Re: We have to consider the human costs
That is one of the points i was going to make. A lot of people here seem to be focusing on what happens when people on minimum wage, no longer are, and are unable to buy their 'stuff' what happens to the economy?
What they are not looking at is, people on minimum wage are often not buying much 'stuff' because they are on MINIMUM wage, and what they do have goes on important things, like staying alive. Take that away from them, without giving them an alternative means of income and they stop paying bills, (rent / mortgage) and lose their homes. Cant afford food / clothes, resort to shoplifting.
All these things pile up making someone who was already in a low paid job (for what ever reason) even less employable.
Another thing is, the idea of re-training people (which many have already correctly identified as not being viable). You can only train people for the problems you have today, you can't start training people now, for an 'opportunity' that wont present itself for another 10 years, because you don't know what training they will need.
Even with school kids, we can teach kids today, with the skills that are relevant today, what we can't anticipate is how the world will change in the next 5-10 years before they leave school, and how relevant those skills will be then.
You can't replace someone's job with a robot then train them to fix that robot. What happens in the mean time (while they are being trained)? You need the people who can fix the robots before the robots take the jobs.
Also, 1 robot does not equate to 1 robot fixer, so even if you could retrain someone to fix 'their' robot, say you replace 100 minimum wagers, with 100 robots, you retrain and keep maybe 5 fixers. What about the other 95%?