I encourage everyone to read I Was a Warehouse Wage Slave by Mac Mclelland, who went undercover to investigate working conditions inside an online shipping warehouse in the United States. The implications are grim for working class Americans, a growing segment that also includes many people who were earning traditional middle-class wages, but lost their jobs due to the financial “crisis” (malfeasance) and are now forced to do whatever they can to survive.
But what about the implications for the privileged few, my fellow MBAs, those destined for greatness in the corporate world as middle managers and senior executives who implement and oversee this dehumanizing and criminal business conduct? Doesn’t operating a business this way destroy their humanity, also? How high does a salary have to be to make someone treat other human beings like this? More importantly: will well-paid comfort, deliberate ignorance and apathy trump the struggle to maintain freedom, liberty and equality? I am not optimistic.
In search of bigger profits, major U.S. corporations sent millions of American jobs to Mexico, China, Bangladesh and a host of other countries where modern-day slavery is possible. Now, we see it is not the jobs that are coming back from China, just the wage slavery, this time for millions of Americans.
After all, how else can corporations remain profitable during a recession/depression that is here to stay? Criminally low federal minimum wages, and non-living wages in general, do not enable people to spend much, if anything, so consumption remains flat and companies cannot achieve real growth. No growth means no corporate investment. No corporate investment means no new job creation. Cutting costs are one way companies can boost profitability in conditions such as these. Labor costs are the single largest expense in most businesses, so is it any surprise the American worker is in the cross-hairs?