December 17, 2007
Those Who Cannot Learn from History Get All the Sweet Gigs II
In an otherwise sensible piece about the current fad in anti-internet polemics, Chris Berg managed to reveal himself as a right-wing hack before I'd caught the Institute of Public Affairs accreditation in the dateline:
People are resistant to change. During the industrial revolution, British textile and agricultural workers destroyed the new labour-saving machines, as they saw them as threatening their jobs and the world they were comfortable with.Jesus, what a pillock. The Luddites were active in 1811, and working class living conditions were abjectly awful for more than a century afterwards. The Luddites were supposed to overcome their "resistance to change" how, exactly? By telling themselves how much better off people would be come the 1950s, assuming they were white, Western and not very working class?
Of course, their predictions of doom turned out to be inaccurate — the introduction of those machines was the beginning of a massive spurt of economic growth that raised the wealth and living standards of the working class.