Out: We're losing jobs to ATMs. In: We're creating jobs via robotics

I’m not sure how to square this with this. Automation is bad for unemployment, except when it’s good for unemployment? Or full automation is bad, but partial automation is okay? Either way, it’s nice to see him talking up the job-creating benefits of technology.

I think he should run with it. Take over the ATM manufacturing industry, then massively expand it as part of a new jobs program. Coming soon: A cash machine every 100 feet, coast to coast.

Of course, there’s been a real debate about where to invest and where to cut, and I’m committed to working with members of both parties to cut our deficits and debt. But we can’t simply cut our way to prosperity. We need to do what’s necessary to grow our economy; create good, middle-class jobs; and make it possible for all Americans to pursue their dreams.

That means giving our kids the best education in the world so they have the knowledge and skills to succeed in this economy. It means rebuilding our crumbling roads, railways, and runways. And it means investing in the cutting-edge research and technologies that will spur growth in the years ahead – from clean energy to advanced manufacturing.

That’s why I’m here today at Carnegie Mellon in Pittsburgh, one of America’s leading research universities. Behind me is a display from a company called RedZone Robotics. The robots they make are used to explore water and sewage pipes, and find leaks and breaks before they become expensive problems. But the folks at RedZone aren’t just solving problems; they’re working with unions to create new jobs operating the robots, and they’re saving cities millions of dollars in infrastructure costs.

This company is just one example of how advanced manufacturing can help spur job-creation and economic growth across this country.

Addendum to the takeover idea: What about manually-operated ATMs? Instead of punching in a PIN and having a computer churn out cash, we could have a union member behind the screen counting out the dough and then pushing it through the slot. Good enough for the Fenway and Wrigley scoreboards, good enough for American banks.