Has Jamie Dimon become a socialist?
He recently said AI would improve workers lives and lead to them having a 3 1/2 day work week.
He also said they would live to 100 because technology would stop them having cancer.
Sharing the benefits of progress with workers? Whatever next? Is he also suggesting that healthcare will be free?
Well, probably not.
I suspect he’s talking about workers employed by the likes of JP Morgan Chase. Well paid knowledge workers with company healthcare.
It shows, once again, that his pronouncements are very much about the world seen through the eyes of Jamie Dimon.
Further proof of this is that he admits that AI will replace some jobs in the short-term. How unfortunate – but not for him, of course. That’s just progress. “Technologies always replace jobs” he blithely states.
Here lies another problem. The benign future that Dimon paints is a possible, and some would say desirable, outcome. But is it likely?
We operate in a version of capitalism that is ruthlessly focused on profits and shareholders return, and aggressively exploitative in its pursuit of those goals. It also funnels wealth upwards, with those at the top taking an increasingly larger share of the benefits, to the extent that previously comfortable strata of society are being hollowed out. The likes of JP Morgan Chase are not only at the apex of the system but advocates and protectors of the system.
Given this is the system that we operate in, where are the benefits of AI most likely to accrue? To those at the top (e.g. Mr Dimon) or to his beknighted workers?
A clue might be that Dimon’s position of hybrid work hasn’t changed, despite the complete lack of evidence to support his view. So those 3 1/2 days are going to be in the office because Jamie believes that’s right and Jamie calls the shots. (If it’s not actually him, it is likely to be someone pretty similar and the power dynamic will be the same).
Unless the system changes, then the outcomes will remain the same. The benefits will flow to the top, at the expense of those at the bottom (and, increasingly, in the middle).
So Dimon has not suddenly embraced socialism, he has simply ignored the inconvenient reality of current day capitalism because ‘AI will bring in techno-serfdom and make me even richer’ is not a good look.
Winners never change the game. That’s why it’s no good waiting for ‘the leaders’ or anyone else to change things for the better.
No-one’s coming to save you. You have to take action yourself.