Jobs for the 21st Century
US Patent #5,305,974
A Mars Shuttle for $10 Billion
Fast Manned Expeditions to Mars, Jupiter, Saturn,...
Product catalog
Links to other Sites
Tickets to Mars

3.0 Jobs - the Solution to the Unemployment Problem



       Over the past few decades jobs in manufacturing and agriculture
   have been steadily eliminated through the use of bigger, faster
   or better machines.  In all the advanced countries we see a switch
   to service jobs and this trend is certain to continue in the future.
   Robots of the future may be so capable that they will be able
   to eliminate nearly all of the remaining manufacturing jobs.
       The lessening of world military threats has led to a dramatic
   decline in jobs in the so called "military-industrial complex".
   Many thousands of workers have lost their jobs.  They are standing
   in unemployment lines now.  The same goes for thousands of former
   members of the armed forces of the US and CIS/USSR.
       We must find jobs not only for the millions of people who will
   be displaced from their manufacturing jobs but also for those who
   are no longer part of the worldwide military-industrial complex.
   How will this be done?  By creating new industries.
       We must create entirely new industries to provide these
   new jobs.  In this book we promote four industries: nuclear fusion,
   hydroponics, robotics, and space.  Of the four, space is the most
   well known.  Space technology is a field of endeavor which is very
   high-tech but need not be military in nature.  We seek to promote
   space projects.  Hydroponics is perhaps the next most well known
   industry.  Very likely everyone has eaten a hydroponically grown
   tomato at some time or other.  This industry is well established but
   small.  We suggest that this industry be greatly expanded.
       Robotics is also a well established but small industry; however,
   the building of androids is practically unknown.  We will explain
   how this industry could create millions of jobs.
       Finally, nuclear fusion represents the future of electric power
   generation.  Current fusion research projects should be intensified
   to shorten the development time of viable fusion power nuclear
   3.1  Jobs in the electric power industry
       The best opportunity for increasing the number of jobs in the
   electric power industry comes from replacing old fossil fuel plants
   with new fusion powered plants.  The capacity of the US electric
   power industry has been expanding at 2% per year for the past decade
   [86, p.195]. We assume that this expansion will continue in the
   future.  As soon as fusion power becomes available, the utilities will
   stop building power plants which use fossil fuels and will build
   only plants which use fusion power.  Why?  For the two best reasons
   of all.  First, fusion power will be cheaper than coal or oil
   generated power.  And second, fusion power is non-polluting and
   produces no radioactive waste products as does nuclear fission.
       If the industry committed itself to replacing 2% of its fossil
   fuel plants each year, then power plant construction would have to
   double (to 4% per year).   Since fusion power plants are clearly
   more complex than fossil fueled power plants (otherwise we would
   already have them), it will very likely take more than twice the
   number of people to build the new plants.  The net electricity
   generation in the US was 2805 billion kilowatt hours in 1990
   [86, p.195].  Thus 4% would amount to 12,800 megawatts of new
   generating capacity each year - half of which would represent new
   jobs.  It would take 35 years to eliminate the fossil fuel plants
   at 2% per year.
       (The politicans could do us all a favor by passing a law which
   would mandate that fossil fuel power plants be phased out at some
   rate, perhaps even at 2% or more per year.  This would quarantee the
   above job increase and would also help the environment by eliminating
   the burning of millions of tons of fossil fuel - coal in particular.)
       Of course we will also have a general expansion of employment
   in the industry by 2% each year which would represent the new
   employees hired to operate the new plants.
   3.2  Jobs in the android industry
       The day will come when most families will own an android just
   as they now own a car.  In 1900 the percentage of families who
   owned cars was about zero.  Now about 88% of US families own a
   car.  In 1975 the percentage of families who owned personal computers
   was about zero.  Now about 25% of US families own a personal
   computer.  Androids will be so useful that every family will want
   one.  Manufacturers will have lots of them perhaps thousands.
   Nationwide there will be millions of androids.
       There will be great fear of androids in the union shops across
   the country.  The union leaders will fight against the introduction
   of androids into the workplace because it will mean they will lose
   their power and their jobs.  It will be a repetition of the fear of
   computers - only at a much higher level.  When computers were
   developed, workers were afraid that computers would put them out of
   a job.  Some people were put out of jobs of course, but overall the
   net result of the computer revolution has been to create several
   million jobs.  Androids will do the same.
       Androids will be of great benefit not only to manufacturers
   but also to workers.   Employers will be able to count on androids
   to work long hours - perhaps 24 hours per day - while making very
   few mistakes.   Androids will not strike nor will they get tired or
   hungry or sick.  Of course they may break down occasionally. Employers
   will find them very cost effective.  Productivity will skyrocket due
   to higher output and fewer workers.  On the other hand today's
   workers will benefit also.   It seems likely that employers will be
   willing to buy out workers' jobs in order to install androids.  Why?
   Because an android will be able to do the work of about four workers
   whose tasks were simple and repetitive.  The worker on the other
   hand will be able to sit at home and collect his paycheck without
   working at all!  He will not be free to get another job however,
   because he is being paid to do nothing - sort of like some farmers
   are paid not to plant crops on part of their land.
       The android industry will create millions of jobs just as did
   the computer industry.  Clearly the computer industry will play a
   significant part in the android revolution.  It is likely that each
   android will have at least a dozen microprocessors in its body and
   the external vision processor will have the power of today's
       Where will all these jobs be?   The following paragraphs give an
   idea of the impact.
   3.2.1  Android manufacturing
       While the androids will be entirely capable of
   assembling copies of themselves if provided with a complete set
   of components, they will not be capable of making the individual
   components (efficiently) themselves.  This means that each of the
   anticipated several thousand components will need to be manufactured
   just as the components of automobiles are manufactured.  Indeed it
   would seem that the android industry could rival the automobile
   industry in size and value.
       In order to avoid causing large scale migration of workers to
   a single national manufacturing facility, the manufacturing plants
   should be dispersed throughout the nation.  Perhaps one could be
   located near each of the major metropolitan areas.  Each of these
   plants would employ several thousand workers.  The component
   manufacturers would then have to ship their parts to each of the
   various sites which would mean more work for the freight hauling
   industry.  All across the country the component manufacturers
   would have to hire more workers to produce the android parts.  Of
   course these parts would be made of metal and plastic and glass
   and so on which would mean those producers would have to crank up
   their output which would cause them to hire more workers and so on.
   3.2.2  Prostheses
       Very likely the parts of the androids will be superior to
   most if not all prostheses currently on the market.  Since every
   effort will be made to duplicate human appendages, the results will
   be directly applicable to the prosthesis market.  The latest superfast
   microprocessors will provide the control needed to produce lifelike
   motions.  It seems likely that artificial limbs will require power
   from an external power supply, but we suspect that dragging a power
   cable will be less onerous than wheelchairs.
       Clearly this market is limited, but the recipients rejoice.
   3.2.3  Android sales and installation
       We will need a nationwide network of sales outlets and regional
   distribution centers.  Doubtless many of these outlets could be
   personal computer stores, but many will be independent stores too.
   Clearly each of the new stores represents several jobs, while adding
   a new product line (androids) to the personal computer stores will
   probably mean at least one more job in each of those outlets.
       There will be a need for significant advertising of the androids
   which will mean more business for newspapers, magazines, and
   printers.  No doubt a number of trade journals directed specifically
   at androids will spring up creating more jobs.
       The delivery and installation of the androids at the customers
   homes or businesses will require many new workers and will create
   more business for the freight haulers.  Since the androids will be
   voice activated, it will be necessary for each android to learn to
   recognize the voices of each human who will be authorized to direct
   that android.  This will entail each person speaking to the android.
       Besides explaining how to plug in, turn on, and turn off the
   android and its supporting computer, the installation process will
   also include setting up a series
   of emergency priorities detailing the android's behavior under various
   emergency situations.  The customer must decide which if any of the
   customer's possessions the android will risk its "life" for - i.e.
   in case of fire will the android try to rescue pets or money or
   documents from a burning building etc.
   3.2.4  Android repair and service
       Since these androids will cost roughly $10,000 each, people
   will want them to be extremely reliable.  However, there will no
   doubt be some problems.  We must of course provide prompt and
   high quality service to keep our millions of androids working
   properly.   This will require a nationwide network of service
   shops to fix these problems which will in turn mean an army of
   technicans.  It reminds one of some of the scenes from "Westworld"
   starring Yul Brynner as an android who goes berserk in an adult
   vacation park populated by androids.
   3.2.5  Android training
       It takes about 20 years to teach a human being how to behave and
   function in society.  Fortunately we will be able to train androids
   in far less time.  This is due to two significant differences
   between humans and androids.  First, the androids will inherit
   the computer characteristic of never forgetting.  Once trained they
   will always be able to perform the task.  Second, since androids
   operate from a computer data base or memory bank, once a single
   android has been trained to perform a specific task, that knowledge,
   i.e. the computer memories, can be transferred to other androids
   without the necessity of training each one individually.
       Training the androids to perform thousands of different tasks
   will require the efforts of thousands of humans - which means
   thousands of jobs.  Say for example, that you wanted to teach the
   android how to sweep a floor.  This would require explaining to the
   android all of the terms involved - such as:  broom, floor, dust,
   dirt, closet, sweep, etc.  The instructor would have to anticipate
   the questions the android would need to ask - such as:  "What floors
   should I sweep?", "Where is the broom?", "Shall I sweep the floor
   each day?", "Shall I move the furniture or just sweep around the
   furniture?" and so on.  Once trained the android would have to be
   tested by a different person to determine if the training was well
   done or needed improvement.  When the task was finally performed
   satisfactorily, the knowledge would be extracted from the android's
   memory bank and stored for inclusion in other android memories.
       Customers can of course train their androids to perform any
   tasks they please.  It will be entirely up to them.  However, most
   customers will expect their android(s) to be delivered with numerous
   basic skills and it will be up to the manufacturers to pour this
   knowledge into each android.
   3.3  Jobs in hydroponics
       Hydroponics is an industry which deserves much more publicity
   and attention.  Indeed one wonders why it has remained so low-
   profile.  One is forced to conclude that it must be only marginally
   profitable.  Our contention is that through diligent research to
   optimize growing techniques, the yields can be increased to the point
   that operations will be very profitable.
       Hydroponics offers the promise not only of eliminating starvation
   around the world, but also of providing lots of jobs and turning a
   profit as well - something unheard of in government.
       No doubt many farmers will be afraid of giant hydroponic
   facilities.  Today "dirt" farmers can still compete with greenhouse
   facilities during normal crop growing seasons because the "dirt"
   farmers have few of the expenses faced by the "water" farmers.  It
   should be recognized that as hydroponic facilities go into
   production, they will be looking for farmers to grow their crops
   and thus they will be re-employing the very people they are most
   likely to displace.
   3.3.1  Construction
       The major portion of the jobs in hydroponics will come from
   the construction of the facilities.   Since the crops are grown
   indoors in a controlled environment, each facility must consist of
   a large enclosed structure with transparent or translucent walls
   and ceilings.  These indoor gardens will be measured in acres or
   hectares not in square feet or square meters.
       According to the "Greenhouse Vegetable Guide" published by
   Texas A&M [Ref 120], the cost of building a greenhouse varied from
   $1.90 per square foot to over $30 per square foot with the weighted
   average at $6 per square foot [120, p.105].  That works out to
   $261,360 per acre - obviously beyond the means of the average
   person - and that doesn't include the cost of the land.  Including
   other necessary equipment, the total average cost was $6.52 per
   square foot or $284,011 per acre [120, p.106].  In addition the
   average yearly production costs (for growing tomatoes) was about
   $3.92 per square foot or $170,755 per acre [120, p.107].  About half
   ($1.95 psf) of this cost is interest and depreciation.   The cost
   of labor is included in the remainder and 25% of that is assumed
   to be paid to the owner/operator for his labor.  On the
   other hand, total revenue was $4.77 per square foot or $207,781 per
   acre [120, p.108].  This yields a net profit of $0.85 per square
   foot or $37,026 per acre.  Not counting interest and depreciation,
   the profit would be $2.80 per square foot or about $122,000 per
   acre.   This analysis is based on a yield of 20
   pounds of top grade tomatoes and 7 pounds of salable culls or 27
   pounds per plant - which is only about half of what they could be
   getting according to Gurney's [78, p.16].
       In summary, the construction costs will be $275,000 - $300,000
   per acre.  This represents thousands of jobs all over the nation
   building greenhouses.
   3.3.2  Research
       We will need several major facilities to research the numerous
   growth parameters to determine the optimal growing conditions for
   each of the many crops.  These facilities will require several
   hundred employees.  Hopefully they will be able to market some
   portion of their produce to help defer their own expenses.
   3.3.4  Production
       The number of employees needed to grow the crops varies from
   crop to crop.  Clearly those crops which require periodic picking
   of fruits such as tomatoes or cucumbers will require more labor than
   crops such as carrots or radishes.  Tomato production requires
   about 4 workers per acre [120, p.108] whereas Bibb lettuce (at
   the Whittaker Corporation's Somis, California facility) needs 19
   people for 2.5 acres or 7.6 people per acre [57, p.151].
       Salisbury and Bugbee believe that the theoretical minimum area
   required to support one person is 4 square meters [LB1, p.638] - but
   that assumes a harvest index of 100%.  If the average harvest index
   is taken to be 40%, then we would need  4 / .4 = 10 square meters
   per person.  Using an estimated 10 square meters to feed each
   person leads to the estimate that each acre can support about
   400 people while providing 4 to 8 jobs in agriculture.  Thus it
   would require only 2500 acres to support 1,000,000 people.  India,
   with a population of 844 million, could be fed (at US standards)
   with the food grown on less than 3300 square miles - a square only 58
   miles on a side.  And Africa, with a population of 795 million, could
   be fed with the food grown on only 3106 square miles - a square
   only 56 miles on a side.  And Hong Kong, a city of more than
   5,000,000, with a population density of about 250,000 per square mile,
   could grow its own food on a piece of land of equal area.
       The above estimates may seem ridiculously high, but in fact they
   could be much higher.  These estimates are based on only one growing
   level.  So if one built a ten storey building and grew hydroponic
   crops on all ten levels, then one would automatically get ten times
   the yields given above.  Continuing this fantasy to the ultimate -
   we could achieve 1000 times the field grown crop production by
   growing ten levels each of which achieved 100 times the field yields.
   3.4  Jobs in space
       Mankind's destiny is to expand into space, to explore the
   solar system and perhaps eventually the galaxy.  At the same time
   the earth will become badly overpopulated - some may say it already
   has!   To accomplish this we must have an economical earth-to-space
   transportation system.  Only then will we be able to transport
   significant numbers of people into space.  However, even before that
   time there will be many space oriented jobs here on earth.  Indeed
   some people already have jobs which involve planning for space
   activities.  Most of those people work for NASA, ESA, NASDA, or
   other space organizations around the world.
   3.4.1  Tourism
       Only a few of the space planes under development will be able
   to lift people into space cheaply enough to reach the general public.
   (See section 11.3 on space planes.)  But once a viable system has
   emerged it will operate much like a small airline.  It is safe to
   assume that it will have somewhat more employees than an ordinary
   airline and thus it may have several thousand employees.  Very likely
   they will expand their fleet of space planes in order to increase
   profits.  This could foster a small industry for building space
   planes.  If the cost of lifting mass amounts to $100 per kilogram,
   then an average person of 70 kilograms would cost the "spaceline"
   $7000.  Of course everyone knows that the retail cost is generally
   about three times the manufacturing cost, so we can expect the cost
   to be about $20,000 per seat or perhaps $15,000 per seat for a group
       Space stations are an integral part of our plan to visit other
   planets.  There will be no more "stunts" like Apollo simply because
   economically viable alternatives exist.  The destination of the space
   planes will be low-earth orbiting space stations such as Freedom or
   Mir or Shimizu Corporation's "Space Hotel".  From the space station
   or space hotel the tourist could travel on to the moon or Mars.  We
   should expand the LEO fuel depots into space stations and then into
   space hotels.  That will provide tourists with exciting places to
   visit and will allow the spacelines to expand their fleets while
   making a profit.
       The space plane developers should investigate the problem of
   lifting people from the space stations to high earth orbit (HEO).
   This capability is a critical one in our plan to develop the moon
   and Mars.  We need not only economical earth-to-LEO transportation
   but also economical LEO-to-HEO transportation.  The space planes
   will provide that capability.
   3.4.2   R & D
       R & D offers the best short term employment opportunities in
   space.  Specifically these areas are equipment and facilities design.
       The machines that we send to the moon will require significant
   design efforts.  If we want to reduce the time required to reach the
   moon, then we should have separate design teams for each piece of
   equipment.  This work should be distributed to the companies who
   build similar equipment for use on earth.  Those teams would probably
   need specialists in composits and low temperature materials.
   We recommend at least two separate teams for each piece of equipment
   because we expect to send many of each type to the moon.
       The facilities which will be built on the moon will be designed
   here too.  Numerous facilities will be needed such as:
       1. Solar power array and power distribution network
       2. Regolith processing facilities
       3. Androids' quarters
       4. Humans' quarters
       5. Hydroponic food production facility
       6. Waste recycling facility
       7. Large parts manufacturing facility
       8. Polar electrified railroad
       9. Railroad cars and cranes
      10. Polar electromagnetic projectile launcher (EMPL)
      11. Polar base
      12. ... and so on
   3.4.3  Remote control teams
       In order to maintain continuous contact and control of the
   lunar bases, we will need at least three earth bases placed 120
   degrees apart around the world - or four 90 degrees apart.  Each
   earth base will need at least two crews and each crew will require
   one person for each android on the moon plus supervisory staff,
   emergency staff, and so on.  In addition we will need a training
   facilitiy here to check out both the androids and the controllers.
   As the number of androids on the moon increases, the staff on earth
   will go up by 6 to 10 for each android.
   3.4.4  Lunar science
       The moon, as has been pointed out by many authors (see
   Edward Teller's "Thoughts on a Lunar Base" in [LB1, p.25-30] or
   [108, p.30] or [63, p.61-3]) is a great place to locate astronomical
   observatories.  It has no atmosphere to blur visual images.  Its
   rate of rotation is low so that tracking of stellar targets is much
   easier.  Moonquakes are much less frequent and less violent than
   earthquakes which means the moon is more stable than the earth.
   The far side of the moon has little radio interference from earth
   and thus is better for radio telescopes.  An extensive list of lunar
   advantages (and disadvantages) is given in [63, p.62-3].
       If remotely controlled observatories were built on the moon,
   they might employ a few hundred scientists here on earth.  The
   cost per job would probably preclude commercial interests and leave
   that opportunity entirely to tax supported institutions.