The Parallel Parliament

Glen Pearson

Posts tagged “employment

The Real Creator of Jobs

Posted on January 28, 2015

IN RESPONDING TO NICK HANAUEER’S observation that “the pitchforks are coming,” one of the .01% noted that the democracy has successfully “tamed” the masses, to the point where violent responses to growing economic inequality are no longer likely. One wonders what that person must think of the millions marching in the streets of Paris in response to a brutal attack on Charlie Hebdo, or the hundreds of thousands marching in streets across the world seeking change in the world’s financial system. These demonstrators might not carry rudimentary weapons like pitchforks, it’s true, but on the other hand, armed with smartphones, websites, petitions, cameras, and powerful texting abilities has meant that they can actually enter into the consciousness of the world in ways never seen…

Kellogg’s – We’re Not Done Yet

Posted on December 13, 2013

I LOOKED UP SO SEE FOUR PEOPLE coming down our driveway.  They introduced themselves, but it’s what they said next that set the tone: “We’re from Kellogg’s.” They were insecure but had lots to say about wanting me back in politics, about the corporate agenda, about what this community has meant to them.  And then, sadly: “Glen, how do we get help from the food bank when the time comes?” This is rapidly becoming the state of modern community life – people who helped arrange food drives at Kellogg’s were now going to require some of that very food themselves.  This is no way to run a society, and nor is it any way to treat people who built our cities and regions.  Sadly,…

Kellogg’s and a Future of Contradictions

Posted on December 11, 2013

  So, it’s done, and the effect has been devastating.  Just in time for Christmas, the city of London was informed that the historic Kellogg’s plant will be fully closed down in a year’s time.  It’s not as though London can afford the loss of another major facility; we’ve been losing more than our fair share lately. No sooner had the announcement been made than the employees themselves become swept up in the various agendas of other groups.  For just one day it would have been good to focus solely on the them and what this will mean to their futures.  The company will move operations to its Belleville plant and keep at it, but the workers … well, they soon won’t be workers.…

History’s Trick

Posted on October 18, 2013

There were many good responses to these last few blog posts on the future of work – some very worth exploring. But largely our leaders of politics and economics just return our questions with a deafening silence.  At the moment, there is no inclination to deal with the problem of the slow disappearance of work. Political theorist, Judith Shklar, used to maintain that work is more crucial to the core values of democracy than anything else, including family or even government.  Shklar died some 20 years ago, just at the onset of burgeoning unemployment. What would she think of her theory today, now that work has been demeaned, or worse, done away with altogether?  Even if she were partially correct, then the loss of…

The Precipice

Posted on October 17, 2013

A number of folks responded to yesterday’s blog and wondered what the solutions might be to a future without work.  Those answers are beyond my knowledge.  I know that in my time in politics that the subject was rarely broached.  But at different non-political sessions I attended (university seminars, United Nations special panels), the subject was front and centre and carried with it its own growing body of research that points to a difficult future. Perhaps what is required is an entirely new look at how modern societies function and the role that work – physical, mental, emotional – can play in arenas outside of economic production.  What would happen if, in addition to production, we moved employment in the post-industrial world to embrace…

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