There will always be a need for manual labor,
Really? Seems to me like that will be the first thing to go, or indeed has already gone in many cases.
Lower skilled labor goes, but every time there is automation to remove a simple task the bar of "simple" gets raised as there is always more to do that we don't have the ability to automate.
They said Ford's assembly line was going to be the death of factory workers, but it proved not to be. They said robots on the assembly lines would be the death of the factory workers, but they haven't been. The backhoe and Ditch Witch didn't remove the need to have "ditch diggers". In all cases the human work changed, but humans were still needed. The workers that wanted to stay employed acquired the new skills that were needed.
It's up to the displaced to learn the new skills to fill the new role or some other existing role. I have no problem providing assistance to those that are willing to make the transitions while they are going through the change. It's those that stand by and complain without doing anything that I have no sympathy for.
I don't count myself as something special or irreplaceable. I know very well that I could be replaced at anytime by someone that can do it for less (H1B, off shoring, etc..). But rather than bitch about how life is "unfair" I instead bust my ass to keep my skills up to date so that I can continue to make a living.
At the end of the day we are the only ones responsible for making sure we have a job. If someone isn't willing to do what's needed to be employable, it's no one's fault besides their own.