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Sat Oct 31, 2015, 11:55 AM

The Uber-economy f**ks us all: How “permalancers” and “sharer” gigs gut the middle class

The "sharing" economy sounds groovy: politically neutral, anti-consumerist. Wait until it comes for your job
by STEVEN HILL

"A significant factor in the decline of the quality of jobs in the United States has been employers’ increasing reliance on “non-regular” employees — a growing army of freelancers, temps, contractors, part-timers, day laborers, micro-entrepreneurs, gig-preneurs, solo-preneurs, contingent labor, perma-lancers and perma-temps. It’s practically a new taxonomy for a workforce that has become segmented into a dizzying assortment of labor categories. Even many full-time, professional jobs and occupations are experiencing this precarious shift.

This practice has given rise to the term “1099 economy,” since these employees don’t file W-2 income tax forms like any regular, permanent employee; instead, they file the 1099-MISC form for an IRS classification known as “independent contractor.” The advantage for a business of using 1099 workers over W-2 wage-earners is obvious: an employer usually can lower its labor costs dramatically, often by 30 percent or more, since it is not responsible for a 1099 worker’s health benefits, retirement, unemployment or injured workers compensation, lunch breaks, overtime, disability, paid sick, holiday or vacation leave and more. In addition, contract workers are paid only for the specific number of hours they spend providing labor, which increasingly is being reduced to shorter and shorter “micro-gigs.”

In a sense, employers and employees used to be married to each other, and there was a sense of commitment and a joined destiny. Now, employers just want a bunch of one-night stands with their employees, a promiscuousness that promises to be not only fleeting but destabilizing to the broader macroeconomy. Set to replace the crumbling New Deal society is a darker world in which wealthy and powerful economic elite are collaborating with their political cronies to erect the policy edifice that allows them to mold their proprietary workforce into one composed of a disjointed collection of 1099 employees. Employers have called off the marriage with their employees, preferring a series of on-again, off-again affairs.

This is a direct threat to the nation’s future, as well as to what has been lionized around the world as the “American Dream.” "

http://www.salon.com/2015/10/31/the_uber_economy_fks_us_all_how_permalancers_and_sharer_gigs_guts_the_middle_class/

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Reply The Uber-economy f**ks us all: How “permalancers” and “sharer” gigs gut the middle class (Original post)
uawchild Oct 2015 OP
BlueJazz Oct 2015 #1
appalachiablue Oct 2015 #2
coyote Nov 2015 #3
milestogo Nov 2015 #4

Response to uawchild (Original post)

Sat Oct 31, 2015, 03:22 PM

1. One of my friends son told his father his new employer was going to offer "Freedom time"

 

The son would work 6-8:30 AM....11-1...then 4-5:30.
My friend told his son to tell them to stick their "Freedom Time" in the usual place that people are fond of saying.

My friend: "what the hell is he suppose to do? Drive to work, hang out for hours at a time and bring home peanuts? fuck um , I'll support him before I'll ruin his life that way"

Lucky son and great dad.

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Response to uawchild (Original post)

Sat Oct 31, 2015, 06:45 PM

2. We see the status & systems of the US workforce crumbling fast like income & wealth--

among the working and middle class-- now with the 'gig economy'. No plan for positive change in sight except Sanders platform call for education and jobs investment. In an Oxfam paper last year Keynesian economist Joseph Stiglitz forecast 25 years of US job stagnation.

The 'sharing economy' is a fraud misnomer. Everything's about the market and selling- no one is giving away anything. The sharing now is mainly 'platforms, ideas', cool sounding crap. But people are, and will be sharing with their loved ones any kind of housing, transportation, food and basic needs they can obtain.

Like Uber and many more cos., Amazon is another corporation with a bad record on labor. There's an article in Good Reads now about *The Life of an Amazon Temp Worker, very bittersweet, sad. 'Mother Jones' had an article a few years ago about a young woman's experience as an Amazon warehouse worker that was revealing.
Several years ago Walmart was caught paying workers in scrip in Mexico! Hadn't heard of that in the US since the 1930s at the latest.

*'Manna', someone posted the link in a comment. Pretty scary stuff but it gives a peaceful future, for some.
*Marshall Brain, MANNA. Two futures for humanity.
http://marshallbrain.com/manna1.htm

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Response to uawchild (Original post)

Sun Nov 1, 2015, 11:58 AM

3. Living in Germany, I can tell you how Germany avoids these problems...

 

Essentially you cannot hire a freelancer for more than 18 months at a company, otherwise the government see the company as evading social taxes (social responsibility) such unemployment insurance, health insurance, general income tax, etc. In sum, it's pretty much viewed as tax evasion.

I have seen many people get hired here as permanent employees due to claims of Scheinselbständigkeit (contractors working like regular employees). The work courts here are very favorable to workers.

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Response to uawchild (Original post)

Sun Nov 1, 2015, 02:02 PM

4. Its exhausting to never get a break from looking for a job.

Once you are in the gig economy its really hard to get hired for something permanent.

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