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Re: [Nettime-bold] Re: <nettime> The Ideology of Immateriality
{ brad brace } on Wed, 14 Jun 2000 18:02:42 +0200 (CEST)


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Re: [Nettime-bold] Re: <nettime> The Ideology of Immateriality



I don't quite buy-it...

Gilded Age 2.0 

Once again american society is profoundly imperiled by
a yawning chasm between the obscenely wealthy and the chronically
overdrawn, between sublime fantasy and sordid reality.

(And, your $25/hr Silicon Valley gardener probably _needs that to survive
in an inflated, duplicitous market where the average rent (SF) for a
1-bedroom apt is $1900/mo.) 


/:b


On Mon, 12 Jun 2000, Mike Weisman wrote: 
> 	Sorry to have to clarify this for everyone, but what is happening, at
> least in the US, is at once more complex and less mysterious.
> Fortunately, its also right in front of your nose for anyone who cares
> to take their eyes off their laptops for a moment.
> 	That great sucking sound you hear is the rush of fairly well educated
> college graduates flowing into all kinds of jobs in the technology field
> (very broadly defined) after about twenty years of unemployment or
> underemployment. Obviously, few of these people have computer science
> backgrounds because those fields of endeavor didn't even exist ten years
> ago, much less twenty years. Although some have retrained by taking
> classes in BASIC or web page design, many are self taught. They are the
> pool of employees for companies like Microsoft, Oracle, or Amazon, where
> someone with a Ph.D. in Classical Greek can get a pretty good job if
> they can write HTML, work a database, or have a real world background
> like (gasp!) working in a bookstore. 
> 	Here, in the best of all possible worlds, many of these people held
> jobs over the last twenty years in a variety of underemployment
> situations. They worked in bookstores and bistros, carpentry, light
> construction, ski instruction, taught English at community college, or
> had a folk music band.  When they got sucked up (in income at least)
> into the techno vortex, they left behind them thousands of jobs in every
> field of endeavor. 
> 	The situation is well documented here.  Waiters in good restaurants now
> get paid vacations, health club memberships, and investment plans,
> because its difficult to find anyone to fill service industry jobs.  My
> carpenter can't work on my project because he is taking his family to
> Denmark to study energy conservation for a few months. My other
> carpenter now installs Ethernet networks in homes and doesn't do
> remodels anymore. The woman that used to cut my hair now works as a
> network admin. My yoga guru doesn't have time to teach because she
> builds web pages for the world's largest company. And so on....
> 	But of course it all flows downhill.  Anyone interested in work has no
> problem finding it these days in many areas of the US, and if they are
> having trouble they can probably move somewhere else. The low end jobs
> are now paying quite well. My gardener is paid $25 hour, which is more
> than what I make. It is this second wave effect that has really wiped
> out unemployment in huge numbers, and it is what will wipe out
> unemployment in Europe soon. It is not necessary for everyone to go to
> work for a dot com; only a few have to go to open up new jobs for many
> more.  And I haven't even begun to discuss the growth in the service
> sector for jobs for people with no time, like picking up dry cleaning
> and delivering meals...  


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