The precariat

View previous topic View next topic Go down

The precariat

Post by hermeticist on Mon Apr 04, 2011 2:07 pm

The "precariat" (precarious + proletariat) is a new term that's been coined during the last few years and describes the new class of people -- many young but really of all ages -- who are involved in low-paid work, often part-time or seasonal. The rough guess is that 30-40% of the working population of countries like Holland, France, Italy, and Japan falls in this category. For Britain I don't know the figure but I'd venture to say it is at least as high. This Guardian video link describes and interviews the British precariat in cities such as Swansea, Bath, and London:

http://globalsociology.com/2011/02/28/the-precariat/
avatar
hermeticist
___________________________
___________________________

Posts : 92
Reputation : 48
Join date : 2011-04-02

Back to top Go down

Re: The precariat

Post by Isakenaz on Mon Apr 04, 2011 3:27 pm

'Precariat' I like that a term unsoiled by the Marxists.
avatar
Isakenaz
___________________
___________________

Tendency : Socialist-Nationalist
Posts : 646
Reputation : 266
Join date : 2011-04-02
Age : 61
Location : Yorkshire, England

Back to top Go down

Re: The precariat

Post by Coach on Fri Apr 15, 2011 1:58 am

Are the precariat a new class? No.
Should we focus on these folks in the growing precariat? HELL YEAH.
Watch the video link in the OP's post, and you'll certainly see why.

avatar
Coach
_________________________
_________________________

Tendency : socialist-nationalist/revolutionary Trotskyist
Posts : 259
Reputation : 133
Join date : 2011-04-02
Location : US Midwest

Back to top Go down

Re: The precariat

Post by Isakenaz on Fri Apr 15, 2011 5:04 am

SNLC is absolutely correct. Watch the video, listen to what's being said, especially when they are talking about thirty percent of the workers being directly employed and therefore available for union strike action, while seventy percent are agency workers (casual) and therefore unwilling to join any industrial action. Whether we like it or not the Precariat is the future of the working-class. We need to be directing our efforts towards this group not worrying about the comfortable classes. They will be 'hurt' by governmental labour reforms that benefit the capitalist, the precariat will be the fuel that feeds the new 'Gilded Age'.
avatar
Isakenaz
___________________
___________________

Tendency : Socialist-Nationalist
Posts : 646
Reputation : 266
Join date : 2011-04-02
Age : 61
Location : Yorkshire, England

Back to top Go down

Re: The precariat

Post by Leon Mcnichol on Fri Apr 15, 2011 10:49 am

Very good video, thank you for sharing.

It's interesting to hear the polish cleaning ladies, because i know how was the mentality there when the gates for europe opened for them. And indeed they thought that the west was some sort of paradise, where you get rich by just cleaning the floor or carrying boxes..

And the ones to blame are the older generation, the baby boomers illuded by the capitalist american dream, that sold the idea to the younger generations there that they should just all emigrate..

avatar
Leon Mcnichol
________________________
________________________

Posts : 352
Reputation : 287
Join date : 2011-04-01

Back to top Go down

Re: The precariat

Post by Isakenaz on Sat Apr 16, 2011 11:41 am

This is one of the comments on the site;

To paraphrase Marx:

Considering, that against this combined power of the elite classes the primary producers or precariat cannot unite and act for itself except by constituting itself into a mass party-movement, distinct from, and opposed to, all old parties and movements, that this constitution of the precariat into a mass party-movement is indispensable in order to ensure the emancipation of its labour power,

That such labour power can be emancipated only when, at minimum, the precariat is in collective possession of all means of societal production, all commons, etc., that there are only two forms under which all means of societal production, all commons, etc. can belong to them or return to community:

1) The individual form which has never existed in a general state and which is increasingly eliminated by industrial progress;
2) The collective form the material and intellectual elements of which are constituted by the very development of capitalist society;

Considering,

That again this collective re-appropriation, or political and economic expropriation of the elite classes, can arise only from the direct action of the primary producers or precariat, organized in a distinct mass party-movement;

Such permanent organization must be pursued by all the means the precariat has at its disposal.

I wonder how many of the 'precariat' would understand what he's on about?
avatar
Isakenaz
___________________
___________________

Tendency : Socialist-Nationalist
Posts : 646
Reputation : 266
Join date : 2011-04-02
Age : 61
Location : Yorkshire, England

Back to top Go down

Re: The precariat

Post by Coach on Sat Apr 16, 2011 12:17 pm

The precariat isn't a different class. It is part of the working class.
avatar
Coach
_________________________
_________________________

Tendency : socialist-nationalist/revolutionary Trotskyist
Posts : 259
Reputation : 133
Join date : 2011-04-02
Location : US Midwest

Back to top Go down

Re: The precariat

Post by alpine joe on Sat Apr 16, 2011 1:05 pm

Give it a couple of years and they will be the working class. Gone are the days of a job for life, decent wages/hours etc..

alpine joe
___________________________
___________________________

Posts : 22
Reputation : 4
Join date : 2011-04-02
Age : 40
Location : A land fit for heroes?

Back to top Go down

Re: The precariat

Post by Isakenaz on Sat Apr 16, 2011 1:34 pm

alpine joe wrote:Give it a couple of years and they will be the working class. Gone are the days of a job for life, decent wages/hours etc..

And that is precisely why I think we should be targeting our ideology at them.
avatar
Isakenaz
___________________
___________________

Tendency : Socialist-Nationalist
Posts : 646
Reputation : 266
Join date : 2011-04-02
Age : 61
Location : Yorkshire, England

Back to top Go down

Re: The precariat

Post by alpine joe on Sun Apr 17, 2011 4:32 am

I agree, since they are the group most affected by the economic climate they'll certainly be more susceptible to our message than most others.

alpine joe
___________________________
___________________________

Posts : 22
Reputation : 4
Join date : 2011-04-02
Age : 40
Location : A land fit for heroes?

Back to top Go down

Re: The precariat

Post by Isakenaz on Sun Apr 17, 2011 6:14 am

alpine joe wrote:I agree, since they are the group most affected by the economic climate they'll certainly be more susceptible to our message than most others.

It's that they represent a trend, the government has bent over backwards to create a 'flexible' work force to fully benefit the capitalists and in doing so they have, IMO, blurred the traditional class lines even further than before. Add to that these 'Austerity' measures that they have introduced and the working and middle-classes are gradualy being reduced to a single class, the 'Precariat'. The traditional Left with its middle-class leanings has failed to adapt their ideas to this new 'class' still trying to mould the situation to fit their ideas rather than the other way about. And the 'movement', with its prediliction for kissing the right wings asses, refuses to see them as anything other than a waste of genetic material.
So we must be the ones they see as representing them.
avatar
Isakenaz
___________________
___________________

Tendency : Socialist-Nationalist
Posts : 646
Reputation : 266
Join date : 2011-04-02
Age : 61
Location : Yorkshire, England

Back to top Go down

Re: The precariat

Post by hermeticist on Sun Apr 17, 2011 11:33 pm

alpine joe wrote:I agree, since they are the group most affected by the economic climate they'll certainly be more susceptible to our message than most others.

Just to keep the discussion moving, there needs to be some "class consciousness" -- maybe even embryonic or nascent. The possible absence of it among the Generation X precariat is what bothers me.
avatar
hermeticist
___________________________
___________________________

Posts : 92
Reputation : 48
Join date : 2011-04-02

Back to top Go down

Re: The precariat

Post by hermeticist on Mon Apr 18, 2011 1:48 pm

The American precariat has to look cheerful and enthusiastic while being paid starvation wages for seasonal work:

http://www.theawl.com/2011/04/liberty-tax-service-your-huddled-masses-yearning-to-be-franchisees

Meet the new working class: seasonal temps paid to gambol like dystopic Care Bears in cheap national monument costumes.

We're not unfamiliar with the entry-level marketing employee—the sandwich-board wearers, the handers-out of pamphlets, the guys who stand in front of the mall propping up the FINAL CLOSE-OUT signs, now or historically. It’s a sad truth that not all jobs are awesome (that’s why they call them ‘jobs’). But these street teams are different. There's no sullen resignation, no tired shuffle. These L'il Statues display the enthusiasm we expect from the Junior Varsity Cheerleading Squad's car-wash fundraiser. They are confounding. Surely they can't be paid enough to be that happy?

avatar
hermeticist
___________________________
___________________________

Posts : 92
Reputation : 48
Join date : 2011-04-02

Back to top Go down

Re: The precariat

Post by Isakenaz on Mon Apr 18, 2011 2:12 pm

they are paying the price for the 'me,me,me' generation of the 80s. In Britain Thatcher proudly boasted that there was no such thing as society, and the past decades have proved her right. The youngsters of that decade, and those since, were told if you want something go and get it. And they did without a care to future needs, 'live for the now' a possible slogan for the generation that gave us 'Yupies' and then 'Dinkies'. Now we see this precariat paying the bill for that 'age of greed'.
So it's understandable if they show no 'class consciousness' that was one of the first things to go thirty years ago, and it may or may not return. It's probably a waste of time looking for it, and trying to fit them into a 'Marxist' theoretical place. I would suggest it's the theories that need to be adapted to fit the situation, and adapted before the situation becomes dire.
avatar
Isakenaz
___________________
___________________

Tendency : Socialist-Nationalist
Posts : 646
Reputation : 266
Join date : 2011-04-02
Age : 61
Location : Yorkshire, England

Back to top Go down

Re: The precariat

Post by Coach on Mon Apr 18, 2011 3:22 pm

Take a peek at the economic news today. Illusions are going to die. Comfort and security will be reduced. Austerity is coming. Conflict is coming.
The younger proles, and then the not so young proles, will be getting their 'teaching moment' from the capitalist system.
Class consciousness amongst proletarians usually starts at the least line of resistance...what Lenin called "trade union consciousness". You can see the beginnings of this evident in that video about the Precariat, amongst the Polish women hotel cleaners in London.
I think we need to focus on where amongst the precariat the beginnings of that "trade union consciousness" is expressing itself. Start there, build there, spread the example of our efforts from there to inspire others, prepare the ground for wider class consciousness and a wider fightback. When the working class fights back to the upper limits of its consciousness, and it finds from experience that fightback is still insufficient, you have the opportunity to guide them over the bridge to the next step (where the misleaders dare not tread).








avatar
Coach
_________________________
_________________________

Tendency : socialist-nationalist/revolutionary Trotskyist
Posts : 259
Reputation : 133
Join date : 2011-04-02
Location : US Midwest

Back to top Go down

Re: The precariat

Post by hermeticist on Mon Apr 18, 2011 4:32 pm

SN Labor Champion wrote:Illusions are going to die. Comfort and security will be reduced. Austerity is coming. Conflict is coming.

Excellent post. Again, just to keep the discussion moving, I wanted to comment on how people do not live in the here and now, but rather in the make-believe world of a bygone era -- 1945-1973 -- when there was rapid economic growth and full employment. Though that era is almost forty years behind us, it is interesting that people still inhabit that era mentally and emotionally. Thus, for example, I notice how people dress up their unemployed or under-employed status with various euphemisms; or think that some new certificate will get them back in the workforce. The dimensions of the present crisis have still not quite sunk in -- except perhaps for the long-term unemployed who have given up all hope. People are living in denial, in a fantasy world. Of course this is aided and abetted by a mass media of propaganda and disinformation, yet still .... Zizek refers to this as the "will to ignorance."
avatar
hermeticist
___________________________
___________________________

Posts : 92
Reputation : 48
Join date : 2011-04-02

Back to top Go down

Re: The precariat

Post by AlbertCurtis on Mon Apr 18, 2011 5:22 pm

Isakenaz wrote:Add to that these 'Austerity' measures that they have introduced and the working and middle-classes are gradualy being reduced to a single class, the 'Precariat'.
That is the end game is being brought about in which the plan is to reduce all that are not wealthy to poverty, and wipe out the American/European Middle classes as political/social/economic forces. First out goes organized labor and and then out goes the middle class managerial class that was 'safe' while labor was busted.

The traditional Left with its middle-class leanings has failed to adapt their ideas to this new 'class' still trying to mould the situation to fit their ideas rather than the other way about.
The will to believe is very strong indeed. Pride, and elitism are important factors as well. The TL wants to be more equal, when in fact we are not equal in the sense they insist in the first instance at all: Madness but there it is.

And the 'movement', with its prediliction for kissing the right wings asses, refuses to see them as anything other than a waste of genetic material.
I am convinced more and more that the movement is in fact a police counter intelligence operation, coupled with a money pit used as a circle jerk for morons and proles. Think about it seems that ALMOST all the 'leadership' are either a convict, have a judgment against them, or has had past encounters with the law. Those that do not seem to go to jail, while others seem to be the systems lackeys get money and live the good life in the sun, with minimal police interference. Odd huh! HUM!!!!
So we must be the ones they see as representing them.
We could be the ones, but they have NO clue we exist and we have NOTHING to offer them but words. Baby steps.

AlbertCurtis
________________
________________

Posts : 122
Reputation : 22
Join date : 2011-04-02

Back to top Go down

Re: The precariat

Post by hermeticist on Sat Apr 23, 2011 12:34 am

This is the article where I first encountered the word "precariat" about two years back. It deals with the Japanese case but I believe it will reward thoughtful reading as the similiarities between Japan and the rest of the (so-called) industrialised world are deep.

http://www.japanesestudies.org.uk/discussionpapers/2009/Obinger.html

I also found this new article and besides imparting precise information on the worldwide casualisation of labor it also gives us some grounds for hope:

http://www.unionbook.org/profiles/blogs/new-unionism-the-precariat-and



avatar
hermeticist
___________________________
___________________________

Posts : 92
Reputation : 48
Join date : 2011-04-02

Back to top Go down

Re: The precariat

Post by Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

View previous topic View next topic Back to top

- Similar topics

 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum