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seabeyond Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 06:22 AM
Original message
Who works hardest? Answer may surprise you
We talk a lot about being workaholics here in the United States, but it turns out we've got plenty of competition when it comes to keeping busy.

A study of 34 countries has found that Mexican, Japanese and Portuguese nationals spend the most time each day on work, studying and household chores.

Belgians, Danes and Germans spend the least amount of time on both paid and unpaid work, according to the study from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.

And as for us Americans? Despite our reputation for being all work and no play, we ranked ninth, after countries including Austria and Canada.

http://lifeinc.today.com/_news/2011/04/13/6465911-who-w...
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kristopher Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 06:48 AM
Response to Original message
1. I was going to vote for women.
a friend that's logged of lot of time doing archaeological digs will not hire men unless he absolutely has to. He claims he can give instruction and leave women alone with no supervision having confidence the job will be done in a timely and correct manner but with men constant supervision is required. He consequently makes a habit of paying women more than men. Lucky for him, I suppose, that his digs are never in the US.
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Syrinx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 06:51 AM
Response to Original message
2. what is your point?
Edited on Thu Apr-14-11 07:00 AM by Syrinx
We should make our country more like Mexico? Or that we should get our advice, as a country, from "today.com," which is a company run by Microsoft?

And spend more of the times of our lives trying to earn enough food to continue living?

What is so great about "working the hardest?"

I'd like a higher standard of living. That's not necessarily the same as "working the hardest."

Why must our goals be so low? Why should we want America to be just like Mexico?

We should hope to go down in those ratings, not up.
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lunatica Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 07:00 AM
Response to Reply #2
3. Maybe this isn't a competition?
Does it piss you off that we're not number one in something?
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Syrinx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 07:02 AM
Response to Reply #3
5. I don't want to be number one in the difficulty of having a decent life
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Scuba Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 07:13 AM
Response to Reply #5
7. Bingo.
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seabeyond Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 07:21 AM
Response to Reply #2
8. my point? we are in middle or not top by far. thought interesting. sittin
about in average.

what point is there to make. it is an article. nothing more or less
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AlabamaLibrul Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 07:24 AM
Response to Reply #8
11. 9th of 34 is hardly the middle. Also, the US is above the OECD average as shown in the graph n/t
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seabeyond Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 07:27 AM
Response to Reply #11
12. meh.... nt
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Syrinx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 07:32 AM
Response to Reply #12
14. lol
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AlabamaLibrul Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 07:33 AM
Response to Reply #12
15. not intended to be a factual statement ??? n/t
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Syrinx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 07:35 AM
Response to Reply #15
16. lol squared
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seabeyond Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 08:07 AM
Response to Reply #15
22. shruggin... not top by far, that is fine. the numbers we have are so close to so many others
all not that significant

i dont get the outrage over this.
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Scuba Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 07:02 AM
Response to Original message
4. There ya go with that nationalism again. You need to look at it from...
...the global corportacrocy perspective.


The wealthiest among us do NO WORK whatsoever, not for a paycheck or even to prepare their own food. Almost all of them inherited their wealth. Ahhhh, to own for a living.

People who aren't among the wealthiest work harder and harder as you move down the income scale. The poor often have three jobs.

Continuing down the income scale you eventually find a small group who do "negative" work, because they require care.


In the global corportacrocy, this last group is considered "waste" and should be eliminated.



Which is kinda the opposite of how I feel.
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Syrinx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 07:13 AM
Response to Original message
6. this puzzles me
This seems to be a post in favor of longer hours for less pay, on a site called the DEMOCRATIC Underground.

Maybe I'm confused. I often am.

But I'll admit it, I'm baffled.
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seabeyond Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 07:22 AM
Response to Reply #6
9. interesting interpretation as i see it as we arent up there at the top so thinking we do better
than some countries.

but whatever
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Syrinx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 07:27 AM
Response to Reply #9
13. Mexico is a major world power now?
I did not know that.
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a la izquierda Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 07:37 AM
Response to Reply #13
17. It has the 11th or 13th largest economy...
in the world, depending on where you look and from what year.
Do you have some kind of problem with Mexico, or Mexicans? You surely didn't target the Japanese in the article.
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AlabamaLibrul Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 07:40 AM
Response to Reply #17
18. I, for one, have a problem with Mexico
Edited on Thu Apr-14-11 07:41 AM by AlabamaLibrul
the income disparity is shocking, as in most of Latin America, and most areas are in "third world" conditions. That should be unheard of, entirely unacceptable in the 11th or 13th largest economy in the world.

Need I remind you they come here in droves for the opportunity of an undocumented job at a fraction of our minimum wage?

So yes, I have a problem with Mexico, and I don't want America to be the world's largest Mexico in terms of labor and living conditions.
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a la izquierda Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 04:40 PM
Response to Reply #18
38. Well, they have the US of A to thank for that...
and some countries are trying to fix that.
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Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 07:45 AM
Response to Reply #17
19. Deleted message
Message removed by moderator. Click here to review the message board rules.
 
seabeyond Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 08:09 AM
Response to Reply #17
24. i am not getting why people are flippin over this article really. was surprised we werent higher.
was kinda thinkin, yea, we are healthier than what i thought. i missed something here.
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seabeyond Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 08:07 AM
Response to Reply #13
23. and i said it was.... where? wtf, is everyones problem. jeezus. the outrage. nt
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JuniperLea Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 04:42 PM
Response to Reply #23
39. The Outrage (TM)
It's all about The Outrage (TM). I think some people would be outraged by the three egg white omelet I had for breakfast.
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seabeyond Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 06:31 PM
Response to Reply #39
42. lol lol
after today, after this thread, lol lol

this has a different signifance. so funny
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chrisa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 09:31 PM
Response to Reply #13
47. The OP insinuated that?
Two posts, each attacking the OP for things that were never in the OP.
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reformist2 Donating Member (998 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 07:24 AM
Response to Original message
10. I thought the people who made the most money worked the hardest. LOL
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90-percent Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 07:57 AM
Response to Original message
20. What is America still good at?
Space Travel

Commercial Aviation

Entertainment

Blowing stuff up real good

-jim

What the hell is so desirable about working your entire conscious existence?
Seems more like enslavement than enterprise to me!

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seabeyond Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 08:10 AM
Response to Reply #20
25. i wasnt looking at this as being number one or anything else. nt
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WatsonT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 09:43 AM
Response to Reply #20
30. Not space travel for much longer
we've given that up.

We are good at arms and heavy manufacturing. And medical research. Also bio-tech.
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FLPanhandle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 07:58 AM
Response to Original message
21. I've worked in Mexico, Japan, & Germany
Edited on Thu Apr-14-11 08:09 AM by FLPanhandle
I can agree with the study numbers, BUT hours at work don't really equal productive hours.

In Japan, they worked a lot of hours but I noticed over time that we didn't get any more done than in the US at the end of the day. That surprised me as I believed the stereotype that the Japanese were all busy worker bees. Turned out there was a good bit of mental rest going on during the work day and hanging out just waiting for the boss to leave. They may spend more hours at work than us in the survey, but I wouldn't say all those hours were productive.

In Mexico, I was again slightly surprised at they were as productive as the US office hour per hour. However, they worked in the office until almost 8pm as we didn't get a quorum of folks there until almost 10am and lunch could be a two hour affair. I used to almost beg them "Guys, if we start on time and take a short lunch, then we could get out of here at 6pm", that never happened. So, Mexico may rank above us in hours worked but again, I wouldn't say they are any more productive after a day's work.

The German office was living up to the stereotype about efficiency. Start on time, designated lunch window, little goofing off time.

Overall, each of the locations did about the same amount of true "work" during a day, it's just the days were spent differently.

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seabeyond Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 08:13 AM
Response to Reply #21
26. interesting.
i think.

but a discussion like this seems to be saying something one way or another and offensive to some.

but your theory or perception works for me.
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FLPanhandle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 08:19 AM
Response to Reply #26
27. I read the entire thread and don't understand why people are taking offensive
Or reading ulterior motives into a survey of working hours.

It's just data.

Anyway, thanks for posting it.
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90-percent Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 08:21 AM
Response to Reply #21
28. FLP
Edited on Thu Apr-14-11 08:28 AM by 90-percent
FLP - that is a robust work experience you have there. Very worldly, literally.

I've worked for a Japanese Company and a German Company. I never went to Japan but went to Germany five times, but only on week long junkets. The Japanese Company would cycle many of their Japanese people through America for a few years. All of them would automatically stay in the office every day until around 7:00. Many with feet on the desk reading a trade magazine. To be fair, there were also some that worked hard their entire ten hours.

The Germans, in contrast, tend to work hard and productively for every minute of their seven hour days. I think they really practiced giving a good day's work for a good days pay.

I agree with FLP in that the amount of time you spend at work is not the measure, it's the productivity that's the measure.

I personally like the eight hour work day and leading a balanced life with more going on that just your occupation. I had spent 30 years in white collar roles and I recently worked on the factory floor running machines. The sense of pride and accomplishment I got running production was a lot more fulfilling than my vague nebulous white collar role. I find the white collar side to be crawling with empty suit genuflecting genius middle managers that just gum up everything. Your performance in white collar is very hard to measure and self preservation means you can't be excellent or incompetent. Mediocre works best, unless you are blessed with a middle manager that is a real leader. I get real energized reporting to someone I respect. I get demoralized reporting to empty suit self serving managers, which is the state of most of working life in America these days, with some exceptions.

I'm pretty much a full blown iconoclast, (my definition: one who questions accepted norms) and boy does that personality type know how to rock the boat! Mediocre Managers sure as hell don't like getting their boats rocked by their underlings! (And I have the pink slips to prove it!)

-jim

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Southerner Donating Member (57 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 09:15 AM
Response to Original message
29. The data counts who works the LONGEST.
Yet the title says who works the hardest. Two totally different things.

What really matters is productivity - GDP produced per hour worked:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_GDP_ (PPP)_per_hour_worked

We're fourth overall but first place amongst large, industrialized countries. (Norway is a small country with very rich oil reserves that generate a lot of their GDP).
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seabeyond Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 01:29 PM
Response to Reply #29
33. "who works the hardest. Two totally different things."
point.

another poster pointed out the different work styles he has encountered which would jive with what you are saying.

i can go with that. i didn't chose the title, there is capitalizations, lol. i just copied and pasted.

but you are right on that. maybe that is why people were bothered with this op
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snooper2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 09:47 AM
Response to Original message
31. I blame it on all the hoarders, they are skewing the numbers
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Taverner Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 12:51 PM
Response to Original message
32. I knew there was something great about Belgium other than the beers
I'm ready to spend the rest of my life quietly contemplating life over Westerverleten 12!!!

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seabeyond Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 01:30 PM
Response to Reply #32
34. lol
with glimpses of your other posts, seems you are getting comfortable with the idea.
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Taverner Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 01:39 PM
Response to Reply #34
35. What - because of the beer?
Yes, I do love good beer :)
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xchrom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 01:46 PM
Response to Original message
36. goes to the notion of our 'exceptionalism'.
we're not even #1 in who works longer, harder, etc -- all the kinds of things we like to break our arm patting ourselves on the back over.
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seabeyond Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 02:17 PM
Response to Reply #36
37. i really didnt get that from this article. i didnt know we were suppose to feel that.
i thought it interesting we were so far down, and more moderate, along with others.

i left that american pride thing so long ago, just isnt in my thoughts. but i think it is a good thing not be the longest hour worker (opposed to hardest, as another couple posters pointed out)and having time to play.
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xchrom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 05:21 PM
Response to Reply #37
40. Really? All that business in our national myth - pioneers making a
Civilization by the sweat of their brow, coming here with nothing and 'working' their way to the American dream, wwI, wwII those courageous & hard working soldiers...

And you don't get that we would see our selves as #1?
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seabeyond Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 06:30 PM
Response to Reply #40
41. really. i assumed that ship sailed in the decade of japan.....
and again, hard work does not equate to hours spent.

and

the most important

i would hope after all this time we have learned a bet of balance and time at work is not all life is about. maybe that is why i did not even consider it is because i think it is a good thing not being number one.

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xchrom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 08:19 PM
Response to Reply #41
43. I think you have 'self interpereted' for your own
Purposes against a national self definition.

I don't know why you would do that - the meaning isn't hidden --
But I have my own ideas.
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seabeyond Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 09:15 PM
Response to Reply #43
46. whatever. just dont give a shit. i clearly, consistently stated what i think about the rankings
Edited on Thu Apr-14-11 09:16 PM by seabeyond
make up your own story .....

this is just gotten to the point of stupid...
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Nikia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 08:39 PM
Response to Original message
44. Does the unemployment/underemployment rate affect this?
You do have a significant number of Americans working less hours than they would prefer. I'm not sure how this compares to other countries.
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Kip Humphrey Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 09:01 PM
Response to Original message
45. Only 9th? May be because 22% of us are unemployed.
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