Speaking at Washington, D.C., economic think tank The American Enterprise Institute on Thursday, Gates said that within the next 20 years, a lot of jobs will be replaced by software automation.
“Software substitution, whether it’s for drivers or waiters or nurses … it’s progressing. … Technology over time will reduce demand for jobs, particularly at the lower end of skill set. … 20 years from now, labor demand for lots of skill sets will be substantially lower. I don’t think people have that in their mental model,” Gates said.
He’s not the only one predicting this dismal downfall for workers. In January, the Economist ran a big profile naming over a dozen jobs sure to be taken over by robots in the next 20 years, including telemarketers, accountants and retail workers.
Gates believes that the tax codes are going to need to change to encourage companies to hire employees, including, perhaps, eliminating income and payroll taxes altogether. He’s also against the raising the minimum wage, fearing that it will discourage employers from hiring workers in the very categories of jobs that are most threatened by automation.
“When people say we should raise the minimum wage. I worry about what that does to job creation … potentially damping demand in the part of the labor spectrum that I’m most worried about,” he said.