Monday, June 20, 2011

WORKER’S PRIDE?












I was never a great one for the idea of the Dignity of Labor. It seemed like one of those patronizing Victorian concepts like the Noble Savage and I wanted nothing to do with it. To be absolutely truthful, I was not especially keen on hard, dirty, manual work in any shape or form. In my youth, I had worked in factories, kitchens, and even dug up the roads for the local council. I saw first hand the disdain with which the fat cats treated their employees and their employees’ pride, and quickly realized that any measure of dignity was not a gift handed down from on-high but a prize fought-for and hard-won at the grass roots by organization and the collective power of trade unions official or otherwise. Why am choosing this moment to state the obvious? Just because, now and again, the obvious needs a bit of stating. Especially at a time when a power elite that has already reduced to wealth to an abstraction and devalues labor as a disposable commodity – and dares to call it necessary austerity – but simultaneously a new seismic class-struggle spreads across Europe, the Middle East, and (I hope) Middle America, and the fight for decency, dignity, and pride, plus a socially acceptable income, healthcare, education – and all that should follow with humanity and civilization – is rejoined.

Click here for hardworking Beefheart and Cooder

The secret word is Unity

8 comments:

Graeme K Talboys said...

Amen, to that.

Aleleeinn said...

We in the heartland of the colonies do appreciate your kind words.
And YES the article could have been written specifically for the USofA.

Anonymous said...

A man after my own heart.

hcb said...

Given my druthers, even at my advanced age, I'd rather work rough and sweaty than sit in a cubicle reading pitches on cold calls, or selling anything. It's not doing physical labor that's ignoble, just being treated like shit. In a perfect world, a great auto mechanic would get as much or more respect than an office manager or white collar flunky.

Aleleeinn said...

In my world they do hcb. Auto mechanic is an art. My father could fix ANYTHING mechanical, from cars to boilers to TVs. That skill is not trivial.

Jon said...

HCB, absolutely. I'd rather work with a crew and share their triumphs and tragedies. Work in common with others creates a kind of bond that is hard to find these days. I hate the thought of life in a cubicle. I'm not even jealous the lone artist anymore. The worst part about work is not work it's bosses. Fuck 'em.

Jon said...

PS, the worst part about the content warning is that it prevents me from reposting this on Facebook. Mick, you need to figure out how to repost on Facebook so your fans and friends can share your stuff.

Mick said...

I do post links to Facebook. I just change the Blogger text to something facile that explains the situation. No thumbnails though, but you can cut and paste the image separately.