Thursday, February 05, 2004

I guess I'm not alone... a member of the 'dying' middle class

It's lunch so I'm doing my customary surfing before going outside the building to get some fresh air and I run across this site.

I thought that the strain of conversation that stemmed from HP's CEO Carly comment (on how people in the US have lost their 'god-given' rights to jobs and that they must learn to compete with the 3rd World) was pretty eye-opening.

There's nothing more to say than we're all in danger of becoming a nation of disgruntled, over-qualified and jobless people. For the past 10 years I've shied away from being politically active; however reading some of the replies and posts on this website makes me think again about lending my efforts to a political cause that lends an ear to my (and countless others) situation. I think that this is the only way that we will be able to make ourselves heard (when you have a disgruntled middle class on your hands that can't be a good thing).

(Added later... Friday morning before the commute)
I read somewhere that Americans work more overtime in comparison to their working counterparts overseas. Moreover, Americans on average get less vacation time than most Europeans and even the Japanese! The Japanese!!! Here I was under the impression that we were lazy bastards compared to the hardworking Japanese with their work-ethic steeped in the values of success from hard work. I'm not saying that they're lazy or bastards, please don't misinterpret what I'm saying here. What happened to us? I think it was all that boom-boom bullshit from the 90's. Work, work work your ass off so that you can help build that start-up. Work for these companies who provide seemingly great... wages yet require you to devote more than a normal work day to get your projects done. Then when the economy gets even harder because, "Honey, you's ain't got no where else to GO."

My father would die if he read this. How could a daughter of his become such an anti-capitalist. I'm not really sure that I would claim that this is completely true. Part of me still is a believer in the importance of the economic strength and power of companies to effect good and have good results on communities. Moreover, I think there's value in the power of competition in business and how it fosters innovation. Though, it's strange how actions of company such as Microsoft and the company... ahem... that I work for don't really speak to this idea of free-enterprise. I think to some extent we Americans have become a little complacent about our political leanings. It's not enough to be staunch supporters of free-enterprise when you're part of a threatened middle class. It does appear that the R. party kowtows far more to the whims of large corporations and the ultra Christian far right. I don't want to pay ridiculous taxes on poorly run government institutions any more than your average Republican loyalist; however, I don't want to be dominated by their paranoid religious delusions. Sorry, Dad. I guess I just can't bring myself to be a good Republican.


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