Monday, April 10, 2006

“What?” scream the economists who flack for the employing class!

Barbara Ehrenreich writes in the May issue of the Progressive about "Kleenex workers"--What corporations call “flexibility”—the right to dispose of workers at will—is what workers experience as disposability, not to mention insecurity and poverty. The French students who were tossing Molotov cocktails didn’t want to become what they call “a Kleenex generation”—used and tossed away when the employer decides he needs a fresh one.

Ehrenreich compares the French protests with U.S. workers:
The fact that you can be fired “at will”—the will of the employer, that is—freezes employees into terrified obedience. Add to that the fact that job loss is accompanied by a loss of access to health care, and you get a kind of captive mentality bordering on the kinkily masochistic: Beat me, insult me, double my workload, but please don’t set me free!

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