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The value of work - Page 2

post #16 of 36
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Mr Harrison: To which comment of mine are you referring?
This one...
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Nice to know the ruling class has completely brainwashed the proletariat...
Sorry I wasn't more clear. I couldn't tell if you were being sarcastic or not. If you're serious, please elaborate. Thanks.
post #17 of 36
So how do I start? I think those who are in power- the Bushes AND Kerrys of the world, the industry titans (let's call them the ruling class) have knocked into our brains (let's call us the ever-shrinking middle class, today's proletariat) that it's important to work hard, save, buy a house, make things better for our kids, etc. When with our current governmental system (a republic in theory, but an oligopoly in practice), there's an ever DECREASING chance that we'll get anywhere near where they are, or have any real power to affect change. That 40% of what we earn taken before most of us ever see it goes to support their byzantine bureaucracy and the continued buying and selling of our political system by special interest groups. We've spent 100 billion dollars looking for fictitious weapons of mass destruction in Iraq lining the Bush family and friends' pockets when our kids don't have enough food to eat, enough funding for a proper education, or health insurance. And our jails are full (usually with people who are decidedly NOT White Anglo Saxon and Protestant). And who's over there fighting in Iraq, and who fought in Vietnam? Again NOT members of the ruling class, and particularly not W his own self. BTW I love how Karl Rove (Bush's master of dirty tricks) impugns Kerry's service record through the back door when his man not only didn't go to Vietnam, but was also AWOL from his cupcake stint in the National Guard. And they've somehow convinced us- 76% of this poll so far- that there's a moral imperative to it to boot. Pretty smart M---F--ers, aren't they? Or are we just that stupid???
post #18 of 36
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And they've somehow convinced us- 76% of this poll so far- that there's a moral imperative to it to boot.
Well, the 'they' that convinced us of (or at least bothered to state) the moral imperative to working was a guy named Adam Smith, the reputed father of economics, who wrote An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations in 1776. Much of Smith's theory has been disproved or improved, but it still holds that in any system, one produces, consumes, or does some mixture of the two. Therefore if one believes it not imperative to work, one becomes pure consumer, and that which one consumes had to be produced by others. Those 'others' are one's peers in the proletariat (to use your phrasing). So a pure consumer subsists off the sweat of his peers, not of the 'ruling class' -- sure, the 'ruling class' is leeching as much as they can from the proles (to borrow Orwell's phrasing) as well, while they redistribute the production amongst the consumers and the producers themselves. Even though they take their cut, and be it massive, and be there staggering waste and inefficiency, the production is still from the sweat of one's peers in the proletariat. Therefore, I consider it a moral imperative to work so that others in the same position as I can get the maximum benefit possible out of their sweat by not supporting me, regardless of any cut anyone else takes or what they do with it. BTW, U.S. income tax rates had formerly gone up to around 85% in the highest brackets at one time. Regards, Huntsman
post #19 of 36
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I think those who are in power- the Bushes AND Kerrys of the world, the industry titans (let's call them the ruling class) have knocked into our brains (let's call us the ever-shrinking middle class, today's proletariat) that it's important to work hard, save, buy a house, make things better for our kids, etc. When with our current governmental system (a republic in theory, but an oligopoly in practice), there's an ever DECREASING chance that we'll get anywhere near where they are, or have any real power to affect change. That 40% of what we earn taken before most of us ever see it goes to support their byzantine bureaucracy and the continued buying and selling of our political system by special interest groups. We've spent 100 billion dollars looking for fictitious weapons of mass destruction in Iraq lining the Bush family and friends' pockets when our kids don't have enough food to eat, enough funding for a proper education, or health insurance. And our jails are full (usually with people who are decidedly NOT White Anglo Saxon and Protestant). And who's over there fighting in Iraq, and who fought in Vietnam? Again NOT members of the ruling class, and particularly not W his own self. BTW I love how Karl Rove (Bush's master of dirty tricks) impugns Kerry's service record through the back door when his man not only didn't go to Vietnam, but was also AWOL from his cupcake stint in the National Guard. And they've somehow convinced us- 76% of this poll so far- that there's a moral imperative to it to boot.
I fail to see how gaining satisfaction from a job well done equates to the upper class brainwashing us. No one brainwashed me into gaining satisfaction from any job I like. You can't rule out the possibility that some people actually enjoy seeing the fruits of their labors, be it money, or as the poll puts it, pride or self-satisfaction. Maybe what you're saying is, the harder we work (chasing after that "satisfaction") the bigger the cut the "ruling class" is able to take. Maybe this actually is a factor. Who knows for sure? Maybe there is some kind of political ploy running behind the scenes, but to categorize all people who genuinely do enjoy their work as brainwashed by the government is a gross overgeneralization.
post #20 of 36
All this over-analysis of class warfare is a bunch of hooey. Conspiracies exist more in the mind than in reality. It's classic paranoia. If there is indeed a class warfare conspiracy, I don't know if I'm one of those being kept up or one of those being kept down, but either way, no one has ever invited me to one of the conspiracy meetings so that I can be informed and coordinated with others in keeping the other group of people down. Have any of you ever received such an invitation? Was it handed to you by a cloaked figure hiding in the shadows? Somebody clue me in here...
post #21 of 36
Steve, Thank you very much for your comments. I don't know that I agree with you on all levels, but I do greatly appreciate your perspective. Thanks.
post #22 of 36
Huntsman: What if all those who consider it a moral imperative to work to support one another decide to also work together in peaceful protest to affect change? Alias: I applaud those who enjoy their work. What percentage of the world's population do you think that is? Vero: It's hooey because you don't take the time to investigate it, or because it doesn't exist? The Bush family business is oil, We've had 2 Bush presidents and 2 wars in the Middle East where the oil is. Coincidence or conspiracy? ALL flights in the US were grounded on Sept. 12th, 2001, except for the chartered jet flying around picking up members of the Bin Laden and the Saudi royal families to fly them home. The Bushes have a 30 year friendship with the Saudis and the Saudis have billions of dollars invested in the U.S., much of it in areas from which the Bushes receive direct financial benefit. Coincidence or conspiracy? Do I need to discuss Cheney and Enron and Halliburton, or have I made my point? More importantly to you as a guy who works pretty hard and aspires toward acquiring real wealth, doesn't it irk you that the idle rich run the country? How many candidates have we had from either major political party in the last 50 years who have worked for a living for a majority of their adult lives?
post #23 of 36
Steve, According to your comments, a desirable political candidate wouldn't be found in either major party. Do you know of any feasible solution to this national (perhaps even global) crisis? Or is all hope lost?
post #24 of 36
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Alias: I applaud those who enjoy their work. What percentage of the world's population do you think that is?
You're asking me? It depends on the socio-political makeup of a country, and there are a lot of countries in the world. Instead of arguing in absolutes, you may want to couch your arguments with relativism. Very few things are absolute in this world, especially human behavior. I honestly cannot speak for the United States, seeing as how I haven't been there for the past 13 years. But I can talk to you about how things are here in SK. People work hard because they believe in working hard. It's an "Asian thing" I'm sure you're aware of. They like to be the best, because the best is the best. It also helps you support your family, and supplies the family with pride. Was this the result of political brainwashing by those who wanted to take part of the riches generated by the proletariat? No, it's a social virtue. I have also found that social virtues are fairly universal. Not all Asians believe in working hard, and not all Americans are lazy (sometimes I hear that here), and so on. So it's not hard for me to believe that, in the U.S., there exist people who honestly do enjoy their work. So lumping a bunch of people into the "brainwashed by upper class" category is very dangerous. Sure, it might be applicable to those poor souls who believe in their government without question. Maybe someone can make the argument that the more educated a person is, the less prone he is to this sort of "brainwashing," and the more likely he will actually enjoy the work for what it is. This is a very slippery slope, however, because often even well-educated people champion rather extreme political beliefs (whether right or left) with the same blinding ignorance a Joe Sixpack can have. So my guess is maybe 35% of the world enjoys its work, and the other 65% are just either too lazy or "brainwashed," as you say. Of course, 68% of statistics are made up on the spot.
post #25 of 36
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The Bushes have a 30 year friendship with the Saudis and the Saudis have billions of dollars invested in the U.S., much of it in areas from which the Bushes receive direct financial benefit. Coincidence or conspiracy?
How exactly are the Bush's profiting from the Saudi's Business investments?
post #26 of 36
Also, while I do agree that Bush and his cohorts have much to answer for, I simply cannot reconcile working hard with political power-playing. Have there been recent "WORK HARD FOR AMERICA" campaigns going on that I've missed? Are they doing the whole WW2 thing ("SAVE SCRAP METAL AND SAVE YOUR COUNTRY") again? My guess is, at the end of the day, most people work for the money that helps them survive, not out of some pride in their ruling class. What's wrong with saving? It's certainly better than going into debt. What's wrong with a house? Better than a box. Maybe I would be better able to understand where you're coming from if you let me read the material from which you're basing your arguments. Don't worry, I'm quite open to all ideas (except for the ones from Fox News and O'Reilly, and I'm guessing we're both on the same side there.) Edit: jpierpont, my guess is that, if the Saudis have more money, they have more money to invest in the Bush's things. Capital is a very good thing.
post #27 of 36
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I applaud those who enjoy their work. What percentage of the world's population do you think that is?
good point Steve. In this past year, I've seen all of my friends take souless corporate jobs after college, though with good paychecks that get even better in the future. I honestly can't respect jobs that people work for just the pay. I find it insane that people would not persue work in a field they love. I for one, have taken a job doing something that I like to do.
post #28 of 36
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I honestly can't respect jobs that people work for just the pay. I find it insane that people would not persue work in a field they love.
But,what is the chance of you getting paid a living wage doing something you love?
post #29 of 36
Hmmm- seems I've stirred up a hornet's nest here- can't imagine how that happened? JHarrison, JPeirpont, and Mike C- Hope is never lost...I'm an optimist, a utopian. I'd love to see people nationwide, worldwide, engage in peaceful protest to make the world a better place...Look what a little tiny guy with an indomitable spirit did to give India independence from the British empire in 1948. It took women 75 years to get the right to vote in this country. But they did it...If people envision a world where you can make a living doing something you love while contributing to society as well, it will happen. Doing what Mike C is doing on an individual basis is what gets it started in a new generation of workers. You guys are the future... I believe you are all young students, or just starting your careers. Do something you love, follow your heart and keep following it throughout your professional life. Don't buy things you can't afford or consume things because of the marketing hype. (Have to point the finger at myself here with regard to fancy clothing). Don't believe that you're not a complete person unless you drive a BMW or live in the right house in the right suburb or trendy urban neighborhood. Question things at face value as presented by the media. Choose a profession that not only makes you happy, but benefits others as well if possible. Alias- Much of what I'm stating comes from the movie Fahrenheit 9/11. Don't know if you could see that there in SK. You could also go see "Bush's Brain", an equally controversial film in limited release currently here in the States. The bit on the Saudi private jet is also in a Vanity Fair article, 10/03 I believe. There are a host of books and movies out currently attempting to expose a lot of things that have gone on with the current administration. But to be fair, it's gone on with a lot of previous administrations as well. Bush has been the most blatant, but it certainly existed under Clinton, Reagan, Nixon, etc. For example, when Alexander Haig retired from the military in 1971, he was offered something like 6 jobs as a highly paid lobbyist starting at well into 6 figures (remember this was 1971..&#33 So this stuff has been going on at least since WW II. And I think you're being really optimistic on the 35/65. My experience has been more like less than 10/More than 90... Jpeirpont- ever heard of a company called the Carlyle Group??? Bush Sr. was forced to resign from it after it came under scrutiny for its dealings and ownership after 9/11. JHarrison- My brother had a great idea. He thought we should also have a place on the ballot that says "none of the above". If that wins the election, then the parties in power have to go back to convention and nominate another candidate. My dad also had the idea that EVERY elected official can serve for only one term- it would get rid of the career politicians, and perhaps some of the lobbying money going for special interests. Not that I come from a political family or anything... What I'd like to see on election day is not a Bush or Kerry victory, but nationwide peaceful protests at polling places. People staying away in droves, refusing to vote until things change and there's a real choice and a better future for our children. Peace, Love, and most of all, Power to the People...
post #30 of 36
Steve, I agree with a lot of the stuff you are saying, and I think Bush is a joke, but I've got to call you out on the bin ladens flying out after sept. 11. All this talk is from moore's movie who used a single source for this claim. And, all the responsible journalism I've read has discredited this. I've even seen the guy who asserts this on a interview, and he didn't do a good job of backing this claim. From what I understand, the bin laden family left, but they left on the same day the ban on flights was lifted. And, they were interviewed by the FBI before they left. As for the brainwashing claim, I think we are brainwashed to the extent that we are told by society that our worth is determined by our job, and not by who we are. We praise the CEO, as someone we should emulate. We don't do this for the janitor, even though the janitor might be a better person than the CEO. Mike C, Geez, I wish I had the chance your friends did to get a soul sucking job as long as the money was good enough. At the very least, they have this option.
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