The only thing more fascinating that watching conservatives’ heads collectively explode over the impending political demise of the Cheeto Supreme, is watching them turn every shade of white in the face of what can only be described as a proletariat rebellion.
Though I certainly prefer Groucho to Karl, Communism did manage to get some things right and one of those stipulations is that workers are generally exploited by their corporate overlords. But the revolution never happened because what truly enslaves your average employee is our all-consuming global consumer mindset.
It’s kinda hard to throw off those bourgeoisie shackles when you’re knee deep in credit card debt. Then there’s the stark reality that Homo Sapiens are overly prone to doing the same thing over and over again because that’s what they’ve always done.
But a funny thing happened on the way to work! The plague unintentionally provided us with the kind of separation from our daily routine that allowed a host of folks to finally see the forest and the trees. That’s when many of ‘em decided that life is far too short to devote it to a job that sucks to the point that it sucks the life out of you on an hourly basis.
Of course, those Republican reprobates love to shriek that it’s those consarned extended unemployment benefits that are the culprit for restaurants and bars sudden inability to find slave laborers, but nothing could be further from the truth because they’ve generally expired and this revolution goes so much further than finances.
I’m sure many of you’ve already read about the Lincoln, Nebraska, Burger King where the entire staff quit en masse, including the manager! Given the untenable kitchen working conditions, she was repeatedly treated for dehydration at the local hospital and when upper management refused to heed their pleas they quit.
Why do I sudden feel the urge to start singing Public Enemy’s ‘Fight the Power?’
It’s not just fast-food joints, either. Medium to high-end restaurants are having serious staffing issues because they can no longer find people willing to work in what are literally “sweatshops” at every level of the word. Why would any self-respecting young woman want to work for intolerant, demanding, prone-to-sexual-harassment bosses for far less than minimum wage, while enjoying the unique perk of getting to deal with the general sweaty public on a daily basis.
I tried waitering for one week. Do I need to further explain?
The dynamic is a bit different with nurses, but the end result’s the same. They may have retained their plague-era jobs, but they were so overworked that a slew of them decided life is too short and they quit.
Think about it! Who in their right mind would want to be a nurse? Sexist doctors treat you like shit, hospital administrators treat you even worse, and then you’re expected to just sit there and shut up while become punching bag for an increasing number of violent patents.
So now, Provena Mercy in Aurora is so short-staffed they’ve upped their nursing salaries and offering new hires a $5,000 signing bonus.
Even white-collar office workers have joined the revolution. Now that they’ve had a taste of working from home, who in their right mind would want to have to endure an hour-long commute in perpetually stalled CO choked traffic, or on a train that’s essentially the equivalent of a human sardine can?
And please tell me, does anyone really miss those absurdly middle-school office politics? If employers are smart they’ll run with the Zoom revolution because maintaining an absurdly expensive large office space is officially an utterly unnecessary expense.
Of course, as is par for the course, conservatives, who love to trumpet the glorious benefits of the “free market” suddenly become socialists when those same market forces are turned around on them! Now they have to offer better wages to attract any employees.
Because, as far as the proletariat goes, the pandemic provided a powerful glimpse of a far better life and now they’re never going back. As someone who gave up the corporate life decades ago, I can’t tell you how much I’m enjoying watching the revolution unfold
And contrary to Mr. Scott-Heron’s 1971 contention, this one will be televised.
You know what the real kick in the ass is dear friends? We’ve always had this power, but it took a plague to get us to see it.