Author Topic: Great Resignation (Big Quit) 2021  (Read 1134 times)

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DavidW

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Re: Great Resignation (Big Quit) 2021
« Reply #20 on: October 12, 2021, 02:30:30 PM »
Reading all the posts above makes me realise just how fortunate I am. 

I also really enjoy my work.  I teach highly motivated and talented students at a specialized STEM school.  So the work is rewarding.  I don't get paid big bucks, but enough to live comfortably and have spending money.

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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Re: Great Resignation (Big Quit) 2021
« Reply #21 on: October 12, 2021, 07:47:20 PM »
As for the USA, a majority of workers think that they will look for a new job this and next year.
The pandemic made us reassess our relationship with work.
This is a good thing.

https://www.bankrate.com/personal-finance/job-seekers-survey-august-2021/

High time ...

Both work and living have become more and more pointless and empty. There is no lack of meaningful things that cry out to be done but our working days are used up in what lacks meaning, making useless or harmful products, or servicing the bureaucratic structures. For most Americans, work is mindless, exhausting, boring, servile and hateful: something to be endured, while life is confined to time off. Beginning with school (if not before) an individual is systematically stripped of his imagination, his creativity, his heritage, his dreams and his personal uniqueness in order to fit him to be a productive unit in a mass technological society. Instinct, feeling and spontaneity are suppressed by overwhelming forces. As the individual is drawn into the meritocracy his working life is split from his home life, and both suffer from a lack of wholeness. In the end, people virtually become their occupations and their other roles and are strangers to themselves. The American crisis then seems clearly to be related to an inability to act, but what is the cause of this paralysis? Why, in the face of every warning, have we been unable to act? Why have we not used our resources more wisely and justly? We tell ourselves that social failure gets down to individual moral failure: We must have the will to act, we must first find concern and compassion in our hearts. But this diagnosis is not good enough. It is contradicted by the experience of powerlessness that is encountered by so many people. Today a majority of the people as moral individuals certainly want peace, but they cannot turn their individual wills into action by society. It is not that we do not will action, but that we are unable to act, unable to put existing knowledge to use. The machinery of our society apparently no longer works, or we no longer know how to make it work. The corporate state in which we live is an immensely powerful machine, ordered, legalistic, rational, yet utterly out of human control and indifferent to human values. It is hard to say exactly when our society assumed this shape. The major symptoms of change started appearing after the Second World War and especially in the 1950s. The expenditure of a trillion dollars for defense, the destruction of the environment, the production of unneeded goods. These were not merely extension of the familiar blunders and corruption of America’s past, they were of a different order of magnitude. And although they were all an integral part of a legal, and seemingly rational system, they were surrounded by a growing atmosphere of unreality. The stupidities and thefts of the Grant era  were not insane, they were human departures from a reasonably human standard. In the 1950s the norm itself, the system itself became deranged.

From “The Greening of America” by Chas A. Reich in The New Yorker. 26 Sep 1970
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
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[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
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His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Offline greg

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Re: Great Resignation (Big Quit) 2021
« Reply #22 on: October 12, 2021, 09:38:48 PM »
WFH since March or April-ish last year, one of the very best things that ever happened to me.

Hopefully I can end up WFH the rest of my life, even in new positions. Coming to office for IT work is totally unnecessary for most. Being in office sucks, the restlessness of being stuck in the same spot all day is almost unbearable sometimes. The only disadvantage is not seeing coworkers, but overall the positive greatly outweigh the negatives.

As for the service industry, hopefully it would lead to employees being treated better. What a miserable industry to work in.
Wagie wagie get back in the cagie

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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Re: Great Resignation (Big Quit) 2021
« Reply #23 on: October 13, 2021, 06:36:58 AM »
I have mixed feelings about WFH in my pre-stroke era. On one hand it was very nice to get up a little later and not deal with the commute, very nice to enjoy lunch at home with my family. On t'other, the 8-hour workday was overall more stressful than if I had been in the office. I felt more like The Man owned my time, than if I had been in the office. I remember an article in the Globe to the effect of: The Laptop Has Destroyed Work-Life Balance, and I had a good glimpse of that when working from home.
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Offline greg

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Re: Great Resignation (Big Quit) 2021
« Reply #24 on: October 13, 2021, 07:53:04 AM »
I have mixed feelings about WFH in my pre-stroke era. On one hand it was very nice to get up a little later and not deal with the commute, very nice to enjoy lunch at home with my family. On t'other, the 8-hour workday was overall more stressful than if I had been in the office. I felt more like The Man owned my time, than if I had been in the office. I remember an article in the Globe to the effect of: The Laptop Has Destroyed Work-Life Balance, and I had a good glimpse of that when working from home.
This can be a problem for sure, it kinda just depends on your specific job and how much people respect your time outside of working hours. In my previous position, despite working in office 8+ hours a day, I was contacted to where I did probably 2 hours average extra time per week logging in and taking care of stuff at home. Nowadays, almost nothing outside of work hours- much less demanding position.
Wagie wagie get back in the cagie

Offline Dry Brett Kavanaugh

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Re: Great Resignation (Big Quit) 2021
« Reply #25 on: October 15, 2021, 05:51:27 AM »
Also it could be partially depending upon marital status.

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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Re: Great Resignation (Big Quit) 2021
« Reply #26 on: October 15, 2021, 01:24:26 PM »
Opinion: Workers are feeling a bit more empowered, and Republicans can’t stand it

Opinion by Paul Waldman

Today at 2:44 p.m. EDT

A record 4.3 million Americans quit their jobs in August, a phenomenon most observers regard as complicated, intriguing and revealing — both about the state of the economy and how people are thinking about the nature of work nearly two years into the coronavirus pandemic.

This is an extraordinary opportunity to look at the economic life of the country in a slightly different way, an opportunity millions of people are already taking. But it may not last. We could look back at this period in our history as a watershed in our approach to work, but the forces of backlash are never far behind any hint of progress.

You can see it at the elite level, with those whose message to the public is Get back to work, you bums. And stop complaining. Like this Republican congressman, expressing a common sentiment in his party:

4.3 million workers quit their jobs. We need to quit paying folks not to work.

The congressman seems unaware that if you just up and quit your job because you’d rather not work, you aren’t eligible to receive unemployment insurance. But perhaps it’s too much to expect that an elected policymaker would have even the most basic understanding of government policy.

What is now being called the “Great Resignation” has many causes. Many of those quitting are doing so because they think they can get a better job elsewhere. Some are starting their own businesses. Some have decided to retire early, even on a smaller income, because they’ve realized they value time more than money.

The quitting is happening at the highest rates in low-wage industries such as restaurants, hospitality and retail. Many have gotten fed up with low pay, difficult working conditions and abusive customers. And many who are still in their old jobs are thinking about moving on.

This isn’t happening by accident. From the beginning, the pandemic was a public health and an economic crisis, and the nature of employment was at the center. When we put the economy into an induced coma in early 2020, we began talking about “essential workers” who put themselves at risk for the rest of us. But what did they get from all those expressions of thanks? Not much.

From the earliest moments of the pandemic, Republicans worried that workers might start getting dangerous ideas about their self-worth. In April 2020, President Donald Trump signed an executive order declaring meatpacking plants to be “critical infrastructure,” forcing the largely immigrant workforce to stay in already dangerous jobs; thousands went on to contract covid-19. But as a White House economist said a month later, “Our human capital stock is ready to get back to work.”

As Democrats forced enhanced unemployment benefits into relief bills, Republicans loudly objected that they would make Americans lazy and unwilling to work. GOP-controlled states moved to cut off those benefits, claiming that doing so would produce an explosion in job growth as layabouts would be forced to get jobs. They were wrong; states that cut off enhanced benefits early did no better than states that didn’t.

Today, as Democrats argue about whether to extend the enhanced child tax credit and improve our health-care and child-care systems, the same arguments can be heard, sometimes from conservative Democrats such as Sen. Joe Manchin III (D-W.Va.): If we make people’s lives too secure, they’ll reveal themselves as the moochers they are, so let’s make benefits as stingy as possible and force people to run a bureaucratic obstacle course to get them.

This is an ongoing struggle playing out in Congress and workplaces throughout the country. For this brief moment, the balance of power has shifted a bit in workers’ direction, because labor shortages are allowing them to demand better pay and working conditions.

A more robust system of social supports would shift that balance further: If your health insurance weren’t dependent on the whims of your boss and you had affordable child care, you wouldn’t always live in terror of losing your job. The fact that you could quit without fear to find something better would give you more power.

But we shouldn’t forget that, for most Americans, this isn’t remotely the situation they are living with. We’re seeing a wave of strikes — not only because workers feel they have a chance to succeed, but because their pay and working conditions have become intolerable. In one recent poll, nearly 40 percent of Americans said they had faced serious financial difficulty in recent months.

We have long told ourselves a story about America as a land of limitless opportunity, despite the fact that we know it isn’t true. We tell and retell stories of the extraordinary people who pulled themselves up from dire circumstances to achieve wealth and success, never acknowledging that it’s precisely the exceptional nature of those stories that is the problem. In a just society, you shouldn’t have to be a one-in-a-million genius or a maniacal workaholic to haul yourself to a life free of deprivation.

We could go either way as we emerge from the pandemic: toward an economy that provides people a baseline level of security that allows them to live meaningful lives free of fear of economic misery, or toward one that tells people they should be happy to have any job at all and don’t deserve much more.

Our history does not suggest that things will work out well for ordinary people. But at least we have a chance to create something different.
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Offline Dry Brett Kavanaugh

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Re: Great Resignation (Big Quit) 2021
« Reply #27 on: October 15, 2021, 02:30:34 PM »
Opinion: Workers are feeling a bit more empowered, and Republicans can’t stand it

 We’re seeing a wave of strikes — not only because workers feel they have a chance to succeed, but because their pay and working conditions have become intolerable.


I have a similar view. Somehow, the Big Quit movement reminds me of the description of, and advocacy for, the labor-capital relationship by Marx.