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Bullshit Jobs

In Bullshit Jobs, American anthropologist David Graeber posits that the productivity benefits of automation have not led to a 15-hour workweek, as predicted by economist John Maynard Keynes in 1930, but instead to “bullshit jobs”:

“a form of paid employment that is so completely pointless, unnecessary, or pernicious that even the employee cannot justify its existence even though, as part of the conditions of employment, the employee feels obliged to pretend that this is not the case.”

While these jobs can offer good compensation and ample free time, Graeber holds that the pointlessness of the work grates at their humanity and creates a “profound psychological violence”

There are no excuses for bullshit jobs, only an inability to do something about the suckiest parts of them.

Small changes can bring fundamental improvements. And if you don’t want to fix the bullshit for yourself, do it for your teammates. This is the essence of good automation. Identify the bullshit, get rid of it for yourself and for others.