Archive for the ‘employment’ Category

The Last Job on Earth

February 27, 2016

“The Last Job on Earth,” animation by the Moth Collective for The Guardian. Read Paul Mason’s explainer here.

More:

“Is this the future of work? Scientists predict which jobs will still be open to humans in 2035,” Paul Karp, The Guardian

“Why Stephen Hawking is more afraid of capitalism than robots,” Brian Resnick, Vox

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If We Make It Through December

December 12, 2015

“If We Make It Through December” written and performed by Merle Haggard, 1973. Johnny Gimble on fiddle, Bobby Wayne on lead guitar.

“I got laid off down at the factory
And their timing’s not the greatest in the world
Heaven knows I been workin’ hard
I wanted Christmas to be right for daddy’s girl
Now I don’t mean to hate December
It’s meant to be the happy time of year
And why my little girl don’t understand
Why daddy can’t afford no Christmas here.”

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The 40 Percent

October 17, 2015

The 40 Percent

On-call, part-time, provisional, and non-permanent workers, freelancers, temporary contract workers, independent contractors and consultants. Put them all together and you’ve got about 40 percent of America’s workers.

It breaks down like this:

Agency temps: 1.3%
On-call workers (work when needed): 3.5%
Contract company workers: 3.0%
Independent contractors: 12.9%
Self-employed workers (shop owners, etc.) 3.3%
Part-time workers: 16.2%

It’s possible to define this group down and pretend that many of these under-employed, under-paid workers are “independent small business owners,” but that doesn’t make their lives any less precarious. Many contingent workers in this “1099 Economy” are also contingent social service clients.

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Patricia Arquette Minds the Gap

February 24, 2015

Patricia Arquette Minds the Gap

When Patricia Arquette accepted the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress, she had words of support for other working women (especially working moms): “It’s our time to have wage equality once and for all and equal rights for women in the United States of America.”

While not everyone gave her performance (or her backstage chatter) rave reviews, Jesus smiled on it (okay, it’s Jared Leto). And so did  Meryl Streep and Jennifer Lopez:

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Park Avenue Food Drive for Walmart Workers

November 29, 2014

Park Avenue Food Drive for Walmart Workers
On this Thankgiving holiday, many low-paid Walmart employees held food drives — for each other. They typically make under $25,000 a year, have no medical benefits, and many must use food stamps. Activists thought Walmart owner Alice Walton might want to pitch in, so they put a giant food drive bin outside her $25 million Park Avenue condo.

Robert Reich has some background:

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October Employment Numbers

November 8, 2014

October Employment Numbers

The Bureau of Labor Statistics has released the jobless numbers for October 2014. There’s good news, not-so-good news, and bad news.

Good news: The official unemployment rate is:5.8%214,000 new jobs were added to the workforce last month, 2.3 million so far this year.

Not-So-Good News: The real unemployment rate is 11.1% (U6, includes people who no longer get unemployment benefits, need work but have stopped looking because it’s futile, or have only found part-time work). Learn more here.

Bad News: Wages for those new jobs are low. Very low, down where they were in 2009. And 2.9 million people have been out of work for half a year or more.

The economy may suck for working people, but Wall Street is doing just fine, thank you.

More:

“America’s dual economy,” Heather Long and Patrick Gillespie, CNN Money

“American workers are still waiting for their raise,” Matthew Yglesias, Vox

“Job Growth Is Picking Up. But What About All the Sidelined Workers?” Josh Bivens, Wall Street Journal blog

“Black Unemployment Falls to 10.9 Percent,” Joyce Jones, BET News

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Image (from a WPA photo) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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Mind the Gap

October 9, 2014

Mind the Gap

“According to calculations from the Equal Payback Project, American women are owed $29,811,746,430,000 (that’s U.S. dollars, also known as U.S. golden dollars with Sacagawea on them) due to the wage gap.

Working female Sarah Silverman is fund-raising for this exact amount. She promises that if this fund-raising goal is met, each woman in America will receive a check. If not, the money will go the National Women’s Law Center, which advocates for legal and structural changes to support professional women. They’re only trillions dollars away from removing this gap off the list of gaps facing women today.”

— “Sarah Silverman Is Fund-raising 29 Trillion Dollars,” Maggie Lange, New York Magazine

More:

“Sarah Silverman creates provocative new video on women’s salaries and ‘the $500,000 vagina tax,'” Siri Srinivas, The Guardian

“Everything you need to know about the gender wage gap,” Danielle Kurtzleben, Vox

“Pay Equity & Discrimination,” Institute for Women’s Policy Research.

 Video after the jump (NSFW, of course, it’s Sarah Silverman.)

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Millionaires Vote Down $10.10 Minimum Wage

May 1, 2014

Millionaires Vote Down $10.10 Minimum Wage

“A broad-based coalition of millionaires converged on Washington today to defeat a bill that would have increased the minimum wage for American workers to $10.10 an hour.

Leaving behind their mansions and yachts, the millionaires were motivated by what they saw as an existential threat to the country, Mitch McConnell, a spokesman for the millionaires, said.

‘This was an extremely diverse coalition,’ McConnell said, noting that everyone from the rich to the very rich to the super-rich united to vote down the bill.”

— “Millionaires Unite to Defeat Minimum Wage,” Andy Borowitz, The New Yorker

More:

“GOP Blocks Minimum-Wage Bill in Senate,” Caitlin Huey-Burns and Alexis Simendinger, RealClearPolitics

Related:

“Which Millionaire Are You Voting For?” Nicholas Carnes, New York Times

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Short link: http://wp.me/p6sb6-jeI

Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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Congress Gives the Jobless a Christmas Gift

December 28, 2013

Congress Gives the Jobless a Christmas Gift

“More than 1 million Americans are bracing for a harrowing, post-Christmas jolt as extended federal unemployment benefits come to a sudden halt this weekend, with potentially significant implications for the recovering U.S. economy. A tense political battle likely looms when Congress reconvenes in the new, midterm election year.”

— “1.3 Million Losing Unemployment Benefits Saturday,” Bradley Klapper, Associated Press

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The Congressional Wage

November 12, 2013

The Congressional Wage

Members of Congress will earn $174,000 plus deluxe benefits next year even though the House calendar shows they will only work for 113 days, just 1/3 of the year. In contrast, 40% of Americans earned less than $20,000 last year and a majority of U.S. workers earned under $30,000.

A bill raising the minimum wage to $10.00 an hour will be introduced this month. How does that compare with the Congressional wage?

“Breaking the numbers down … members of the House of Representatives will make approximately $1,539.82 per day or, given an eight-hour work day, roughly $192.47 per hour.”

— “Congress Working Less Than 1/3 Of Year In 2014, Getting Full Salary,” CBS Miami

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