Sunday, July 28, 2013

Reading Naomi Klein's No Logo about permatemps and no benefits jobs

Google Naomi Klein, No Logo and permatemps, you'll be directed to the 10th anniversary edition of her book (see description below) and here you can find how she describes Microsoft's strategy (page 251). The initial edition was published in December 1999, the 10th anniversary edition in November 2009.

Klein also looks at the workers who keep these companies running, most of whom never share in any of the great rewards. The president of Borders, when asked whether the bookstore chain could pay its clerks a "living wage," wrote that "while the concept is romantically appealing, it ignores the practicalities and realities of our business environment." Those clerks should probably just be grateful they're not stuck in an Asian sweatshop, making pennies an hour to produce Nike sneakers or other must-have fashion items. Klein also discusses at some length the tactic of hiring "permatemps" who can do most of the work and receive few, if any, benefits like health care, paid vacations, or stock options. While many workers are glad to be part of the "Free Agent Nation," observers note that, particularly in the high-tech industry, such policies make it increasingly difficult to organize workers and advocate for change.

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