“This was once a country where people made things. Until the fucking robots took over.”
This is, long term, a good thing. It frees the people up to create more value. It is, in this way, like open source software (where the robots are the open source software — get it?). Just takes time…
But if people’s “value” is manual labor and everything is taken off-shore, what are we “freeing” them up to do?
Serve us food. Consult. Operate cash registers. Promote. Consult on our promotions. Promote our consultations. Operate cash registers in a food-service establishment. Lather. Rinse. Repeat.