Here's a picture of a caboose that I'm helping to paint. My employer is meticulous about preparation and wants all of the rust removed before painting. I've been grinding the paint, labels, and layers of paint off this week. It is physically exhausting.
We started scraping the paint with a wire brush and metal scrapers and substituted mechanical electric grinders. This is a clear substitution of capital for labor. I think we could have saved a lot of time by just using a chemical to neutralize the rust, then paint over it. This brings me to this post.
When is it feasible to use labor in place of capital?
Here is a picture of the caboose painted by another crew eight years ago.
To paint this structure, one would need a lot of planning, knowledge of product selection, tools, and sun protection. I think a better term for these words would be entrepreneurial ability. There seems to be a balance and trade-off between using capital and labor. I believe that ultimately, capital will replace labor in most occupations. I believe that you will see the natural rate of unemployment stay constant at 8.3% and gradually increase in your lifetime.