“You seem to think everyone’s worried about robots. But what everyone’s worried about is you, Marc.”

Alex Payne takes issue with (Pando investor) Marc Andreessen’s recent justification of constant disruption and its effects on employment, and particularly his low level of concern of the pain in reaching his resource-unconstrained capitalist utopia where everyone is fed and clothed and can pursue science and the liberal arts for the sheer joy of it. Payne argues that Andreessen is both misrepresenting recent economic history and refusing to engage with the actual issue: “you’re kicking the can down the road and hoping the can will turn into a robot with a market solution.”

Andreessen claims that “the loop closes as rapid technological productivity improvement and resulting economic growth make it easy to pay for the safety net,” but Payne counters that “unless we collectively choose to pay for a safety net, technology alone isn’t going to make it happen,” echoing Vice President Al Gore’s view that munificent philanthropy by billionaires isn’t sufficient: “We the people have the right to work together to allocate resources including tax money for good purposes.”

As Dan Hon points out, we need to ask ourselves “what sort of society do we want to create?”