Commentators, academics and presidential candidates are all quick to offer theories about America's long-term economic prospects. But the truth is, nobody knows what the next 30 years will look like -- and with ongoing battles over federal spending, debt ceilings and tax increases starkly dividing the country, the level of uncertainty is one of America's hardest-to-manage problems.
Recently, Canadian novelist and filmmaker Jim Munroe offered his best guess about where we're headed in the next three decades with his upcoming film, Ghosts With Shit Jobs. Munroe envisions the U.S. job market in 2040 as a deteriorating landscape in which over-educated Americans scurry after the few jobs that Chinese and Indian workers refuse to do. While the job titles -- robotic baby technician, spider silk gatherer, human spam -- are playfully futuristic, the low-level work is strangely reminiscent of marginally legal careers that occupy the edges of the global economy in parts of Asia, Eastern Europe and much of Africa.
Ostensibly produced for Chinese television viewers, the film's trailer takes a tone of concerned condescension that will be familiar to anyone who has ever watched a documentary on PBS or seen Michael Moore's Roger and Me. Described by its producers as a "low-fi sci-fi mockumentary," Ghosts With Shit Jobs will be released online in October.
Bruce Watson is a senior features writer for DailyFinance. You can reach him by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org, or follow him on Twitter at @bruce1971.
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