as a way to at least temporarily slow the spread of automation and to fund other types of employment.
What the hell for? Let's get everything fully automated as soon as possible so we can get the basic income uprising out of the way and we can all do whatever we want instead of what we feel we have to do.
I agree. Ignoring the fact that it's impossible to draw the line between a robot and a machine (is a calculator a robot?, what about a self service checkout?), I think the best solution for excess labor is probably to just start reducing hours worked per week in lockstep. If we reduced hours worked from 40 to 30 then we would instantly create 25% more jobs. As jobs get automated away, we could continue to reduce hours worked until people were only working a few hours per week. It's really the supply versus demand that is the problem. There are a ton of crappy jobs right now because the supply of "unskilled" human labor is greater than the demand. For the foreseeable future though, there will still be jobs that only humans can do so if we want wages to go up, the best way to do this is to either decrease the supply or increase the demand. Increasing the demand is going to be hard. Decreasing the supply is much easier. Death or population control would be one gruesome way. Another solution is to cap the hours worked per week. Companies would still need those jobs filled and would have to pay more per hour for people to be willing to work them and also need to hire more people to fill the same number of hours.