Originally Posted by Fedaykin
Ahh, being obtuse as usual I see.
Wal-Mart has employees that they currently actually need, but don't pay them what it would take for them to stay with Wal-Mart. Instead they rely on public subsidy to provide the difference in compensation.
This is nothing like the situation where an entire job description is simply no longer needed.
What you don't realize is that it's often a sliding scale and involves a cost/benefit analysis.
If you passed a law tomorrow saying checkers had to make $25 an hour, Walmart would suddenly "not need" virtually all of them. And that's obviously not because the technology didn't already exist to replace them.
Automation isn't free. It has its own headaches. But the more artificially expensive you make the human alternative, the more attractive automation becomes.
And you'd look at the 2 or 3 checkers left behind making $25 an hour and say "Hey that's great!" Meanwhile, you don't sweat the 50 that got sent home permanently to effectively become wards of the state.