Economists have been loathe to discuss the possibility of machines displacing workers. The facile counterargument is that labour-saving innovation started with the industrial revolution, and subsequent labour-saving innovations coincided with rising employment. Few ever concede that technological innovation could eventually transition from labour-saving to labour-replacing.
Thankfully, that’s begun to change. Nobel laureate Paul Krugman recently reconsidered this long-held economic view.
The robots are coming and will terminate your jobs
Tim Harford, Financial Times December 31, 2013