The last two hours of the morning news bloc on SCETV Radio are pretty much a dog's breakfast, what with NPR's Morning Edition constantly broken up by an endless string of one-minute programmites and Promo ads for other shows on the sister TV network, come-ons for vacation trips for ETV's old but wealthy core donors (imagine being trapped in a bus for a week across the vastness of Oregon with Roland Alston) and reminders that if you remember ETV in your will you can ensure your grandchildren will get the same level of mediocre programming ETV gives you now.
One of the longer shows in this thicket is South Carolina Business Review With Mike Switzer, which seems, this week, to be on a mission to promote a sister state agency that gives grants and subsidies to film-makers. Monday Switzer turns over the mic to John Warner, who runs a business called Innoventure and a website called Swamp Fox. Warner talks about whatever he's interested in- or has an interest in, to put it another way- until Switzer's time is up.
But once in a while you hear an interesting fact tumbling out of all the shilling. Today it was a chilling one: Warner said for all the hype about growth and modernization in the Upstate, per capita incomes have gone down now for fifteen years in a row.
The culprit? Increases in productivity- a euphemism for automating jobs out of existence. Notwithstanding the big industry "gets" of the last two decades, all the jobs they bring- and the Uniparty in Columbia cheers about as proof they are doing the right things- are offset, and then some, by machinery that does repetitive task faster and more accurately than people.
It's something to think about, as the rich in the Upstate get richer, the poor grow poorer, and the middle teeters on a precipice.