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Modern School Donating Member (558 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-20-11 08:00 PM
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Human Need or Capitalist Greed
It is not only absurd, but dangerous, to believe that jobs are good just because losing a job is undesirable (See the Cry For Jobs, Ruthless Criticism). Of course it is terrible to lose ones income and material security. But simply demanding jobs generally results in compromises and sacrifices in order to get that paycheck rolling in again. Workers accept lower wages, longer working hours, more dangerous conditions, less autonomy, longer commutes just to get back to work.

Jobs do not even necessarily provide material security, particularly if the wages arent sufficient to cover living expenses. Even when times were good and unemployment was low, prior to the start of the economic crisis, wages and living standards had been spiraling downwards for more than 30 years. Working hours had been increasing, stress growing and leisure time shrinking.

Why do we need jobs? We dont. We need the things that we can purchase with the income that jobs provide. If these goods and services can be produced in less than 40 hours per week we should all be happymore leisure time, right?

But it never works that way because the goods and services dont belong to us, they belong to the bosses, and we dont get paid the value of the goods and services we produce, but only a fraction of that. Our pay is an expense to the bosses. The more work they can get out of us and the less they have to pay for it, the greater their profits. Therefore, the purpose of work is not to meet human need, but capitalists greed and increased worker productivity does not result in more leisure time or increased wages, it results in increased profits.

Modern School
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RKP5637 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-20-11 08:03 PM
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1. K&R !!! n/t
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Tuesday Afternoon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-20-11 08:04 PM
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2. recommend
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Sarah Ibarruri Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-20-11 08:10 PM
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3. That needed to be said. Jobs that pay an unlivable wage are not real jobs, they're slavery
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drokhole Donating Member (759 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-20-11 08:26 PM
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4. Might be a good companion piece - Useful Work vs. Useless Toil
Useful Work versus Useless
by William Morris

"The above title may strike some of my readers as strange. It is assumed by most people nowadays that all work is useful, and by most well-to-do people that all work is desirable. Most people, well-to-do or not, believe that, even when a man is doing work which appears to be useless, he is earning his livelihood by it - he is "employed," as the phrase goes; and most of those who are well-to-do cheer on the happy worker with congratulations and praises, if he is only "industrious" enough and deprives himself of all pleasure and holidays in the sacred cause of labour. In short, it has become an article of the creed of modern morality that all labour is good in itself - a convenient belief to those who live on the labour of others. But as to those on whom they live, I recommend them not to take it on trust, but to look into the matter a little deeper.

Let us grant, first, that the race of man must either labour or perish. Nature does not give us our livelihood gratis; we must win it by toil of some sort of degree. Let us see, then, if she does not give us some compensation for this compulsion to labour, since certainly in other matters she takes care to make the acts necessary to the continuance of life in the individual and the race not only endurable, but even pleasurable.
Now, the first thing as to the work done in civilization and the easiest to notice is that it is portioned out very unequally amongst the different classes of society. First, there are people - not a few - who do no work, and make no pretence of doing any. Next, there are people, and very many of them, who work fairly hard, though with abundant easements and holidays, claimed and allowed; and lastly, there are people who work so hard that they may be said to do nothing else than work, and are accordingly called "the working classes," as distinguished from the middle classes and the rich, or aristocracy, whom I have mentioned above.
Next there is the mass of people employed in making all those articles of folly and luxury, the demand for which is the outcome of the existence of the rich non-producing classes; things which people leading a manly and uncorrupted life would not ask for or dream of. These things, whoever may gainsay me, I will for ever refuse to call wealth: they are not wealth, but waste. Wealth is what Nature gives us and what a reasonable man can make out of the gifts of Nature for his reasonable use. The sunlight, the fresh air, the unspoiled face of the earth, food, raiment and housing necessary and decent; the storing up of knowledge of all kinds, and the power of disseminating it; means of free communication between man and man; works of art, the beauty which man creates when he is most a man, most aspiring and thoughtful - all things which serve the pleasure of people, free, manly, and uncorrupted. This is wealth. Nor can I think of anything worth having which does not come under one or other of these heads. But think, I beseech you, of the product of England, the workshop of the world, and will you not be bewildered, as I am, at the thought of the mass of things which no sane man could desire, but which our useless toil makes - and sells?"

...(more at above link)

"We must do away with the absolutely specious notion that everybody has to earn a living. It is a fact today that one in ten thousand of us can make a technological breakthrough capable of supporting all the rest. The youth of today are absolutely right in recognizing this nonsense of earning a living. We keep inventing jobs because of this false idea that everybody has to be employed at some kind of drudgery because, according to Malthusian-Darwinian theory, he must justify his right to exist. So we have inspectors of inspectors and people making instruments for inspectors to inspect inspectors. The true business of people should be to go back to school and think about whatever it was they were thinking about before somebody came along and told them they had to earn a living."
"Every child has an enormous drive to demonstrate competence. If humans are not required to earn a living to be provided survival needs, many are going to want very much to be productive, but not at those tasks they did not choose to do but were forced to accept in order to earn money. Instead, humans will spontaneously take upon themselves those tasks that world society really needs to have done."

- R. Buckminster Fuller

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