The point about monopolies is that the only way that information technology companies can make a profit is by operating a monopoly. The cost of copying a Beatles song is next to zero. If iTunes didn’t have a monopoly on this through copyright laws they wouldn’t be able to make any money. As the same technology starts to apply itself to other areas of economic activity it must lead to a similar colapse in price and therefore in profit, unless we set up a complex system of market and other restrictions which would be closer to the old Soviet Union.
I still maintain that profits are falling for any useful industry. The apparent increase in profits is because they are coming from rentier businesses. The big profits are not from making things or providing services but from owning property, gambling in the financial markets and lending money.
If we were able to take advantage of the new technologies that are now available we would have hundreds of firms producing these new products by the bucket load, but it isn’t happening. This is reflected in GDP growth. During the last Kondratief cycle, at it’s height (1950s and 60s) world GDP grew by between 5 and 7% each year. Since 2000 we struggle to reach 5% and most of that is from developing countries catching up. For the developed west 3% is considered a huge achievement.
Another indication of a new Kondratief cycle is an increase in incomes. (By the way, I never mentioned Thatcher or Reagan where I can agree with you that they are dead people. I spoke of Thatcherism and Reaganomics, which are political ideologies. Since I was talking about labour laws and the labour laws then enacted are still largely in place, this is relevant). I would agree that recently there has been an increase in average incomes. In Britain, for some quarters, they actually achieved the same level of increase as inflation. If you go back to the 1950s and 60s again, during that period average incomes increased by 3 percentage points above inflation each year (on average).
I have never advocated the seizing of the means of production, though I believe that so called 'natural monopolies’, such as railways and utilities are better state owned (but not state run). I don’t think there is any need to overthrow capitalism. Capitalism is not a law of nature, its a system that arose because of circumstances. Any system that has a beginning must have an end and for the reasons I’ve been giving it is quite likely that we are at the beginning of that end.
Back to the original question: Will new information technology not only destroy jobs but also create new ones? I don’t think it will create new jobs because information technology, within which I include AI and robotics, is different to previous technological advances in that any new products will also be produced by the same information technology that replaced the old jobs. Why employ people to produce your new widget when all we have to do is write a bit of new code for the machines we already have?
The system that replaces capitalism could be feudalism if we aren’t careful. It is possible that the 1% could use their power to just retain all the wealth leaving the rest of us to live on just universal basic income. This is why UBI isn’t a long term solution.
Hopefully it won’t be feudalism, in which case I think it likely we will have a society of considerable leisure and prosperity, in which people band together co-operatively on projects that interest them. Whether or not you want to call this socialism or anything else I don’t care.