October 18, 2010

Gen Y: Not Buying The Work World

Slackers not buying the work world

Teenage participation rate in the work force is at a low not seen for decades. Some have used this fact to predict the demise of the world as we know it. They should relax.

Generation Y, or Slackers as they have been called by the more work-obsessed, have been slagged for a variety of sins, like having a poor work ethic. They don't seem to be playing the wage drudgery game, and that makes some people upset.

I, on the other hand, am with the Slackers all the way. "Go, Slackers, go"... or should that should be, "stop, Slackers, stop"? Whatever it takes, I hope they keep sticking it to the system in the greatest exodus from wage labour since the hippies turned into suit-wearing soldiers of capitalism.

But just because Gen Y is not participating in the labour force does not necessarily mean they are lazy. Maybe they are valuing other parts of their lives more than workin' for the man. Are they volunteering in their communities? Traveling? Helping out at home? Or maybe they are just enjoying being kids.

These kids may be the ones that make a break from our current soul sucking system. A system that awards a good work ethic with longer hours, worse conditions, and declining pay.

And besides, I thought the whole idea was to reduce the number of hours we had to work in the future. Isn't that what time-saving convenience technology and mechanization promised? Don't we all dream of a 3 hour work day, and shouldn't it be possible after two hundred years of industrial 'progress'? Why isn't increased efficiency freeing us from the drudgery?

Labour activist Paul Lafargue (1842-1912) thought God was the ultimate Idler: “After six days of work, he rests for all eternity.” And we get two weeks of holidays a year, if we even choose to take them. We are suffering from Idleness Deficit Disorder, and it is making us very sick.

I hope Gen Y is simply creating more balance in their lives - and releasing their inner idler. That is something I would support. If I could get off the couch. Go Slackers!

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