All Fired Up…..

fired up

 

by Kenneth Justice

~ This past week has had a number of ups and a number of downs. Returning from my trip to Colorado last week things were pretty much on the upswing,

Until,

I found out a business associate of mine is getting fired……..and he doesn’t know it yet. I’ve been working with this particular client for nearly 10 years and the owner of his corporation recently sold out to a different client. To make a long-story short, I had coffee with the new owner and he told me who he would be keeping and who he would be letting go.

The business friend of mine who is getting fired is a really good guy; he’s honest, down-to-earth, and a great family man, which in certain elements of the business world are rare commodities.

I am really sad that he is going to be losing his job……and there’s nothing I can do about it.

When I was younger, first starting out in the marketplace of business, I didn’t think about jobs and work very much. Sure, I went to work everyday, performed my duties, and then I went home or went out with friends. Life was simple; work was a means to an end.

But in recent years, with the economy falling apart all across the United States and Europe; we all think about work and jobs a whole hell of a lot more than we ever did in the past.

Earlier this week, fast-food workers across the United States went on strike in the hope of forming a union and obtaining an increase in pay.

My heart goes out to those fast food workers because it seems to me that they work harder than many people who make substantially more in the corporate world.

Unfortunately, I don’t know what the answer is; As much as I dislike McDonalds and what it stands for, I realize that many of the individual McDonalds are independently owned by men and women who don’t make a ton of profit. I know one particular McDonald’s owner who only makes a profit of $150,000 per year. That isn’t very much when you consider how much of their money is tied up into the place. It’s also not a lot of money when you consider what a $4 an hour increase in payroll would do to their bottom line.

So while on the one hand I believe these workers should get an increase in salary, on the other hand I realize that in many cases the owners of the independent McDonalds don’t have the money to dish out.

What is the answer?

I really don’t know.

It’s one thing if we were just talking about high-schoolers working in fast food; no one would cry out ‘injustice’ at the pay scale. But there are so many men and women over the age of 25 working in fast food who are trying to raise their families, pay rent, and I don’t know how we can expect them to make it on less than $12 an hour.

In the 1980’s the Western World was very fortunate to experience the computer industry spring-up out of nowhere. For nearly 20 years the advancements in computer technology led to millions of jobs that didn’t exist prior to the 1980’s.

But we are currently in 2013

There is no new technology or innovation that has sprung up out-of-nowhere.

With each passing day, more and more people merely want the simple satisfaction of going to work, performing a job, and making enough money to lead a certain lifestyle.

But perhaps that is where the answer lies.

Perhaps our standards have to be lowered.

Perhaps its too much for all of us to own an automobile.

Perhaps going to the movies, tanning, out to eat, and bowling have to now be looked at as luxuries.

Perhaps traveling by airplane should be a more rare experience than a typical one.

Perhaps we are reaping what our parents sowed.

Perhaps our parents were too reckless with their money and lifestyles and the way they set up the economic system so that now we must go through a period of radical lifestyle change.

OR

Perhaps I am wrong.

Maybe there is some answer out there to correct this current global economic meltdown that I can’t see.

For now, I’m just going to have another cup of coffee and think about it all.

Kenneth

 

 



Categories: Culture & Society

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

9 replies

  1. The jobs that are in the service professions are really not given what they are worth, never have been. I have been in public service jobs all my life. I love working and serving others. It is my calling. Right now I am at an adult day care for special needs adults. I love what I do. But I am paid a hourly rate that is looked at as a second income. Could I make it on my own not in this profession. So yes I agree that we are in need of a change for the service and laborers of this world but I like you will just sip my java and ponder…good read and got my mind going today!

  2. Interesting questions. Unfortunately I don’t have answers. I guess we just have to make the best of our lives with the resources available to us…

  3. I’m afraid the problems stem from a culture that values power, prestige and titles of authority over humility and service. How else do you explain people willing to pay $150 to watch a guy in tights throw around a piece of pigskin or a tone-deaf teen crooner shake his skinny jeans on stage, but not more than $7 for a fast food combo so the people serving it can fill their children’s bellies?

  4. Hey Kenneth I’ll start by saying that the 300 richest people in the world have half the entire world’s wealth tied up and therein lies the problem. the system is set up for inequity. the same argument against raising the minimum wage is the same argument used for slavery. We have to make our profit. Slavery is being brought back… it will be indentured slavery and debt will be the yolk to harness labor. If you look debt was at the core of the 2008 Great Recession including credit default swabs or in essence the packaging of bad debt and selling it as an asset. We are still being encouraged as a society to spend beyond our means. the real economic collapse is on the horizon and from its ashes a credit system (these 300 people are not going to forgive our debt but use it too their advantage.) the only difference is future generations will end up being born owing… they are the plantation owners of the future… not completely off topic, this is what is forcing small companies and business owners to make cuts to their employee base also, they are also puppets of the scheme, their strings are being controlled by the markets which the aforementioned 300 manipulate… the alternate reality is a civil revolt like that of the French revolution but on a global scale. I like neither scenario and hope I am wrong about both…

  5. Totally agree with tjtherion and I fear that the scenarios are real. What we have to understand is that the ethics of work are outdated and the ethics-values of life not allowed to step in. If we are to accept that only working people should be allowed to live (earn their living…) then 2 billion people must die because there is no work for them. Of course if they were working for free, I guess many people would love their services… So there is a need and there lies the answer.
    Yet, technology (the “big saviour” ) has allowed for more productivity-production and advances in medicine and agriculture, with less workers, but of course it is not for free, so all these people are excluded. If this is not unfair, unjust and plain evil I don’t know what is. I am not against technology, but I am not in favour of it, above everything else.
    It is my belief that time is running out and people should revise very quickly their standards, their ethics and their way of lives. Austerity should not be forced, excess in consumsion is just the smoke screen and even though it is a problem it has little to do with this crises.

  6. there’s lots of things going on at once and as already stated… a good portion of it is inequity. those in control/power who have the money don’t want to give it up or share at all. there is the fact that people have also spend outside their means… but my guess is that pales in comparison to the inequity issue. the whole overspending as the problem is probably what’s been fed to us so we don’t consider the inequity issue. that said, it’s not going to be easy to recover from all this. both my editor and my mom keep telling me they don’t see a peaceful resolution to this; that it will mean revolution or something of that nature… it could be. i hope not but it’s certainly possible. it’s been happening in other places… it’s certainly plausible to think it could happen here. i just keep hoping that things improve somehow.

  7. Good Morning. This was an interesting post as always that I have found with you. I am sorry about what is happening and wish that I had answers, but just wanted to let you know that I nominated you for “The Versatile Blogger Award” the criteria and acceptance info can be found here: http://crissyb315.wordpress.com/2013/08/05/the-versatile-blogger-award/, if you choose to accept. Congrats!! 🙂

  8. Wow. I love your care to your friend – you genuinely seem to care. This is beautiful.

    I had no idea McD’s is independently owned, no idea. An interested post indeed.

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