Student. Dreamer. Layabout. Bad influence on those wishing to maintain a sense of decorum and maturity. Please be aware: this is a NSFW blog. Really.
The only people that can afford to take an unpaid job are those that are already well-off enough to survive without pay. That means that there are careers where the only way to effectively break in to the industry is to be well-off in the first place.
This is a major problem in many industries, including film, advertising, fashion, music, and others. If your parents can pay for an apartment in Manhattan, congratulations, you can get your foot in the door. If not, tough luck, go find another job more suited to your lower-class life.
THIS IS NOT ALTRUISTIC. THIS IS GOOD BUSINESS. Holy shit, when the fuck will that sink through every fucking person’s head. You pay a worker a living wage, HOLY SHIT THEY WILL SPEND MONEY ON THINGS AND KEEP THE ECONOMIC WHEEL TURNING. You keep a worker healthy, HOLY SHIT THEY WON’T LOSE PRODUCTIVITY. You treat a worker well, HOLY SHIT THEY FUNCTION BETTER AT THEIR JOB.
It’s true. There’s a whole book called “Sabotage” about the things employees do when they’re angry with their employer. I’ve committed acts of sabotage on the job myself.
Also, a good reminder that Costco is a fantastic company and a business worth supporting. They’re one of like five huge US brands that doesn’t donate to Republicans.
But yeah — the problem is that the prevailing school of economic thought in the United States doesn’t believe in any of those things you mentioned, Twig. Our economic system is totally Ferengi in nature.
It is astounding how significantly one idea can shape a society and its policies. Consider this one.
If taxes on the rich go up, job creation will go down.
This idea is an article of faith for Republicans and seldom challenged by Democrats and has shaped much of today’s economic landscape.
But sometimes the ideas that we know to be true are dead wrong. For thousands of years people were sure that earth was at the center of the universe. It’s not, and an astronomer who still believed that it was, would do some lousy astronomy.
In the same way, a policy maker who believed that the rich and businesses are “job creators” and therefore should not be taxed, would make equally bad policy.
I have started or helped start, dozens of businesses and initially hired lots of people. But if no one could have afforded to buy what we had to sell, my businesses would all have failed and all those jobs would have evaporated.
That’s why I can say with confidence that rich people don’t create jobs, nor do businesses, large or small. What does lead to more employment is a “circle of life” like feedback loop between customers and businesses. And only consumers can set in motion this virtuous cycle of increasing demand and hiring. In this sense, an ordinary middle-class consumer is far more of a job creator than a capitalist like me.
This is for geeksaurusrex, who asked about economy in Star Trek. Since I wrote an chapter on it in my dissertation, I figured I might as well just post it.
Firstly, though , I need preface this post by saying that the purpose of my research was to discern the differences between moving (Enterprise) and stationary (Deep Space Nine) space when it comes to politics.
IPE stands for International Political Economy.