue to require ‘human operators’ for some time.
Ultimately, in the long tern, we may well end up with a future in which far fewer formal ‘jobs’ are required, or in which people, on average, work fewer hours. But this needn’t mean we’d have any sort of general unemployment crisis. It may just mean we’ve successfully increased efficiency and managed to achieve the ‘life of leisure’ many people have been looking forward to for some time.
I agree that we should have a Basic Income. I agree that would help people who do lose their jobs due to automation. I agree it could enable us to cope better with a situation in which there may be fewer formal jobs than there are now. I don’t, however, see clear evidence that we are about to have an imminent, automation-induced unemployment crisis.
And I think the case for Basic Income is so strong that we should be able to happily adopt it for positive reasons, rather than being panicked into accepting it because of speculation about a looming crisis.