The World Wide Web has led to the downsizing of businesses to such a startling degree that most Americans will eventually be self-employed — a return to the way things were 200 years ago.
That’s the alarming view of Nicco Mele, author of "The End of Big: How The Internet Makes David the New Goliath’’ and lecturer in public policy at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government.
“There’s definitely been a dramatic change in our economy,’’ Mele told Newsmax TV’s “The Steve Malzberg Show.’’
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“In 1820, most Americans, 90 percent plus, were essentially self-employed farmers. By 1920, most Americans, 90 percent plus, were employed by corporations.
“And we’re headed back, by 2020, to a situation where the vast majority of Americans are, again, essentially, self-employed, either as solo consultants, solo operators, or as contract 1099 employees – not full employees, but contract employees.’’
That’s the result of jobs being eliminated because of sweeping technological advances in communication that require less people.
Mele — who directed internet operations for Howard Dean’s presidential run in 2004 — said the shift is not a good one for the nation’s workforce.
“The fundamental dynamics of our economy are shifting in a way that is profoundly anti-institutional — where big companies are not taking care of American workers in the same way,’’ he said.
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