Morning Ed: Labor {2016.09.05}


Will Truman

Will Truman is the Editor-in-Chief of Ordinary Times. He is also on Twitter.

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32 Responses

  1. Avatar Saul Degraw says:

    The New Yorker story was very good but very dispiriting, I often see libertarians post articles on how everything is grand because of decreasing global poverty. I wonder how much comes from remittance economies though. The Philippines still has an extremely weak and horrible economy if college grads earn more by being house-cleaners, nannies, and home health aides in the US than working for the government at home.

    Did not know that about the anime industry.Report

    • Avatar Brandon Berg says:

      I often see libertarians post articles on how everything is grand because of decreasing global poverty.

      That’s a strawman, of course. Everything isn’t just grand, and that’s not what we’re saying. We’re saying that things are improving.

      I wonder how much comes from remittance economies though.

      Looking it up, remittances are about 8% of GDP in the Philippines, which is pretty big. For China, it’s only half a percent, and for India about 3%. Although the economic growth in the Philippines has been very good over the last 15 years, it’s still a poor country with about half the per-capita GDP of China. India is a bit poorer still, and even China’s barely at a quarter of the US per-capita GDP. But things are much, much better than they were back in the 90s, and remittances, while they certainly help, are not large enough to explain more than a small part of that. Developing countries still have a long way to go, but they are actually developing, which hasn’t always been the case.Report

  2. Avatar LeeEsq says:

    The Cracked article is why I remain very skeptical with the free market will solve all problems. Just as government comes with civil servants and their follies and vices, markets are not composed of ideal market actors but business people and their follies and vices. People go into business to make money and there is a lot of evidence that business people will lie, rob, cheat, steal, and exploit to make the most money for themselves regardless of the consequences of others. Many even engage in these activities for the thrill of power and because they can. Markets need a countervailing force to put a leash on the worst instincts of business people.Report

    • Avatar Morat20 says:

      Once, when working at a company that shall not be named, they “updated” their vacation acquirement policies to be “more attractive to new employees”. (Keep in mind this company does NOT roll over vacation hours. Use it or lose it).

      Previous policy was “You accrue vacation THIS year for NEXT year”. That is, an employee working all of 2013 would accrue his or her full vacation for 2014, which could be used on January 1 and would be paid out if he or she quit on Jan 1.

      The new policy was “you accrue as you go”. So you earn your 2014 Vacation as you work in 2013, so one month of work = 1/12 of your vacation earned. If you take all your vacation but quit after six months, you owe them money for half your vacation.

      Except…what of the worker who worked all of 2013? When 2014 switches to “accrue as you go” he had already earned his vacation for 2014. So said employee should either earn twice the vacation time for 2014 (a one-off as schedules adjust) or be owed the pay for those weeks of vacation.

      Except…that didn’t happen. Every employee who had worked the previous year saw two or more weeks of pay…disappear. They worked all of 2013, accruing 2014 vacation — to start 2014 with no hours and vacation accrued as they worked.

      Somewhere, high up in HR, some “genius” came up with this. The company is a large one. Tens of thousands of employees across the US. Do you know much money that comes out to be? (If you guessed this happened somewhere between 2007 and 2010 you’d be right…)Report

      • Avatar LeeEsq says:

        Apparently wage theft is more common than ordinary theft, a little under a trillion is stolen by wage theft in the United States every years compared to only a third of that for regular theft.Report

    • Avatar notme says:

      The Cracked article is why I remain very skeptical with the free market will solve all problems.

      That’s odd because I don’t remember anyone here ever arguing that. Why would even think that a free market could solve all problems?Report

  3. Avatar Oscar Gordon says:

    Giving businesses to employees: see Bob’s Red Mill in Oregon.Report

  4. Avatar notme says:

    9.93 Million More Government Workers Than Manufacturing Workers

    Just what the country needs, more govt parasites. Bet they will vote democrat to keep their jobs.Report

    • Avatar Kazzy says:

      Government employment has been flat for a while. It isn’t that there are more government employees but that there are fewer working in manufacturing for a host of reasons.Report

      • Avatar Troublesome Frog says:

        Hey, wait a minute. Now that farming is gone, manufacturing is the only truly Holy and American job. We cannot accept fewer manufacturing jobs, ever.Report

        • Avatar notme says:

          At least folks in manufacturing jobs make something unlike most gov’t workers that create paperwork, regulations, red tape and BS.Report

        • Avatar Kazzy says:

          The funny thing is, if notme was bemoaning the loss of manufacturing jobs, we could have that conversation. Instead he is using a faulty stat to complain about the “rise” of government workers when no such rise exists.Report

          • Avatar notme says:

            Or it could be both for those folks that have any intelligence.Report

            • Avatar Kazzy says:

              Check the chart in YOUR link… aside from temporary census hiring, government employment has been flat for over a decade… down if you factor in population growth.Report

              • Avatar notme says:

                Yes, maybe over the last decade but so what? I’m talking about the long term. You can cherry pick a short period over a long period to prove anything you want. Wow, Kazzy can cherry pick, good for you!!Report

              • Avatar Kazzy says:

                2016: 22.2M (September)
                2006: 21.8M (January)
                1996: 19.4M (January)
                1986: 16.7M (January)

                That is for all government employees.

                For federal it is:
                2016: 2.8M (September)
                2006: 2.7M (January)
                1996: 2.9M (January)
                1986: 3.1M (January)

                Which means that all of the gains have been at the state and local level.

                Approximate US population over that time:
                2016: 320M
                2006: 300M
                1996: 270M
                1986: 240M

                In 1986, that works out to a ratio of approximately 1 government employee per 14 Americans.
                In 2016, that works out to a ratio of approximately 1 government employee per 14 Americans.

                So while the absolute number of total government employees has grown in the last 30 years, all of those gains have been at the state and local level AND the growth has kept pace with population growth.

                Now, let’s talk about what the word “cherry picking” means and if you actually have any idea.Report

  5. Avatar notme says:

    Obama Kept His Promise, 83,000 Coal Jobs Lost And 400 Mines Shuttered

    Happy Labor Day!!!Report

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