What is Fully Automated Luxury Communism?

Brian Merchant | UK Guardian

At a time when robots crowd factory lines, algorithms steer cars and smart screens litter the checkout aisles, automation is the new spectre. The robots, they say, are coming for our jobs.

Let them, reply the luxury communists.

Cybernetic meadows and machines of loving grace

Located on the futurist left end of the political spectrum, fully automated luxury communism (FALC) aims to embrace automation to its fullest extent. The term may seem oxymoronic, but that’s part of the point: anything labeled luxury communism is going to be hard to ignore.

“There is a tendency in capitalism to automate labor, to turn things previously done by humans into automated functions,” says Aaron Bastani, co-founder of Novara Media. “In recognition of that, then the only utopian demand can be for the full automation of everything and common ownership of that which is automated.”

Bastani and fellow luxury communists believe that this era of rapid change is an opportunity to realise a post-work society, where machines do the heavy lifting not for profit but for the people.

“The demand would be a 10- or 12-hour working week, a guaranteed social wage, universally guaranteed housing, education, healthcare and so on,” he says. “There may be some work that will still need to be done by humans, like quality control, but it would be minimal.” Humanity would get its cybernetic meadow, tended to by machines of loving grace.

“Take Uber. Huge company,” Bastani says. “Its idea is that by 2030 it will have this huge global network of driverless cars. That doesn’t need to be performed by a private company. Why would you have that? In London, we have Boris bikes. Why couldn’t we have something like Uber with driverless cars provided at a municipal level without a profit motive?”

This is just the beginning

The ideology springs from a tangle of well-observed trends. Generally, the rate of technological progress and labour productivity is rising, but wages are stagnatingand factories are shedding jobs. Recent research indicates that 35% of jobs in the UK are “at risk” of being automated. And MIT professors Erik Brynjolfsson and James McAfee argue persuasively in their oft-cited Second Machine Age that the robots are just getting started.

Homer Simpson and Bender share a beer
Humanity’s cybernetic meadows will be tended to by machines with loving grace. Photograph: HD Wallpaper

The automatons of this new age offer a number of advantages beyond automation that promise to make drudgery redundant, including 3D-printing and algorithms smart enough almost to pass for human. An age of machine-abetted plenty appears to loom around the corner.

“I’m not saying we’re there yet, though in certain areas we clearly are,” Bastani says. “Take video and audio content – we’ve reached post-scarcity with that. A Spotify or an iTunes or a Wikipedia-style model doesn’t feed people, obviously. But the claim could be that this is the leading edge of a set of trends for software, but also, soon, for hardware. Because that’s attendant with the rise of solid freeform fabrication, 3D-printing, synthetic biology.”

Bastani isn’t alone in evangelising an era of mass robo-luxury. Members of the leftwing group Plan C deploy the slogan “Luxury for all” in their agitations, and a sharply-designed Tumblr, Luxury Communism, trumpets sympathetic ideas. The maxim has been showing up at student protests.

Likewise, Brynjolfsson doesn’t find the idea of machine-generated populist luxury outlandish. On the contrary. “A world of increasing abundance, even luxury, is not only possible, but likely,” he says. “Many of things we consider necessities today – phone service, automobiles, Saturdays off – were luxuries in the past.”

Robot cooking food
‘Fully automated luxury communism is about seizing the bakery rather than stealing the bread.’ Photograph: Bettmann/Corbis

“Technology can create enormous bounty,” Brynjolfsson wrote, “but the road to abundance may be very rocky as existing business models and ways of creating value are disrupted.”

British luxury communism

British luxury communism has its origins in the mid-00s protest movement, according to Plan C, when its members spotted the slogan “Luxury for All” at a demonstration in Berlin.

“It seemed to us that this demand neatly summed up the aims of a modern communist movement,” say Plan C members. They believe its tenets were initially inspired by Kim Stanley Robinson’s Red Mars trilogy, wherein a socialist utopia is established on the Red Planet. A Pattern Language, a 1970s utopian tract written by three architects, was also an inspiration. Bastani says his conception of FALC is based on a modern reading of Marx’s Capital and Grundrisse.




  • video marketing expert 1 month ago

    Zinc supplementation has been shown to increase testosterone levels in some guys.

  • video ranking expert 1 month ago

    I’m afraid that number’s ex-directory levitra comparison The letter dated Tuesday is co-sponsored by Massachusetts Attorney Martha Coakley and Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine. It says e-cigarettes are being marketed to children through cartoon-like advertising characters and by offering fruit and candy flavors, at the same time they are becoming more affordable and available.

  • Rocco Worthley 4 weeks ago

    Case Celular

  • dallas residential cleaning service 4 weeks ago

    Please let me know if you’re looking for a author for your weblog. You have some really good articles and I believe I would be a good asset. If you ever want to take some of the load off, I’d really like to write some content for your blog in exchange for a link back to mine. Please blast me an email if interested. Many thanks!

  • reverse commissions 4 weeks ago

    Hi my family member! I wish to say that this article is awesome, great written and include almost all significant infos. I¡¦d like to look extra posts like this .

  • real orlando singles Review 3 weeks ago

    Hello just wanted to give you a quick heads up. The words in your article seem to be running off the screen in Firefox. I’m not sure if this is a formatting issue or something to do with browser compatibility but I figured I’d post to let you know. The layout look great though! Hope you get the problem solved soon. Thanks

  • #1 rated seo 3 weeks ago

    Have you ever considered creating an ebook or guest authoring on other websites? I have a blog centered on the same subjects you discuss and would love to have you share some stories/information. I know my subscribers would enjoy your work. If you are even remotely interested, feel free to shoot me an e mail.

  • Jospeh Killoy 3 weeks ago

    DestinyGameInfo – Info, Clips, Hacks and more

  • Rachelle Leofsky 3 weeks ago

    buy valium online

  • Coral Mcgeehan 3 weeks ago

    swiss watches

  • Alexia Resnikoff 3 weeks ago

    prezent dla dziecka

  • betterscooter.com 3 weeks ago

    I enjoy this device! betterscooter.com http://adf.ly/6249830/banner/www.scamadviser.com/is-betterscooter.com-a-fake-site.html are actually decent, trend, and thus classy!! Regards,

  • snapmilfs 3 weeks ago

    snap milfs

  • milfpussy selfshot 3 weeks ago

    amiture moms in naughty outfits pics

  • brook stagles 3 weeks ago

    887667 6293Hi, if you want to get higher rankings, you should check out the plugin I left in my link, it will help. 977412

  • Pharmacy Management Qatar 3 weeks ago

    There are some interesting points in time in this article but I don’t know if I see all of them center to heart. There is some validity but I will take hold opinion until I look into it further. Good article , thanks and we want more! Added to FeedBurner as wellyou have a great blog here! would you like to make some invite posts on my blog?

  • HIMS DOHA 3 weeks ago

    I’d have to check with you here. Which is not something I usually do! I enjoy reading a post that will make people think. Also, thanks for allowing me to comment!

  • basement waterproofing rochester ny 3 weeks ago

    461219 967526Im not that much of a internet reader to be honest but your blogs really nice, keep it up! Ill go ahead and bookmark your site to come back down the road. Cheers 823097

  • Duty Roster Management Qatar 3 weeks ago

    There are certainly a lot of details like that to take into consideration. That is a great point to bring up. I offer the thoughts above as general inspiration but clearly there are questions like the one you bring up where the most important thing will be working in honest good faith. I don?t know if best practices have emerged around things like that, but I am sure that your job is clearly identified as a fair game. Both boys and girls feel the impact of just a moment’s pleasure, for the rest of their lives.

  • полети до сащ 3 weeks ago

    I’m impressed, I must say. Really rarely do I encounter a blog that’s both educative and entertaining, and let me tell you, you have hit the nail on the head. Your idea is outstanding; the issue is something that not enough people are speaking intelligently about. I am very happy that I stumbled across this in my search for something relating to this.

  • mold remediation 3 weeks ago

    120196 990221You understand, a lot of individuals are searching around for this info, you can help them greatly. 61186

  • евтини самолетни билети до англия 2 weeks ago

    I am often to blogging and i really appreciate your content. The article has really peaks my interest. I am going to bookmark your site and keep checking for new information.

  • logo maker 2 weeks ago

    Is it necessary to get the copyright of the game content developed individualy before publication?

  • продава апартаменти в софия ново строителство 2 weeks ago

    I was very pleased to find this web-site.I wanted to thanks for your time for this wonderful read!! I definitely enjoying every little bit of it and I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff you blog post.

  • Irena Gayanilo 2 weeks ago

    clean energy

  • turquoise fascinators 2 weeks ago

    Hi there, just became alert to your blog through Google, and found that it is really informative. I’m gonna watch out for brussels. I’ll be grateful if you continue this in future. Numerous people will be benefited from your writing. Cheers!

  • Faustino Sukeforth 2 weeks ago

    Cerrajeros Alicante

  • logo creator 2 weeks ago

    Is there a way to report a website for violating copyright of articles and images?

  • Shalonda Wittnebel 2 weeks ago

    1/2/2017 americanintelligencereport.com does it again! Very thoughtful site and a good post. Nice work!

  • pink hat wedding 2 weeks ago

    Hello. fantastic job. I did not imagine this. This is a remarkable story. Thanks!

  • beige fascinator hat 2 weeks ago

    I see something truly special in this internet site.

  • turquoise hats for weddings 2 weeks ago

    I don’t even know how I ended up here, but I thought this post was good. I do not know who you are but definitely you are going to a famous blogger if you aren’t already 😉 Cheers!

  • Ramon Reineman 1 week ago

    bForex scam

  • Graig Toan 7 days ago

    AAA rated repairs

  • lime green wedding hats 6 days ago

    Thanks for the sensible critique. Me and my neighbor were just preparing to do a little research about this. We got a grab a book from our area library but I think I learned more clear from this post. I’m very glad to see such magnificent info being shared freely out there.

  • lime green and black fascinator 5 days ago

    Some really prize posts on this website , saved to fav.

  • Amelia Foree 3 days ago

    Orlando vacation rentals near disney

  • Sneakers Kids 2 days ago

    335120 334534Strategies for dilution antimicrobial susceptibility beadlets for beagles that grow aerobically-fifth edition. 246593

  • евтини самолетни билети до дубай 2 days ago

    Would you be interested in exchanging links?

  • Barbara Jones 18 hours ago

    Dating when you are over 30 can seem tough. We all had plans to be married by 26 right? Well, thanks to 30 Plus Dating, 30 is the new 20! So make this new years start with a bang

  • abogados accidentes trafico 8 hours ago

    Thanks for a marvelous posting! I quite enjoyed reading it, you happen to be a great author.I will be sure to bookmark your blog and definitely will come back at some point. I want to encourage one to continue your great writing, have a nice holiday weekend!


Add your comment

Your email address will not be published.