Monday, June 24, 2013


(h/t Atrios)

Anne Laurie at Balloon Juice has a post about American workers and I really liked this part:
“Work hard and you will get promoted / get a raise” is the natural response, but in many of our workplaces I think we discover fairly quickly that the raises aren’t coming no matter how hard we work (or they come, but with a truckload of additional burdens that vastly outweigh them).
That’s the end result about all of this “Woe is us” from the owner and manager classes – we’re constantly told that we can’t be paid more (“We just can’t afford it! We’re barely breaking even!”) but we’re not expected to react strategically. The rational thing to do, if you know you can’t profit from working harder, is to figure out the minimum amount of work you can do under the terms of your employment.
Of course, when certain people in our society do what is rational, it’s “smart”. When the rest of us respond rationally to incentives, we’re lazy.

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