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Why robots could soon replace fast food workers demanding higher minimum wage
KIRO-FM's The Curley and Walsh Show ^ | July 11, 2013 | Josh Kerns

Posted on 07/29/2013 11:03:49 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet

If Seattle fast workers demanding a big raise in the minimum wage get their way, they'll soon be replaced by robots says KIRO Radio's John Curley, who points to growing automation as a warning to those who want $15 an hour or more to flip burgers.

A group of local fast food workers recently staged a one-day walkout and are calling on the Seattle City Council to increase the minimum wage from $9.19 per hour - the highest in the country - to $15 an hour.

"We're asking for $15 because in order to support one person in a one bedroom apartment you need to make $14.88. We don't make anywhere near that and we're all on food stamps," 23-year-old Amanda Larson told KIRO Radio's Linda Thomas recently as she worked the counter at a Seattle Arby's.

But restaurant owners argue they simply can't afford it. With technology continuing to allow restaurants around the world to replace people with robots and computers, Curley says look no farther than several examples in Japan and Europe as a sign of what's to come if the Seattle workers get their way.

A noted Japanese sushi-chain has robots making food while customers order on a touch screen. A conveyer belt delivers their food and a computer tracks customer purchases and automates their bill payment at the end.

"There are no managers in this restaurant," Curley says. "The managers are all in a centrally located place that are just simply watching video screens. So they've been able to cut out almost all the help."

Several years ago, McDonald's installed thousands of touch-screen kiosks at stores across Europe, replacing cashiers entirely. The company has reportedly also tried out automated burger flippers to further cut back on employees.

It's not far fetched. A Chinese restaurateur has developed a robotic chef now found in a number of noodle bars, further eliminating the need for humans. With the robot chefs costing just $1,500, they're far cheaper than employees and don't demand raises or breaks.

Curley says the workers here demanding higher wages for a job that should be entry-level should think twice before raising too much of a fuss - before they find themselves completely obsolete.

"The saddest thing for this story, if you follow it, is robots will replace human beings in these McDonald's and fast food restaurants and low skill workers will have really no place to go."

(VIDEO-AT-LINK)


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society; Extended News; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: automation; food; macwages; minimumwage; minwage; robotics; robots
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1 posted on 07/29/2013 11:03:49 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

“”We’re asking for $15 because in order to support one person in a one bedroom apartment you need to make $14.88. We don’t make anywhere near that and we’re all on food stamps,” 23-year-old Amanda Larson”

That’s a sad story, Amanda.....now STFU and get my fries before it gets cold.


2 posted on 07/29/2013 11:08:52 PM PDT by max americana (fired liberals in our company after the election, & laughed while they cried (true story))
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Robots have taken a lot of manufacturing jobs. I suppose that eventually, it will be a good thing, as they will perform all the drudgery and free up the workforce for better things.

In the meantime, there are lots of displaced, unskilled workers.


3 posted on 07/29/2013 11:09:58 PM PDT by BlackVeil
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

The real problem is not the wages, but the barriers that exist that makes it difficult to learn marketable skills.


4 posted on 07/29/2013 11:12:32 PM PDT by Jonty30 (What Islam and secularism have in common is that they are both death cults)
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To: max americana

Our nearby Aldi’s grocery store (opened about 3 months ago) pays $11.50 to $21.50 an hour with benefits and rent around/cost-of-living here is a mere fraction of that in New York City.


5 posted on 07/29/2013 11:14:21 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet (I aim to raise a million plus for Gov. Palin. What'll you do?.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet


You want fries with that?
6 posted on 07/29/2013 11:15:52 PM PDT by USFRIENDINVICTORIA
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To: Jonty30

Who placed those barriers there? Were these individuals not afforded the same K-12 free education that you and I were offered?


7 posted on 07/29/2013 11:16:27 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet (I aim to raise a million plus for Gov. Palin. What'll you do?.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Unionized, I assume. How much are the items for sale there?


8 posted on 07/29/2013 11:23:16 PM PDT by max americana (fired liberals in our company after the election, & laughed while they cried (true story))
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To: max americana

No, not union, I don’t believe. Aldi’s is German-owned and the items are inexpensive:

http://weeklyads.aldi.us/aldi/default.aspx?action=entryflash&adref=aldistorelocator&StoreRef=1750


9 posted on 07/29/2013 11:25:59 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet (I aim to raise a million plus for Gov. Palin. What'll you do?.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

and someone didn’t ping me to this. Same thing I’ve been saying all day.


10 posted on 07/29/2013 11:28:54 PM PDT by GeronL
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

There are already french fry and burger vending machines. The french fries are dropped in a fryer when you order it and delivered HOT. There are even pizza vending machines.

No reason robots couldn’t replace these useless breathers.


11 posted on 07/29/2013 11:30:48 PM PDT by GeronL
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

And Aldi’s has fewer workers than a normal grocery store of course.


12 posted on 07/29/2013 11:31:33 PM PDT by GeronL
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To: GeronL

Que Sera, Sera.


13 posted on 07/29/2013 11:33:07 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet (I aim to raise a million plus for Gov. Palin. What'll you do?.)
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To: Jonty30
as automation increases (and I'm an engineer contributing to that), I see fewer and fewer jobs for those who are not highly skilled professionals. What is to happen to those who cannot do the highly skilled jobs?

And also note that I include plumbers in highly skilled -- those guys sometimes can earn more than I do -- and they deserve it!

14 posted on 07/29/2013 11:35:33 PM PDT by Cronos (Latin presbuteros>Late Latin presbyter->Old English pruos->Middle Engl prest->priest)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet; Jonty30
Yes 2DV, but the fact is that not everyone is smart. 50% of the population has an IQ lower than 100, and many are just not able to perform higher skilled tasks. What do we do with these people?

What do THEY do?

welfare is not the way.

15 posted on 07/29/2013 11:37:30 PM PDT by Cronos (Latin presbuteros>Late Latin presbyter->Old English pruos->Middle Engl prest->priest)
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To: Cronos

artificially higher wages is a form of welfare too


16 posted on 07/29/2013 11:39:49 PM PDT by GeronL
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To: Cronos

Do you want to go back to the CCC, NRA, New Deal make-work programs? Many of those people could start a small business, sell, farm a small plot of land with high-revenue plants and animals, learn a simple trade (locksmithing, small engine repair, etc.) enroll in Job Corps or go into the military to learn a skill.


17 posted on 07/29/2013 11:44:48 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet (I aim to raise a million plus for Gov. Palin. What'll you do?.)
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To: Jonty30

The barriers that make it difficult to learn marketable skills, barriers such as laziness and stupidity.


18 posted on 07/29/2013 11:52:33 PM PDT by Jeff Chandler (I hear wet grass.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
No. Quite frankly I don't know what is the solution, all I know is that there is going to be an increasing problem with people who just do not have the skills in a highly automated world

And the prospect of humans becoming blobs like in Wall-E is scary yet possible.

19 posted on 07/29/2013 11:59:24 PM PDT by Cronos (Latin presbuteros>Late Latin presbyter->Old English pruos->Middle Engl prest->priest)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Many of those people could start a small business, sell, farm a small plot of land with high-revenue plants and animals, learn a simple trade (locksmithing, small engine repair, etc.) enroll in Job Corps or go into the military to learn a skill.

Let's go through these:
1. Start a small business -- you still need some skills and acumen. This can be taught to some extent, but there are still many incapable of even doing this -- in the old days they'd be shop assistants or sweeping the floors or something. Also, keeping a business is to some extent luck

2. farm a small plot of land -- yes, and this is a good option, but we need to cut out a lot of the regulations and also remember that many are not willing to do hard labor (everyone wants an office job) -- that can be changed, but most won't like it!! But I agree that this is the best idea

3. learn a simple trade -- most engines and locks are nowadays pretty high-tech, but this is also a good option

4. enroll into a job corps or go into the military -- good options but we need good people in the military

Your points made me think -- I've always been a proponent of Heinlein's "work to get citizenship" ideal. Perhaps it could be merged with this? namely each person must put in 2 years for society - it can be in the military or community service (doctors can work in the countryside etc.) and let people EARN their vote. This would also give people an appreciation for the dignity of physical labor and also some skills

20 posted on 07/30/2013 12:05:05 AM PDT by Cronos (Latin presbuteros>Late Latin presbyter->Old English pruos->Middle Engl prest->priest)
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To: GeronL
artificially higher wages is a form of welfare too

correct. A minimum wage doesn't help imho

21 posted on 07/30/2013 12:05:30 AM PDT by Cronos (Latin presbuteros>Late Latin presbyter->Old English pruos->Middle Engl prest->priest)
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To: GeronL

22 posted on 07/30/2013 12:06:59 AM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet (I aim to raise a million plus for Gov. Palin. What'll you do?.)
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To: Cronos
"work to get citizenship" ideal

Because nothing says freedom more than being a government slave for some odd number of years.

23 posted on 07/30/2013 12:07:26 AM PDT by GeronL
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

“Give me a number 5 ... for a robocop.”


24 posted on 07/30/2013 12:09:22 AM PDT by Mr Ramsbotham (I'll retire to Bedlam.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

If these nutters got their way, we could see these places on every corner, just one person managing a 7-eleven sized store with pizza, burger, chicken and nacho machines. THAT person will likely be paid pretty good.

Gotta keep the ingredients stocked after all.


25 posted on 07/30/2013 12:09:24 AM PDT by GeronL
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To: Cronos
While on recruiter's aide duty for two months in my home town, I drove a young man to the MEPS who had finally passed his ASVAB by the skin of his teeth so that he could join the Army. He was assigned to bath and laundry. That is a trade.
26 posted on 07/30/2013 12:09:38 AM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet (I aim to raise a million plus for Gov. Palin. What'll you do?.)
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To: Jeff Chandler; Jonty30
barriers such as laziness and stupidity.

the laziness can be worked out, but that will take decades of work. It's like the Roman republic. Initially everyone was working hard for the community as a whole then the politicians learnt about giving free bread and circuses to get votes....

27 posted on 07/30/2013 12:10:04 AM PDT by Cronos (Latin presbuteros>Late Latin presbyter->Old English pruos->Middle Engl prest->priest)
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To: Cronos

What do we do?

First, start unwinding the policies and laws that have driven up the cost of living. The issue is at least partly the zoning laws that allow rich liberals to continue living in their insulated neighborhoods while keeping the poor, poor so they vote demonratic

Second, some of these people may need to move to other locations where the cost of living is lower. This would lower the cost of living in large cities by reducing the pressure on the housing supply. It would also help to break up the ghetto mentality that re-enforces cycles of low income behavior

Third, find a democrat and punch their lights outs. This is their fault. Just because it feels so good

Four, part of the first point would allow some manufacturing jobs to to return. Incentives could be given to companies to build in the US. This would not be an immediate help and would take time

Fifth; break the unions. At least brake the ones that rather than working to better the company and setting realistic wage and working goals insist upon an overtly confrontational us versus them approach. But remove all union pension benefits and place them in a single Federal Agency where they cannot be siphoned off for mob activities or democratic campaign contributions

Just my thoughts


28 posted on 07/30/2013 12:10:13 AM PDT by Fai Mao (Genius at Large)
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To: Cronos
While I agree with his idea in Starship Troopers that only veterans earn the franchise, can you imagine the howls if anyone ever proposed such a bill?
29 posted on 07/30/2013 12:11:43 AM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet (I aim to raise a million plus for Gov. Palin. What'll you do?.)
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To: Jonty30
What barriers? The only barriers that exist are within that person’s mind.

Life was not meant to free of obstacles or challenges but those are not impenetrable barriers.

30 posted on 07/30/2013 12:21:59 AM PDT by Ophiucus
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To: Cronos
NOBODY can make a career of flipping burgers at any fast food joint. Now, plenty of people made great careers from fast food joints. And quite a few of those folks didn't even know how to flip burgers when they first stepped into that world. But they learned. That is, if they stuck it out long enough to learn. Eventually they got past the mechanics of cooking, cleaning and serving, and began to get the basics of RUNNING a fast food joint.

How to run a crew, how to schedule diverse personalities, how to handle the cash, and how to budget, order, and plan with an aim of making the joint successful and you gain skills that ANYONE can sell.

These folks don't have to be Mensa members, nor do they have to be in the 100+ range of IQ. They first have to have gained these skills, and they have to be willing to show up every workday ready to do the work. Because this is work that needs to be done, whether it's for a fast food joint, or running a phone store, or sell tires, or any of a hundred other jobs that need to get done every single day. And these jobs DO pay more than minimum wage.

31 posted on 07/30/2013 12:27:14 AM PDT by Wingy
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To: Cronos
What do we do with these people?

Slavery. It is was welfare was designed to do, prepare and create the new slave class. A new slave class with the mentality and capability to do only the meanest and basest of society's chores, existing at the largess of the upper classes of society. A large number of science fiction novels over the last century have explored this historical destination.

32 posted on 07/30/2013 12:27:45 AM PDT by Ophiucus
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To: max americana

Well, at least a robot chef won’t get all disgruntled and spit on your food...


33 posted on 07/30/2013 12:37:33 AM PDT by Smokin' Joe (How often God must weep at humans' folly. Stand fast. God knows what He is doing)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
2nd Div, Cronos:

“What do we do with the unemployed then?” Nothing really. With all their free time, they can spend most of it at the local library where there is unlimited free access to all the world's classic books. We can have a huge permanent, but spectacularly well-read unemployed class! We can have book clubs with regular discussion sessions everywhere.

Others can jog and bike and swim regularly. Triathlons will be available to everyone with their new fitness. Triathlons will even have age divisions so everyone can have a meaningful chance of competing for honors.

The people will be so happy and contented. I so look forward to that day soon.

Oldplayer

34 posted on 07/30/2013 12:37:39 AM PDT by oldplayer
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To: GeronL
No reason robots couldn’t replace these useless breathers.

You end up supporting them one way or another...

35 posted on 07/30/2013 12:38:57 AM PDT by Smokin' Joe (How often God must weep at humans' folly. Stand fast. God knows what He is doing)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Loved that book, got a tattered 20yr old copy of it. Also love the concept, but I would include the police and firefighters that also put their lives on the line.


36 posted on 07/30/2013 12:50:49 AM PDT by mikefive (RLTW)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Hey fast food workers at $15 an hour, if you still have a job, you will be absolutely required to get our orders RIGHT.


37 posted on 07/30/2013 12:55:42 AM PDT by FreedomGuru (Without Life nothing else matters.)
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To: max americana

Why use Robots when you can hire kids and old people? They will work for $3 an hour and food. Maybe do a kick back system. Let them work three hour shifts—Part Time “Training wages” People want to work and will if given a chance. No need to pay $15 dollar wage to some greedy minority who thinks he’s worth it for breating air. Hire illegals—they will work and live in a room with 6 others to make it work.


38 posted on 07/30/2013 1:10:14 AM PDT by Forward the Light Brigade (Into the Jaws of H*ll)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Warehouse work is on the cusp of a revolution.

Amazon has a Seattle grocery warehouse where a fleet of robots actually pull multi-item orders from the shelves and deliver them to the proper loading dock.

Next job in danger?

Warehouse-to-warehouse long haul truckers.

39 posted on 07/30/2013 1:13:49 AM PDT by zeestephen
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

I have a long-standing ongoing argument with a friend about the “living wage”. She just refuses to see that when a person’s minimum pay is set at some level, it prices them out of the market. She just believes (BELIEVES!!!) that the only reason that wages are set at the current level is because the corporations won’t raise them.

Of course, she’s a pastor and her wage is set by TPTB in her denomination rather than the amount of money brought into her congregation.


40 posted on 07/30/2013 1:23:14 AM PDT by Stegall Tx (Teaching part time and enjoying it. I just can't afford it!)
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To: Cronos
People on the lower end of the intelligence scale used to do menial work. Cleaning houses, offices, hotels, schools. Mowing lawns. Working at the car wash. Food service.

Part of the problem is that Americans feel these types of jobs are beneath them. So they turn to welfare and/or crime and the illegals gladly take their low-skill jobs.

41 posted on 07/30/2013 1:49:37 AM PDT by informavoracious (We're being "punished" with Stanley Ann's baby. Obamacare: shovel-ready healthcare.)
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To: Cronos

Starting a small business these days is tantamount to economic suicide. The amount of regulations involved is beyond staggering. Virtually no one who is currently only qualified for burger-flipping is going to navigate their way through that maze.

Farming likewise is fraught with oversight obstacles, as you point out.

Small engines (such as those on lawnmowers, garden tractors, and the like), are still pretty basic. Ditto locks. These are areas that would probably be useful. Learning appliance repair would also be a good route (most appliances these days are so modular that no real skill is required). I suspect this will be a growth market for jobs, as the economy slows further and folks try to squeeze longer lives out of their stuff.


42 posted on 07/30/2013 2:21:35 AM PDT by Little Pig (Vi Veri Veniversum Vivus Vici.)
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To: Little Pig

I think its kind of sad. Is it such a bad word? Why is there no radio station with the call letters WORK?


43 posted on 07/30/2013 2:23:42 AM PDT by GeronL
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
A group of local fast food workers recently staged a one-day walkout and are calling on the Seattle City Council to increase the minimum wage from $9.19 per hour - the highest in the country - to $15 an hour. "We're asking for $15 because in order to support one person in a one bedroom apartment you need to make $14.88. We don't make anywhere near that and we're all on food stamps," 23-year-old Amanda Larson told KIRO Radio's Linda Thomas recently as she worked the counter at a Seattle Arby's.

Meanwhile Bill Gates told Congress that degreed engineers wanted too much money to do computer work and that more HB1 visa Indian scabs were need so he could pocket 33 billion because there wasn't enough to pay workers and remain profitable.

Mr. Gate lie to Congress affected the entire industry, not just his little kingdom.

I say let's get more Indians in America flipping burgers. That seems to be the solution to everything.

44 posted on 07/30/2013 2:26:57 AM PDT by a fool in paradise (America 2013 - STUCK ON STUPID)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Those pizza machines are opening up all over town here in Russia. The thought of buying a pizza from one of them is disgusting.


45 posted on 07/30/2013 2:27:41 AM PDT by Cowboy Bob (Democrats: Robbing Peter to buy Paul's vote.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet; Revolting cat!
STARBUCKS 2025:


46 posted on 07/30/2013 2:28:45 AM PDT by a fool in paradise (America 2013 - STUCK ON STUPID)
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To: GeronL
"There's... room to move as a fry cook"


47 posted on 07/30/2013 2:35:00 AM PDT by a fool in paradise (America 2013 - STUCK ON STUPID)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Betcha those robots don’t spit in the food the way Je$$e Jack$$on used to do.


48 posted on 07/30/2013 2:39:36 AM PDT by Fresh Wind (The last remnants of the Old Republic have been swept away.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Well, it should be extended to other community activities -- even "community organizer" :)

Seriously. I believe even a paraplegic can contribute to the community -- and many of them are truly gifted intellectually and should be given the opportunity to contribute.

49 posted on 07/30/2013 2:40:47 AM PDT by Cronos (Latin presbuteros>Late Latin presbyter->Old English pruos->Middle Engl prest->priest)
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To: Smokin' Joe; Bender2; Revolting cat!
Well, at least a robot chef won’t get all disgruntled and spit on your food...

Not so sure about that.

The future can be a scary place, Dave.


50 posted on 07/30/2013 2:41:15 AM PDT by a fool in paradise (America 2013 - STUCK ON STUPID)
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