Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Hard Times

I try to keep the tone of these entries light, for what should be an obvious reason. I don't believe people want to read about depressing topics, or, more accurately, topics presented in a depressing manner [Let's face it, one person's depressing topic is another person's laugh-fest]. Normally, I can find a cheery, or at least a non-dreary, way to discuss whatever's before the floor. This one, however, is too close to home. Last week, several employees of the radio company I work at, including some announcers, were let go.

Let's be honest here. This is not a tragedy. No one was killed, no buildings collapsed, no one drove into a lake. But I think everyone believes that their job is important, their position secure. Whenever someone loses a job, the whole fabric of Life feels shaken. Conversations around the building were a bit more quiet. Laughter was a lot harder to find.

Again, the number let go [4] was not particularly huge. But each person has a story. A single mom. A person trying to finish a college education. People with lives, desires, and most frustratingly of all, bills.

I guess what hurts the most, puts the most concern on the table, is that there doesn't seem to be an end to any of this. We went through similar "reductions" in the days before we were sold last year. Nowadays, being sold doesn't seem to lead towards security.
A few of you in the back row are no doubt thinking, "Well, this kind of thing goes on every day in America". Yes, indeed. Rather my point. Something has changed in this country, over the last ten years or so. Owners of companies were always trying to make a higher profit margin. It was expected, and considered the mark of a successful business [And, realistically, no working person could really resent it].
While we remember the 1980's as the decade when "Gordon Gekko" famously intoned the phrase "Greed is good", in the movie Wall Street, the greed didn't seem to take hold until the late part of the last decade of the last century. Now, a damn-the-worker mindset is endemic in the US. I bring all this up because today is Election Day in most of the United States. Next year's vote will really set the agenda for the next few years. But it may just be time to begin putting a framework for change together. It's time to look at the candidates, consider what views they support [and not just with lip service, either], and vote our own enlightened self-interests. Hey, there's no shame in it. Big Money has done it for years...
-Mike Riley


Racefan57 said...

yes... and things are going to get worse. nice post mike.

Tatiana said...

Hi Michael, I have to agree with you because while things get worse in US, the EU countries trying to be and do the "copy cat" bring our countries slowly but surely on the same road to damnation. I wish there was a way to change this there such a way?

BTW, you were just tagged by me on my blog, so please go there and take the details. And have a nice week ahead :)