Bill Gates Thinks Robots Should Pay Tax

In a recent interview with Quartz, Bill Gates was asked about the topic of how robots could impact workers and the US economy. He had this to say,

“Right now, if a human worker does, you know $50,000 worth of work in a factory that income is taxed. If a robot comes in to do the same thing you’d think we’d tax the robot at a similar level. What the world wants is to take this opportunity to make all the goods and services we have today and free up labor — let us do a better job of reaching out to the elderly, having smaller class size, helping kids with special needs. And all of those are things where human empathy and understanding are still very, very unique and we still deal with an immense shortage of people to help out there. And so if you could take the labor that used to do the thing automation replaces and both financially and training-wise, and fulfillment-wise, have that person go off and do these other things you’re net ahead. But you can’t just give up that income tax because thats how we have been funding that level of human workers. Some of it can come on the profits that are generated by the labor-saving efficiency there. Some of it can come directly in some kind of robot tax. You know, I don’t think the robot companies are going to be outraged that there might be a tax. It’s okay.”

Watch the video here:

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