Automating CEOs is more fiscally responsible than automating labor

Originally published at: Automating CEOs is more fiscally responsible than automating labor | Boing Boing

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Or, they could just pay top executives less and rank and file staff more.

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While that’s a highly laudable notion, who gets to set their pay? Certainly no one who has mutual interests, investment portfolios, or plays golf on the same course.

So as long as we’re (trying to re-create the plot of TRON by) placing 'A.I.'s in positions of power, how about instead making a rule that the company stock cannot be traded on a public market if their chief executive’s pay is higher than some governmentally set ratio of the median employee wage? (e.g. 3.14…) How’s that for: policies that shall never happen?

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It’s still quite common in Japan, where Carlos Ghosn, the disgraced former CEO of Nissan, caused quite a scandal when he took home an unprecedented 10M USD (equivalent) salary. I work for a global company with over 35k employees in every inhabited continent, and the CEO makes the equivalent of 500k USD.

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What will happen to all the “trickle down” money. /s

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Most of the role of CEO has already been automated.

At this point, the role primarily consists of accepting checks and doing jail time. (Also, preventing fraud so you don’t have to do jail time…)

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If automation isn’t practical or desirable you could obviously also save a lot of money by outsourcing your next CEO to India or China or wherever instead of outsourcing your labor/production (or Executive Assistant) there. It’s not like those countries don’t have lots of talented MBAs.

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Pay C levels a base salary, but put the bonuses and perks into trust and pay it out over time based on performance of their choices. If their amazing work is truly worth 500x the lowest earner then it should be obvious over time.

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If you are investing in a company and it’s CEO makes more than 300% of the median pay of that company, you are being ripped off by the company’s board of directors.

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The problem with performance bonuses is that they get gamed so that CEOs favor short-term growth over sustainability.

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This is what Elon is ACTUALLY afraid of when it comes to AI.

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The terrifying logic behind every dystopian AI nightmare scenario is already deeply embedded in the behavior of every company on the stock market. When the bottom line is defined by a relentless pursuit of quarterly profit instead of a company’s longevity, the welfare of its workers and the welfare of the community it supports, that company has already created an entity as brutal and terrifying as any an unrestrained AI could create.

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That’s the point, make most of the metrics be measured (independently) beyond the short term.

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The automation of executive leadership is absurd on its face and for many of the same reasons a human CEO is generally ineffective in their role; built-in biases, garbage in-garbage out decision making and the sense that the role itself implies the efficacy of decisions. This just doesn’t work most of the time. The whole concept of AI replacing the C-Suite is predicated on the idea that the C-Suite is intrinsically necessary, even though its failure prone and a top-line expense.

There are options and they work:

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My thoughts exactly. The only new spin on this are their plans to use the same model on the moon or Mars. Considering what an AI might do makes it seem like workers in Total Recall had it easy.

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The difficulty is that those metrics are hard to measure. CEOs should get raises and bonuses through the same processes as everyone else in a company.

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It’s a good thing we have governments to restrain these companies and look out for the welfare of the people and the planet./s

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While that’s a highly laudable notion, who gets to set their pay? Certainly no one who has mutual interests, investment portfolios, or plays golf on the same course.

I consider this an excellent point. Rather than treating businesses like sanctioned dictatorships, they ought to be democratized. Investors aren’t the only people who have a stake in companies – the lives of the actual goddamn workers depend on their companies (even more so, with healthcare so often insidiously linked to employment). Companies should be democracies, where all stakeholders vote on major decisions like pay rates, locations, and goals. CEO positions don’t necessarily need to be automated – they just need to be treated like any other employment, with no special privileges.

Fuck hierarchies.

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This reminds me of Kurt Vonnegut’s Player Piano.
Without all the entertaining bells and whistles of his vision of the future of work, I can see an AI CEO just usurping every role when it realizes it can do most of the work itself and everyone else is just screwing up its plans.

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