Perhaps you heard about the fast food workers which had gotten together spanning several different major quick service restaurant chains and decided to strike in November and December of 2012 right during the peak season of holiday traffic. These workers had claimed that they didn’t have a union to protect them, they weren’t paid enough, and the working conditions just weren’t fair. On the CNBC financial news many free-market economists and business owners simply stated; “if they don’t like the working conditions or the pay, they should quit.”Well, many of them did end up quitting or were fired for not showing up for work, and then picketing in front of their restaurant in front of the very managers which gave them the jobs in the first place. Still, there were many folks who sided with these employees because they were only making minimum wage, and they didn’t have adequate healthcare or Cadillac healthcare plans as those in the unions do. In fact, many unions which don’t like nonunion companies were busy egging them on, and trying to fit them into their own game plan and message in the media.In the Singularity Hub online news site there was an article by Peter Murray published on January 21, 2013 titled; “Robot Serves Up 360 Hamburgers Per Hour,” which told of a robotic machine which could make gourmet style hamburgers at an incredible rate, one which no human could ever hope to achieve, and it could do it all day long is long as the ingredients were ready.Is this the future of the fast food restaurant industry? I believe it is, so do many futurists, and we’ve all been talking about it in the robotic sector for about three decades now. In fact it’s becoming a joke these days, along with; “so where is that flying car that I’ve been promised?” which is the counterpart joke amongst engineers and techies.With regard to this robot which can replace all of those striking workers, perhaps some of the management of those very fast food restaurants might be thinking to themselves; perfect, so can we fire all these good for nothing employees now? I hope they aren’t thinking that way, but after this latest act of striking, I wouldn’t be surprised much. Some restaurant patrons of these fast food establishments, are not all that pleased with the service or quality of the food either, one that I talk to in preparing this article told me that the robots would be a good change because;”The current employees don’t care, and robots can’t spit in the food. The meals never look like the picture on the overhead menu,” suggesting that the robots might be able to change all that.Still, there are pros and cons to replacing all the workers with robots, then no one will have a job, and who will have the money to buy the restaurant’s food if everyone is out of work because all the jobs in our society and civilization have been replaced with robots. Indeed, perhaps it is a Catch-22, and perhaps this whole idea of striking as a restaurant worker might turn out to be a bad idea. Indeed I hope you will please consider all this and think on it.
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