Thursday, September 5, 2013

On the Phenomenon of Bullshit Jobs, by David Graeber

Read the whole essay:

On the Phenomenon of Bullshit Jobs

Some quotas:

” the number of salaried paper-pushers ultimately seems to expand, and more and more employees find themselves, not unlike Soviet workers actually, working 40 or even 50 hour weeks on paper ”


” The answer clearly isn’t economic: it’s moral and political. The ruling class has figured out that a happy and productive population with free time on their hands is a mortal danger (think of what started to happen when this even began to be approximated in the ‘60s). And, on the other hand, the feeling that work is a moral value in itself, and that anyone not willing to submit themselves to some kind of intense work discipline for most of their waking hours deserves nothing, is extraordinarily convenient for them. ”

” There’s a lot of questions one could ask here, starting with, what does it say about our society that it seems to generate an extremely limited demand for talented poet-musicians, but an apparently infinite demand for specialists in corporate law? (Answer: if 1% of the population controls most of the disposable wealth, what we call “the market” reflects what they think is useful or important, not anybody else.) ”

” in our society, there seems a general rule that, the more obviously one’s work benefits other people, the less one is likely to be paid for it. ”

” If someone had designed a work regime perfectly suited to maintaining the power of finance capital, it’s hard to see how they could have done a better job. Real, productive workers are relentlessly squeezed and exploited. The remainder are divided between a terrorised stratum of the, universally reviled, unemployed and a larger stratum who are basically paid to do nothing, in positions designed to make them identify with the perspectives and sensibilities of the ruling class (managers, administrators, etc) – and particularly its financial avatars – but, at the same time, foster a simmering resentment against anyone whose work has clear and undeniable social value. “

NO DOUBTH WE NEED TERJE BONGARD'S IN-GROUP DEMOCRACY (IGD) MORE THAN EVER! THIS WAY WE CAN DEMOCRATICALLY VOTE TO DO AWAY WITH ALL BULLSHIT JOBS, ONLY HAVING TO WORK TWO, MAXIMUM THREE DAYS A WEEK. THE REST OF THE TIME WE CAN DEVOTE TO MEANINGFUL CONTEMPLATION, ACTIVITIES AND RELATIONSHIPS. IN ADDITION OUR JOBS WILL BECOME MEANINGFUL.

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