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"Job Creators?"

“Job Creators?”

By Dennis Loo (2/15/14)

Several years ago I visited a college class in which a student was doing a presentation about global warming. He used as an illustration of this the long-distance transport of salmon from Russia to the US. His point was that the use of fossil fuels in this distribution contributed to global warming. In response a student piped up that she thought this was actually a good idea because it “created jobs.”

This reminds me of the stock cheerleader Jim Cramer who I happened to catch one day yammering on TV about the melting of the Artic ice cap. Rather than expressing alarm at the impact of this on the world’s environment (over the last ten years one-half of the Artic ice cap and two-thirds of its volume have melted), Cramer was celebrating the ice’s disappearance as opening up access to oil and other resources in the Artic for oil companies. “Get in while the getting is good!” was his enthused message.

Decades ago when I was attending a public hearing in Hawaii about a proposed hotel development set to be erected on community land, an issue that the residents of this community and their supporters had mobilized around to stop, a representative from the Carpenters’ Union, who like many of the protesters was also part-Hawaiian, showed up to support the development on the grounds that “it creates jobs.” I thought to myself, “By that logic, there would be no point in stopping any resort developments. We could keep on building until the islands are all filled up and what would you do for carpenters’ jobs then?”

Here is the problem with the “it creates jobs” argument: you have to be utterly incapable of thinking outside the box of capitalist logic to fail to realize the inanity of this argument.

Why do we have to “create jobs” in the first place? Aren’t there tasks that need to be done out there to be done?

What did humanity do for most of the 200,000 years we’ve been around? Did the hunters and gatherers whose societies make up the vast majority of human existence so far not do anything because there were no precious “job creators” around to organize them and inform them that they could “have jobs” if they worked for the “job creators” and went gathering and hunting? Did people just sit around all day wondering what they ought to do with their time since there wasn’t any TV or Internet to occupy them?

Did horticultural societies only come into being because capitalist “job creators” showed up and told people what to do and told them if they didn’t do what the “job creators” were willing to pay them to do, that they would otherwise starve?

Did the humans who figured out how to keep a fire going and how to start a fire only do this because some enterprising entrepreneur came along and said: “I have a great idea: let’s patent this fire thing and we’ll make so much money doing it! Under our patent if we catch anyone using a fire that we didn’t sell to them we can extinguish their fire and leave them to die of exposure or pay us for the right to have a fire. We’ll make a fortune!”

“Job creating” and the absence of work for large numbers of people without it – what Marx dubbed the "Reserve Army of the Unemployment" - only exist within capitalist economies. Unemployment does not exist prior to bourgeois societies. Homelessness does not exist outside of capitalist economies. Somehow everyone found a way and the need to work before capitalism appeared. Capitalism’s operating logic is to deprive the means to life from the vast majority so that those who now monopolize the means to life (aka the means of production) can force the rest of the population to work for them under the Hobson’s Choice of “work or starve.” This allows those who own the means of production to exploit the labor of others to enrich themselves at the expense of the rest. This is why when capitalism first emerged in England one of the central acts making its rise possible was the closing off of access to the land to the peasants, rendering them unable now to make a life outside of becoming a proletarian (literally, the "propertyless").

It is only under conditions in which private property in the form of the formalized control by a relative few over the means to life, protected by the law and enforced by men with guns, that “creating jobs” makes any sense at all. Outside of this situation, the very idea that jobs have to be created is nonsensical.

Look around: are there not tasks that need to be done? Aren’t there places to be cleaned up and made beautiful? Aren’t there houses and playgrounds and parks to be built? Isn’t there artwork and music that could be spread about to enliven people’s worlds? Aren’t there animals to be rescued or cared for? People who need companionship? Inventions to be developed and tried? Trees to be planted? Malnourishment to be solved? Sexual exploitation to be ended? Inequities to be bridged? Books to be written, read, and shared? And so on and so on and so on.

If we had a system in which social needs determined what was done rather than whether it can make a profit for a capitalist, why is such a world so hard to imagine?

Why do people have hobbies where they not only don't generally make any money from and, in fact, they spend money and countless hours on, if the pursuit of monetary gain is the sine qua non of human existence?

I am going to spit the next time someone says the words “job creators” or “it creates jobs.” The people who supposedly create jobs are the very ones responsible for destroying people’s right and need to work and for destroying the planet.

They are not the solution. They are the problem.

Comments   

 
0 # KLR 2014-02-15 21:53
"It creates jobs" is a terrible way to make jobs for people that want to work. Capitalism has ingrained into us that monentary worth is the only thing of value. What were considered jobs in the past are now considered "hobbies" because capitalism can't make enough from them. To use a term from "Truth and Orthodoxy" most of us are "social animals." Over the years, Capitalism has used social groups to convince us that money has more value than a job that is well done. The closest that we get to subsidence living is through our hobbies. I think the reason as to why we spend so much on our hobbies is because deep down that is what we want to be doing instead of the work that we are basically have to do to pay the bills and put food on the table. In a weird sort of way, creating jobs in a Capitalist enviroment is a different form of subsidence living.
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0 # Lyndsey Morris 2014-02-16 01:38
I agree with everything you said. People only link worth with value. If it doesn't give them anything extra then they don't see it as valuable. Isn't that the reason for capitalism, to get as much profit as possible? Also I found your whole jobs and hobbies topic very true and I don't think I've thought of it that way before. These days people can't make enough money to support themselves and their family doing the jobs that they would like so they tend to focus on their hobbies more. Which in turn becomes more important to them sometimes. Last week I posted on an article saying that capitalism was a good thing for our society, do you think after reading your thoughts to this article that it is more beneficial for our society or that it is only hurting us?
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0 # Lyndsey Morris 2014-02-15 22:07
In the beginning where u talk about the ice cap&how he was not worried about the environment, but rather getting the oil&other resources it provides us with now, all I could think about is how our world doesn't put our environment@its top priority but how we can use&take things that would benefit us more now. The power, the people who use it&how much their power can make them in terms of money&social status is now what our society cares about more. I agree that we already have an unlimited amount of jobs that need to be done&this whole "creating jobs" isn't benefitting us in any way. I believe that it's not about people really needing these "new jobs" to be done, it's about people feeling like they are in charge&they have the power. Creating a job seems like they would get more gratitude&like they are doing something so good for people needing the job&those who would befit from that job being done but i think solving our problems that r already created is what would help our world.
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0 # Dennis Loo 2014-02-15 22:40
It would be useful to distinguish btw the capitalists vs. the rest. Because of the capitalists' dominance over the society, their values are also the dominant values. Their views are propagated in countless ways every day and every minute. At the same time, the real interests of the people continue to exist and in varying degrees the people are consciously aware of this and how it conflicts with the dominant perspective thru media, etc. That conflict provides the potential to raise consciousness about ppl's real interests.
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0 # AEK 2014-02-15 23:56
The phrase "it creates jobs" is so engrained in the capitalist system that it is thrown around as a reasoning, or excuse rather, for anything. New projects, such as the building of a hotel, arise to benefit and increase the wealth of the ones on top who monopolize production; because, in this system, the capitalists need to exploit the labor force in order for them to succeed; that social relationship is inevitable. Instead of saying, "we are going to build this hotel so we can get exponentially more rich and exhibit our control over the working class with the use of cheap labor", they say "it will benefit the individual worker by creating jobs". Yes, it may create jobs, but that is only sugar coating what is actually happening when that phrase is spoken.
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0 # LeslieB 2014-02-16 08:42
I agree with your point of view and looking at the phrase of "it creates jobs" as a form of sugar coating allows people to see why its so problematic rather than as someone else mentioned a "beneficial thing". I think that if more people understood capitalism and the way it really works we wouldn't be so willing to approve expansion solely because it "creates jobs". It reminds me of Durkheim & his "advice" that in order for the worker to keep working you must make him/her belief that their insignificant job is indispensable for the success of the company.
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0 # Wolfian 2014-02-16 00:01
We need to “create” jobs, because with the rise of capitalism the only way to make ends meet is by working. How else is a person going to get money to provide for their families? Shall we go back to a feudalistic society? And how can we? Isn’t feudalism and capitalism the same? Feudalism the power of the ruling class (Aristocracy) Capitalism (private/public industry-the power of the ruling class) the only difference between those two is the "Reserve Army of the Unemployment” which didn’t exist with feudalism. Marx saw feudalism as the economic situation before the rise of capitalism. As you said the word “creation of jobs” is nonsensical how else can we describe the term?
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0 # Dennis Loo 2014-02-16 01:21
The "creating of jobs" and work was not and is not an issue prior to the rise of capitalism. Peo have always worked since the beginning of homo sapiens. It is only under capitalism that it becomes a problem b/c capitalism's defining characteristic, as I lay out in the article, is the depriving of the majority of the means to life, thus forcing them to "work or starve."
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0 # Dennis Loo 2014-02-16 01:31
While both feudalism & capitalism are stratified their economic logic is very different. Feudal production was primarily for use vs. capitalist production is primarily for exchange. Money plays a role in feudal economies but its role is secondary & operates solely as a means to facilitate the translation of one use value for a different use value. For ex., someone sells a goat in order to get shoes and either they do a straight barter exchange or money comes into play but only as a transit point. Under capitalism, by contrast, the beginning & end of the process is money and the point of the process as a whole is to increase money, not to obtain usable values. Thus, capitalism's nature is the relentless & unending pursuit of more & more money (profit).
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0 # Dennis Loo 2014-02-16 01:34
When you ask "how else is a person going to get money to provide for their families" you are assuming that money has to exist and that the only way for someone to obtain food, shelter, etc. is thru money. That is the logic of capitalism but not the logic of any other economic or political system that predates it.
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0 # wolfian 2014-02-16 02:40
Yes, I asked that bcuz you are talking about today. Today’s societies have the need to “create jobs.” In a capitalist system only by the means of work you get the money necessary for living. I understand that years ago things were different, but today’s capitalist society demand labor and laborers. Marx viewed capitalism as a doom system, however it isn’t. Then what can we do? capitalism is today's reality.
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0 # Dennis Loo 2014-02-16 03:35
Don't you think a system that is destroying the planet is a doomed system?
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0 # wolfian 2014-02-16 03:42
You got me there,I thought he was referring only to money, if we bring the environment into account. Yes it is a doomed system.
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0 # lcdisney37 2014-02-16 00:12
It is hard to imagine a world where people work for social needs rather than for profit because capitalist have embarked this idea that you need to have good earnings in order to have a good life. People worry more about what job will pay the most rather than worrying about what needs to be done. I believe a main reason as to why people spend a lot of time doing their hobbies without pay is because they know their hobbies are not beneficial to the market economy, and often times there are a number of people already working on their hobbies with little pay. Capitalism gives us this idea that if it does not make much profit then it probably is not worth dong. This is why this saying "it creates jobs" is ridiculous saying.
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+2 # Daniel Carrillo 2014-02-16 00:29
When people like Jim Cramer make claims that specific circumstances(t he melting ice caps, an oil pipeline or even a new residential development)wil l "create jobs" what they really mean is that these things will make a few people very rich. Unfortunately, the very nature of capitalism is that it must expand, and as it expands it destroys (exploits)the environment. Since our planet has a finite amount of natural resources, capitalism is not sustainable. Unfortunately,a s Engles said,"In relation to nature, as to society, the present mode of production is predominantly concerned only about the immediate, the most tangible result." Since it is clear that corporations wield the greatest political force in our country, only by destroying corporate power and regulating and restricting it will we have a chance to correct our growing environmental crisis.
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0 # rrr96 2014-02-16 02:07
People are being manipulated by the idea of job creating. This “job creating” tactic is used to fight against people when big business in coming in to their communities. A functionalist would argue that manipulation is used to keep the peace and keep everything moving smoothly. But truly this is just a way for be businesses to move in where they are not wanted. Big businesses actually take business away from small businesses owners. Walmart is really well known for wiping out small business owners when they come to towns. Big businesses may offer a lot of jobs but that does not mean they are of quality. Most employees of big businesses are exploited because of their expendability.
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0 # Elver Gonzote 2014-02-16 04:47
rrr96, i completely agree with you, people are being manipulated through the terminology that is being used. I have been in some discussions in which the subject was war and I have found it shocking the tactics that are used into manipulating people into accepting something. For example, one I recall is the phrase "support our troops" essentially meaning in favor of war. Once this correlation was made, it resulted to those who found the war unnecessary instantly being unsupportive of the troops at war.
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0 # Elver Gonzote 2014-02-16 04:54
rrr96, i agree with what you say and believe that manipulation is key to the one percent running our country. This article reminded me of a discussion I was in in which the subject was war. In order to get people to support the word the phrase "support our troops" was used. Once the correlation of the war and our troops was made, people were left with no option but to support the war because otherwise theyd be against our troops.
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0 # rrr96 2014-02-16 05:29
That's a very good point Elver Gonzote. This topic of persuasion relates a lot to the conscience collective. Group agreement can really sway peoples views and action. Often people believe "facts" based on little to no evidence and that is why people are manipulated so easily. People that step out side of the conscience collective way of thinking are often ostracized and labeled as conspiracy theorists or something along those lines.
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0 # dawahba 2014-02-17 06:21
I feel like even if people became aware of the exploitations of capitalism, they would still be willing to deal with it... Does anyone have an idea of how realistically the United States today could do without capitalism? It's hard for me to imagine existing outside of capitalist society but I know that's probably out of ignorance since capitalism is the only type of society I've experienced. I can't imagine anything other than capitalism being taught in schools, etc.
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0 # Elver Gonzote 2014-02-16 02:44
it is sad to see how some are completely blinded by capitalists and their expand or die ideology. I do not see how they creat jobs and even if you can say they do, they do it overseas where they can continue their exploitation by paying workers ridiculous low wages which is not enough to survive. I dont think the student who argued that jobs were being created was or is still fully informed of what capitalists are capable of doing. Lack of awareness is why capitalists can get with what they do. They say one thing such as "we are creating jobs," and that could be true, but at what costs? If enough people knew the true costs of overseas jobs then maybe they would rather go back to the hunting days.
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0 # Jasmin Burgos 2014-02-16 04:47
Elver Gonzote, that was a great point that you brought up. While reading your post, I was visualizing all of the people working in sweat shops overseas making a couple of cents per day. & like you mentioned, there is such a lack of awareness that we continue supporting the exploitation being made by consuming such products.
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0 # Jasmin Burgos 2014-02-16 04:35
In this article Dr. Loo stated: "Capitalism's operating logic is to deprive the means to life from the vast majority so that those who now monopolize the means to life (aka the means of production) can force the rest of the population to work for them under the Hobston's Choice of "work or starve". I completely agree w Loo, I also agree with some of previous comments that were made about our hobbies. I do voluntary work at the Sheriff Station and this is where I feel the most productive and very passionate on what I'm doing but then the capitalist mentality kicks in and tells me how I have to work at least a part time job in order to produce some type of means to pay rent, my bills, etc. Capitalism is deeply ingrained into us.
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0 # Mary M 2014-02-16 05:06
Before this I didn't think about this before how capitalism uses “creating jobs” as a way of covering up what is really going on with exploitation and only benefiting the already wealthy elites. I used to think that “creating jobs” was always benefiting for everyone since we need jobs to put food on out table and to clearly just survive, it’s always seemed that way in today’s Capitalism. Since Capitalism has brainwashed us to believe that the only way to live is by gaining value and seeing how to make the most profit out of everything. We have become too wrapped up in how to gain value and make things profitable stating that “it creates jobs” that we have forgotten the alarming status of the environment. It time for a change this is a disaster-prone system we are living in.
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0 # debdawg91 2014-02-16 05:59
I'm a little confused with this article, I would need to know the definition of "Job Creators" and "Creating Jobs." What I understand is that anybody whether it be an individual hiring a HS kid to cut his grass for a price or the largest corporation on earth hiring people to distribute there goods has just "created" a job for someone. What I'm asking is would you give me more insight from these terms. Another area that I need more clarification on is the profit statement. It would seem to me that every company is there to make a profit. If a company could not make a profit how would they survive, how would they continue their product? In the end they would have to close their doors and all their employees would be out of a job. An ex, At Cal Poly, if the students stopped eating at the Market Place, they would have to cut back on employees or even close down for the time being. Either way someone here has suffered.
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0 # Dennis Loo 2014-02-16 06:32
The phrases "job creators" and "creating jobs" refer to the propaganda from the business world & from particularly the Republican Party (but not exclusively since this kind of argument is being made extremely widely in society currently & for about the last 35 years). The phrases typify the dominance of capitalist logic. When Romney ran for president he & Obama competed w/ each other over who would do the better job of "creating jobs." My article is designed to address and critique the logic and concrete practices of those who claim that capitalist solutions are the way for society to continue to follow. See next comment for continuation...
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0 # Dennis Loo 2014-02-16 06:40
Since unemployment is substantial and even those who are working are facing great difficulties paying bills and carrying debt (e.g., student loan debt now exceeds credit card debt nationally), the two major parties are seeking to offer "solutions" to the problem but their "solutions" are actually overall the exacerbation of the problem rather than the solution.

Second, re: profit. There are two major parts to clarifying this for you. First, you need to understand the point I've been making in class that systems are not the product of the individual actions & attitudes of those who occupy those systems. Capitalism is a system whose defining characteristic is the pursuit of profit. You think this is normal and the only way to be because you've been told this all your life by the ruling class - i.e., the capitalist class. But it isn't normal or inevitable. See next comment...
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0 # Dennis Loo 2014-02-16 06:44
Social needs are how decisions should be determined overall in a just and functional society. But the logic of capitalism bars that from being the criteria and substitutes instead the making of profit. Note what I say in the article about the reasons why making profits = exploitation of human labor, not the provisioning for the needs of society or the people. Those who claim that they can fix things by "creating jobs" are trying to keep peo from learning that the great inequities and suffering now is due to a system that makes profit the be all and end all. Prior to capitalism's ascent a few hundred years ago humanity lived in systems that weren't driven by profit. The term didn't even exist.
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0 # debdawg91 2014-02-16 06:32
Mary M: What is the alternative and what kind of change?
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0 # Mary M 2014-02-16 07:07
I’m not exactly sure on how we can fix this system we are living in today but I do know there is a need for a revolution recently I attended an even at UCLA listening to BA’s speech on things that need to be changed in this capitalistic system we are in listening to this made me look at society and capitalism in a new fashion. I recommend watching it.
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0 # Daniel Gomezzzz 2014-02-16 08:08
Exactly what I Was talking About In your Office haha :)
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0 # LeslieB 2014-02-16 08:31
Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of happiness is one, if not the most popular quote form our Declaration of Independence, yet in today’s capitalistic world it appears that we no longer have the right to do any of those things (perhaps the right to life but even that is questionable). the pursuit of happiness has been sacrificed by the pursuit of profit for the capitalist and the pursuit of survival for us the regular Joes. "creating jobs" is a phrase that doesn't make sense w/o capitalism. We only have a need for jobs because they create money which allows us to purchase things that have been made a commodity that before were available to us w/o money (i.e. food and water). Profit is now seen as the main priority rather than human life and preserving of our habitat. thus, I agree with the phrase they are not the solution. They are the problem.
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0 # KG7 2014-02-16 14:20
As ridiculous as this may sound, I often think that if I could zap myself back in time I would be Laura Ingalls on the Little House on the Prairie residing in Walnut Grove, Minnesota (1870-80's). U caught enough fish to feed your family (you didn't over exploit natural resources), your homestead had chickens/cows that produced enough eggs/milk to feed your family (no factory farming),u grew your own vegetables/harv ested your own crops (w/out the use of pesticides), your main transportation was on foot or horse/buggy (not Hummers),u bartered w/your neighbors for basic necessities (not to make a profit), your H2O came from a well in your backyard (not bottled H20). There weren't billboards every 50 ft cramming advertising down your throat. U could lay under a tree w/out the hum of cell towers & electrical power lines obstructing your view of the sky. Kids used their imaginations/pl ayed outdoors (not on gaming devices/cell phones). There wasn't unemployment/ho melessness.
Con't
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0 # KG7 2014-02-16 15:00
Fast forward to 2014. Yesterday, I was driving thru the city in which I reside. A banner reads (don't spit) "Creating jobs" (The Metro is being extended thru my city). I am reminded of Marx: The Communist Manifesto, "The need of a constantly expanding market for its products chases the bourgeoisie over the whole surface of the globe. It must nestle everywhere, settle everywhere, establish connections everywhere". Marx further states, "the proletariat, the modern working class...a class of labourers, who live only so long as they find work, and who find work only so long as their labour increases capital". What happens to the day labourer once the massive construction of the Metro is completed? Is he/she any better off in the long run?

My vote is for the horse and buggy!
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0 # KG7 2014-02-16 15:33
Front page of The LA Times, Fracking Boom: A south Texas town is enjoying new oil wealth-for a price. By 2022, the deposits are expected to generate 128,000 jobs and untold side effects across the region.
A resident states, "I worry that wastewater from fracking will contaminate groundwater and local wells. Some days, as I drive into town, I smell an odor that's new here, like rotten eggs. What's going to be left for people who live here? What effect are they going to have on us?"
A deputy director of the University of Texas at Austin's Energy Institute, "How do we harness as much good from it w/out getting left w/just a bad residue? The trick, is not to drill too hard too fast: Smart drillers milk the oil field slowly for all it's worth".

Take it away Dr. Loo
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0 # Dennis Loo 2014-02-16 16:06
The resident worries it will contaminate groundwater and wells. He ought to watch the two part documentary Gasland that chronicles the devastating effects of fracking on communities' water and air and the mayor and others moving out of their town because of it. One of the lovelier take away images is that of residents literally setting their kitchen water faucet afire due to the contaminants in their drinking water supply. Natural gas is touted as clean energy by the industry & by Obama but it is the very opposite of that due to the extraction process.
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0 # Dennis Loo 2014-02-16 16:15
A Stanford Prof points out in Gasland 2 that wind energy could by itself provide 5-6x the energy needs of the US. Why isn't it being more utilized? It's called Chevron, Shell, Mobil-Exxon... and particularly the US military. War and military uses of fossil fuels are the single largest emitter of C02.
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0 # KG7 2014-02-16 16:42
Bringing the issue closer to home: In South Los Angeles, residents complained for 4 years to local and state agencies about headaches, respiratory illnesses and nosebleeds, the US Environmental Protection Agency accused an oil field operator of threatening the health of neighbors by failing to maintain safe emissions. Allenco Energy Inc. has voluntarily shut down, at least temporarily (LA Times).

Capitalism vs. health...hmmm.. .seems like a no brainer
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0 # sintricity08 2014-02-16 18:10
It does seem that way but people that monopolies the gas companies and oil industries will constantly justify their actions for money. Capitalism has shattered the ideology of many Americans, where they find material wealth to be the sole purpose of working and becoming successful. Materialism needs to be put aside for the bigger picture to take place, a place where jobs can be centered at community building and getting rid of epidemics like the article mentions. I hope we can get there in my lifetime because eradicating the need for money would be one of the greatest things a society could do for each other.
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0 # bmcotran13 2014-02-16 22:22
Even President Obama discusses "creating jobs". It is unfortunate that there is even a need to create jobs. It is also unfortunate that we create jobs at the expense of our Mother Earth. Capitalism is still in reign with these new jobs because human labor is being exploited. These new jobs may either pay above minimum wage for a short while, or minimum wage for a longer while. Either way, the labor is worth more than the wages being paid. Marx says, "An enforced raising of wages would only mean a better payment of slaves and would not give this human meaning and worth either to the worker or to his labour" McIntosh, pg. 22. Even if hourly wages were to be raised, this alienated labor is still going to make people feel worthless. As long as we live in this capitalistic society, we will always be slaves to our labor. They will keep unemployment high, wages low, and working conditions unsatisfactory. Not to mention these new jobs destroying our planet. In the end, that is all we have.
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0 # dawahba 2014-02-17 06:17
Before reading this article I never really considered "it creates jobs" to be a bad thing. I guess that's just how connected people in general feel to capitalism. Capitalism doesn't truly argue on the side of reason, so it's difficult to justify how/why it is working because it's not in many different perspectives. We are just led to believe that it does. I feel as though "it creates jobs" is a loaded statement but isn't saying much for the truth.. "it creates jobs, BUT..." is more like it. I feel as though if more people were educated on the subject, they would be more inclined to reject capitalism but even then it is (sadly) difficult to imagine a world where money isn't the driving factor, there would be many questions to answer and a lot of restructuring to do and that kind of change makes people uncomfortable.
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0 # Dennis Loo 2014-02-17 19:49
Does it make you uncomfortable? I ask that because often when people express disbelief that others will do something it's because they themselves are unwilling to do that something. Let's assume, on the other hand, that you're entirely right - since of course at least some if not a lot of people are reluctant to entertain that big a change. Does that make it wrong to do because it's going to be hard? If the planet's survival is at stake, which it is, then what's too hard to do in the face of that?
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0 # dawahba 2014-02-19 01:52
To be completely honest, yes it does make me uncomfortable, but like most change does. But that's not to say I'm against change. I guess if you live your entire life exposed to just one form of society you have a biased view of the world. My view is not that capitalism is right, it's just that I am finding it difficult to think outside of the box on this subject. I would just need to know more about the different types of societies that could exist. However, I do agree that considering the damage being caused to the planet immediate action should be taken. What I'm looking for is just more information on the topic. I am not skeptical, I just want to know more about the other options before jumping in full support of a different system.
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0 # PD06 2014-02-17 18:01
I would have to say I agree with you on this issue. The people who are saying they are here to create jobs are not in it to help the community but instead are in it to make a profit. The company are only there to make profit and if it so happens to create a job or two fine. The question I pose to you though if these companies are not the way to gain jobs, how are we to address the high unemployment that exist today?
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0 # Dennis Loo 2014-02-17 19:53
Capitalism is the problem. That needs to be understood clearly. It's the problem and as long as it's around it's not going to solve the problem of unemployment because it rests upon the artificial creation of unemployment for its very existence. To ask how are we going to solve the problem of a disease caused by people not washing their hands without having people wash their hands wouldn't make sense, right? If you look at how these companies operate then it becomes obvious that their governing logic as companies is that they seek to destroy jobs overall, not create them.
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0 # PD06 2014-02-20 08:32
I understand that capitalism is the problem and that it is through unemployment that capitalism survives and thrives on. What system would you suggest then to be an alternative to capitalism and address the problem of unemployment
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0 # sickmacias89 2014-02-19 02:45
To quote Professor Loo who was quoting Russell Brand who said in an interview, "Capitalism is destroying the world", and it hadn't struck me as true until I became enrolled in this class. Switching to a different subject in my philosophy class we discussed two diseases that were created by industrial/tech nologically advanced countries;bulim ia and anorexia. This got me thinking that the problem would be fixed if we simply put less emphasis on body image right? Then i thought of capitalistic profits which come from those diseases. Pills, gym memberships, and surgeries, this is just a sad realization i noticed that keeps capitalism alive in sick ways.
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0 # Dennis Loo 2014-02-19 02:56
Susan Faludi in Backlash: the Undeclared War on American Women demonstrates that the stress by Madison Avenue on women being thin (esp. Twiggy as the icon for this) arose precisely at the time that the 1960s' women's liberation movement was gaining steam. The notion that women had to be unrealistically thin helped to distract from the movement to empower girls and women. Anorexia and bulimia are ills that accompany the oppression of women in capitalist society.
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0 # Sas13 2014-02-20 23:57
If we continue to follow the logic of "it creates jobs" as a society we should continue to incarcerate those who have been found guilty of minor drug possecion. Today we have mass incarceration due to the war on drugs. As Alexander states this has become our "new caste system. " This was become popular amongst whites as they see it as getting "tough on crime." Mass incarceration of minorities has left jobs available to whites which allows whites to have an advantage and keeps minorities subordinate. Mass incarceration also creates jobs.
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0 # TiffyWiffy 2014-02-23 02:59
First off this article reminds me of a TED talk by Nick Hanauer. Apparently it was taken down, but others have since uploaded it, it's definitely worth the watch. Secondly, I remember in one of my classes we talked about how inmate labor is the cheapest labor around. It's basically legalized slave labor. And because of this need for cheap labor, there was more demand for inmates. And once prisons became privatized and for profit, well then inmates just became a commodity.
Lastly, I feel it is because of capitalism that artists and musicians are now looked down upon as second class citizens. Anything creative is now seen as a waste of time, until you become famous. But before someone can become famous, they must start somewhere. Creative and original thoughts are now seen as a waste of time. People no longer go to college to learn, we go because we have to. People are afraid to choose majors that interest them, instead we choose majors that we feel will help us in the job market.
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0 # FAVEC001 2014-02-23 07:53
@TiffyWiffy.
In response to your post, I feel that to a certain extent what you said is true, especially when it comes to college, and the reasons for attending college. However, when it comes to musicians, and artists being looked upon on as second class citizens, I do not think that is entirely correct. Second class citizens are often considered to be people who have worked hard to build this country, but are denied basic rights due to either their gender or ethnicity. Simply because they are a musician, or an artist, does not mean that society as a whole, treats them as second class citizens. I feel that it is quite the opposite. Artists and Musicians, especially in a capitalist society, arguably are some of the brightest, and most profitable people corporations see. If this was not true then companies such as Disney, Sony, Columbia, and any other major entertainment company would not exist.
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0 # getyourexbackreviews 2014-03-05 17:09
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Elaine Brower 2

Elaine Brower of World Can't Wait speaking at the NYC Stop the War on Iran rally 2/4/12